First Impressions: Strange Brigade
Picture the adventure and fun of Indiana Jones and The Mummy (the good Brenden Frasier version). Throw in co-op shooting against hordes of mummies. Then add in a pinch of old timey voice announcing. If you can picture that mixture, then you have a good idea of what Strange Brigade is all about!
Strange Brigade is a brand new IP from Rebellion. It is a third person action shooter for one to four players. The game, according to Rebellion, is heavily influenced by classic adventure serials and cinema from the 30’s. These adventure serials and movies featured adventurers exploring far reaches of the British Empire and the dangers that they faced.
The demo at E3 was only single player. The good news, however, is it ran really well for an alpha build. Ideally, four players would be the best when playing Strange Brigade. However, if the demo was any indication, then single players will have no problem enjoying the game and having a great time. In my demo, I picked one of four adventure seekers. My character, Professor Archimedes De Quincey, is an archaeologist and Oxford Scholar (BTW – absolutely love the name). The other characters are Nalangu Rushida, a Maasai warrior from Kenya; Gracie Braithwaite, a Lancashire engineer; and Frank Fairburne, a soldier with the ‘coldest eyes in the Empire.’ Right now, there are four characters, but more may be added in the future.
I was equipped with a pistol, machine gun, and sticky grenade. The game will feature more weapons to unlock (including a very powerful heavy weapon). Besides weapons, your character has an amulet that, when charged, will unleash a powerful attack that is very helpful in battle. At times, you can get surrounded by many enemies, and the amulet is a perfect weapon for clearing out enemies and giving you some breathing room. Not only do you have a variety of weapons and the amulet power, but you also have traps that can be triggered to clear out enemies. The traps include spike traps, flames, and twirling blades that cut enemies in half.
One of my favorite parts of the demo is the variety in the enemies. In the demo, there were plenty of undead enemies to conquer. However, there are a variety of special enemies that makes things very challenging. I fought a huge ten foot Minotaur, mummies that would reach out and summon more undead, speedy mummies that are quick and merciless, and enemies with long range capabilities. I loved the amount of enemies because it made me think about strategy and using my weapons and amulet wisely. When a huge horde is after you, the environmental traps are especially important to your survival.
The demo also featured some simple puzzles, which was a nice addition to the game. There are specific things to shoot in order to unlock doors. I can see some good replay value when it comes to exploring different areas in the map.
I was really impressed by Strange Brigade. For an alpha build, it ran extremely well. For me, the co-op component is going to be the selling point. I had fun with single player, but I want to destroy undead enemies with my friends. I absolutely love the 1930’s feel to the game, and the announcer fits perfectly with the narrative and feel of the game. Strange Brigade will make many gamers happy, and I can’t wait to play more! We will bring you more information as it becomes available. No release date yet (most likely 2018 release). It will be available on Xbox One, Playstation 4, and PC. For now, please check out some great gameplay footage from Strange Brigade!