PREVIEWSPillars of Eternity Preview
For Obsidian's crowdfunded love letter to Infinity Engine games like Icewind Dale and Baldur's Gate, I was impressed by its willingness to pull back the curtain and let me see the machinery behind it.
We've all been there. Everyone remembers that mission. You and your partner are climbing up the mountains in the snow, striving to pull some slick clandestine operation about getting some intel on a bad guy, or something similar (because let's face...
A lot of shooters these days try to cover up their sub-optimal mechanics with fluff. We’ve seen plenty of stories that nobody cares about, and QTEs added when they don't belong. City Interactive knows many gamers just want some clean, unadulterated shooting action, and to satisfy the craving it began construction of Alien Rage—previously known as Alien Fear.
If you enjoy blasting away enemies, then Alien Rage is your cup of tea. The game is set in a sci-fi world and uses the Unreal Engine to deliver a dark and gritty atmosphere. In a way it’s reminiscent of games like Gears of War and Killzone, but instead you’re fighting savage aliens. The visuals are already sharp during alpha and are some of the best ever seen from a budget title.
When playing Alien Rage it’s all about maintaining a safe perimeter, landing headshots, and taking advantage of the environment. To keep the game’s simplicity interesting, City Interactive has made sure to make gunplay cohesive. It’s rare to play a game that gives so much feedback when you fire weapons, and there are ten of them to offer flexibility. Following the sci-fi theme, each weapon is futuristic and has two fire modes. Learning how to best utilize them is the best way to conquer Alien Rage’s challenges.
Enemies can be difficult to overcome and have a variety of flavors. Many utilize cover to take pop shots at you making it hard to retaliate, while cloaked enemies will charge at you with deadly claws. The 21 different enemy types will also be accompanied by 8 bosses, many of which are large and intimidating. Make sure to bring your A-game as you attempt to conquer all of Alien Rage's 14 levels.
Don’t think you won’t be rewarded for performing well, though. There will be a variety of unlocks obtained by achieving high scores, and they can be used in subsequent playthroughs. You may even choose to take advantage of them when playing on a higher difficulty. Additionally, a leaderboard rich with statistics will add competition for those who seek it.
Later this year you’ll be able to play Alien Rage for yourself and experience the transition from classic arcade shooters to the modern era. It’ll be available for an affordable price on Xbox Live Marketplace, PlayStation Network, and through digital distribution on PC.