The RPS Verdict: Brink

By RPS on May 13th, 2011 at 12:26 pm.


Brink is here, and we’ve been playing it. We’ve even got some servers up. But what do Alec, Jim, and Quintin actually think about it? Let’s find out.

Jim: Brink then, the long-awaited multiplayer shooter from British devs Splash Damage. Everyone had a bit of a play?

Quintin: I have shot so many men.

Alec: But were they men? Or were they computer-men? (I have also shot so many men.)

Quintin: Perversely, I’ve also brought so many back to their feet! And then watched them get shot again. I’ve been focusing on the Medic class. How about you two?

Alec: I’ve been medic too, for the most part. I think a reasonable number of players feel the same way.

Jim: I have alternated pretty evenly between all the classes, not least because no one seems to go engineer or covert dude when you actually need them for objectives. I feel like even though the game goes to great length to explain its objective-based stuff, you really have to have played each map a couple of times to actually know what’s going on.

Quintin: Especially so in single player, where your allied bots aren’t the brightest.

Jim: Okay let’s explain what single player means. Brink’s single player is not REALLY single player. Instead the game has set up each of the levels as missions within an over-arching campaign, each with its own little story and interstitial cutscenes. That means you play multiplayer maps with bots. If it were being judged as a single player game, we’d say “lovely setting” but er what.

Alec: Yes, this whole ‘mingleplayer’ thing isn’t really true.

Quintin: Right. I expect we’ve spent more time with those bots than most players ever will, what with us getting the game prior to the servers going live.

Alec: I’d really hoped that all the talk about the narrative and it flowing like a singleplayer game was going to lead to something meaty and surprising, but while the cutscenes and the voicework is strong, the nature of the game – winwinwin – means the temptation to simply skip ‘em to get straight into things is almost overwhelming. Which means you do end up treating it as, basically, TF2.

Quintin: Yeah. It’s an odd one. I enjoyed those brief 30 second cutscenes so, so much. I adore the effort they’ve put into amassing voice actors with different accents, to drive home the Ark’s nature as a global safehouse.


Jim: Yes, which feels like a waste of fantastic world. The script and world design is really very strong. I’d like to play a Guns & Conversation game in that world.

Alec: And everyone’s so morally confused, there’s no right answer and all that, but of course once you’ve seen every cutscene once you’ll just skip ‘em from thereon in.

Quintin: That said, have you seen how many audio logs you can unlock? And then you have to listen to them while staring at the main menu?

Alec: There’s a lot of menu stuff I think has gone a bit wrong, especially on pc

Jim: Menu stuff?

Alec: I keep getting chucked all over the place in character customisation; press the wrong Back and it takes you out of the whole thing rather than back to the paper doll so you can change from fiddling with trousers rather than fiddling with beards.

Quintin: I didn’t have too much of a problem with the menu.

Jim: Ah yes, that failure to navigate the beard selection bit is crappy. Also I don’t understand if the filter is just broken in the server browser.

Quintin: The servers- yes.

Alec: It’s got so much going on in terms of UI and menu, but I don’t feel it’s got that ease and slickness it needs despite looking as though it does.

Jim: The character design and customisation is totally fucking brill though, best ever for battle-men.

Alec: Indeed, I can get lost in that.

Quintin: It is. And annoyingly, I peaked very early. I made a topless man covered in bandages and plasters that I really, really liked, and then was happy. I don’t want to cover him in fetish gear and skater jackets and tattoos.

Alec: I do have the serious reservation that you don’t really notice what anyone looks like in game, because it’s a flood of UI elements and tiny people running away. Actually, that bothers me a bit – there’s a bit too much clothing dedicated towards a certain kind of punkery. I’d hope it would be a bit broader in its aesthetic.

Jim: They do appear in cutscenes, actually.


Quintin: And now we’re getting back to this idea of Brink wasting a fantastic world.

Jim: And yes, the world is fantastic. That doesn’t translate to the level design, for some reason.

Alec: Yes, the level design. It’s bewildering corridors with epic backdrops, isn’t it? And there’s a strong, strong need to learn the maps.

Jim: I barely notice the epic backdrops, to be honest. It’s tunnel city.

Quintin: It absolutely is. While the levels all have plenty of paths through them, almost all of those paths are incredibly enclosed.

Jim: And yes, it’s Quake-like in its demands on spatial learning.

Quintin: That has massive repercussions.

Jim: I noticed in the game before last we basically chokepointed the map across two corridors for the last 10 minutes.

Alec: And in its combat. I mean, it’s spawn point hell at times, spawn camp hell, I mean. Totally rewards the hardcore and merciless at the expense of the funtimes player.

Quintin: What? I haven’t encountered spawn camping at all. Unless you mean the enemies blockading the corridor outside of your spawn. Which is really no different to them or you blockading any other corridor.

Alec: The first of the two games we played this morning, my team could not get more than about 10 metres from the spawn. There were two very short corridors pointing into that area, and the other team had them totally locked down. It was just carnage for about 10 minutes.

Quintin: Right. And this is the point I really want to make. We’re finally emerging from that old school shooter design wherein the game is no fun if you’re outclassed. Brink feels like a return to it.

Alec: Clearly a coordinated team could find ways around that, but that sort of thing means it’s just going to feel punishing for the more mainstream player Brink wants.

Jim: Yes, the game feels “hardcore” in its structure, even if the dakka-dakka guns and general combat dynamics are Call-Of-Duty-accessible. As in, I think it will reward very tight teamplay, and probably be less interesting as a public game. (I mean that’s almost ALWAYS true, but specifically here.)

Alec: Yeah, it doesn’t feel like it could break out like TF2. If you’re not in the club already, you probably won’t want to join it.

Jim: I am enjoying the combat though, i have to say. It feels resonable tight when you are chucking around ammo and health between a small group of you. That stuff really works.

Alec: Tell you what, I like the Challenges a lot, and they’re the closest to it being a singleplayer game . It pushes the more interesting systems front and centre. Reminds me a little of Mirror’s Edge, the way the campaign was all kinds of gone-wrong, but the race challenges made it make sense. This, of course, may mean it’s a long-term success. There’s a desire for that, especially what with TF2 becoming so hatty.

Jim: Agreed, the challenges are a neat addition.

Quintin: You know, I was watching TV with the girl last night, and an advert for Brink came on. It looked incredible- people parkour-ing over rusty containers, scrambling all over this beautiful playground. And that’s the game I want to play. I don’t want to be pushed down into gulleys and killzones.

Alec: I was looking at the screenshots I’ve taken vs the screenshots we were sent for previews and things. And it’s just heartbreaking. A mess of text and cramped spaces, not these fantastic looking, exaggerated muscleguys in apple-crisp locales.

Jim: Ah yes, the SMART? How do people feel about that?

Quintin: Very, very happy. It’s great.

Jim: Sliding to dodge gunfire works a treat.


Alec: yeah, I’m good with SMART. I pretty much have it held down all the time.

Quintin: Sliding is great. Learning to use the Agile body type is great. Clambering up obstacles to get to a vantage point is great. My only problem with it is that you can only ever clamber up about six feet.

Jim: And in the game?

Quintin: Shit, are we still talking about Brink?

Alec: Yeah, it feels a bit mathematical, learning which areas you can climb and which are just a bit too high.

Jim: I think the thing that disappoints me most, and it’s a bit of an odd gripe, is that all the weapons (grenades aside) are basically dakka-dakka machinguns. There’s no big thumping plasma weapon, no flamethrower to mix it up.

Alec: there are some shotguns, which I guess come to the fore if you’re defending something.

Jim: It feels oddly like the multiplayer of Kingpin, too, and the flamethrower was what made that sing. And yes, true, there ARE shotguns.

Alec: It’s got that problem of wanting to offer all the unlocks and upgrades in the world, but also fearing that anyone gets too much of an advantage. I wonder if that’s why the weapons are so of a kind.

Quintin: On the subject, the grenades are pathetic. You can be staring at one from seven feet away when it goes off. Unless it’s a flashbang. In which case, yeah, staring is unwise.

Jim: But it despite the diversity of weapons there doesn’t seem to be any diversity.

