Brink Reviews

  • WorhammerWorhammer261,172
    11 May 2011 04 Aug 2011
    67 31 45
    ***UPDATED after DLC & lag patch 4 Aug. 2011***

    Brink is a very interesting and unique game that tries to do quite a bit of new things, and succeeds only at some. It's a first person shooter that tries to mix in the parkour craze with a little mandatory cover - while providing no snap-to cover mechanics.

    The biggest feature I saw advertised about Brink was the deep levels of customization - however, immediately upon starting the game, I found this to be severely lacking.

    Sure, you can change the color of your outfit, but only with preset colors. Sure, you can change your face, but you only get 10 or 15 preset options to choose from, and you can't mix and match facial features. Not to mention the fact that once you do choose your face and voice type you're stuck with what you choose. The voice options are also sadly lacking. Speaking of the voice acting, it's acceptable, but not stellar. It's mostly used to communicate objectives to team mates during play. Sometimes it's over the top, and sometimes it doesn't really make sense. Especially when you buff a team mate and they respond with "Thanks awfully" - I often wondered if they were thanking me, or being sarcastic.

    On the other hand, there are quite a few options for your outfit. You can choose between various bits of facial hair, helmets, hats, hair styles, jackets, shirts, and pants. There are some tattoos, but almost all of them look retarded - especially the facial tattoos. If you want to look like a cholo, you're set cause there's plenty of that. You can also have different face paints on top of it all, but most of those are ugly as well.

    The gun customization is an extremely welcome addition to the game, and can be extremely helpful in making your character more suited to the highly objective-based gameplay. This is probably where the customization that they so widely advertised shines most. You have different sights, muzzles, grips, and other things that will increase your accuracy, decrease gun shake / bloom, allow you to reload faster or switch weapons faster, and many, many other options.

    The "matchmaking" system, if it could be called that, is incredibly retarded. I tried to play with a friend who was only 1 rank higher than me (the game is broken down into ranks and levels, every 5 levels being a rank) and he simply could not join my game, even when set to a private game with matchmaking options set as "My rank or higher." He was always told "Your level is too high to play on this server." However, I could join his game, so that makes up for it (sort of.)

    In addition to this, there is no matchmaking lobby, so you are forced into joining a game in progress, then hoping there's room and inviting team mates, if you want to play campaign with your friends but open it up to other randoms. There was a lag patch released shortly after launch. If you get a bad host, it will slow you down a bit, but it's now barely noticeable unless you have a very poor host.

    The graphics in the game are probably one of the best parts. The unique art style suits the game well, and provides a good mood for the style of action that accompanies play.

    The controls take some getting used to, especially the parkour, but once you have it down they work very smoothly. I found this only to be troubling when attempting the parkour challenges, as often I would want to go up and stop, and instead would go up and over - off the edge of a high platform, forced to circumnavigate my way back around the map to where I fell from.

    The gameplay itself is really targeted for multiplayer. The campaign isn't really much of a campaign, more like a string of multiplayer objective matches hastily stitched together by a few 30 - 45 second cutscenes. The AI was tuned up quite a bit in a patch a few days after the game was released, and the game is easy to beat alone on Easy. However, it's pretty boring as it often involves a good deal of camping and shooting the endless waves of enemy bots that run in. Even on Hard I found the AI to be significantly improved on your side, but don't expect it to be fun without some friends.

    The storyline in the game is laughable. Even after beating the game several times on both sides, I'm still not sure what went on. The missions don't really seem to go together other than "go here, stop this, do that, catch this guy" - there are explanations, they're just not very engaging. With no stand out characters, I found myself not caring whether I won or lost, other than the fact that I want to win because winning is good.

    If you're looking for a good time, your best bet is to get a few friends together and go through the campaign (which will take you no more than 3 hours per side) and have some fun laughing about how lame the storyline is.

    The difference between classes is minimal. Each class has a specialty, but other than that they all shoot the same. The medic can heal and revive, the engineer can buff and drop turrets, the operative hacks stuff, and the soldier will probably steal the show with his better grenades and ability to share ammo.

    With a few minor exceptions, the achievements are all easy. The most difficult will be the 3 stars, and even that will be somewhat easy once you figure out how to trick the enemy AI into leaving you alone while you complete the objectives.

    All in all, despite it's quite numerous flaws, the game is fun. It has quite a bit of replay value, assuming people can suffer through the lag until it's fixed. Play it with friends, and you'll have a blast.

    Overview:
    Visual: 4 / 5
    Graphics are unique, and the scenery is varied and has lots good fun touches. The ability to make your character look (mostly) how you want is a great bonus here.

