I love nothing more than climbing into a giant robotic war machine and reigning terror on other giant robotic war machines, but unfortunately fuel prices are high and I’ve been given a warning from the authorities about destroying my neighbours yard. To keep me from going to jail you can do exactly that for free with Hawken!
Okay, so I don’t really have a giant mech-warrior, but this weekend I had the pleasure of playing Hawken, an awesome FREE robotic FPS that’s currently doing some beta testing. I was lucky enough to get a code thanks to Nvidia and played the hell out of this game over the weekend in their closed beta event.
The game is fairly simple to play, and looks fantastic. You’re given a fairly basic machine to begin with that you can upgrade with awesome weapons and armour to create the ultimate robotic killing machine either using the in game currency that you earn by playing the game, or with points you can buy with real cash.
The graphics take on a very grainy CCTV style look, and you’re field of view is through the machines cockpit which is a fantastic touch, there are a series of different dials that show your currently HP, Fuel level, and weapons heat. It all looks a little daunting and complicated at first, but once you see past all the dials and numbers you start to realise that it feels familiar to most other FPS games. That’s not necessarily a bad thing, in fact its great, this way you already know most of the controls and can jump right into the game play.
The Game play as a whole is fairly diverse, you can find yourself flying or walking around an area for a while and then turn a corner and you’re immersed in a fast paced battle between you and at times several other battle bots. What’s great about this game is that you can’t be subtle or sneaky because of course, you’re walking round in a giant robot, you’d have to be stupid to miss that. I tried out a few play styles such as running and gunning, stealthy corner hugging, and up high on top of a building sniper-style gaming, but in Hawken the only game playing style that really succeeds is the running and gunning and the skill you can apply to that, you can’t sneak around in this game because of the huge crushing footsteps nor can you stand on top of a building and “snipe” other bots because you’ll find yourself being a sitting duck for every other person that sees you perched on the edge of a building.
There are three different game modes; Team Deathmatch, Deathmatch, and Missile. The first two are pretty straight forward, but the Missile game type takes on a similar feel for a King of the Hill mixed with Capture the Flag. Each team must attack or defend as the Missile Silo’s, One team must protect their Base ship that you can see flying over the game area, they do this by stopping the opposing team from activating the missile silo’s and having them turn against the base ship.
This closed beta weekend was a great way to show players what this game has to offer, it’s not too different from the style of game play that you find on most FPS but that’s what makes the focus on the robotic warfare stand out, and adds a great twist to the classic gaming genre.
Enlist now over at http://www.playhawken.com to hold your username for when this truly great free to play game launches in 44 days!