Quintin: You mentioned Call of Duty before- even CoD has crossbows, rocket launchers, knives.

Alec: Let’s talk about the unlocks and upgrades. I’m quite into that stuff.

Jim: Ah yes, progression. That seems to work really well!

Alec: I’m often a bit sniffy about it, but there’s a good sense of creating my Build rather than simply getting better stuff.

Jim: Although I was annoyed I had to unlock the body types.

Jim: Not sure how quickly I’ll max out levels though. It doesn’t seem like it will take long.

Quintin: I like the progression a lot. I’m also a touch annoyed that you’re not rewarded for specialising quite so much.

Alec: there’s broadly a choice between tactical nitty-gritty and being simply a more robust fighter, which I think works well, me being me, I go for the easy option of more health, more ability supplies.

Quintin: You can happily max out one of the four classes, and if you want to play that class and that class alone, you end up buying stuff you don’t necessarily want.


Alec: It doesn’t want you to specialise, is the thing. If there’s an engineer shortage, it wants you to swallow your medic pride and switch to engineer. I can see why they did it; whether it feels right for the players is a different matter

Quintin: Mm.

Jim: That’s kind of true of all class-based games though, you’ve got to be able to do more than one thing.

Quintin: In terms of closing thoughts, well, we are being negative. It’s a solid shooter. We expected too much, perhaps?

Alec: Yeah, we talked ourselves/were talked into thinking it would be something far beyond a decent team shooter

Quintin: Tell you what is spectacular. The audio.

Alec: It really is a decent team shooter, and in time I reckon we’ll be happier about that. It’s the ever-present problem of hype and expectation, but I think this was critically, critically miss-described to the outside world at important points in its development

Jim: It’s a disappointing game, but not a BAD game, bugs aside, and those will be fixed. I’m enjoying plenty. That said, I am only enjoying it about as much as Section 8 Prejudice, which has a lot more crazy crap going on in it. Brink is JUST men with guns. There’s no vehicles, no getting into a fight with a giant ape bot, and no falling out of the sky. Given that Section 8 is the underdog this month, it’s also $15 and has coherent single player.

Alec: I will happily play it lots, but I will be sighing sadly whenever I remember that the game I thought it would be doesn’t exist Is it Splash Damage’s best game? I know Wolf ET had more impact, but I feel like this is a greater accomplishment in many ways.

Quintin: I don’t know about that, but I like it a lot for it’s intensity.

Jim: Quake Wars was a more interesting game, but this is better designed. What I’ve enjoyed most is in those moments when a team coheres, and you’re charging out together, people leaping over barricades, hurling buffs back and forth, laying down fire. That stuff is magic.

Alec: they’ve made a team shooter that doesn’t feel like a mod, doesn’t feel like COD, that includes a bunch of very complicated elements without being overwhelming. They may not have lived up to all the originally talked of, but that they actually made all this stuff work is pretty impressive.


Jim: It’s not the sum of its promises, no. But also most of the criticisms that surfaced in the initial barrage of 360 reviews are tosh. One was even criticising it for rewarding teamplay, which made little sense. This game cannot be judged on its single-player, because it’s a demanding multiplayer game, and utterly focused on that. Also, I was reading somewhere that RPS would be an apologist for this game, and I’m sorry to have to confirm that dude’s opinions of us, but the point is that Brink is simply a bit disappointing, it is by no means a bad game as some people have attempted to argue. That’s just nonsense. (And if they’re making that judgement based on the 360 version, well, you can imagine my feelings on that.) The bugs are atrocious, the pace of the game is odd, the overall sense is one of it being less than we’d hoped. But it’s still quite something.

Quintin: It does have it’s moments. I was carrying the objective on a map this morning, hunkered down behind some cover with the enemy closing in from one side and my freshly-respawned team-mates sprinting and leaping and clambering towards me from the other direction. It was a perfect race, and in the end they showed up first and we pushed on.

Alec: I’m going to immediately play it again once we’ve finished this chat, I must say. It successfully tunnels you into its purpose, you’re totally involved in your objectives rather than in the scoreboard.

Jim: Yeah, I’ll be on the RPS server, if anyone needs me.

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188 Comments »

  1. dtgreen says:

    I presume you guys are already aware of the broken images?

  2. Koozer says:

    Game in not-living-up-to-the-hype shocker!

    • JackShandy says:

      Be fair- what game could live up to Hype?

    • lunarplasma says:

      Minecraft?

    • poop says:

      @lunarplasma did you just step out of a time warp from feb 2010? i feel for you man

    • cHeal says:

      Holy sh*t stickles I actually got that game as a Christmas present many moons ago. A GERMAN edition. I was like 19! WTF???

      My brother sucks at present buying.

    • Corrupt_Tiki says:

      Every game is like that in some way, but, I think the problem with this was the price, for basically just a MP only FPS game to cost $90 AUD. I would have been seething If I paid that for this, I would appreciate it, but I don’t think it would be worth that.
      That’s £58 of your Queens monies for those of you who are too lazy to convert it ;_;

    • Dura says:

      @Corrupt_Tiki; your money has the same queen on it.

  3. Premium User Badge bglamb says:

    I felt disappointed that it wasn’t really class-based at all.

    Having a different buff seems like a very small difference. And making only a single class be the one to push the magic objective button feels like a lazy way to make distinctions in otherwise bland classes.

    The only time I had any idea or care what class any friend or foe was, was when I was waiting for a revive. I guess this is why everyone goes medic.

    • James Allen says:

      The unlocked abilities make a difference between classes.

    • Bhazor says:

      Yeah engineers can plant sentries and mines, operatives can turn invisible and medics can bring back the dead. It really isn’t just the buffs.

    • Premium User Badge bglamb says:

      Maybe TF2 just spoiled me. I felt that every class was a completely different game there.

      With this, I picked medic and was still just running and gunning with the best of them, and just throwing out the odd revive.

    • Bilbo says:

      So Brink is inferior to TF2 because Brink lets you choose your own body type and weapons – define your own, hybrid classes – but TF2 forces you to accept class-based restrictions. Logic!

    • Dhatz says:

      There aren’t any op buffs and op is practically just spy/scout and counter-op. other classes are what you need and a soldier/heavy as well.

  4. skinlo says:

    Typo in the opening paragraph: thing should be think.

    Otherwise, looks like a reasonably good game. I find it interesting that the console reviews are so much worse than the PC, does that mean consoles players don’t know the concept of team work, and so are confused by the very idea that they have to use it??

    • P7uen says:

      Bring should be Brink.

    • DrazharLn says:

      RPS articles always have typos. It’s a feature.

    • SuaveMongrel says:

      Console players tend not to work together very well. We have keyboards for use when it’s either too late to speak or if we don’t have a mic, however consoles do not.

      If I remember right, Battlefield BC2 had a competition on for the first platform to do a 100,000 team actions and the winners would unlock a new map for everyone on that platform. The PC crowd were miles ahead.

      They ended up releasing the maps to the console kids as a New Years present because they were so far behind. Cue angry PC gamers.

    • Merelia says:

      @Skinlo

      The message box I got when I started playing does suggest the developers think that.

    • ceriphim says:

      Come on guys, RPS has *FAR* fewer typos than Consumerist or Slashdot, my other two favorite blogs. I think they do a pretty damn good job, for being British. /hides

    • subedii says:

      @ SuaveMongrel :

      Yeah, despite having fewer numbers, the PC playerbase actually unlocked it in half the time because they were constantly carrying out teamwork related actions.

      I think there was just a different culture of gaming at work there, and being a Battlefield game helped as well. PC-side people were coming at it from a Battlefield background, where everyone’s familiar with having to work towards objectives as a team. Console side, people were primarily coming in from a CoD (Modern Warfare) background, players were focussing far more on their own frags.

  5. Jumwa says:

    Sounds promising. I would like to hop in and give it a play, but the lack of female character options means it’s not a co-op friendly title in my home.

    • TariqOne says:

      Same here. It’s a boggling choice in a game with so much purported variety.

  6. CMaster says:

    So, it isn’t the team-based messiah we were all hoping for (Maybe NS2 can deliver?)
    But it’s solid enough that you all want to play it properly.
    Interesting, although the “it’s about as good as S8:P” makes me think that it might be better of me to swing over that way.