    Controls: 3 / 5
    Responsive, but the parkour needs some work.

    Sound: 3 / 5
    Voice acting could be better. Music unimpressive.

    Achievements: 4 / 5
    Time consuming, but easy. Don't expect anything to keep you from getting the full 1K if you want it. Time to 1K: 20 - 25hrs. Less, if you boost them all (every achievement in the game is boostable except the campaign achievements & the audio logs.) With boosting, if you get a group of 6 or 8 friends to blast through Tough As Nails, you could probably do it in 10 or 15.

    Fun Factor & Replay: 3 / 5
    Don't expect to enjoy it without some friends. However, with friends, it's a really good game.
    3.0
    Showing most recent comments. View all comments.
    SyntrThere isn't an online pass, I'm playing online and I rented it.
    Posted by Syntr on 21 May 12 at 18:48
    FIVWPPJ4/5.
    F.I.V.W.P.P.J.
    Posted by FIVWPPJ on 02 Jul 12 at 21:24
    gatordeve86this game blows... im glad i only paid $5 new but i still think i got ripped
    Posted by gatordeve86 on 16 Sep 12 at 11:21
  • KienamaruKienamaru233,685
    25 Apr 2012
    14 2 8
    Let's talk about BRINK for a moment. This game has many flaws but also many strongpoints. I'll keep it simple, and sectioned with PRO, CON, and summary. Review number 3...

    PROS

    Something Different- This game is not your typical run of the mill, shoot em dead kind of game. As a matter of fact there is no deathmatch mode at all. It focuses on objective based gameplay which is a welcome step in a new direction. Hopefully Bethesda learns from this fames mistakes and releases a BRINK 2 someday.

    Customization- I have never played a game that has such a large focus on character creation other than sports or fighting titles. This game has everything you could want in an FPS aside of women. (would look horrible given their art style) You get clothing for nearly all parts of the body, multiple layers, tattoos, body types, face types, skin color, voices, multiple classes, lots of weapons and tons of attachments for weapons, and abilities. The chances of running into someone who has all the same choices as you are likely one in however many people play BRINK.

    Sound Effects- The gun sounds vary greatly and many are insanely crisp or over the top. Grenades aren't so great at first but become alright with upgrades.

    SMART system- Instead of saying what SMART stands for I'll explain how it works. Holding RB allows you to move over, under, across, and around nearly anything in your way. This makes navigating maps tons easier and quite enjoyable. It uses the same button as sprinting which may confuse some. To sprint simply press and don't hold the button.

    Custom Controls- You can set each action to any button of your choice allowing you to be as comfortable as you like.

    Music- Aside of menu music I have only noticed music a few times on rare occassions. However the theme is catchy and fits the customization, which is what you'll be doing if you happen to listen to it.

    Class Variety- The class you pick will greatly affect how you play the game, assuming you play skillfully. The four classes are...

    Medic= As the name implies medics use medicine for buffing, reviving, granting temporary bonuses etc. Best if not used on the frontlines.

    Soldier= Frontline units. They get extra ammo, stronger explosives, extra equipment, and double as the Demo men.

    Operative= A more behind the scenes role. Operatives can disguise as enemies, reveal enemy locations on the HUD, spot mines, reprogram turrets, and hack objectives or shortcuts. Goes well with light body type and suppressed weaponry. Gets special grenade types suitable for trapping locations, sentry bots for scouting, and a special dead man bomb, giving you a chance to kill someone after death using your corpse.

    Engineer= The mega class. Engineers can buff weapons, buff armor, set mines, defuse enemy mines, place turrets, defuse enemy charges, repair objectives, repair turrets, repair bots, and remove sticky grenades before they detonate. Engineers are effective in front line or anywhere else really.

    Level Design- There aren't very many levels, but every one is enjoyable on each side. They are generally seperated into attack and defense sides, each with different segments for objectives, varying in difficulty. The levels are creative, multi tiered, and bring the Ark to life. Your body type will affect what paths and shortcuts are open to you, and your class can alter some of them to help allies or hinder opponents.

    Challenge Mode- A quick diversion that I would recommend playing before the story or Mp which is generally the same. These mini missions work as in game training modes, each utilizing different implemented features. They reward you with special weapons and unlocks.

    Audio Logs- Much of the game's story lies in the files you recover after missions. They help to flesh out the game for those who care, and can be ignored by those who don't. The game never forces them on you.

    CONS

    Story mode- This game features a double sided campaign which is a fine idea. There is little to no story telling however, so reading loading screens, and listening to your briefing is the only way to truly understand everything.

    DLC- The dlc was at one time free, now it costs 800msp. This includes 2 new maps, a few weapon attachments, some clothing, and an increased level cap along with new abilities.

