Wot I Think: Natural Selection 2

Natural Selection 2‘s intense multiplayer sci-fi corridor-combat has given me odd dreams. I am not sure why that’s relevant, but I wanted to mention it.

Unknown Worlds’ long-awaited sequel (since 2002!) to the original hybrid mega-mod has been out for a while now, and I’ve been snapping my giant, slavering jaws on the live servers during that time. I believe this means I am ready to send you an encoded transmission that tells you wot I think.

Natural Selection 2, as we have already discussed at length, is an awesome accomplishment of community, and of unwavering vision. The small team of developers behind it had a keen idea of what they wanted to achieve: to create a full-blown commercial version of their original RTS/FPS hybrid mod, Natural Selection, and for it to do everything that the best team-based shooters are capable of. And then they did it. With some help from their friends. For a while there it looked like they might have bitten off a steel-bulwark sized parcel of Too Much. But they’ve unveiled the game to some small fanfare, and the results are quite impressive.

It breaks down like this: there are two teams, the marines and the aliens. Each team has a commander – a single player who directs the action and builds structures – while the rest of the gang run around the sci-fi corridors, battling the opposing team and attempting to support the actions of the commander. Or not. Depending on the player.

It’s a mix of RTS and FPS mechanisms, in a way that many of you will already be familiar with: FPS combat takes place on the ground for most of the team (with the aliens using their claws and jaws more than the marines do) and victory is dependent on base construction across the map. A few games have taken similar positions in the time since Natural Selection first appeared, but few of them have done it with as much vigour as this.

What you get here is a very tightly conceived game on just a few maps. I see that limited aspiration (and single asymmetrical battle game mode) as a good thing. It could have bloated, it could have sprawled. It did not. And the complexity of asymmetrical conflict that can emerge from this is enormous, of course, because the levels are large and twisty, and the options provided for commanders and grunts alike are many.

It looks fine at 60fps on my 2500/560ti too. It’s not exactly chewing its way through the most magical of modern graphical effects or animation, but everything in it feels designed. It all looks right. Nothing is out of place, and most of the effects are as you’d want them to be. It has a considered feel about it – as it should for a game that has slowly gestated over several years.

Applying what I had learned from other games, I spent my first few matches identifying veterans and following them about to see what they did. A sound strategy, too, because being out on your own in NS2’s labyrinthine levels is a recipe of having your arms and legs removed. The action is pleasingly fast paced (no Quake, but it still moves), whether you are a marine or an alien. The marines move slower, of course, but they still have to have the reactions to pop a cap in the skittering/flying/shambling ass of the host of beasts that spew from the alien side. It’s much easier to do that when they’re attacking someone else. (And, after hours of incredibly tentative combat, I eventually realised there’s no friendly fire, either, and began to do much better.)

Building – a task which is utterly essential (this is as much a duel of competing bases, entangled with each other across the map, as it is the two teams of entities biting and shooting each other) – is not something that anyone can solo. Even attacking what appears to be an undefended enemy point can go horribly wrong if you are not supporting (or being supported by) a team-mate. Enemy commanders are usually quick to direct their team to enemy incursions.

The matches evolve, too, with tech being unlocked as you play. This process requires a competent commander to understand and direct that unfolding of tools. As a footsoldier on either side you depend to quite a large degree on information, direction, and supply from the commander (who is, on public servers at least, occasionally a Russian gentleman with an impenetrable accent) if you are to as effective as you need to be to win.

It will remind some of you, I should think, of the AvP games. Particularly Rebellion’s original, where zooming about as the alien was just so much fun. It’s ludicrously fun here, too, and I got a lot more enjoyment out of being a pair of jaws that can walk on the ceiling than I did being a marine. But that superficial squeal is quickly replaced by the realisation that this is a formidable game which does far more than other Aliens-alikes.

When it finally became time to play as the commander – well, I had already messed about with the game’s “explore” mode, so I knew many of the tools, and what they were for, but I simply didn’t have a strategy. I still don’t. I ended up retreating and leaving it to others.

