Battalion 1944 [official site] managed to get onto my good side within seconds of poring over the website for details. It does that by dispensing with buffs and unlocks, in an attempt to deliver a purely skill-based multiplayer shooter. It looks cracking too, with tight maps based on actual WWII locations. The proof, as ever, will be in the pudding though, and you'll be able to taste that pudding at Rezzed next week. Square Enix Collective will be bringing the game and its developers, Bulkhead Interactive, to the show where you'll be able to join in 4v4 matches.
I'll be playing beforehand and will let you know how that works out next Thursday, both on the site and in person should you see me at Rezzed.
The last multiplayer first-person thing that I enjoyed was Rainbow Six: Siege, and I suspect if I had time to spare, I'd still be enjoying it. I miss the days when I could sink an evening into a deathmatch with a few chums though, and my brief attempts to get into the multiplayer scene on most modern shooters have been disheartening. I think that's at least partly because I feel like I've been left behind before I start, knowing I'll never have time to unlock all the good stuff. Give me a gun and a level playing field and I'll...well, I'll still lose, but at least I'll lose on my own terms.
Although it's a year old now, the announcement trailer below gives a good idea of what to expect. There'll more footage out in the wild soon.
With this and Insurgency: Sandstorm, 2017 might be the year I actually fall back into old FPS habits. I'll let you know next week, once I've had my pudding. In the meantime, tickets for Rezzed are still available (though Saturday is running low) and Battalion will be there all three days.