    Story Mode is MP- This is not horrible by any means, but sometimes you want your multiplayer experience to be different than your single player.

    MP setup- You can freely customize your search or host options, however people of a higher rank than you can not join your game. Even worse than that, is that there are no lobbies whatsoever, mic chat is normally set to off, and finding friends to play with is highly unlikely unless you force it.

    MP challenges- You can do challenges on mp, but it does not unlock the rewards earned for single player.

    Faster Audio Logs- For some reason you acquire logs faster by playing in mp, this allows someone to shave off hours of time to get them all just by playing through multiplayer. Single player will take twice as long.

    Bad AI- The worst feature of this game is the AI. Most noticably on Hard. The enemy AI will be unrelenting Marskmen all armed with Shotguns, Revolvers, and a Kross smg every now and then. Your team AI has a problem avoiding mines, prioritizing targets, helping in escorts, scoring objectives, reviving you, resupplying you, aiming, defending objectives, and trying to complete primary objectives. They always go for secondary.

    OVERALL

    BRINK isn't a bad game, I find it very enjoyable being tired of Halo or CoD type games. Good sound effects, graphics, and gameplay. A solid customization feature, and near genius level design, coupled with classes and objective based gameplaynoffers a new kind of shooter experience. The only real downsides lie in the offline gameplay, and trying to play online with random people.

    If I've forgotten anything let me know and I'll update gladly.
    4.0
  • Wull ScottWull Scott478,431
    06 Jun 2011 06 Jun 2011
    45 34 29
    Brink.

    Ah... Brinky, Brinky, Brink Brink Brink...

    Right, let's hit this head-on, shall we?

    Brink is set in a post apocalyptic dystopian future on a hi-tech floating island during a civil war where you... *SNORE!*

    Sorry, I said "head on" didn't I... Brink is a shoddy copy of Quake Wars: Enemy Territory with worse graphics, no vehicles, a broken parkour element and shoddy generic characters that look like they are from Bo' Selecta.

    Brink is a DONKEY of a game - it is a fetid pile of toss. It is by a LONG stretch the worst game I have ever played.

    "Strong words" I hear you say. Strong words indeed and words that I feel need justification with such turds as Hour of Victory, Turning Point and numerous others on my played list. My justification is this - I love cheap and cheerful games, the ones that I find in my local game shop and actually have to ask what it is because I've somehow missed the release, like Blood Drive, Warrior: Legends of Troy and the criminally overlooked Singularity. Games that have had very little publicity (if any) where there are some unexpected thrills to be had. Then we have odd games from German/Eastern European developers that are obviously huge in Germany, like Two Worlds, Divinity 2, Risen and Ghost Warrior which have been made very cheaply and they know what they are. They know that they are cheap and average looking and there might be one person out there who loves them - and that's fine. All these types of games I have no beef with.

    Now. Here's my point - Brink and it's ilk, the vile over hyped trash that is usually headed up by months of developers diaries and a teaser trailer consisting of a logo, a muffled crash and fade to the name of the game or something... Oh they wind me up. It is the world we live in, the world of hype and marketing, and AGAIN - I accept this. But never before in my gaming life have I ever felt so comprehensively LIED to as with Brink. Being misled by my own expectations is my own fault, but this... this was targeted humiliation.

    Let's start at the beginning then, with character creation - it's hard not to get excited by customisation possibilities that will eventually be made available to you. It's only when you realise the implication that ALL THE CLASSES LOOK THE SAME that you get your first sinking feeling. You see, in an objective based game where everyone has a role to fill it is quite important that you are able to identify and prioritise targets, so if you are defending a deliciously hackable terminal, you are going to want to shoot the operative (or spy, or whatever, I actually don't remember) before you waste your ammo on his escort. Sadly, with the customisation options, everyone looks like extreme sports hobos with cranio-facial genetic disorders. The voices are bland, but at least convey a feeling that they are an international bunch. It can be a little bit odd when you play as the Security forces and you accidentally shoot one of your INEPT cockblocking AI team-mates and they shout "DO I LOOK LIKE A FASCIST TO YOU!?". Buzzcut, uniform, boots, rifle... Yes, actually. Yes, you DO look like a fascist...

    We may as well discuss the AI as we have briefly touched on it - it is awful. Greatest hits involve one minute being unable to hit you from three feet and fighting as a dispersed gaggle, to suddenly every shot hitting you as they skilfully hold the objective room. This wild inconsistency runs through both teams to the point where I had gone to the toilet, and got waylaid on the way back to find that in my absence my team had won 2 maps. On other occasions, the respawn, die, respawn, die, respawn, die cycle is so short that you can't help but feel huge amounts of frustration. And woe betide if your AI team-mates pick up an objective that needs to be delivered. That can cost you a match as he steadfastly refuses to move out the room, or insists on getting involved in gun battles rather than running to the objective. It is incredibly frustrating, but not NEARLY as frustrating as the gun play.

