PSX 2016 – Games of Glory Preview – Brought to You by Synarchy (PS4)
While a lot of attention has been paid to the larger games exhibited at Sony’s annual PlayStation Experience convention, there is still a lot of fun to be had looking at all the games being developed by smaller teams. Lightbulb Crew’s upcoming Games of Glory is one such example, and it’s free to boot! We went hands-on with the game while at PSX 16, and have all the details available in our preview.
Games of Glory is a top-down MOBA-like mashup of a few different genres. For starters, the game’s combat controls in a twin-stick manner, where you use the left analog stick to move around, and the right analog stick to aim. Powers are mapped to the shoulder and face buttons. There will be over 50 weapons to choose from, which are non-character specific. Upgrades are purchased via in-game currency, which will no doubt be where some of the monetization for this game will come from.
While each character in Games of Glory can use any weapon, they have unique powers which vary in strategic, offensive, or defensive use. You’ve got a standard mix of classes to choose from, with tanks, support, scouts, and other more specialized classes, which should cover all playstyles. Their powers may include healing, freezing enemies, or feature the use of exotic weapons, telekinetic powers, and more. A genuinely wide variety of powers was shown during the demo, and it should take gamers a while to master any single character, let alone all of them.
The game mode we saw played at PSX 2016 was a 3-vs-3 match where a random player on both teams was designated with a star. The goal of the one minute, twenty-second round was the get the star player as close to the center of the map as possible, without getting killed. The winning team would be either the last to keep their star player alive, or the team that ended up having their star player closest to the center when time expired. Despite a large cast of characters, Games of Glory played fairly well-balanced. The match was a best-of-11 series, which went all the way to the 11th round before a victor was determined. The whole thing was over in around 10 minutes, because the star players were often killed before time could expire.
I was surprised to learn that Games of Glory was being developed using the Unity Engine. Controls felt very responsive, and the game’s frame rate kept up with the high-paced action. The pre-game menu and environment were high-tech and clean looking; indeed, the game’s universe is sci-fi and futuristic. You play as a clone gladiator, fighting for the amusement of citizens of the Synarchy, a “powerful intergalactic empire.” Little else of the story was revealed, which will occur in time as the game releases (which follows a long time spent in Steam’s Early Access program).
Cross-platform play is exceedingly rare on console games, especially on the PS4. Yet Games of Glory will see exactly that – you can fight against PC gamers while on your console. While most of the time this means that the players with the mouse have the upper hand, here the developer Lightbulb Crew claims that because of the nature of the game, those on PC will see no advantage. In fact, CEO and co-founder Anders Larsson stated that he felt the game was easier to play with a controller because of the number of buttons needed to press while running around the battlefield. Aiming snaps precisely where the right analog stick is aimed, or in which direction the mouse is moved. So, unlike a first-person shooter, the mouse is no more or less precise.
Games of Glory is going to release in a free-to-play format, with over a dozen characters available at launch. The prospect of cross-platform multiplayer is intriguing, and we will see at launch if either platform has a competitive advantage. Games of Glory is scheduled for release in “early 2017” on PlayStation 4 and PC.