But that’s fine. I didn’t expect people to be able to command 100-man fleets when I played Eve Online. I had to learn how to do it. If I want to get the most out of the Natural Selection 2 commander role I’ll have to learn how to make the most of it. But I won’t. I’m glad to be a grunt. I can’t offer more than that without being dishonest: I bounced off the commander role, because I wasn’t comfortable with flailing about at the controls. I suspect this will be a problem for other gamers, but since there’s only one commander per team, I was happy to let someone else direct.

I suppose if I have a complaint about all this, it wasn’t that the RTS aspect was inaccessible, but rather that the games I have played seldom felt like a balanced, knife-edge struggle. It seemed more like a slow slide into the abyss, if we lost, or a steady crushing of the enemy, if we won. I suspect this was simply down to the teams in these games being imbalanced – inexperienced commanders being taken apart by better teams, experienced commanders being betrayed by confused newbies (like me) – and so on. These, however, are familiar feelings from playing competitive multiplayer games on public servers. I realise that my experience could be atypical, and I can’t make a proper judgement on quite how that will work out for anyone who plays this for a longer time than I have, but I suspect public games will often have these sorts of dynamics.

There are a few other silly little things I don’t like: None of the marine weapons are quite punchy-enough for me. The battle-suit doesn’t feel meaty enough. In fact the entire game could do with a bit more weight. I am not sure how it would do that, but it feels like the audio-visual feedback, and the attendant physics, could be dialled up a few degrees to intensify the action. Needs more cowbell.

Not all of the maps made sense in my brain, either, but that’s all about learning. And games like this require you to learn. They are about that challenge of mastery: not simply of gun-twitch, but of spatial awareness, tactical awareness, teamplay, resource care. All good brain-food.

Actually, there are two brains in Jim Rossignol. One of these brains has spent years playing games with organised teams, in games like Quake III, through Planetside and Arma II, and off into the awkward realms of MMOs. This brain is one that appreciates teamwork, cohesion, organisation, competition. It’s a brain which, when exposed to Natural Selection 2, sees one vision of how this game would really be worth playing: with a team that I had become familiar with, with regular competitive nights, as part of a clan that took things a little more seriously than the folks who just drop on to public servers for a quick blast.

This brain also feels uncomfortable with Natural Selection 2, because it realises it will never actually experience that level of play. It knows I haven’t played enough of this game. I never will. I am not going to get into serious NS2 play. I just won’t. There’s too much else out there, and it’s not the laser-point perfect place where I want my serious gaming energies to go. In another life – and for other people – it most certainly will be.

My second brain, well, that’s one which has eased, over many years, into a sort of casual appreciation of most games. Almost anything is worth dropping into and dabbling with, even if you aren’t going to get the true reward of full-blown competitive commitment. This brain gets a lot of use these days, because it’s the brain which, while Brain 1 was obsessive over this or that specific game, was tasting everything else on the menu. I sampled things for the sake of criticism, and I sampled things because they were worth seeing.

Natural Selection 2 is worth seeing, but to this second brain it does not stand out as a major highlight in a world with so many classed-based shooters, RTS aspect notwithstanding. That said, I have not failed to enjoy any single session I played. While the servers aren’t perhaps as many and as populated as I’d like, the game always offers something. It’s brilliantly crafted – right down to the FPS counter on the graphical options screen, so you can see what impact your changes are making – and that alone makes it, for me, a game that deserves to sit in my games library forever.

There’s something like an irony in the name, too. Because Natural Selection 2 doesn’t seem like an evolution, it seems like a very specific and directed act of creation. Unknown Worlds willed this into existence, and it was a very deliberate attempt to create a game and a community to serve a specific desire and way of playing. Few games reek so pungently of dedication and obsession to a cause. This is one. And it’s a cause I believe we need to support. Let’s do that.


  1. Lars Westergren says:

    How well does it work to play one human team against one bot team? I play with some of my friends online, but the process of all getting into one team and finding non-jerk opponents can be tiresome in some games.