    • Jim Rossignol says:

      I think S8 is better value, overall. But it’s not as *tight*.

    • CMaster says:

      Course, for all these discussions, I’ll probably just play SWAT4 tonight, which does require genuinely close teamwork and turn to TF2 or BC2 if I want something more competitive. I do want to reward Brink for starting to move away from the refrigerator box a little though. Maybe a buy-on-sale deal.

    • Groove says:

      On a related note, this review finally made me make the jump and buy Prejudice.

    • Kdansky says:

      I’ll buy Prejudice now, when people are playing it. In a year, I’ll get Brink for cheap, and there will still be people about.

    • Premium User Badge QuantaCat says:

      I agree on the difference thing between S8P and Brink, Prejudice just feels a bit.. random at times. But it is hella fun, even though I think a counter for the jamming beacon would be nice.. (talking as a player that uses jammer beacon a lot)

      Also, welcome to S8P! Theres a rock paper shotgun steam group for it, which is the best we can do as its over GFWL. The list of all RPS player’s gamertags are in the group.

    • Gnoupi says:

      S8P is great, offers a wide array of objectives for teamplay, too.

      It feels random at times though because there is not really a way to coordinate your strikes as a team.
      You have squads, a squad leader, but he can’t point the next objective on the map, so it feels ultimately a bit useless.
      It also doesn’t really keep you updated on what the team does the help you. Typically, while the game invites you to repair a teammate, he won’t be aware of that, nor notified in any way.

      A S8P with more elements from the way Brink handles teamplay would be great.

      That said, I will probably get back to S8P this evening, waiting for a patch for my ATI.

    • subedii says:

      @ CMaster : It’s pretty amazing that SWAT 4 still has active players after all this time.

      Then again, there hasn’t really been anything like it since, which is a real freaking shame. I don’t know why publishers are so horrified of the idea of another SWAT game. There’s definite demand for it. Just give it a budget title FPS budget, bung it on Steam, and as long as it’s well implemented I’m certain it’ll sell.

      Goodness knows that there aren’t plenty of other budget FPS’s coming out these days, and most of them are crap, and half are still trying to emulate either Counter-Strike or CoD.

    • CMaster says:

      @Subdeii
      I’m just playing it coop with friends, having bought a copy from Play a month or two ago. But yes, there are a staggering amount of servers out there for it still, along with new maps and mods still being released. A new SWAT-like or even a Division 9 alike. Hell, just imagine what the reaction would have been like if it had been announced that the new XCOM game would feature a classic-style strategic map and SWAT style tactical missions. I’d have been over the moon, and I’m sure loads of others would love it.

  7. Monchberter says:

    So, your conclusion is, it’s not TF2?

    I find it utterly charmless and it looks too similar to Bulletstorm in terms of aesthetics (futuremen do shootings).

    Oh originality, where art thou?

    • Quintin Smith says:

      To be fair, Brink is almost entirely competetive multiplayer while Bulletstorm didn’t even have a competetive multiplayer mode. They’re not particularly comparable.

    • Gnoupi says:

      And I would say that they are the strict opposite in terms of “teamplay induced by the interface”.

      Both games have a multiplayer based on teamplay.

      Brink goes a long way to make you work as a team. It rewards you for it, and keeps you aware of any team effort (“that guy just buffed you”) constantly. It pushes people to use the interface to tell what they plan to do, so that you can adapt. I like that this is a team game that you can play mostly without typing/talking, even on a public server.

      Bulletstorm is even more demanding teamwork (you can’t get past most levels if you don’t kill in pairs), and on the opposite side, has totally non-existent system to reward or push people to work together.
      You barely see “team kill” points, but it never tells you that both players are getting it. And in the end it rewards the players with the most individual points, who tend to be simply the one who executed the targets themselves, while you were losing your time “preparing the shots” for your team.
      (And to add to all this, you don’t even have keyboard chat to explain to people what the game should have explained in the first place)

      So in my opinion it really is the opposite, as a team game.

    • Monchberter says:

      I was only saying that Brink ‘looks’ like Bulletstorm. As in burly men with shoulder pads and skater hair dos in some typical future dystopia. I just don’t think that as a setting it’s very original. As the the comment on TF2, it jut seems the RPS seems to have used that as the most common touchstone.

    • -Spooky- says:

      *eh?* More TFC / TF 4 Ever / ET / ET:QW .. forget about TF2. ;)

    • Serenegoose says:

      @Nick: lol, dressing my character up in a military themed burqa is probably not a particularly spectacular answer to women being invisible in this games world.

      EDIT: Huh, my first legitimate reply fail. Interesting.

    • 1longtime says:

      Bulletstorm was attempting to be as offensive as possible… just generally tacky “LOOK HOW RATED M FOR MATURE WE ARE” at every corner, which was grating.

      Brink manages to have some real style to it, and comes off very differently than Bulletstorm. The “shooters with shoulderpads” theme isn’t overwhelming, and there’s actually a bit of conflict set up with short cutscenes that make each team more than mindless grunts.

      Brink on PC has been very satisfying, although the bugs need to be fixed immediately.

  8. Bodminzer says:

    Have the devs given a proper reason for boasting about a billion squillion customisation options but not offering the ability to make a female character yet?

    • Ilinx says:

      Yes, this! It’s really bugging me that the future apocalyptociety is apparently all one big sausage fest.

    • Premium User Badge VelvetFistIronGlove says:

      It’s because all the women and most of the men were tired of all the shootybangs. so they started this rumour about the end of the earth or something, and this Ark which would save everyone. All the shootybangsmen fought to get on this Ark to survive, only now the Ark is falling apart and sinking which it was always designed to do, ridding the world of the blandshootybangsmen. Like the telephone sanitisers, only grittier and with guns.

    • Jumwa says:

      That’s the point that turned my partner and I off from the game. She doesn’t particularly want to stare at the back of some Big McLargehuge’s tree-trunk neck while gaming, and I can’t blame her. Plus, of course, the whole issue of sexism.

    • SuaveMongrel says:

      If you could play as a female in most shooting games, I have the strange feeling a lot of feminists would be against it.

      Unless they’re well represented, like a size-zero supermodel beating up a male bodybuilder for hitting on her, then walking off giggling.

    • trigonometryhappy says:

      Erm…. its a fps, you don’t have to look at any any neck.
      So, you don’t play tf2 either… that’s all men too. (albeit sissy hat wearing men)

      In Beat-em-ups I like to play as the incedibly agile characters…. 99% of the time means playing as a woman. So what.

      Also guys think of the hitboxes

      Gameplay > Roleplay.

    • RagingLion says:

      :) “telephone sanitisers”: nice reference (that actually fits really well) – I’m quite impressed my brain was able to remember the context for me out of its dark recesses. I think I’ll choose to believe your alternate storyline for Brink now since it’s more fun; where are the women … safe on dry land, glad to have gotten rid of all the annoying males.

    • SuaveMongrel says:

      “Those.. Feminine curves! They’re.. Dodging all these bullets!”

    • Ilinx says:

      “If you could play as a female in most shooting games, I have the strange feeling a lot of feminists would be against it.”

      Unreal Tournament had gunladies. (Well, 2003 and 2004 did, not sure about original one.)

    • Jumwa says:

      The hitbox argument seems a very lame excuse to not include female options. If a developer really can’t visualize a stylistic female form to make comparable in size to a males, just force them to slap on some armour or something. C’mon, I’m sure a real developer could do much better than that if they actually cared to try.

    • qrter says:

      So the game only really bothers including the game’s backstory when it’s convenient to rule out female character models..? That sounds.. classy.

    • trigonometryhappy says:

      Well apparently your GF doesn’t want to stare at fat necks…. newsflash the heavy body-type would inolve fat-female characters too. (personaly this should be done more in games, I’m so sick of whole spectrum of male attractivness but LOL ONLY TEH PRETTY WOMENZ PLS)

      Hitboxes are a completly valid reason, Woman and men are differen’t, they move different, they have differen’t statures….should SD just have put Tits on the male characters (Sexism XD). I’m not saying it wouldn’t be possible, but it is incredibly hard work to do, unless its a straight up everyone in uniform army game ala Ghost Recon, which this is not. A woman in armour/exo-skeleton would ust look wrong. I’d rather they did Woman right as DLC.