    Weapons are divided into 3 broad categories... No. Only joking! They are uniformly garbage. Not only do they lack the perceived weight through their animation and controller vibration, but the sound effects are akin to children's toys. Couple this with the fact that they lack the visceral punch in the game and you have a very unsatisfying whole. Examples include 3 headshots with a sniper rifle to take down an enemy and the shotgun that may as well be firing confetti. Muzzle climb and accuracy are awful in this game (as well as damage), so your only real combat tactic is get in close with a rapid fire SMG and holding down the button until you are out of ammo. Oh and good luck with the lucky dip of weapons. They are all basically mixed up in a big generic menu screen with the scantest of information. Sure, you can see stats like damage, stability and what-not, but the game omits basic information like the weapon type and actual rate of fire. It's quite annoying when you discover in your first up close fire fight that the 80% filled bar on the rate of fire stat refers to firing a three-round burst, rather than full auto. Or that new high powered rifle is, in fact a shotgun. It is very shoddy indeed, and that's not even mentioning the tacky feel of the weapon customisation - reflex sights take up too much screen and sniper scope crosshairs are too bloated for accurate work, but then I refer you to my previous statement regarding three headshots to kill. With a SNIPER RIFLE.

    Ah-HA! "In Brink, you should be moving more than you are shooting", a loading screen message proclaims. "The guns aren't the point, you fat fool" the game (seems) to cry. Well if that is the case, you really should get a sense of speed as you move through the cluttered environment. Well, you don't. The lies that I mentioned in the previous paragraphs get another mention - I swear that they sped up game play videos, even within the game itself the tutorial videos look far faster than the actual game. It seemed quite promising that there were the three body types to choose from as well, as I thought that maybe the light body type might move like Mirror's Edge or something. It doesn't. In fact, you tend to find with the light body that your character launches himself OVER thinner bits of scenery (like walls) rather than onto, losing you a tactical edge. With his significantly lower health, I had very little use for him. Also, I have to say - S.M.A.R.T? Smart? What would be bloody "smart" would be rather than designing six stupid, confusing cluttered maps and then making a system that allows Smooth Movement Around Rough Terrain, how about you just design better maps? No?

    The maps are very poor, it must be said. I have never come across a game so hopelessly skewed towards defenders. It might just be that I am better at defense, I don't know, but I never failed a single defense objective, but on attack... Oh, god. Chokepoints, slow moving easily damaged escort VIPs, hacking that takes an age and AI that flat out refuses to defend you as you repair things as the engineer all conspire to cripple the attacking game. I make plenty of mention of the AI, but not of multiplayer, you might notice. This is due to me getting the game a week after its release, while about a dozen of my friends bought it day one. So appalled were they, that a week later only 2 still had it. My local game shop had to stop taking trade-ins as they had bought in so many (I think their cut off is ten copies). So, I have been left to trawl the underbelly of random matches and blessed lord Krishna, is THAT a lonely place to be... Either that or I'm just unable to join matches. I have managed 2 games and in both, there were only 3 other human players and the rest made up of bots. So... No... No thanks.

    My final irritation in this game came on the Shipyard level with a piece of graffiti. A piece of graffiti of a man with a fish saying "WE EAT COD". Now I accept that they probably eat cod. That's fine. However, the implication that they "eat COD" as in they better Call Of Duty in any way is laughable on so many levels. Were the developers so ARROGANT as to compare their new untested product to a far superior well established franchise, or are they so STUPID? I genuinely don't know. For the record, I dislike Black Ops and World at War intensely, but I would play either any day of the week before I even contemplated touching this dreadful pile of muck.
    1.0
  • VinchuccaVinchucca181,946
    27 Jun 2011 28 Jun 2011
    13 4 1
    I've been thinking about this review for quite a while now. Brink is a game I've been anticipating pretty much since it was first announced. I liked the idea of a class-based, objective-oriented FPS for the consoles (especially since I suck so much at Team Fortress 2 on my PC).

    But Brink isn't an easy game to formulate an opinion on. If you break it down to it's individual parts it's hardly special. It even fails at some of it's basic goals. Yet somehow the end product is more than the sum of it parts. And still it manages to not feel as great as it should've been. It's a game that reached for the stars, but found itself standing on a wonky ladder. (How's that for an analogy eh?).