    • Scythe says:

      There are no bots in the game as yet. I suggest you join a server with a few friends and enjoy the remarkably friendly community of people who play NS2.

  2. captainfailsauce says:

    So it’s a fairly faithful reproduction of the first? That’s exactly what I was hoping for.

    • Ansob says:

      It’s a sequel, and a good one.

      It takes NS1, streamlines it, takes out the shitty bits, and produces a much tighter, better game that feels like you’re playing NS.

      • Mr. Mister says:

        I think you just defined a well-done intergenerational remake.

      • Moraven says:

        I have fun with it, but I do miss some of the things in NS1. Skulk web, Onos Devour, more vents that aliens could use but that also marines could weld shut. With that last bit they were trying to go with the Aliens feel of welding as many pathways as possible.

        Great fun still. Needs more maps (and retool the lava falls one) and I will keep playing this for awhile.

        • Ansob says:

          Devour was a terrible ability, from a design point of view. You were forcing a player to sit out of the game for thirty seconds. It is part of the “shitty bits” I mentioned they removed.

          Welding doors is coming back in a future patch once they’ve worked out the kinks and they did say they plan on adding more alien abilities at some point.

    • Bacillus says:

      I think a lot depends on what you loved in the original. I guess you could say it’s a modernization both in good and bad way.

      Good in the sense of graphics, more human learning curve, less frustration, more action. It’s a nice and smooth game.

      Bad in the sense that it doesn’t have quite the strong basic mechanics and sharp and precise feel of the late 90s and early 2000s stuff like Q3 and HL. The game also sacrifices some possibilities to be a nice and fair game for everyone. In some sense you could say it’s ‘just’ a nice and smooth game.

      I guess it’s a sequel in somewhat of a similar way as Team Fortress 2 is to Team Fortress. For most people TF2 is probably the way to go, but there’s still something lost in the transformation.

  3. airtekh says:

    Yay! I thought RPS had forgotten about this game.

    Multiplayer game of the year so far for me, it was worth the wait.

  4. DutchDrunk says:

    Can’t wait to sink my teeth into this game.

  5. derbefrier says:

    Awesome game. Lots of fun and the community from the few games I have played also seems pretty awesome. I will be switching between this and Planetside 2 for my competitive shooters for a long time i think.

  6. d3vilsadvocate says:

    I like this game. The only thing that bugs me are lurkers. They are extremely hard to play if you don’t jump around like a madman. And the jerky gamestyle of some lurk players will give me epilepsy when playing as a Marine.

    • Sparkasaurusmex says:

      My favorite way to play this game (and what really sets it apart from regular FPS) is playing as Skulk!

  7. dE says:

    I’m having a problem with the game. Or rather, the way I enjoy it the most is kinda contraproductive to my team. I know I should just be killing that lone marine and get to more important business at some other place. But I just can’t resist toying around with him. Laying in wait in some dark corner, annoying the hell ouf of marines, driving them crazy and into enough of a panic that they spray their entire selection of bullets all over the map in hopes to hit that one infuriating, invisible and sneaky bastard – that’s where my fun is at.

    But yeh, I often find myself not doing that, as the game dictates a different flow of combat. Which is my only problem with it. The game is absolutely great nonetheless.

    • rapchee says:

      that was the best way to play the skulk, at least in ye old, mod days – the commander needs to heal and supply the marine(s), and his attention is divided

      • airtekh says:

        Also, it’s worth mentioning that the skulk’s main job, apart from scouting and killing the occasional marine, is to destroy extractors. Denying the opposing team resources is a crucial strategy to delay the appearance of exos/onos.

        Start chomping down on one, and turn on your alien vision. If you see a marine coming (very easy since he’ll be bright orange) retreat to the nearest vent and proceed to a different extractor. Rinse and repeat. It’s incredibly annoying for the marine commander to deal with.

