Brink-o-Vision: In-Game Footage At Last

By Alec Meer on November 30th, 2009 at 8:36 pm.

Cryptic, gravitas-laden teasers are of little use – genuinely seeing a game in action is all that matters when it comes to trailertime. So, it’s relief to be able to show you goodly human beans just what Splash Damage’s upcoming hybrid single/multiplayer shooter Brink really looks like. This video focuses specifically on the (optional) auto-jump/climb system they call SMART. It’s caused a bit of a fuss as Some Gentlemen have expressed that it must mean the game has been stupidised in the name of consolebox success, and similarly snobbish knee-jerk assertions. Maybe it will. But have you played it yet? No, you haven’t. So maybe it won’t. Gotcha!

This walkthrough vid tries to both explain and justify SMART’s existence. Does it help, Some Gentlemen? Oh, and it also does a sterling job of demonstrating that the uber-shiny screens we’ve seen to date really are very close to the real thing…

That’s Game Director Paul Wedgewood speaking, by the way, in an exclusive whatchamacallit for G4.

I’m very keen to play the thing as, despite having seen it played first-hand, I still feel as though I have only the faintest sense of how it all works. A little bit Enemy Territory, a little Unreal Tournament assault mode, a little bit APB… Hopefully these frail human hands of mine will be able to typespeak more about Brink to you soon.

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127 Comments »

  1. Spacegirl says:

    Any1 who talks about some “Consolization” in regards to this system is a fool.

    What the hell competitive FPS can you even do crap like this in anyway? Also it is optional and all the things you see there supposedly can be done with specific binds!

    So what are you even talking about? Ppl sound like the clown fanboys who post on every IGN page.

    I think the system looks kind of neat!

  2. sulkdodds says:

    it is as if he knows that people on the internet could be anyone at all and could wish you ill. maybe they are from your home town. maybe you walk past them every day and never realise it. maybe they’re RIGHT BEHIND YOU.

  3. iQue says:

    idtech4 never looked so good… can’t wait for this

  4. RGS says:

    Looks very good actually.

  5. Choca says:

    I don’t know why they won’t release the footage they showed us at E3 because it made Brink number one on my wait list for 2010.

  6. Adrian says:

    i also see the problem of having to look down to crouch or look up to jump. personally i would enjoy playing a game like this because i like fancy animations but i could never seriously play a shooter like this. i think one key for all jumping/climbing/wallrunning and one for all crouching/sliding/etc. actions would be better than just one for all.
    just imagine that screne with the metal detector. imagine on the other side of the detector is an enemy. with 2 seperate buttons you could shoot at the enemy then press the button for climbing up and get on top of the thing and keep shooting fronm up there. ud still see the fancy animation but you wouldn’T have to take the aim off the enemy as much.
    plus the time you loose by taking your mouse off the enemy will be gained again by jumping on the detector. the result should equal in zero but you used your environment and you’d see a lot more cool things in a game than usual.

  7. Schmung says:

    Could be interesting. The up/down flick to guide your movement should be familiar to anyone who played The Specialists. Worked fine there and should be fine here as well. I recall seeing somewhere that they still had a manual jump button and that the SMART controls were just for all the parkour stuff? I’d actually be more worried if I was thinking of playing this on console because it’s a lot harder to make those snappy up/down movements with a controller than it is a mouse. Anyways, it sounds very interesting.

    • Aubrey says:

      Do you have a link to the specialists? I’m afraid I never heard of it but it sounds like there’s a similar genus to the control scheme!

    • Schmung says:

      http://www.specialistsmod.net/ for you sir.