    Brink seems to be conceived around 3 'pillars' being customization, classes and parkour.

    Let's start by talking about customization. Well, to be brief: there's a ton of it. There's lots of ways to customize your character. From tattoos, to scars, to different clothes in all sorts of wacky colours. For some reason I really enjoy this sort of thing (maybe I have a secretly suppressed urge to dress up Barbie dolls or something I don't know) and Brink doesn’t disappoint here. Weapons aren't safe from Brink's customization-craze either with add-able scopes, different kinds of magazines, grenade-launchers etc... This customization is even more fun because of the games pleasing and refreshing aestethic. All the characters seem elongated, which creates a somewhat cartoony effect I really welcomed as a nice diversion from all the gritty realism in FPS's these days. So that's a “+1” for Brink then? Yeah sure, but unfortunately it immediately loses this point again because although customization is great, it won't allow you to identify the different classes on the battlefield, since anybody can look like whatever. That's a big problem! If you want to defend an objective against say...soldiers, how are you going to do that if you can't tell who's a soldier and who isn't!?

    Which brings us quite neatly to the classes. There's 4 in total: soldier, medic, engineer and operative. Most of which seem to come right out of Team Fortress 2. Also quite a weird choice on the designer's part is why on earth do I need to unlock the class-related stuff?! Like the turret for the engineer and the EMP-grenades for the operative? This class-specific stuff should be available right off the bat! Now for the first five levels or so I'm stuck with four almost identical classes and play-styles. Why I ask?! What were they thinking?!

    The HUD is a mess as well. There's so many icons, indicators and other crap going on it leaves me confused and lost. I can understand they wanted to show as much intel as possible but come on this is madness! I had to force my eyes to keep tracking the enemy instead of objectives, ammo counters, weapon equipments, supply-pips, health, command stations, xp-indications, class-icons and grenade-cool-down-diagrams to name but a few!

    Speaking of aestethics and grafix, on the technical side of things it isn't as pleasing. Textures take forever to load in and even then they look blurry and vague. It shows the game is based on the engine that ran Enemy Territory Quake Wars back in 2007. Which was in turn an upgraded engine from Quake IV, which was an updated engine from Doom³ from 2004! Even with these low-res grafixs the game still jitters at times and never seems to consistently hit a decent amount of frames per second. There's really no excuse for this engine to be around still after all these years and it only gives me the nagging feeling that I'd really, really, really like to see this game were it made with the Frostbite engine! Luckily though the sound is pretty decent and the weapons all have a good tactile feeling to them, which matters more in a shooter I guess than fancy grafixs.

    The last pillar is parkour (you know – running around vaulting and mantling over crap like you're an ADHD-monkey with jack-all to do all day). The extend to which you can partake in this however is limited to your body type. As you can imagine the light body types can run faster and climb and jump over pretty much anything, but they're vulnerable and can only wield light machine-guns and pistols. The heavies on the other hand can only vault over low objects, but have far more hitpoints and can wield massive p*nis-extensions like gatlingguns. But to be frank there's really not much point to it all. Sure there's a crate scattered on the ground here and there, but nowhere does this parkour give you a tactical advantage. Even when there's some boxes stacked up like a makeshift staircase the actual staircase is usually right next to it, begging the question why you'd bother with the whole parkour thing? There's a fun slide-move though, that can get you out of a pickle or knock an enemy off his feet, so I suppose it's not all for nought.

    I'm running way to long here (nobody likes to stare at a wall of text) so I'm going to wrap it up. Brink is a game that’s not good. But still I kept playing it and I honestly can't tell you why. Maybe it's because I'm so tired of the dual-wielding-shotgun noobs in Modern Warfare? Or all the no-scope-headshot-no-lifers in Halo Reach? I don't know but fact of the matter is I played this game long after I got all the achievements (which aren't that hard by the way) and maxed my character at level 20. I'm even going to start a second character later tonight. So although you'll see a 3/5 star rating at the bottom of this review, know that it's really only a 2,5 but since I somehow still enjoyed myself I felt inclined to round it off to a 3.
    2.5
  • 7 1 2
    Brink is a first person shooter game by Splash Damage and published by Bethesda Softworks. I picked this game up because it is also one of the few T rated shooters on the Xbox that is somewhat recent. (I recently decided to move away from M rated games since I have small children in the house).

    Story: The basic plot is that someone decided that Waterworld was a great movie and it would be really fun to make a game set in a Waterworld. There are two factions, cops and terrorists (yes they are named different in the game). The terrorist group wants to be free to leave their island refuge and go.... well that is never really made clear since the entire world is covered in water, but instead they seem set on screwing everyone over by blowing up the one safe haven all humanity has. The cops on the are trying to stop the terrorists plans and save the world.