        If there’s a couple of buildings in the room, then go for the power node instead; but if it’s a solitary extractor, kill it first because it costs resources to replace.

        • dE says:

          Yeh, I know how to play, which is why I’ve said the way I enjoy it most is counterproductive to the team. ;)
          But your example signifies my problem with it. It’s the mentioned “the gameplay dictates otherwise”. It’s the Dogma of “Stay in motion. Always”. It’s also why you rarely see Alien Commanders go for an early Shade, because dem Skulks be hungering for Celerity.
          It was similar in NS1, with people ragequitting like mad, because someone slapped an early sensory chamber on that hive. But in my memory, I feel like NS1 allowed for more leeway in panic tactics and less focus on “just chomp’em dead already”.

      • Vandelay says:

        I would say that still applies here. If you are keeping a couple of marines aware from building extractors and expanding then that certainly can’t hurt your team. The alien commander doesn’t need the skulks help to spread infestation or take resource points.

        • Hypocee says:

          Exactly. A tied-up marine, ideally calling support/attention from somewhere else, is still a good trade. Let your skulk flag fly, you’re helping.

  8. Zanchito says:

    I enjoy this game very much, even though I just play it casually in public games.

    • Slinkyboy says:

      WE NEED A COMMANDER FOLLOWER SYSTEM! Read the NS2 forums. One player suggested it, but nobody posted in it.

  9. Stardog says:

    Congratulations on the worst screenshots ever. The winners are 3 and 6.

    Here are some better ones – link to neogaf.com, link to neogaf.com

    This is one of the best PC games ever. Plain and simple. Play for 3 hours straight and you’ll see plenty of balanced matches.

    • Zanpa says:

      Hello Mr Fanboy.
      I like this game too, but what he says is right. When a teams begin to win, everybody knows the outcome of the game and no comeback is possible. Yet the game lasts for 10 to 20 minutes more.
      This is one of the bad things of NS2. Please, as much as you like it, try to recognize that it is not perfect.

      • Ansob says:

        It is, except the tools are there for either team to end it. You all hit F4 and go to the ready room, then the game ends and you start a new round.

        It’s like saying “gg” in competitive Starcraft. The problem is that new players don’t know the etiquette, so it doesn’t get done.

      • dE says:

        While the game has flaws (balance changes, as a friend said, seemingly being made with a bulldozer), comebacks are entirely possible and have happened. A lot more often than you might think too. Most people don’t get to see that though, as the second the tide changes, people ragequit by the dozen. However their hissy fit has a beneficial effect on the team: Bad players leave, a good chance that better ones might join instead.

        • Cross says:

          I agree with this. I’ve had a bunch of times where i called GG, then we got rid of a bad commander, and totally turned it around and kicked the aliens so hard they went back in time and turned into eggs, which we shot.

        • Synesthesia says:

          I agree, it has happenned, but there is a no return point, and that is the RTS aspect filtering into the game. I also think it is a matter of etiquette, as ansob says. Once the commander drops the GG, people should go to the ready room and start over.

          • ThTa says:

            Yeah, but dropping GG as a commander without the consent of your team isn’t particularly nice.

            Generally speaking, when things get to a “sure loss but it’s dragging on for another 20 minutes” point, that just means the enemy commander really isn’t all that good either, a decisive victory really doesn’t take that long, and a good opponent would easily turn things around. The only exception is when the clearly winning team is just mucking about, in which case a GG+F4 is appropriate.

        • subedii says:

          Agree as well.

          If you give up and ragequit all the time that’s the REAL reason you’re never going to see a turnaround. I’ve had plenty already and I’m pretty new to the game.

          A sudden desperate plan, attacking where they aren’t expecting you to attack from because a lone marine built up a sneaky proxy can make all the difference.

          What it DEPENDS on is good coordination and good communication in the team to take advantage of a chance when you get it. It won’t always work, but then that’s why desperate plans are desperate.

