Ravaged – the new post-apocalyptic first person shooter from 2 Dawn games – released today and with that the review embargo has been lifted so we get a chance to tell you what we think about the latest entry in to the team based fps arena. I got a chance to spend quite a bit of time playing our review copy, both on my own and with the developers of the game, and here’s what I can tell you about it…
One of the first things I noted when I started up the game is that the folks over at 2 Dawn games did a really job on the sound. I’ve played a lot of FPS titles in my time and one thing I have always noticed is that the sounds just didn’t feel right. Some have volume issues, others have no echo or reverb which makes the sound of distant gun fire sound hollow and unrealistic and some of the FPS games out there just shouldn’t have bothered putting sound in at all because they fail at it.
Ravaged, though, has it just right. Distant gun fire and explosions sound just right so when there is a fire fight going on over by the enemy’s resources, your brain can rationalize what your ears are telling it. I can’t think of a more accurate way to say it than “it’s just right”.
Time to start playing, you’ll be selecting a server to play on, just like any other online FPS. Once you’ve selected a server, you will get assigned to a team and will pick a class to play with. The classes are the time tested and trued formula where you’ll have a sniper, a light assault, a medium assault and a heavy. Each of the classes will have its own strengths and weaknesses, like one would expect. Some of those strengths and weaknesses are weapon based, others are movement based. You’ll notice very quickly that a sniper can move a lot faster than a heavy can and can, of course, put lead downrange at much greater distances than the other classes but will, of course, die a lot faster in a firefight than will his better armored team mates.
Once you get in the game, you’ll start to see and hear what sets this game apart from others in this genre. The game modes are, again, some of the tried and trued modes we all know and love but they are mixed and matched and made to fit the landscape. The “capture the flag” mode, for example, doesn’t require you to capture a generic, colored flag. Instead, you’re stealing gasoline and bringing it back to your side. At the same time there are flag points to be captured around the field which mixes in a domination type gameplay to the mode.
You’ll also see the wide variety of vehicles, from helicopters to cars with grenade launchers mounted on them to Road Warrior style whirly-birds, you have a lot of transportation options to choose from. Be careful with the helicopters and whirly-birds, though – They’re tough to fly and there’s always someone stalking you with an RPG or Stinger launcher. They’re also a LOT of fun to fly, though so definitely try them out.
As for the gameplay – It’s smooth and pretty. I had no trouble getting 60 fps on the highest graphics settings, which means they’ve done a great job at optimizing the graphics code since my machine is hardly a beast. Controls are the standard WASD/mouselook style with selectable inversion for in-flight controls and are very responsive…and those sounds – oh lordy the sounds. They’re amazing.
On the down-side – Ravaged doesn’t take huge leaps at breaking new ground. There are some interesting features and the folks over at 2 Dawn have tried to make sure that this isn’t the same old, same old but the FPS genre in general needs a serious re-working. Ravaged is most certainly better than your average FPS (It blows Battlefield and COD’s multiplayer games right out of the water) but I’m still waiting for someone to come along and re-define the genre. It needs to happen.
Ravaged is available TODAY on PC and can be purchased for $24.99 through Steam, Rain Digital Games, 2DawnGames, GameStop, Gamers Gate, Origin, and GameFly. If you’re an FPS fan, I suggest getting this one. It’s also worth saying that a demo version is available which will allow players to play on the same servers as full version players so if you’re on the fence, grab it up and check it out.
Also, check out the launch trailer, below. We think it’s sexy!