    Gameplay: Gameplay centers around class-based, objective oriented, combat. There are four classes in the games (Soldier, Engineer, Operative, Medic) each with their own special talents and abilities that are needed to complete your objectives. Adding to the mix of classes/abilities is the SMART system which allows you to traverse the maps easier (usually).

    Soldiers are geared towards heavy combat, demolition, and resupply. They also focus on various forms of gernades. From what I see the best soldier is a heavy one carrying large guns.

    Engineers are the support class. They can buff weapons and armor, lay protective mines and control zones with their auto guns. They also are needed to repair equipment, disable bombs, build/destroy alternate routes, and build machine-gun platforms. In most situations the Engineer will have something to do.

    Operatives are the spy class. They work best as an infiltrator/assassin light class. Able to quickly get above and behind enemy lines. They have the ability to hack into objectives, control points and even enemy guns. They also can disguise themselves as one of the other side to assassinate and disrupt.

    Medics are the healer class (obviously). They can revive/heal others and buff their health so they can survive longer. About the only time they are necessary is when the objective is to escort a person.

    While both gameplay modes (solo/multiplayer) are essentially the same, there are some differences you should know.

    First in solo mode your teammates are dumber than a box of rocks. (I've witnessed one pick up the objective only to stand there until time ran out.) The classes will not actually do their jobs most of the time, and when they do you will wish that they had not. While they game emphasizes staying in a group, the AI bots blindly charge into a no win situation.

    In multiplayer, things can be better as long as everyone does their job. All classes (except perhaps the medic) has a job, and you should be focused on doing it. If you don't, the wheels will quickly fall off and the more organized side will win (which can be a debate sometimes in a AI vs Human match).

    Graphics and sound:

    Everything more or less looks and sound like it should, but you win not find anything that makes you impressed (except maybe by the similarity of the narrator to the guy who is over at zombo.com). As I said the story makes little sense and the voice acting doesn't help it.

    Content:

    The game does live up to it's Teen rarting. There is a little language in the game, but nothing that wouldn't be a PG movie from the 80's. The blood and gore is minor, but you are murdering wave after wave of human enemies.

    Overall:

    Despite it's flaws (and there quite a few), I've enjoyed Brink. It partially reminds me of Tribes on PS2, and partially reminds me of a time when shooters didn't have to depend on shock value (language for the sake of language and blood and gore just because they can). I wish this had been better done and better received as it may have brought back the T-Rated shooter of old.

    Score: 3 of 5 for most, 4 of 5 for those wishing to say at a T rating.
  • thirtysmooththirtysmooth212,186
    06 Sep 2011
    7 1 1
    Reading reviews of Brink before it was released back in May, my judgement for this FPS-come-Parkour game had been slightly clouded, due in part to some pretty dodgy reviews littered around the gaming web sites. Since these reviews pretty much decided my outcome to not make this a day one purchase, I had been awaiting a price drop for some time. Forking out £40 for a game which IGN rated at a mere 6/10 with the word “Okay” emblazoned underneath the score, doesn’t exactly scream “Buy me NOW!”.

    Having researched a bit about the game play, its core mechanics and realising that it’s Published by Bethesda, the company that brought us epic and memorable titles such as The Elder Scrolls and Fallout Series’, I noticed that it’s developed by the little known (at least to me) Splash Damage. They brought us Doom 3 and Enemy Territory: Quake Wars. With the gaming behemoth Bethesda behind them, how could they go wrong?

    Brink sees a new game mechanic developed by Splash Damage named SMART or Smooth Movement Across Random Terrain. Basically, this makes the player’s movement around the various terrains and obstacles a lot easier and smoother, but we’ll talk about this a bit later on.

    After ordering and waiting 3 days for the Postman to arrive, I have it sitting in my Xbox 360 ready to play.

    Upon loading, I enter straight into the campaign and am greeted with a rather brief and bland history of The Ark; It’s been isolated for 20 or so years and has been split into 2 zones or factions: The Security and the rebels, or The Resistance. Very boring stuff. Once I’ve entered into the game itself, I’m assigned a task. A small yellow outline of a door is present in the distance. I guess I have to go and do something with that? Heading towards this door, I am faced with what I presume is an adversary, however I am unsure as it just stares blankly at me. After a moment of confusion, this random being begins to shoot at me. Okay, so it is an enemy, but why did it take him so long to realise that I was, in fact, an enemy? Is the AI in this game really that bad? Are the reviews about the AI’s intelligence being likened to a sausage roll true? Yes and yes. They are awful. A cabbage would be more useful than these abominations!

