We got the chance to preview Brink in my hometown of NYC, which was a pleasure in itself, but since the core gameplay I got to take part in at last years E3, Brink has come a long way. First off the character customization was so in-depth, you could spend hours changing your skin tone, voice/accent, tattoos, physical attributes and much more. Simply picking the head on your character will give you the option to change your accent, facial hair, face paint, facial tattoos, facial scars, face gear(masks), hair or head gear. This goes on for each area of the body giving you the ability to change Jackets, Colors, Body Tattoos, Shirts, Pants and the assortment is huge! Even with Archetype you can change your look, skin, nose, etc. That customization also extends itself to the weapons with the ability to have custom skins on your guns as well as choosing specific attachments for each weapon.
There were literally tons of features that I got to see that I have never seen before, for instance one that stood out the most were the ‘controller presets’ to other first-person shooters. Instead of giving you different control setups, Brink actually lets you choose presets such as Call of Duty, Counter Strike and many more, so you can quickly pick the shooter you like the controls the best in and pick that preset, then your done. Of course you are not limited to the presets as you can customize the controls exactly how you want them.
Brink and it’s drop-in/drop-out 8 player co-op draws you away from just wanting to stick to one class as there are four different ones. You can simply find a near by hub that lets you change your class depending on the situation at hand. There is the Engineer, Medic, Soldier and Operative. You can level up and gain abilities that are specific to each class as well as ones that are in place no matter what class you play as. I did notice a ‘Buy abilities’ tab leading me to believe you use XP to get them, but don’t quote on that as our time was limited during the event. I played as a Medic quite a bit as I was able to heal myself on the go and getting near downed team mates I could toss them a epipad/ syringe and the cool thing about this is that the downed player does not have to use the syringe I through to him to get back up as he has a choice to also re-spawn at our base. This can be for a number of reasons.
Our main mission of many different ones, was to escort our tank to a designated area while we played against the AI trying to slow us down by damaging the tank and killing us so no one can be there to escort the tank halting it. There are also side tasks each class might have for instance, I switched to my soldier class to learn that I could set a charge in a area that would give our team a short cut back to the tank we had escorted a ways up, after re-spawning at our base, giving us a nice advantage. As soon as I switch back to a medic I see an AI Engineer patching up the shortcut I just made! His life ended quickly. The Engineer is also the one who must repair the tank if it has taken too much damage in this mission. So this leaves me from wanting to switch from class to class doing side tasks to help the team rather than sticking to one class and one class alone.
There are also Challenges in the game that are separate from your normal unlocks. These challenges give you much more rewarding things. In each challenge you can unlock three stars with each star unlocking something new. Now Splash Damage went about a little differently as that third star might be the hardest to unlock but it might not be the best item, so players don’t have to be limited to getting all the cool stuff based on their skill. These challenges are also tracked on a friends only leaderboard. One example of a Challenge called “Parkour This” which requires you you to race around check points as a light body type. All these awesome features in the game, but by far one of the coolest things is SMART system which allows you to flow over object jumping and sliding making you feel like Spiderman. Just pressing the button won’t bring you to a halt in any situation, getting you into places fast when you need to be and out of places quickly when your in trouble.
Here are some things about Brink you should know:
Publisher: Bethesda Softworks
Developer: Splash Damage
Release Date: May 20th
Platform: Games for Windows / Xbox 360 / PlayStation®3 system
Genre: First Person Shooter
Brink is an immersive first-person shooter that blends single-player, co-op, and multiplayer gameplay into one seamless experience, allowing you to develop your character whether playing alone, with your friends, or against others online. You decide the combat role you want to assume in the world of Brink as you fight to save yourself and mankind’s last refuge. Brink offers a compelling mix of dynamic battlefields, extensive customization options, and an innovative control system that will keep you coming back for more.
Brink takes place on the Ark, a man-made floating city that is on the brink of all-out civil war. Originally built as an experimental, self-sufficient and 100% “green” habitat, the reported rapid rise of the Earth’s oceans has forced the Ark to become home to not only the original founders and their descendants but also to thousands of refugees. With tensions between the two groups growing, Security and Resistance forces are locked in a heated battle for control of the Ark. Which side will you choose?
Not Just Another Hero – Brink’s advanced player customization offers a near-endless combination of looks for your character – allowing for the appearance of your character to be truly unique. As you progress through the game and acquire more experience, you’ll have even more opportunities for customization.
Two Sides to Every Story – Choose to fight through the single player campaign as either a member of the Resistance or the Security and then take your same character online to play cooperatively or competitively against other players.
Blurring the Lines – Take your unique character online at any time you choose! Brink allows you to seamlessly move between your single player campaign, co-op with friends, and intense multiplayer action. Multiplayer takes the story online where you can play with up to seven other people (or AI characters) cooperatively as you take on the opposing faction or with up to 16 players competitively.
Play SMART – Brink uses the familiar shooter controls that you’re used to, without frustrating, artificial constraints and adds a new feature: the SMART button. When you press the SMART button, the game dynamically evaluates where you’re trying to get to, and makes it happen. Whether you’re a seasoned FPS veteran or someone just getting started, you’ll be able to make more intelligent decisions during the fast-paced action with SMART.
Context-Sensitive Goals and Rewards – Objectives, communications, missions, and inventory selection are all dynamically generated based on your role, your condition, your location, your squad-mates, and the overall status of the battle in all gameplay modes. You’ll always know exactly where to go, what to do when you get there, and what your reward will be for success.