      Brink isn’t a MMO, neither is SD a as you put ‘real’ developer such as those precious MMO developers with the resources to put into these kind of things over gameplay. Do you actually realise the time and effort that inolves making a whole new gender in comparison to making accessories for a the male bodytype.
      I’m not gonna play Brink to roleplay….I’m gonna play brink to have fun. The only purpose I see for customisation, is to be able to easily tell people apart in combat. (icon idenfication being greater than nametag idenifcation). You are not a video game character, you are you.

      The biggest mistake that brink made was having Bethesda as a Producer, leading alot of people to believe Brink is a make your own adventure RPG, its not…. its a competitive 8v8 class based shooter.
      This has been discussed to death already on the splash damage forums. Here’s one of the biggest threads, with posts from SD developers. http://www.splashdamage.com/forums/showthread.php?t=18886

      I’m off to boycott Portal 2 and DOA:Beach Volley Ball. Also God Damn it Team 17 I’m not a Worm, let me play as human.

    • Jumwa says:

      That seems a rather hostile reaction for the simple desire to have playable woman, y’know, the bulk of humanity that’s so often over looked in gaming.

      The rest seems rather silly, put breasts on male characters? Most women don’t have breasts so large that it’s really increasing their size substantially, y’know? It’s a game design choice to give giant breasts to every female character.

    • K. says:

      Since the game features extensive character customization and animations (WET), that overall seem to be more complex than, say, quake models, the most likely answer is:
      Because implementing females would heavily increase the amount of required unique graphical assets (= time+money).

      Rereading this posting made me painfully aware of my own technocratic Klugscheißerkrankheit.
      Still posting to prove my point further. I hope it’s not fatal.

    • trigonometryhappy says:

      I apologise If that came across as hostile, the last time I posted on the interent about video game was on the steam TF2 forums and I completly irrationaly depicted you as one of the ‘cosmetic hats over Gamplay, cat-walk money, trade magpies’ ….its a reflex, don’t know why I did that, I’m very sorry. Steam forums, can give you a very negative outlook on gamers….in contrast to the RPS comments section.

      That’s not what I meant in regards to the boobs (or their size) at all or how the breast themselves would effect hitboxes. In an overly optuse way I was just saying that they would have had to make woman exactly the same build as men to make it work in a balanced manor but give them for example a female face. One must remember that this game is made up of stylised character designs, so woman would be stylised too, which I firmly believe would make hitboxes a massive chore to implement in a balanced fashion…aswell as a whole new set of animation, clothes etc.

      I just don’t think gender matters. If Brink was all females, I would not care, I’d still play it. And If I do get a gender choice that doesn’t effect gameplay, I’ll play as my own gender. I don’t think this is sexist in any way…. sexism in videogames is something completly different.

    • Premium User Badge Hypocee says:

      Try again. What he’s saying, and I’ve said, is: Would you consider Splash Damage’s job done if female characters were men with a mesh putting fat in different places? If they ran, jumped, and dressed exactly like men?

    • Jumwa says:

      I suppose the problem therein lies in treating the male form as default. If you’re trying to make a female form fit to an exaggerated male form, no it wont work well. But a stylized form needn’t be hampered by such a thing.

      I certainly didn’t mean to imply I was holding or encouraging a boycott of the game. My partner doesn’t enjoy playing male characters in games, just as many men don’t enjoy playing female characters. And since it’s a multiplayer game, I don’t play without her.

      On top of that, it DOES strike me as odd that at this point I’m still seeing a game boasting about customization only include males. For whatever (legitimate or not) reasons. I’m not stating that all games should be gender-equal, or that it’s sexist, as that’s a much bigger discussion than I’m willing to engage in through a comments section, just saying: it seems weird to me at this point.

    • trigonometryhappy says:

      @Hypocee
      Their job is already done…. What I don’t understand is why don’t people complain to valve on why there is no female classes in TF2 for instance, but Splash Damage gets all this stick on not including women.

      Try Again what…. I (and I think SD would agree with me on this) think woman would be great to have in Brink, it would fit the theme nicely….. but if gonna be implemented they should be done right and if SD say thats too much work to do, atleast until DLC, I’m okay with that.

      If your idea is anything to go by, then I think Splash Damage could have saved themselves a great deal of hassle if they had said, “yes we have females in the game. Just press this button to change to a female, tada your character is now female…..a very very male, masculine looking female”.

      @Jumwa
      I think we can both agree to disagree, different strokes for different boats. I understand the relevance of you not playing/buying the game.

    • Jumwa says:

      S.T.A.L.K.E.R 1 & 3 are two of my favourite games of all times, easily, and not having a single female character in them doesn’t stop me from playing them. However, I’d be lying if I said it didn’t strike me as weird both when I first started playing and now looking back.

    • Serenegoose says:

      I think the problem is that judging by their alleged reasoning for cutting women from the game (it was too difficult to make all the INTENSE CHARACTER CUSTOMISATION and still include women) someone apparently asked themselves. “What’s more important? Having a BLUE SHIRT as well as a SLIGHTLY DIFFERENT BLUE SHIRT or not excluding 50% of the population of the planet, and came down on the side of the blue shirts.” The basic assumption that it’s not really a big deal to exclude women turned me off more than anything else, and genuinely took Brink from ‘must buy’ to ‘whenever’. Not because it dramatically affects my gameplay experience, but because it felt like a slap in the face.

    • PFlute says:

      @SuaveMongrel: “If you could play as a female in most shooting games, I have the strange feeling a lot of feminists would be against it.

      Unless they’re well represented, like a size-zero supermodel beating up a male bodybuilder for hitting on her, then walking off giggling.”

      You’ve…never met an actual feminist, have you, friend? Having a super model in your movie as eye candy and then saying that she happens to know karate isn’t “feminist”. It’s quite the opposite, actually.

      No, any actual modern feminist would rejoice to see muscled and grizzled ladies shooting and getting shot along with the men like it was no deal at all.

    • Josh W says:

      The game already has different body types, it already has different hitboxes. If they want to do it really cleverly, they would use the same balancing principle they allready use to create light to heavy, and make the female body types sit in slightly different places.

      So I agree, DLC.

    • CMaster says:

      @Jumwa
      “That seems a rather hostile reaction for the simple desire to have playable woman, y’know, the bulk of humanity that’s so often over looked in gaming.”
      Imagine if this had been about say, Beyond Good and Evil or Hydrophobia and someone saying that they wouldn’t play it because they don’t play as female characters. They’d have been laid into just as much, probably more in fact (lots of muttering about lack of security in sexuality etc). Especially considering this is an FPS and you don’t even see your character, it’s an extra silly attitude to take.

    • Premium User Badge Hypocee says:

      @Jumwa

      I certainly didn’t mean to imply I was holding or encouraging a boycott of the game. My partner doesn’t enjoy playing male characters in games, just as many men don’t enjoy playing female characters. And since it’s a multiplayer game, I don’t play without her.

      For the record, I absolutely understand that. I’m fine with people saying what a shame it is that there aren’t female avatars. I’m fine with people not buying the game because of it. I’m fine with people telling me that I shouldn’t buy the game because of it, though I’ve obviously not obeyed. Should there be a Brink 2, I’ve promised myself it’s a go-no-go feature for me. I considered SD’s attempts at changing movement and removing the harassment and griefing from multiplayer to outweigh their failure on that front. All I object to is the one step further – the slandering jackasses (like Serenegoose above) claiming that Splash Damage’s decision was between lots of T-shirts on the one hand, and women on the other. If gender equality’s to be done anywhere remotely near right, it’s not that easy, and the point of my rhetorical question was that they know it full well when they’re slinging barbs at Splash Damage. Even in RPS’ interview recording with Ed Stern, you can hear how memory-constrained they were on voices, just for example. OK, cut those in half; does it fall below a threshold where you’re better off not even bothering? Just have one male and one female voice maybe? Choose from three male and three female facial archetypes? Are you happy now?