      • Vandelay says:

        I do think this is a slight issue. Games can occasionally drag when they should have ended. I think this comes down to a couple of reasons. Firstly, the already mentioned lack of knowing etiquette. I think I have been in about 2 games where everyone hit F4 once the game had clearly been decided. Possibly adding a surrender button for the commander that calls a vote might work.

        The other issue is that people don’t know how to finish a game. I see a lot of alien teams that completely ignore the power node when they have the marines pinned in their base. Instead, people dash in and out attacking random buildings or marines, getting ripped to shreds by the enemies’ weapons. It seems to be less of a problem the other way, as aliens are much more squishy, but people often don’t attempt to stop aliens from spawning in the first place by taking out eggs.

        The later problem is a harder one to resolve, but will probably die down one people learn the game more.

      • Moraven says:

        I think overtime as the players mature the seasaw games will come more often. It can be great when you get the Onos vs Exo clashes.

        • Ruffian says:

          Moraven makes a very good point IMO. I agree that it’s mostly a matter of skill and coordination, as with any other competitive, teambased rts or moba. It’s rare, but certainly not impossible. People just need to get more familar with the meta-game and the maps.

      • Faxanadu says:

        Stardog is right though, that screenshot of an extractor exploding is pretty nonsensical. :P

        As for games feeling like a slow, sure slide to defeat/victory: It’s the basic nature of RTS games.

        Take StarCraft 2 for an example. In high level games, all the casters keep repeating “it might not seem like a big deal, but when the game goes on he gets more and more ahead” -when someone loses the first unit.

      • hamburger_cheesedoodle says:

        I’d been seeing a lot of slow slides into a loss as well. And sure, part of it is that (most) players are new, and we’ve just been learning how to actually finish. I think some of it might be balance too though, or at least was. It could be observer bias, but I have seen more games that are constantly on-edge for almost an hour and impossible comebacks since the patch two days ago than I had in the two weeks prior.

  10. haradaya says:

    Natural Selection 2 reminds me of good old multiplayer games like BF2142. People try to play together, people who know there’s many flavors of success, and it’s not all ones resulting in a kill message. The type of players that have thinned out greatly since consoles became so dominant.
    It’s a game where I don’t mind staying behind to guard an area, while two others go ahead to the action. It feels right.
    It’s also the first game where I actively VoIP with complete strangers.

    • Sparkasaurusmex says:

      Not really like 2142, older than that. This is classic stuff without persistent leveling and all the nonsense in the BF sequels.

      • haradaya says:

        No I didn’t say it was like BF2142, but the teamplay it encourages reminds me of it. People try to support each other rather than go on their own. Something I haven’t seen since that game.

  11. Wang Tang says:

    “seldom felt like a balanced, knife-edge struggle”

    But when it does, it’s gorgeous (pun ..?)
    I just played such a game two days ago, where we as aliens had 3 hives, but lost one, rines were moving to the second, and we had no big hopes, because marines had map control, exos, jp, etc. Our commander wanted to give up. But he didn’t, we didn’t. At the end, we rebuilt hives 7 times (I counted) in different locations and won that game after 1,5h. Fantastic.

  12. Tei says:

    None of the weapons or aliens skill are very good. You play hoping to get to the good parts, but it never hapends.Is still fun to play, and is true that the community is good.

    • Sparkasaurusmex says:

      I don’t think this is true. Play as Gorge or any class besides Skulk and the alien skills are amazingly fun.

    • Outright Villainy says:

      edit: went in as a reply for some reason.

    • subedii says:

      Have to disagree.

      Alien and marine abilities are functional, to the extent they’re not out there and crazy-sauce. But they fulfill their purposes. The real meat of the game is in the style of the gameplay and the kind of team-play it promotes, and the cross-coordination between the commander and the players.

  13. Tane says:

    I can confirm than NS2 is best at competitive level. So every competitive player who seeks fast paced but still teamwork and tactical based competitive game, I welcome you to play this game. Tactics of course are really limited in public games; you see this game in its full colors only in competitive play.

