Dirty Bomb – Review
Imagine if you will a task in front of you. The task itself is rather simple, take an object to a designated area. In your way of course is an opposing force of equal magnitude, one that has thwarted your plans for the last eight attempts. Suddenly you see a change in momentum, call it luck, skill or a gift from the gaming Gods, but this change gives you a glimpse of victory. Your team also notices this and almost like a telepathic synergy, you all jump on the opportunity and go for the goal. In the dying second, the music only elevates your heartbeat, victory is mere seconds away, yet so is defeat and then, like climatic ending to an epic tale, you take the objective and victory is on your side this time!
That, my friends, is what it feels like to win a round in Dirty Bomb, a combination of cohesion and individual skill that will result in either a win or loss for your team, and that reward is both intrinsic and satisfying.
Dirty Bomb is a game brought to us by the same team that brought us Brink. Heard of Brink but never really played it? Well join the rest of the gaming world it seems, the game sold very poorly, which is a shame because, from a critical analysis perspective, it was a very good team shooter. For the few who actually played the game, you’ll find a lot of similarities between the two titles. Generally speaking, they’ve taken a lot of the good things from their previous title and bundled it into this F2P shooter.
Stylistically Dirty Bomb is a squad based shooter with multi-stage objectives. The attacking team must complete a series of objectives to win the round whilst the defending team attempts to halt their advances. The objectives themselves change a lot depending on the map, in one case you’ll be escorting an ATV its drop zone and the next you’ll be taking a brief case to a helicopter pick up zone. The rounds are the perfect length, not too long, not too short, the game seems to find that perfect spot between pleasing casual gamers looking for a quick fix and the more hardcore gamers who prefer a lengthy battle.
During a match you can pick three potential characters, and depending on the current objective and team structure, you’ll find yourself switching between these quite regularly. What really makes this game work so well is the varied character classes on offer. An overly cynical person would boil these down to support, assault, heavy, etc. But truth be told, it runs much deeper than that. Each character has a special ability that, when used, at the appropriate time, can drastically turn the tide of a battle.
It’s possibly too early to tell, but it never feels like there’s a best character to choose. More appropriately, it feels more like there is the need to pick right character for the right job. In one map, during the first objective, the area my team were attacking was quite open with a lot of choke points. Choosing Skyhammer, I was able to clear these and apply pressure with a well timed air strike and provide team support with ammo packs. The next objective though was in a more closed area and I found using Aura the Medic was helping my team more by reviving them and dropping a well placed healing pods. What makes this game so good is that it didn’t matter who you wish to use, it feels rewarding and more importantly fun.
Graphically speaking the visuals pass muster, but only just. There’s truly nothing to write home about here, and at the same time, nothing to truly criticise. Gamers shouldn’t be disappointed of course, just don’t go expecting anything that’s will push the limits of your gaming rig here. The F2P model is quite fair and distances itself from being a pay to win title, for the review we were using the mercenaries starter pack which gave us a good swagger including five full time Mercs, a bunch of in game credits and two elite load out cases. This was only $30US but the best part is there’s enough on offer before you drop a cent to give you an informed decision if this is a game you wish to spend some dollars on.
One could easily write this off as a Team Fortress 2 clone but it would be a big discredit to this title and the awesome work the developers have achieved. Dirty Bomb makes many small changes to the formula to what feels like great effect. It’s accessible to gamers regardless of their skill levels with the FPS genre and more importantly it’s a entertaining title that will win you and your friends over, be sure to check this one out!