The Five Best Things About The LawBreakers Closed Alpha
After a dirty weekend with the closed Alpha for LawBreakers, there’s a fair few things to reflect upon. LawBreaker has garnered a steady amount of hype, and for good reason. These are the five best things about the Alpha
There’s no perks, loadouts or any of the elements that plague modern shooters. It doesn’t sound like a big deal, but it gives the game a sense of freedom. Each character posses a set of skills and two unique weapons. Flowing into roles and counters, the weapon and skills on offer work in a similar method to rock, scissor, paper mechanics.
Loadouts and customization options are great, as long as they fit. Far too many shooters try to force in the feature, cheapening the gameplay in the process. LawBreakers plays with a healthy of flow, allowing each character to gel well with the game’s rule sets and mechanics.
Each character posses a special ability which provides the opportunity to change the direction of a game. Similar to ‘ultimates’, these skills make use of a character’s trait. From shouldered mounted heat seeking missiles, to firing electricity out of your hands, LawBreakers has a decent range of unique specials
They’ll slowly build up throughout the game, allowing everyone to earn at least one. Skilled players can build up their special by taking out enemies and taking objectives. This builds up a sense of momentum, encouraging players to be active rather than passive.
Clean map design
Modern shooters love to litter their maps with stuff. Ever since Call of Duty 4′s ‘four seconds till cover’ rule, map design has struggled to break free. Quality over quantity, it’s a good principle to follow with multiplayer maps. LawBreakers seems to subscribe to this, mostly in how it avoids unneeded clutter. Maps are clean and direct, hosting gameplay nicely.
Open areas for the zero gravity, wide corridors to encourage movement. There’s a few spots that allow players to deploy devious tactics, such as backdooring and ambushing the enemy. With only one map in the Alpha, with more coming in future test, the action still felt fresh across numerous play sessions. Old school influences can be felt in how the map loops and arches around itself. Refreshingly clean and wonderfully crafted.
Different strokes for different folks
The Alpha offers four different classes to play as. Each class fills a role within the context of the game. Titans are a slow, heavy hitting, class that works nicely as a defensive unit. Their damage output is impressive, but comes at the cost of speed and flexibility.Assassin seemed to be the most popular choice. A mixture of mobility and burst damage allows them to dart around the map stacking up kills. Their grappling hook acts as the primary appeal, allowing players to swing around the environment, as well connecting to enemy players.
Vanguard acts as a strange middle ground. Their jet packs provide some cheap thrills, opening up a wealth of strategies. Encforcers are pretty much the vanilla shooter class, not much really to write home about, but still performs well within the game. It feels like each class has something to offer, with others providing enhanced challenge.
Old school, new uniform
LawBreakers feels like it descends from the school of classic multiplayer shooters. The way it plays, how the map feeds into itself, it all feels classical. Of course the traits of the classes add a touch of modern, but even they adhere to classic weaponry. If you’ve played Unreal or Quake, you’ll pick up tastes of those classics while play LawBreakers.
Even in its Alpha state, the flow of the gameplay gels nicely with the core elements. There’s a few odd design choices, mainly health stations and general movement speed, but they’re deal breaker. It may not be the perfect replication of classic gameplay, but it does make its on mark on the style.
*Footage contains mature language*