      @trigonometryhappy

      I (and I think SD would agree with me on this) think woman would be great to have in Brink, it would fit the theme nicely….. but if gonna be implemented they should be done right and if SD say thats too much work to do, atleast until DLC, I’m okay with that.

      Absolutely agreed, with the addition of some uncertainty on the ‘okay with that’ even. SD’s leaders do agree with you; Richard Ham (IIRC) is on record in an interview with ‘I know, they’ll engrave my apology to girl gamers on my tombstone. At the time we made the decision we just didn’t think we could do that right in the time and resources we had.’ Ed Stern tweeted recently saying ‘In retrospect, if we could have known how everything would go, we might have gone the other way on that.

      Incidentally, I’ve been following Brink pretty rabidly for most of a year and I can’t recall encountering a single person praising SD for their contribution to ethnic diversity in the character model, though to be fair there are a number of positive comments about having the diverse accents. Obviously that’s mainly because failures attract much more interest than successes, as they should, but if we’re going to hang an albatross around SD’s neck for daring to make flawed digital dolls, I think it’s only fair to give them credit for an attempt at equality that’s equally rare. Also, if I wanted to disgustingly pervert maths to ‘support’ a ‘side’ of a sad compromise, .5*.80>1*.21 :P

    • wererogue says:

      Excellent female characters for TF2, that complement the “it’s possible to use the same animations and hitboxes for females as males when your characters are stylized” argument?

      Oh, go on then: http://www.gamebanana.com/members/845166

    • trigonometryhappy says:

      @Jumwa That’s a matter of immersion. Of course its a bit weird that woman aren’t there, it breaks the immersion, I agree with that. But Game developers have restrictions and they have to relinquish reality & immersion in order to make a game….Not sure about the Stalker devs to be honest….maybe they ran out of time to include female characters, maybe they’re sexist….who knows.
      @Serengoose
      May I ask, do you play TF2? Surely the TF2 team could have made less hats/new weapons and made 9 female classes instead…. but wait making hats is ten times easier than modelling, skinning, animating, voicing for 9 female classes. (not trying to pick on TF2 all the time, just that its the closest to Brink in this regarding style/male classes/accessories etc.). Adding different cosmetic items is not the same as adding in females. They would have had to cut out a lot of the things which make brink what it is or have to have delayed the game for a good while to include females.
      @Josh
      So female classes would effect game-play? Would it go Heaviest = male, Heavier = female Medium= male, Semi-Medium = Female, Light = male, Lightest = Female
      All I can say Josh, is that I’m a man, and its a complete slap in the face to have to play as a woman if I want to play as a character that is slightly heavier than a medium class. It gives me a good balance between speed and extra health. I just don’t understand how people can play as a gender that’s not there own. :)
      ———-
      For an end note, can I just say that the term feminism is such a joke and a half. Feminism to me implies you are biased on the side of females. Surely Equalist is a much better term. As in a want both genders to be treated fairly and justly, and in places of competition, the person most suited and adequate for the Job gets the job. (Don’t get me started on Gender Quotas) Can you imagine if I called myself a Masculist….how dumb and biased does that sound. Sorry nothing to do with videogames… had to get it off my chest, either say it here or make myself a Blog.

    • Serenegoose says:

      I no longer play TF2 when I felt it became all about the hats (ok, it was actually when they introduced a whole ton of new weapons, the hats I couldn’t care less about) and I felt the game was just based around running out of spawn and into the overloaded 32 man dustbowl map and exploding at completely random intervals. And yes, the lack of gender representation in TF2 also irked me quite seriously, but I was, when I bought it, less concerned about such things. I have since become more so, and judge brink on my current criteria and not of my me-from-3-years-ago criteria.

    • PFlute says:

      @Trig: Feminism means equality for women. It’s the bloody definition of the thing. And there are myriad very serious issues that affect women mainly if not entirely. But this isn’t really the time or place eh?

      Honestly, the thing with women in Brink does cause me a grimace, and I do think there are some complaints you could lodge at Splash Damage because of it (I honeslty do think chopping all the existing assets in half between the sexes and just trying to add on more clothing options later as DLC would have been preferable. From a design standpoint a lot of the customization elements are a bit similar at this point anyway), but they’ve also done a lot of things right:

      Including, on this very same issue, not making the environment blindly, adolescently aggressive in a 15-year-old-lad sort of way: There’s no tea-bagging, no poorly thought out sexual innuendo. To the best of my knowledge characters never insult each other by calling each other gay, or women. Even the universally beloved (myself included) TF2 stoops to talking about “ladies” and “real men” now and then.

      The game emphasizes sportsmanship and teamwork, all in all. To be frank, it does a lot of things right. It’s a shame they sort of got this one (big! 50% of the population big) thing wrong, but I’m very happy about all the things they got right, including a great sense of ethnic diversity. And if Hypocee is right, and the devs actually acknowledge and are graceful about the situation: DAMN. I seriously appreciate that.

      While I don’t like people slinging anger too loosely, I have to say this is one of those issues where I can’t blame women gamers for being bitter: They endure being second string (if not reduced to complete eye candy) in this hobby almost constantly. Especially if they like games where you shoot a gun or two.

    • Serenegoose says:

      Also, lol that I’m a slandering jackass because I don’t think the LOOK HOW MUCH WORK IT WOULD BE FOR US excuse is a very good one. Sorry, if you have to record more sound files, and make a whole new animation model, and a whole ton of extra stuff, then that’s what you have to do. Not doing it simply isn’t acceptable. I don’t care how much they baw about it being work, they exist in society and as a multi-million pound corporation making a game for potentially hundreds of thousands of people I perceive that they -are- obliged to be inclusive of people, not exclusive. The idea that it’s too much bloody effort to include women is a sexist idea in and of itself and you ought to be ashamed for even voicing it, Hypocee.

    • Nick says:

      Just wear fully body armour and helmet or extra baggy clothes/face mask and pretend you are a woman, problem solved in game.

    • Premium User Badge Hypocee says:

      I’m not. They had some money and some memory and 9GB of disc space and they had to guess, three or four years down the line, what they could make with it. They chose, and in retrospect possibly chose wrongly. You, on the other hand, should be ashamed for stating – though you’ve predictably tried to shift the goalposts already – that the choice was between remotely respectful female avatars and two different shades of shirt.

    • Jumwa says:

      @CMaster

      Except Beyond Good and Evil was a single player game with no character customization what-so-ever, it’s not the same case at all. Notice how I said it’s odd for a game that boasts of its extensive character customization not to even have a female option. Even TF2 seems to get off on the issue because they don’t boast about character options.

      @Serenegoose

      I can’t help but agree. To say “it’s just too much trouble to add women” indicates that male is the primary focus and women are a secondary consideration at best. Which, well… isn’t that the definition of sexism? Surely there would be better excuses than that for it.

    • Serenegoose says:

      If you can’t discern hyperbole on the internet…. I got no pithy follow on to that. Regardless, I also don’t buy the ‘omg we’re so stretched for space’ excuse. So they have enough space for their 100 quadrillion unique character models but adding some women to that mix suddenly requires so many more resources that it simply can’t be done? Despite the fact that TF2 has nine classes with their own sounds and skeletons and so on that ALL move differently, Brink somehow can’t have six? How then, does Oblivion, with all of its customisation and many races in addition to each gender, possibly fit? And it still comes down to the fact that they asked themselves ‘women or customisation’ and chose customisation. Their excuse doesn’t stand up to scrutiny, imo.

    • TariqOne says:

      I love how this topic brings all the breathers out. B-but hitboxes!! B-but budget!! B-but backstory!!!

      Tons –TONS– of games, even shooters, have managed to work in a female option or two without it being gamebreaking, wallet-breaking, or immersion-breaking. There’s no good reason for their exclusion here, in a game boasting of its infinite rococo customizability, beyond one: The devs are breathers. There is no better evidence than the fact that all the breathers come a-runnin’ to defend it every time someone brings this up.

      My two favorite gamers in the world are females, and devs need to stop seemingly intentionally alienating them. Girls have money. And some are even cool. Make friends with them, morons.

  9. Mike says:

    It’s a shame, because it sounds like a fine game, but they sold it as something else and that kind of sucks, for all concerned. I really wanted the agile body type + SMART thing to result in a Mirror’s-Edge-meets-The-Scout gameplay, and I don’t think it’s going to do that at all. I hope SMART gets picked up as an idea in general though.

