A tribute to LawBreakers
Im flying through the air chasing the enemies healer, as a rocket flies past my head, without a single though I hit a kit to turn my weapon behind me and and shoot back at the titan who fired the rocket, while still chasing down the enemy healer. I land on a platform and blink forward infront of the fleeing medic empting my marksman’s automatic pistol in to him, and finishing it off with a kick. Seconds later a titan rocket ends my streak, exploding my head like a balloon. This is LawBreakers, the new game from BossKey productions and Nexon.
For the last 5 years First Person Shooters have had a problem. They feel bland, slow, and at times honestly like shovel ware. To fix this problem FPS legend Cliff Bleszinski left Microsoft to found BossKey Industries, and change FPS games forever. The result of 5 years of development, half a dozen betas, and a butt ton of work, that game, LawBreakers, is finally launching on stream next week. So sit down, and get ready to read, because im about to tell you why you need to spend $30 to get this game. You owe it to yourself to give LawBreakers a try if only because it is the opposite of everything FPS games are right now. Its injecting a breath of fresh air in to a genre that’s so full of stale old games that even the hard core fans are sick of it. Even if you played early alphas or the first beta I promise you this is basically a totally different game.
At release the game will have a full 8 classes (With at least 2 more planned according to Cliffy B.) Multiple game modes including a point capture mode, a fun take on a ballgame called “Blitzball” and of course the classic battery mode the game is known for. All of the modes have had a dose of balance added, and there is now a match making system that places in games based on skill. This was a major problem I had before, as towards the end of the closed beta I would end up playing full 5 man teams that were practicing and getting completely wiped out.
Everything just feels so polished and done now. I can hardly believe this game is a beta, and I honestly think its an important step in diversifying the currently bland FPS genre. There are colors here that I haven’t seen since I played Quake in the early 2000’s. The maps remind me of old school shooters like Unreal Tournament, and the game modes seem fresh. Perhaps most of all I like that team death match has been left out entirely.
So what does that leave us with? Well the game has one of the best class systems in modern gaming. There are no classes that aren’t usefull. As of writing and release we will have 8 classes, but Cliff has hinted there are at least two more in development. IF you want a full rundown the Lawbreakers YouTube channel has you covered. For now we have a very original mix of abilities and characters, with a melee assassin, a juggernaut with his shotgun, an enforcer who wields a powerful assault rifle, the flying vanguard with her chain gun, the Titan with his massive rocket launcher, the battle medic with her grenade launcher and the two marksman classes, the Gunslingers with dual pistols, and the wraith with his machine pistol. These 8 classes each have three abilities, and most also have a secondary weapon that helps transform the role from a simple rock paper scissors game in to a much more complex animal.
For example the assassin class’s primary weapon is melee, two swords that do heavy DPS up close, but are sort of useless in a long range fight. So she has a secondary weapon to make her more effective at ranged duels, a powerful shotgun that does increases damage at close range. Almost all classes have this balance on them, and it makes them wonderfully fun to play, because unlike other hero shooters its really difficult to hard counter any class.
In addition to secondary weapons each class has at least two abilities, one is usually movement based, and another damage based. Even the basic solder class (the enforcer) has a grenade, and a missile launcher to supplement his kit. There is just so much fun to be had here when you’re playing. My personal favorite class, a marksman called the gunslinger, has dual pistols so he doesn’t get a secondary weapon, but he does get a projectile knife that also sends out a sonar pulse, and his guns do two very different things. All of it just makes for a tight fantastic shooting experience that I haven’t had the like of in almost a decade, and I haven’t even gotten to the gravity features yet.
Gravity is the main premise of this game, it’s all about the gravity. When lawbreakers first launched it was emphasized that the game was going to play games with gravity and wow did the team at Bosskey deliver. Every single map has one of these zero-g zones, where you sort of fly through, and if you jump you jump higher, and if your playing the right class you can do really neat tricks! Its just such a refreshing and fun mechanic. It reminds me of when Titan Fall 1 first did wall running, it was something that no one had ever seen before, but that eventaully became standard. I really think cliff and the team are innovating on this front as well as the weapon diversity.
If your interested in classes the Lawbreakers has the mix you desire. I loved being able to switch midmatch from a marksman to a more tanky class, and even the juggernaut, who arguably is the most simple class, has depth. I love flying around the map using my pistol to snipe from above, and I love walking on the ground and picking off helpless floating enemies who jumped in Zero-G. All this at a breakneck pace that I haven’t experienced in a game since playing quake all those years ago.
Well that about wraps it up. In case you cant tell I absolutely love this game and everything that goes with it. Ill be playing and streaming the game extensively post launch and hopefully I can find a good group of people to hook up with and play.
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