      Controls system basically worked by having an indicator to the left of your aiming reticule. When the dot was in the uppermost section you’d do a high move, lowermost a low move and the middle should be obvious enoguh. In combination with the stunt key and your usual jump/crouch buttons it allowed for all sorts of acrobatic stuff. You’d fairly quickly get into the habit of flicking you view to the desired location and very rapidly re-calibrating your view to aim or whatever. It’s a nice system TBH and something not really done elsewhere. As I said, it’s wonderful with a mouse, but would probably be a nightmare with a controller and I wonder if Brink employs a similar system

  8. El Stevo says:

    Systems like SMART are an important step forward for games. Hopefully they will soon become as ubiquitous as advanced physics.

  9. MultiVaC says:

    The SMART system looks pretty lame to me. It seems like the same same thing was accomplished more a more intuitive and skill based way by the Mirror’s Edge control method.

    • Schmung says:

      I wouldn’t like to try and headshot a moving target while moving and dealing with Mirrors Edge control system. It’s a nice way of bringing freedom of movement to the fore of the FPS without giving you twenty more buttons when you really want to be concentrating on aiming and suchlike.

  10. MultiVaC says:

    *accomplished IN a more intuitive…

    Why does the edit button keep going away?

  11. Okami says:

    The enter derogatory term of choice here who complain about this beeing “dumbing down for consoletards” are the same kind of people who are responsible for Dragon Quest IX having traditional turn based battles instead of the realm time system seen in the first few trailers.

    They’re nothing but bitter, conservative boys who’re adverse to change and see any kind of progress as a challenge to their narrow view of the world. Go play Quake 1 and pat yourself on the back for beeing true pc gamers.

  12. Taillefer says:

    I liked the transition from loading screen to game.

  13. XM says:

    I don’t like the gun wobbles as you walk that new games are adopting. They look too fake, I know fixed is very 90s but a subtle movement is best I think. But the game is looking good otherwise.

  14. quake1istehbestgameintheworld says:

    I like all this possibility of move, but the SMART system seems a little meh. In a fps, you just never look where you go, you look where is the fight. So i don’t see how i can be practical. And the fact all the move we have seen can be donne with just JUMP (Hold JUMP to climb) and crouch (run + crouch for a slide) let me think that this SMART is just here for the marketing.

  15. Ado says:

    I wouldn’t mind this SMART thing in combo with specific keys for the actions too.

    I think we need to remember that this SMART system is probably all in aid of helping console players move more freely, as this can all be achieved in PC games already. We don’t mind having a few extra keys to press around our WSAD key set but consoles are limited by the controller.

    Personally the single most annoying thing I find when playing on console is the controller, as it sucks in comparision to the KB Mouse combo. I want another game to throw the console gamers and hardcore gamers in the same arena again (like Q3 didfor a little while on DC) just so we can show them how lame they really are.

    Thinking the SMART system will probably be like a SMART car, seems like a good idea until you get behind the wheel…

  16. Kadayi says:

    Definitely like the idea of the streamlined context sensitive movement (I liked Mirrors Edge, but it was damn fiddly with M&K at times tbh), feature could potentially become as ubiquitous as primary and secondary weapons are these days.however not so keen on the butt ugly avatars (and apparent lack of females in the future) though. Promising, but that Art style, really?

  17. Lucas says:

    I’m mildly relieved that Brink is delayed until at least next fall. Splash Damage are great developers and more than deserve the time to make it a AAA game. I hope Bethesda’s quality control is better as a publisher than a developer.

  18. Max says:

    I’ve had an idea like this for a while, though I agree with the the other comments that one button for all actions is too simplified. I think that it would make more sense just to have the jump, sprint, and crouch buttons act intelligently with respect to your environment.

    Also, what’s he doing shaking that pistol so violently?

  19. Rei Onryou says:

    Assassin’s Creed introduced us to the idea of one-button allowing flowing, uninterrupted traversal of non-uniform environments from a third-person perspective. It proved that one-button does not necessarily remove a player from the game.

    Mirror’s Edge introduced us to the idea of flowing, uninterrupted traversal of non-uniform environments from a first-person perspective, with the use of two buttons. The game consisted purely of ways to access and surmount the player’s surroundings, while offering little else. It proved that platform games, which had always previously been an “out-of-body” experience for spatial awareness purposes, could happen in first-person.