    There are four character classes to choose from:

    Solider – The run and gunner. He has the ability to furnish teammates with extra ammo. He is also the demolition guy.
    Medic – He is pretty much what it says on the tin. He has the ability to ‘buff’ team mates’ health and revive the incapacitated.
    Engineer – He is the tech guy. He can build MG nests, turrets and disarm mines.
    Operative – Think of him as a spy. He has the ability to disguise himself and can hack computer systems.

    Whilst all four classes have different abilities, you find yourself doing exactly the same thing. Run, kill, and repeat. Whilst the different classes offer slightly different objectives, if the class you’re currently playing as doesn’t have the correct ability to complete an objective, you’re pretty much just stuck killing the beyond-dumb AI enemies which becomes monotonous and boring extremely quickly. You do have the ability to change your class mid-game by visiting a command post, but this can prove frustrating and lengthy. At the end of the day, you shouldn’t need to change classes whilst in the midst of battle, that’s where your teammates should come in, but they just don’t.

    Along with the different classes, Brink offers a fully customisable character system which enlists different outfits and body types for your character and a weapon customise menu which allows you to modify your weapon(s) to tailor to your needs. These range from the type of scope on your weapon, to the type of magazine attachment. This allows you to be completely unique if you wish to compete online, why you would want to play online is another issue altogether though. This is, however, one of a few good points to the game. I spent a good while cycling through the different variations of tattoos, scars, hair styles and clothing only to realise that I don’t actually care.

    It takes a good hour or so of continuous play to get to grips with the controls (Left Bumper to run) and with the objectives you need to complete. As soon as it all clicks in your head, the game becomes a bit more bearable. I actually found myself enjoying it, but don’t tell anyone I said that. The game play reminds me a lot of Team Fortress (and its sequel Team Fortress 2) and Mirror’s Edge. “Team Mirror’s Brink”, if you like? Team Fortress and Brink are very similar in the way they are heavily geared towards multiplayer and team-based objectives. I can give Brink some credit for trying to emulate them as the two Team Fortress games were great fun during their prime and I can see what the developers were trying to do, unfortunately they just didn’t have the fluency or ingenuity to match TF/2.

    The SMART system that the developers employed wasn’t exactly a radical improvement to the gaming world. Sure, it works well when traversing over objects, but it’s nothing that Mirror’s Edge doesn’t already do. It can get a little annoying as I, on numerous occasions, accidently run over an obstacle, slowing me down, when it would have been easier and quicker to have moved a quarter of an inch to the right or left where the obstacle wasn’t present, but perhaps that’s just me being a retard.

    The multiplayer is a complete mess of Rambo wannabe’s and varying levels of lag of goliath proportions. For a game that bases itself on co-operative game play and team work, it fails for these two reasons alone. Certain people seem to think that all First Person Shooter titles are either Halo or Call of Duty. These people also think that Elvis Presley and Tupac Shakur are still alive and are secretly holidaying in the Maldives. The pure naivety of these gamers ruins the game that Brink is trying so hard to be; the game that employs you to use your head, rather than blasting everything that moves. If you rid these unworldly beings from the game, you might have something that resembles a decent online experience.

    Overall, Brink isn’t terrible, but it isn’t great. It had a lot of potential with its resemblances to Team Fortress and Mirror’s Edge, but it failed to deliver an original Parkour-Shooter game. It could have raised the bar in the genre; it could have been so much more. Instead, we’re left with a campaign that is short and devoid of any real storyline and a multiplayer that is dysfunctional and disjointed.
    3.0
  • WildWing2007WildWing200799,876
    01 Aug 2011 01 Aug 2011
    15 12 8
    Story: Not much to write home about. The Security is fighting the Resistance for control of the Ark. None of the cut scenes add any sense of urgency or continuity, and the story as a whole really doesn't make as much sense as Splash Damage probably would've liked.

    Gameplay: Excellent FPS action. Typical gun play, but what is more exciting is the way you play Brink. Jumping head first into a fire fight all alone is not the way to go. You will die. Instead, the focus is on teamwork. And when you and your team win a hard fought battle, you get a fist pumping, "Hell yeah!" moment. It is sweet. On the other hand, when your team sucks, their isn't much you can do to turn the battle in your team's favor. Maps are brilliant and invoke thought and strategies to use. I have had the game since launch, and I am still finding new ways to approach the maps. Character customization is relentless. You can create a character that is truly unique by customizing the face, clothes, injuries, tattoos, hair, facial hair, accessories. Then you get to the actual stuff that helps you in combat. The guns. At least 20 guns, each one different than the last. Plus, accomplishing the challenge missions unlocks new guns and attachments to put on all those guns. Throw in 20 (Soon to be 24) levels ups to get, each one giving your character new ability points to spend. You can then spend those points in a general ability pool, or each of the class pools. Speaking of which, the classes available in Brink are the Operative, Engineer, Soldier, and Medic, and each one is equally as important. Also, the new SMART movement system makes it easy to run, jump, mount, climb, or traverse any terrain with just the press of LB.