  10. B0GiE-uk- says:

    I played it for 5 minutes and didn’t like it. Feels like a typical ID engine game with laggy mouse and stuttery graphics.

    • Jim Rossignol says:

      Smooth as a whistle on my PC, like… all other Id games.

    • Sunjammer says:

      What a surreal comment!

    • Antsy says:

      “I played it for 5 minutes on my Pentium 2 with riva tnt graphics card and didn’t like it. Feels like a typical ID engine game with laggy mouse and stuttery graphics.”

      Sorted.

    • -Spooky- says:

      Less QQ, more PewPew. Write your own autoexec.cfg, on ALL ID Tech engines ..

  11. The Sombrero Kid says:

    I personally have found that almost all reviews I’ve read have been more apologist than RPS, RPS was the most honest one i found after the site that refused to review it because they were only allowed to play the 360 version and were told it was going to get a patch to fix all their criticisms on release.

    • Hallgrim says:

      I was also impressed by Ars’s “we’re not going review this yet” post. You don’t often see that kind of pushback from games journalists. Must help to not get all your money from gaming ads.

      Edit: This isn’t commentary on RPS, just games journolism in general.

    • subedii says:

      Destructoid’s review was pretty good, in that they outright state that this style of game was really largely tailored with specific people in mind, and outside of the bugs it’s pretty much an outright “love it or hate it” thing.

      I mean Quinns comment about grenades is pretty much exactly a case in point. The devs deliberately set out to make grenades that weren’t that lethal, and instead depended more on knocking people back or otherwise clearing areas.

      There’s a reason for that, because in most other FPS’s, grenade spam is utterly ludicrous. If it’s a game that has a dedicated grenade key, then most encounters between two dudes typically feature grenades being thrown, and most kills end up being from randomly thrown grenades. It all feels far less skillful and far more random. This is particularly true in games where players tend to have high hitpoints (just watch some high level Halo macthes some time. It’s ridiculous. Grenades all day, e’ryday).

      It’s precisely this reason that they completely removed grenades from Team Fortress 2 altogether. The hardcore community wailed and there was much gnashing of teeth because they couldn’t do conch jumping anymore, but it was crucial, absolutely fundamental to how the gameplay of TF2 turned out. If grenades were back in like in TFC, then like TFC, it would’ve just been a grenade spam fest, with random deaths everywhere.

      Random sudden deaths in general is something that Splash Damage worked hard to mitigate. Which is why for example, one-hit kills are also extremely rare.

      That’s kind of what I understand from the concept of this being a “love it or hate it” game. Not everyone’s going to be happy with grenades that don’t immediately kill people and instead server other purposes. But at the same time this is something that, when I first read the devs were doing, I was just thinking “YES!” because that is precisely the kind of design decision and reasoning that made me like the idea of Brink.

      Not that it’s not moot at this point. The freaking game’s disappeared from the Steam store.

    • Premium User Badge Hypocee says:

      It’s precisely this reason that they completely removed grenades from Team Fortress 2 altogether. The hardcore community wailed and there was much gnashing of teeth because they couldn’t do conch jumping anymore, but it was crucial, absolutely fundamental to how the gameplay of TF2 turned out. If grenades were back in like in TFC, then like TFC, it would’ve just been a grenade spam fest, with random deaths everywhere.

      The Demoman says hi?

    • subedii says:

      The demoman’s primary weapons are grenade launchers, but they serve a different purpose to traditional in-game grenades. They aren’t designed to be throw-and-forget room clearers and one-hit kills, at least not on their own. You still need sustained fire to take out anything. You don’t use them in addition to your primary weapons in order to try and score lucky kills, they ARE your primary weapons and you need to hit an opponent several times to have any real effect

      I mean you can say “LULZ demoman” but the Demoman’s grenades actually follow a similar profile to Brink’s in some ways. Very limited splash damage AOE, and much reduced damage. Far more so since they’re supposed to be a primary weapon and not a support weapon. They are only effectively used when they directly hit the target, so they’re still directly aimed weapons. Stickybombs don’t need to hit the target, but then those are manually triggered and can be cleared. And if you’re firing them at the target directly, same rules apply.

      You’ll note for example, that in the earliest promo trailers for TF2 that the demoman actually still had his MIRV. That WAS a traditional grenade type. And this has subesequently been removed as well in later builds, because it negatively impacted the gameplay.

      For that matter, the Soldier has grenades as a visual part of his uniform but those are never used. He follows a similar profile to the demoman when in closer quarters, in having explosive (but more direct-fire) weapons,but the actual usage is different from what other games use grenades for. And in general, all the classes have received class updates with new weapons, and NONE of them have been grenades.

      So no, not really. I mean the devs behind TF2 very literally stated this as their goal and deliberate design decision when removing grenades from the game. If you still don’t believe me, you can feel free to look it up for yourself.

  12. Flameberge says:

    Hmmm. Still no idea whether to buy this frankly. Would prefer to get it as a sub-£15 purchase down the line, where most of the performance bugs are fixed… but then might be put off by trying to learn the maps when in games full of people who already know them. Don’t really have the time for that sort of effort any more, last time I did was about a decade ago when playing in various Counter Strike leagues.

  13. Groove says:

    This might just be a bug on my end, but has this game disappeared from the Steam store?

    I went looking for it last night and this moring, and the game doesn’t exist any more. Last night I found nothing, this morning I found trailers and nothing.

    • jon_hill987 says:

      No, it has gone. Even if you follow a link you get “not available in your region”.

      Sad really, because nothing will kill a competitive MP game faster than a shit launch.

    • Bilbo says:

      I know. In spite of the hand-wringing I actually want to have a go, and Steam is denying it exists at all. Even the trailers are region-locked right now, for some reason.

    • Milky1985 says:

      Odd, i loaded it up this morning and it loaded fine at least (i pre-ordered it via steam, and reloaded it)

      Looks like its fine if you pre-ordered at least, maybe there was a falling out between steam and betheseda about something

    • Howl says:

      It’s joined the long list of recent releases that mysteriously disappear from Steam on UK release and slink back months later without any warning.

      Is it the bricks and mortar stores that are causing this ongoing drama? I don’t understand why. HMV has stopped selling PC games and GAME only ever has WoW and The Sims.

    • Premium User Badge Nathan says:

      This is very odd and could do with some investigating. It completely vanished from the Store sometime between 1 and 1:30AM (UK), and hasn’t reappeared since.

      The ever reliable source of the Steam forums is also saying that people who bought physical (or D2D) copies are having issues with activating in the UK, too.

    • psycho7005 says:

      @Howl
      What GAME do you shop at lol? I’ve never had a problem finding and purchasing any game, both console and PC from my local GAME store. :S

    • Nick says:

      The three GAME shops around where I live all have roughly a shelf of PC games (not counting slightly larger budget shelving), stacked facing outwards.

  14. Corrupt_Tiki says:

    So… basically its good but could use a decent patch or two eh?

  15. Xercies says:

    Having loved Quake Wars so very very much, should I get this as well. It definitely intrigues me and i have been kind of looking forward to it but all the things say its a little bit meh to be honest.

  16. WMain00 says:

    An entirely unrelated question, but one i’d like to ask without bothering you with an email:
    When can we expect the Witcher 2 review?

  17. jon_hill987 says:

    Any news on why it seems to have been removed from the Steam store in the UK?

    • trjp says:

      Seconding that question really – there MUST be some dirt behind that decision, it’s a Steamworks title which is unavailable to purchase through Steam here in the UK!?!?

      There are people on the Steam forums reporting that their download is stalled and they can’t restart it – my mate installed it AOK earlier tho so it seems at least some people can get retail copies working (£22 from Grainger Games – bargain hunters!!)

      This smells like the Blur release where it showed-up right upto launch and then disappeared for months – but this is a Steamworks-based title so – ermmmm…

      UK D2D are offering it so they sorted their key issue – makes you wonder tho…

  18. Branthog says:

    In a world of average FPS games with average guns and average mechanics, Brink is one.