    There was ESL live tournament two weeks ago, where two best EU teams showed the game full capacity: link to de.esl.tv (show starts at 17 minutes)

    • mouton says:

      Aren’t team-oriented games always better with an organized team? The way you say, it might be read that pub gameplay sucks.

      • Tane says:

        It depends what you are used to. For me public NS2 kind of sucks, because I’m used to better teamwork ect. However, it doesn’t suck for people who don’t know better.

        • hamburger_cheesedoodle says:

          I’ve watched you play more games on NS2HD than I can count; I’m not surprised pub play bores you. The rest of us just don’t play at your level. :]

      • BickeringEntree says:

        Pub games, like nearly all multiplayer games, are always hit and miss. Though I’ve found people in this game communicate more than other games I’ve played, which is a joy as I thought it’d only be good if played with a team of friends (as Planetside 2 seems to be). A good community seems to have built itself up around this game.

        • mouton says:

          That’s nice to hear. Usually when game is good only with a team of friends, it is a strong indication it is not very good at all.

    • Sparkasaurusmex says:

      Not exactly sure why (the commander role?) but pub games in NS2 are usually much more organized than pub games in any other FPS.

      • derbefrier says:

        yep that’s something I noticed immediately. Even on the rookie servers which I expected to be a complete mess had at the very least some basic form of teamwork happening. I really need to put some serious time in this game and learn it as I only have a couple matches under my belt but work has been a bitch lately and my video game time has been seriously hampered because of it.

  14. Gorf says:

    Nice WiT. I was hoping you would do one for this as Ive been eyeing it up lately and it looks like something I would dig.

    “There’s too much else out there, and it’s not the laser-point perfect place where I want my serious gaming energies to go.”

    Great description of how things are these days for me also.

    This sound like a game I’ll play and enjoy but will fall by the wayside, just like so many others.
    Even with most of this years new releases on my harddrive (not even got to the bordelands2 dlc yet, left XCOM, GW2 and Dishonoured among others), I find myself playing KoToR2 with the restored content mod.

    • Sparkasaurusmex says:

      Xcom is great, but since NS2 was released it’s been getting dusty in my steam box

      • Gorf says:

        I’ll give it a go tonight as there’s definately an itch that needs to be scratched in my MP gaming diet and this really does look like fun.

        I would be playing Planetside2 but I’m going to wait for some patches first, and mainly because I’m not sure my old quad core will give me the frames per sec I like, (I may just wait for the upgrade to the 2500k I’ve been putting off buying for all theses months).

        • hamburger_cheesedoodle says:

          I’m running a core 2 duo @ 3ghz (e8400) and while I won’t say the game runs great, it’s very playable at 30fps, 1680×1050. Low graphics look surprisingly good.

    • Vandelay says:

      I often feel like that with games that require dedication, particular multiplayer ones. NS2 seems different though. For the first time in years I am sinking a lot of time into it and I constantly want to come back for more. I pre-ordered yonks ago, but I only played for about 15 hours in the couple of years, most of which was in the month or so before release. My steam counter is now pushing 40 hours. That may not seem like much to a lot of you, but I can’t think of a mp game I’ve played for this amount time since Left 4 Dead 2.

      The best part is that I am still learning about the game in every match I play. I haven’t even touched the comm chair on either side yet! I have no doubt I will be hitting triple figures with my playtime on this.

  15. BickeringEntree says:

    Good WiT and definitely agree that the games at the moment feel like a slow progression of winning or losing, not much shifting of balance during the game. I have played a few games which were equal pushing and pulling from both sides, and I think this may happen more as people learn the game, tactics, and counters.

    This is the first online (and even offline) game that I have really enjoyed in a long while. Not that I haven’t enjoyed other releases but this one has absolutely grabbed me. I never played NS1 so didn’t expect much, thought it’d be fun for awhile and then fall by the wayside, but it struck a surprising nerve with me and can feel that I’ll be constantly coming back to this title.