    Brink is utilising both ideas. It’s just the next logical step in progression. Allowing a greater degree of freedom while not detracting from the core multi-player feature-set that we come to expect.

    I had always considered Mirror’s Edge to be a prototype to be looked at for future games and I’m glad that it’s Splash Damage who are attempting it. ET:QW didn’t quite hit the spot (I blame the “necessity” of vehicular combat in FPSes), but W:ET was an unbeatable team-based multi-player game and I hope that they’ll be returning to more of those ideas.

  20. Riddla says:

    I think part of the reason for the look/move SMART system being how it is, is this:

    In real life, for example, how hard would it be to chase an enemy up to that detector and without taking your eyes off him for a second, vault up on top of it while still shooting at him and to jump down the other side doing the same?

    In the game, as in real life, if you want to achieve flashy acrobatics in the middle of a gunfight, you’re going to have to take your eyes off the prize and expose yourself for the sake of a better vantage point, better cover etc in the heat of a firefight.

    I think what SD are trying to do is at least give the feel that you are playing as your character in the story, rather than a faceless infinitely-clonable automaton with no difference except the visual that titles such as Unreal Tournament and Quake spew forth at you.

    Looks very exciting, something I’m going to be giving a go for sure. :)

  21. eyemessiah says:

    @: “smart button that jumped for you”

    That’s why the only game for REAL PC-GAMING MEN is qwop. I hate those dumb games where you press W and it automatically runs for you!! Stupid console retardation!

    @Totalbiscuit’s friend re. SF4

    I agree – I’d love it if SF4 had a mode that was slightly slowed down, had more forgiving link timing and no-brainer special inputs – because there is a lot of SF4 that I understand but simply cannot execute. There is a whole level of gameplay that I’d love to be involved in but my reflexes\motor control simply aren’t up to it.

    That said I don’t begrudge the hardcore SF4 guys their twitchy reflexy challenges – I love to watch those guys play each other and there aren’t so many highly polished pure arcade games these days.

    @ The brink art style – I love it.

    Very ugly and french. As much as of a fan of beautiful androgynous anime manwomans as I am, there is something desirable about being really seriously ugly, particularly in a shooter. Shame there are no ugly girls in it! That would have been something.

    @ Not being able to perform complex movements without taking your reticule off your opponents forehead.

    I’d say this is fair. Certain mechanical FPS conventions might make us feel entitled to be able to headshot the guy in front of us, instantaneously mouselook 180 degrees and headshot the guy behind us – all while running down a flight of stairs – but there isn’t much of a justification for this beyond convention. It might be easy to believe that your fps-avatar is a featureless sphere floating effortlessly a few feet above the ground, able to fire in any direction at a moments notice regardless of motion – but generally speaking he supposed to be, yknow, a guy.

  22. Tei says:

    @eyemessiah

    “Very ugly and french. As much as of a fan of beautiful androgynous anime manwomans as I am, there is something desirable about being really seriously ugly, particularly in a shooter. Shame there are no ugly girls in it! That would have been something.”

    This is a dificult concept. I have made some research, and I have found that both the latin pulcher and the word neat comes from clean/nothing.
    http://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/neat

    Maybe the thing, is what adjetives you want to attach to “mans”. If “nice man” is a desirable idea, “beatifull man”, “pretty man”, “handsome man”, or something here. There are clearly two different styles. One ends with mans femenized, like in the assian animes (assian culture?), the other is our own style (exception made for the frenchs), where man try to look pretty/beaty. I don’t know what adjetives best describe the manly man, since most I know seems to end on the femenine man side and pedofilia. Maybe theres some defense to be made of the word/concept “mature/developed” as opposed “cute/childish”. Or “Simple, but not too simple”, and demonize feminized mans as “too simple”, a dumbification of man.