    Also, the whole “it’s like an FPS with parkour!” thing failed to ever appear. It has about as much free-running feel to it as Gears of War.

    • Ilinx says:

      I get the feeling that locking away the agile body types until you level up sufficiently was an extremely bad start. No doubt it will sort itself in short order, once levelling up has been done, but all I have experienced from dropping in and out of random public servers so far has been medium sized chaps shooting at each other down medium sized corridors.

  19. Crimsoneer says:

    Is there any way to favourite servers?
    I love it, btw.

  20. Spacewalk says:

    At least the colours are nice.

  21. Danorz says:

    i wish it had some proper singleplayer, it really is a lovely world.

  22. abraxas says:

    Repostin’ this here because it feels like it belongs here more than to the other Brink post.. anyways!

    I have to say this launch reminds me a lot of the BC2 launch.

    BC2 launched with an absolutely awful amount of bugs. Terrible, non-working server browser, random disconnects from the stats server which immediately dumped you to the main menu (and as an added bonus, completely ditched the XP you had already earned), Login problems, lag, hit detection problems and many more that I don’t even want to remember now.

    However, the gameplay was solid and fun and all the fundamentals were there. About 3(ish) patches in, most, if not all of the problems were fixed and BC2 turned into a genuinly fun and engaging MP shooter (Carl Gustav and Vehicle spam notwithstanding).

    I feel Brink is suffering from the exact some problems. It’s almost creepy how similar it is. The gameplay and the fundamentals are fun and very enjoyable (speaking purely of my personal opinion here) but the screwed up launch is souring the experience a bit. If SD manage to be on the ball and push out fixes to the major issues in a timely manner I can absolutely see this turning out to be a great game with a rather extensive playerbase and so on and so forth.

  23. Premium User Badge heretic says:

    Sounds good enough to give the demo a try WHEN / HAVE THEY RELEASED A DEMO???

  24. Flappybat says:

    It reminded me of APB in the way there are some good ideas but they fail to work with them to flesh them out. In the same way there are fundamental design issues which sabotage the game.

    The customization is solid but the way it is handled with the inability to change body types or have quickly saved loadouts in game is boneheaded. If you feel your team is missing a minigun heavy to lead the push then you have to quit the server to quickly change! Then for no clear reason some options like scars and tattoos are permanent to your character, as if this was some kind of serious roleplaying game.

    Ironically I realized when I finally played resistance after a few hours that I didn’t actually know what they really looked like due to the heavy red colouring of the enemy team.

    Funny that for the depth of customization they limit you to very few three outfits until you climb the level tree. It repeats Bad Company’s mistake of letting you start as an engineer or medic but not having any equipment for them for several levels but on the flip side you can unlock all the weapon attachments in around thirty minutes of doing challenge rooms. Then some of it is kind of laughable, Why do Operatives exist at all? The class has almost nothing going for it. Engineers are going to be highly disappointed when they find out their turrets are crap and the MG emplacements they can build are the worst weapon in the game.

    In the end it falls apart in the combat. It feels like there is too much disconnect between what you are doing and the results, like the skill ceiling has been placed very low. Firing in iron sights doesn’t get you away from the punishing recoil and damage drops off very fast at range. Headshots do exist but feel random with the accuracy of guns.

    I don’t think any patches are going to make the game worthwhile.

    • James Allen says:

      I have to disagree with you on two points.

      1. You start with all the equipment you need (except for turrets) when you start out for engineers and medics: you don’t need to unlock med packs or paddles like in BC2.

      2. Operatives are a class I am quickly learning to love, and I usually hate the “spy” class. Yes, they start out useless (no buffs, but they do have disguise), but they have tons of tools that are unlocked later: comms hacks to putting enemy positions on radar, hacking turrets, and several grenades.

  25. Sheng-ji says:

    Guys, would it be possible to please put a gap between each segment of the conversation e.g.

    Jim: Brink then, the long-awaited multiplayer shooter from British devs Splash Damage. Everyone had a bit of a play?

    Quintin: I have shot so many men.

    as opposed to

    Jim: Brink then, the long-awaited multiplayer shooter from British devs Splash Damage. Everyone had a bit of a play?
    Quintin: I have shot so many men.

    Just because I had a chemo session yesterday and getting through that block of text will almost certainly cause my head to split

  26. bill says:

    I rather feared this would be the case. The parkour system sounded great, but every time I googled a video of it before launch it seemed to be a bunch of slowly moving people walking/standing/shooting in a small room/corridor. It was really hard to find a video of the promised movement/freedom.

  27. karry says:

    Sorry, i refuse to read someone’s 2 hour irc chat instead of an article, can someone sum it up for me ?

    • Ilinx says:

      Hows this: It’s like TF2 with an ill-advised single player mode with bots. And it currently has some bugs. So not all good news, but not necessarily all bad.

    • Groove says:

      My summary – These types of reviews are great and full of personality.

      Their summary – What a shame. Not what was promised, but a good competitive manshoots.

      Not discussed – Sexism, not having enough iron.

    • Nick says:

      Summary: don’t be such a dick.

  28. MuscleHorse says:

    Does anyone else suffer from shockingly bad performance? My compy runs Crysis at high without a hiccup, yet this game brings it to it’s knees even with everything either off or low. I’ve gone through the usual driver update dance yet no joy. Its pretty much unplayable.

    • Gnoupi says:

      I’m guessing you have an ATI.
      So like the rest of us, you will wait for a patch. Because for now, most ATI are getting 15fps of average, no matter of the horsepower.

    • Hunam says:

      It’s not just you. I’ve heard of this in a few places. I’ve read that basically it’s something to do with virtual texturing (as Brink is one of the first games to use it) and newer cards don’t quite work with it the way it should.

    • MuscleHorse says:

      Gnoupi, I do. Well, that’s a relief of sorts – at least I’ll be able to play it properly at somepoint. What I have seen does appear to be enjoyable, just not the worldstomping TF2 devourer that I hoped for.

  29. Premium User Badge Hideous says:

    Been playing it for a bit this morning, and while I love the parkour and gameplay, man, they’ve got some graphics issues with ATi to fix.

  30. Gnoupi says:

    Note that the HUD is messy mostly for medics, because it shows all teammates’ health.

    I played mostly as an engineer, and didn’t feel bothered by the text on screen.

  31. the_fanciest_of_pants says:

    I’ve been really enjoying my time with brink so far. I have an ATI card, and had the horrible 10fps issue at first but the 11.5a drivers fixed that for me.

    The game feels great though, and zipping all over the place as a light medic is pure joy. I like that the guns and gubbins don’t take much to unlock too, RPS is right in that the weapons could use a little more variety though.

    But my lord are these guns beefy, they boom and clack and buck awesomely. Very satisfying to use.

    Definitely not disappointed, I’m not sure what I was expecting, but I’m happy with what I got.

  32. trigonometryhappy says:

    Like all splash damage games, it seems this is not going to be popular with the casuals as SD/Beth’ wanted/marketed it to be. Doesn’t bother me, hope this game takes off on the comp’ side though.

  33. Howl says:

    Whilst I’m sure that RPS’s free review copies were worth a squirt, £30 is a bit much for something that has had such poor feedback. If RPS had sunk 30 quid into this, would this discussion have been different?

    Also, I’ve heard there is a lack of Eyefinity/Surround and SLI/Crossfire support. It’s a first person shooter in 2011. They need to do better than that if they want my moneyz.

    • Jim Rossignol says:

      See how I mention Section 8 being £15? There’s the option for the money-conscious.

      I think I would have felt a bit disappointed with this at full price, but would still be playing it – which I am doing.

    • Crimsoneer says:

      So is Section 8 good then?

    • Lewie Procter says:

      I agree £30 would be a lot for it, but there’s been multiple preorder offers just over £20. If this is your sort of thing, that seems like a pretty great price.

      Although I’ve not played either Section 8.

    • innociv says:

      Same thing I was saying in the last post about Brink.

      It looks no more fun than the $15 Section 8, while costing more than 3x more.

      Glad I have section8, and don’t need to waste money on this.

    • Premium User Badge Hypocee says:

      OTOH, have fun in your GFWLcopter.