    Not that there aren’t problems with it, the lack of tutorial can be off putting for new players especially since it doesn’t play like many other games out at the moment. Marines can feel tough to play as they really rely on their commanders (health / ammo / scans / nano shields), while the aliens can get along without their commander needing to hold their hands. Though aliens are the hardest to learn to play, though when you do, oh the joy.

    Now I feel the need to stalk some plucky marines

  16. PatrickSwayze says:

    I so desperately want to LOVE this game but in reality I only LIKE it.

    And a large part of it is what Jim mentioned, the feed back of weapons and interaction between players generally.

    Needs more umph.

    I’m sure we’ll get it.

    For now it hits the back burner

    • alilsneaky says:

      Aliens have amazing feedback, the sound when your bites hit and the reliable consistent nature of the hit reg (never seen reliable hitreg in a game that had melee before, ever) make it very satisfying and make it feel very consistent.

      Marines could do with better feedback for the gunplay though,the assault rifle needs more feel to it through animation and sound. Probably the only single small downside of the entire game. Pistol and shotgun feel good but you spend most of the time with the AR so..

  17. TheRAIDER says:

    awesome review! :D

  18. Squishpoke says:

    A certain server I play on is highly competitive (yet still noob friendly). It seriously changes the game a whole lot- there’s constant swapping of bases and AMAZING comebacks, and usually the commanders are very experienced and know how to direct their subordinates into action. They don’t mind helping the newbies along either, so it’s not uncommon to see a green text “graduate” after 3-4 rounds and become just as productive as the rest of us.

    On the flip side, I’ve been on different servers where commanders are a bit too shy to talk, and players kind of doing their own thing. Basically, this game is only as good as what you put into it.

    • derbefrier says:

      would you mind sharing the name of that server?

      • Squishpoke says:

        That would be the [gg] gentlemen gamers :: ggclan.com, located on the West Coast (America)

  19. Ruffian says:

    good to read, I’ll have to pick this up sometime soon.

  20. alilsneaky says:

    Best game I’ve ever played by miles, and I’ve been a pc gamer since the 90s.

    There is more teamplay to be found in pub games with the awesome community than there is on most clan servers in other competetive games.

  21. strangeloup says:

    I wasn’t sure about this, because Nuclear Dawn had standard peoples and a commander, and it turned out kind of rubbish (though I hear there are some pretty good mods for it). I’m happy to hear that it sounds like it’s pretty decent, but at the same time, I can’t see myself getting into it personally, mainly due to the long duration of matches.

    Then again there’s not much multiplayer-only stuff I like. TF2 is a huge exception, and I ding onto Tribes Ascend or CS:GO once in a while, but other than that it very rarely appeals.

  22. OMMad says:

    this seems like the type of game that should be getting e-sports coverage. is there a replay function or a way to output to avi (or a similar format) because reading the review and the comments here has me dying to watch a good NS2 match. considering how much fun i have watching SC2 despite never having played the darn thing, the concept of a RTS where the units are controlled by OTHER PLAYERS has me creaming my pants.

    • airtekh says:

      Here you go. From the very recent European finals.

      Gameplay starts at 30:40

    • hamburger_cheesedoodle says:

      There is a replay function, but only locally, and it’s kinda finnicky right now. If you want to watch hundreds of matches commentated from all levels of skill, check out NS2HD on youtube.

  23. Lucretiel says:

    In short: It’s not the game gamers want right now, but it’s the game they deserve

  24. dextronaut says:

    “Needs more cowbell.” hahahah I lost it there. sadly I dont think many people are going to get that reference. Ive only just turned 20 for reference btw. ANywaaaays, I just bought this game over Steam (winter sale) $10. It seems very interesting. Im a fan of planetside 2, and I like fps’s a lot. rpg’s are great too. I haventplayed an RTS game since like warcraft or starcraft (the first), but this game seems so damn unique and the community is engaging Im really excited to try it. Its 80% done already. Also, I just got me my first headset (turtle beaches at that! a great xmas present) and I wanted a game where communication was key because its about damn time I have and use a headset.