While I’m mostly a fan of first-person shooters, there’s still a big place in my heart for the genre’s cousin, the third-person shooter. The first one that I played was Uncharted 2: Among Thieves back in 2009, and since then I try and play as many in the genre as possible. So when I first heard about Strange Brigade a little over a year ago, I was automatically excited.
It’s been a while since I’ve played a really fun third-person shooter (the last one I can think of, ironically, is Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End). But after recently playing an entire mission from Strange Brigade hands-on, I can say that I’m very excited for the game’s release later this month.
For those that don’t know, Strange Brigade is a shooter that prides itself on cooperation. You can play the game with any number of players (between one to four), although for my demo I was only playing with one other person. Before the start of each mission, players have the ability to choose their character, weapons, items, and amulet, the latter of which is a special ability that you can activate during the mission.
One thing that I was genuinely happy to see was the amount of character customization that I could use in my gameplay experience. While the characters themselves can’t be changed that much as far as their looks, I was genuinely surprised by the amount of variety there is in your loadout before each match.
I only had a limited amount of weapons due to the fact that I was playing an early version of the game, though from what I saw it’s clear that there will be plenty of other options when the game releases. While I don’t recall the exact number of items and amulets that I had at my disposal I know that there were plenty of options, so if you like shooters that provide flexibility (and frankly, who doesn’t) then you’ll feel right at home here.
While the game centers largely around co-op shooting, during my time with the game I also came across plenty of interesting story points to explore. Just as shown in the game’s trailers, the cutscenes in Strange Brigade are presented in black-and-white and narrated by a man who sounds like he’s straight out of the 1930s. While the game’s 1930s aesthetic may not be for everyone, personally I love its theme as its generally not explored in media like this (especially in games), and it works really well here.
In terms of the gameplay itself, there’s nothing too out of the ordinary to expect from Strange Brigade, although that’s not a bad thing. The gameplay and controls themselves are solid, although I do think that the aiming needs to be tweaked a bit, as I found myself missing a good number of times. One really fun aspect of the gameplay, though, is the fact that there are a ton of environmental traps located around each mission. The trap that I liked the most brings giant, propeller-like blades from the ground and swings them really fast, killing any enemies who get stuck in them. Aside from the giant fan, I look forward to seeing what other hazards that Rebellion Entertainment comes up with for the full release.
All in all, Strange Brigade is a ton of fun. It’s unique 1930s theming, loadout variety, and environmental traps make the game stand out from other third-person shooters, and I can’t wait to get my hands on it at the end of the month.
Strange Brigade will release for PS4, Xbox One, and PC on August 28th, 2018.