    That covers the good, now here's the bad: No party up system, which means you can't go into a game WITH friends. No in game lobby, meaning you have to leave the matchmaking lobby you have been playing in to customize your character. Only 8 maps (Soon to be 10). While each map is great, there are only 8 to play on, and in a multiplayer focused title, that is a small number. BUT like I said, there are a new batch of maps coming, and probably more are in the works. Finally, the AI (Before the patches they were BRAIN DEAD) is competent, but is still focused solely on capturing command posts.

    Graphics And Sound: The voice acting is OK, but I could take it or leave it. Why does everyone have a Jamaican accent? The graphics are very good. The art style is fantastic, and the execution is good. This is after the patches, so I am not counting the lag, pop up or bad textures, as they have been attended to.

    Longevity: Only 8 (thus far) missions, but each map has two sides to the coin, and you will constantly find new vantage points, escape routes, shortcuts, etc. Audio logs, upgrades, achievements, various gameplay types and modes, and upcoming DLC ensure a long life span for Brink gamers.

    Conclusion: A fantastic experience. The game satisfyingly rewards players with endless streams of rewards. Endless customization, enticing weapon combinations, and teamwork inspired gameplay makes this shooter stand out from the rest. Take a ride to the Ark with Brink, and you will be cheering (and occasionally swearing at your dumbass teammates) all the way.
    5.0
  • matt the dragonmatt the dragon403,020
    17 May 2011
    1 4 4
    rent this game first before buying it
    i can list at least 4 problems with this game
    1. campaign is over so quickly 2 hours per side which is a joke.
    2. A,I what the fuck A.I in this game on easy and medium are like the spastic version of stephan hawking and on hard its stephan hawking on spped. you cant get anywhere because there too tough.
    3. story. nothing orignal end of the world blah blah blah last people on earth create the ark some bums arrive and come to the ark to stay there then food stocks are running out and chaos ensures bland!
    4.value for money is it really?
    3.0
  • 1 8 1
    All in all, Brink was a game which didn't live up to my expectations. I will be judging this review on four aspects:

    1. Achievements (how hard/easy they are)
    2. Re-playability value
    3. Gameplay
    4. Graphics

    Well, here's the review:

    Achievements: The Game took me a week to get everything done, and honestly I never looked back at it. You can get a great deal done just doing a few private matches and both sides of the campaign. There are only a few which will take you a few days to achieve. Overall, an easy game for 500GS and up. 8/10

    Re-playability value: After I finished both of the campaigns, I realized the story was bleak. All you do in the story is just objectives, such as:
    Arming/Disarming an HE Charge
    Carrying some critical objective
    Cutting into Vaults
    A lot of defending
    So, not much replay value. 4/10

    Gameplay: To me, I was very excited with the gameplay: before the game came out. I thought it would be a cross between Call of Duty and Mirror's Edge. The running aspect turned out to be very bleak, not much oriented around it, and the A.I.'s do nothing. Not very good Gameplay for me.
    5/10

    Graphics: The graphics are probably the best thing about this game. They are sharp on 1080p, and it is never too dark or bright. 6/10

    Bethesda did a good job on this game, but not up to my expectations.
  • RobotZombearRobotZombear143,942
    12 May 2011 15 May 2011
    10 21 2
    Just cut your Expectations in half and you will be happy with a FPS with some new features to play with friends.
    SMART(Smooth movement across random terrain) is a great system and all future FPS should have some form of the SMART, it works very well once you get the hang of it and is quite a great way to get around the map. Its "Campaign Mode" was short and uninspiring. Its huge "Solo/Multiplayer is the same thing" is kinda a joke, its just a multiplayer arena style game with objectives. It was Nowhere near as good as i was expecting, The computer AI is wanky, you will have the perfect group of teammates that will complete objectives before you get to them sometimes, and other times they all play operatives and just run and die. Sometimes you will be revived within seconds, other times there is no medics at all on your team, Same with the AI on the other team, sometimes they will drop like flies and not get back up, and sometimes they have 4 medics that are constantly reviving those you just kill.
    All in all when playing Human vs Human this game can have some really killer matches. Don't believe the hype but this is definitely worth a rent, or picking it up for something different (than Cod Bops) to play with your friends while you wait for Battlefield 3.
    3.0