Prepare for an Awakening
Developer: Tuque Games
Publisher: Perfect World Entertainment
Platform/Links: Xbox Store | Playstation Store | Steam Store
Rating: T for Teen
Release Date: August 30th
“Livelock is a co-operative top-down shooter where you play solo or with up to two allies to break the cycle of infinite war between machines. As one of the remaining Capital Intellects, your role is to unlock Eden and revive humanity. Take control of one of three mechanical chassis – Hex, Vanguard or Catalyst – to defeat intelligent mechanical enemies.” The story itself comes from a voice over narrative throughout the levels of gameplay, but also in the beginning of each mission. Each level brings a new task for you to do. You will sometimes be forced to destroy certain items spread across the map, fight off waves of enemies, or attempt to race to the end of the level in the fastest time you can. Throughout my time of play, I noticed this game isn’t too much about story, as it is more concentrated on the fun gameplay it brings instead.
Being a Top Down Twin Stick Shooter, LiveLock is a fast and sometimes very challenging game full of non stop action, that will keep you on the edge of your seat throughout the entire time you play. As stated earlier, LiveLock has three characters for you to choose from. The most time I played was with the fast and powerful purple giant, Hex. Hex is the main damage dealer in the game. The weapons and abilities that he is allowed to choose from are mostly slow while having a ton of power to them. The second character is the big orange brute, Vanguard. He is the tank of the group, with attacks bringing him up close and personal, while being able to take the most damage as well. The final titan, Catalyst, is the most tactical of the three. Catalyst has drones that she can bring to battles, as well as being the best of the three inside of groups. She benefits most from helping her teammates out, instead of jumping into battles all by her lonesome.
The main mode to pick from within LiveLock is the campaign mode. That spans across three separate Acts, with many different chapters to complete within. Each chapter will take roughly 10 to 20 minutes, without starting over to try to get the best score you can. You are graded at the end of each level for how much damage you dealt, how long your rapid killing spree lasted, how fast you completed each stage, as well as a few others. That is also how you earn your Experience points for which you can then upgrade your titans weapons and abilities.
Every level surprised me immediately with how they managed to face you with a new enemy type each time. One level you are facing nothing but enemies that are can only attack you up close, the next brings in ranged enemies or creatures that can self destruct for massive damage, then later they start to show you the insanely huge foes with shields you must take out in order to kill. The variety of enemies and environments are always changing the farther you continue the story.
VISUALS/ PERFORMANCE/ SOUND
Speaking of the environments, the are easily my favorite part of the game. Walking across old beaten down bridges as the ground below you is falling, crashing through walls and glass to move onto different sections of the map, or mistakenly taking out huge pillars by accident in the middle of battles makes this game incredibly special. The explosions, glass breaking, lasers and bullets flying, or buildings crumbling all look, feel, and sound so real. Think a top down shooter that resembles a look of Transformers for example, with metal pieces and debris falling off of titan as you are shooting them. The particles in the game all have their own physics as well so it never takes away from immersion even after that pillar falls from you crashing through.
Well the sound and graphics are surely incredible, the performance itself doesn’t seem to stray to far away from that either. Being able to experience this title on both Xbox One and PC, both versions were fairly smooth in the sense of frames per second. There were a few slowdowns, specifically on the Xbox One with many things going on-screen at once, but that is to be expected. My mid range PC was able to run this title almost completely maxed out with very, very few drops, if at any noticeable at all. With the amount of things on-screen and physics, it sure is something to be amazed by looking at.
HARD KNOCK VERDICT
LiveLock is a three person co-op experience first. With its jump in and jump out style of gameplay, unfortunately I wasn’t really able to experience that being I was playing an early release copy. On the PC, once the codes were given out I was able to find just 1 person online that, to my dismay, would not start the match without someone else joining. Over on the Xbox One side of things, I was unable to search for online matches without getting booted to the dashboard. I hope that is fixed when the final game launches (which would be by today if you’re reading this), as playing alone left me feel my time playing would increase immensely with having two other titans by my side. For the price, look of the game, and just all out fun this game provides, I do feel this is something you should check out. Especially worth checking out given the lack of top down shooters we have received this, besides the PC crowd that may benefit from getting more of these types of games. For console or PC players, I do recommend you giving this title a try. I’m looking forward to the next coming days of continuing to level up my titans and join with others to see just how far I can get on the highest difficulties.
Let us know in the comments if you will be picking up LiveLock. Follow us @HardKnockGamers and join in the discussion in our Hard Knock Gamers Facebook Group – “The Best Place to be for ALL Gamers on ALL Platforms”
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