  34. Crimsoneer says:

    There are a few MAJOR, MAJOR BUGS. 2 most obvious ones are:
    Objectives not displayed correctly: Eg, both teams have “Guard Reactor”. This can lead to some pretty epic confusion
    Sound death: The sound just dies on 2 maps. No idea why, it just does, for the entire server.

    • poop says:

      also a couple maps have sound effects, but no dialog at all, its really something you dont appreciate until its gone

    • Toner says:

      I think both-teams getting the “Guard thingymabob” objective is actually correct even if on the attacking side. It should only pop up if you’re not the right class to take the objective, so it’s telling you to get there & guard it so someone else on your team can complete it. Could have worded it slightly differently though I guess.

    • James Allen says:

      Indeed. They should have renamed it “attack door” or “defend door” instead of “guard” for non-soldiers on both sides.

    • ExMortis says:

      I could be wrong but I think there IS actually a wording difference. If you’re supposed to “attack” reactor but you’re not the right class to do the attacking, it says “Guard.” If you’re supposed to “defend” reactor it says “Defend” regardless of class. I think.

      There really should be some indication on the objective wheel though that “this is supposed to explode and you’re not the right class to do it and no one else on your team is, either.” I feel constantly uncertain when a guard objective pops up. One of many glaring weirdnesses, played for 12 hours according to Steam, still absolutely no idea if I like the game but only just or totally hate it.

  35. Sunjammer says:

    What happened to game demos on the PC? I’ve been excited about this but the reviews have scared me; And the only way I will know if the investment is worth it is by… Making the investment.
    It’s bullshit. We’ve gone from a world where I could almost ALWAYS try something before I bought it to one where I almost feel bullied by advertising into buying. It’s incredibly frustrating not to be allowed to make an educated purchase.

    I’m tempted to say this is one of the reasons why we have such rampant piracy.

    • Felixader says:

      It’s not any better with demos on the consoles lately.

      What do i want with a demo 6 months afeter the game’s release when their is one at all?

  36. Rond says:

    This game has more hats than guns, and I’m not a hat man. What happened to open levels, class weapons and deployables from ETQW? This game basically has like 3-4 different weapons, and what, 1 ability per class? The levels make me claustrophobic. This S.M.A.R.T. system is total bullshit, Warsow has a much better one. I’m happy I haven’t bought it, because I was pretty hyped about it and trailers managed to hide all its ugliness from me.

    • Rond says:

      Oh, also the GUI is fucking awful, looks like they’ve just taken it straight from the xbox version

    • SuperNashwanPower says:

      Doesnt the Village People fetish gear make up for the lack of hats? Can I make a character with a ball gag, open-buttocked chaps and nipple rings to hang grenades from? If so then i will buy it. And call him Brüno.

      **does one handed shotgun pump slowly and suggestively**

  37. airtekh says:

    I was expecting quite a lot of Brink and I’m disappointed to hear that it isn’t as exceptional as I thought it would be.

    It still sounds like something I would play and enjoy though, so I’ll pick it up at some point.

  38. El_MUERkO says:

    my copy didn’t turn up today from Amazon, also noticed that brink isn’t listed on Steam today, it’s launch day, try search of it, it’s not there

  39. Makariel says:

    After quite some back and forth I’m getting Brink. And I intend to play on the RPS servers. Please be nice to me, the last time I played online multiplayer was with Quake 3 Arena…

  40. Unaco says:

    Well… Was considering the purchase of this. Is the weekend after all, and I’ve been anticipating this for many, many months. But, alas, Steam have removed it in the EU store.

    http://www.pcgamer.com/2011/05/13/brink-disappears-from-european-steam-store-customers-unable-to-activate-retail-copies/

  41. pepper says:

    13-05-2011, at 17:07, GMT + 1 from The Netherlands, Brink is in the steam store for me. How odd.

  42. wintergreen says:

    It must be just me, but I found this game to be mind-boggling complicated. Maybe because I never really play multiplayer FPS, but literally, you watch the intro video (which by the time I’d wrapped my head around the fact they’d apologised for it coming from a console version of the game, it was over and I realised I’d learned nothing) and then get thrown into a room with a load of people shouting gibberish about elevators and control points, GUI icons flashing all over the place, and then are killed dead in the face. And respawn and it happens again. Ad nauseum.

    I guess Brink “expects” a certain degree of familiarity with the genre, but in that case why bother having a levelling system at all. In an age where even Dragon Age 2 comes with a lengthy tutorial section, this doesn’t seem to have a curve at all. I don’t even get how to do the sliding and whatnot.

    Also, and I’m sure this will piss people off for me saying it, but there is no controller support. Yes I know it’s inferior to mouse and keyboard, but after nearly a decade of being exclusive to Xbox, the PC muscle memory has left me. Given that almost every other cross-platform game has controller support, this seems like a mad omission.

    • Rond says:

      Keeping ‘wheel’ GUI elements without controller support MAKES NO SENSE.

    • Premium User Badge Hypocee says:

      I agree that omitting controller support is mad, especially given that they had it running on PCs with controllers for demos. Sorry for stating the obvious, but there’s always that 1% chance someone hasn’t been informed: Does Xpadder not meet your needs?

    • Brutal Deluxe says:

      @Hypocee: I know about xpadder but I can’t be arsed. I’m probably going to just take advantage of the discounted battlefields I got on steam last week instead…

    • Premium User Badge Hypocee says:

      Oh hey, you can patch in controller controls with autoexec.cfg; Brink Configurator 1.5 has a set of defaults plugged in.

  43. MoseSchrute27 says:

    Wow, a review where the writers actually set up a server and played the game for a few days to get a real feel for it? I thought reviewers were supposed to run through a few campaigns with bots before release and put out some garbage review an hour after the release just to get some extra adsense revenue. As a person who gets much satisfaction out of mocking idiotic game reviewers, I am disappointed in you.

  44. Bobtree says:

    I’ve played 30 hours of Brink in 3 days, and today I’m contemplating whether to go outside or play some more. I can’t wait until my weekly game night gang gets their act together and we can coordinate to play together with specialized roles. IMHO, it’s a great game with some rough edges and an ugly launch, and it will get better with time.

  45. Iskariot says:

    No true single player, so I am not interested at all. I must admit I like the unique design and style of this game a lot. I wish it had a strong SP storyline and campaign.

  46. Rii says:

    Great read, thanks. I won’t be picking this up, but I’ve more appreciation now for what it tried to do and where it succeeded and failed. Here’s hoping it finds a sustainable community and earns Splash Damage enough that they can live and learn.

    But – and maybe I’m totally misconstruing this – what’s with “and if they’re making that judgement based on the 360 version, well, you can imagine my feelings on that”? Is the (probably more) cash paid by 360 gamers for their version of the game less important than that of PC gamers for theirs or something? If the game doesn’t deliver on 360 – for whatever reason – then it’s fair to criticise it upon that basis. Why should 360 owners care that there’s another, apparently better version of the game available elsewhere?

  47. Joseph says:

    Brink is very good, and this writeup is overall very honest.

    I will say though, that spawn-raping is an issue in ONE (out of eight) map, Container City, where the first security spawn and soon the first resistance spawn are not only possible to attack, but pivotally MUST be attacked to have a shot at winning.

    This map is by the creator of ‘de_dust’, in my mind the most famous horrible map ever.

  48. QSpec says:

    For anyone that has played Brink.

    Are the issues systemic or perhaps something that can be fixed with a patch and a few new maps?

    The reason I ask, if it is the latter, I would be happy to gamble on it. If it is the former, I might have to pick up S8 instead.

    • slick_101 says:

      to me the issues don’t seem that bad, the only major bug that I’ve found is that on one level there is some issues with sound which will soon be ironed out. but sadly there is a link the the dreaded “DLC” already in the game so looks like you will most probably have to fork out your hard earned cash for the extra maps

  49. DOLBYdigital says:

    Not surprised, it seemed like everyone was building this game up to be more than it could be…. I’m really enjoying Section 8 and for $15 I think its the safer bet for now. If all your looking for is online manshoot then I would suggest S8 now and if you really want this game wait for the sale

  50. Dances to Podcasts says:

    I support this idea of replacing ‘casual’ with ‘funtimes’.