Helldivers is a new 4 player squad-based sci-fi shooter, presented from a top down perspective. Players take the role of a Helldiver, a special forces soldier trained to reach enemy planets and reconquer them for Super Earth’s government. Given command of a ship, Helldivers are directed to explore into the star systems controlled by three type of alien races which threaten Super Earth’s way of life.
The year is 2084, all of earth have been unified into one democracy . With such rapid advancement, politics made an easier way to vote for a more improved democracy. Computers now ask a series of questions that automatically chooses the best choice for each individual. Earth as we know is under one set of government rules, which leads us to the renaming of Earth to ” Super Earth”. As humans progress they manage to reach space and cross paths with hostile intergalactic species. To speed up things, the aliens have one purpose, and it is to destroy all human life. There are three types of aliens: The Cyborgs, The Bugs, and The Illuminates. With each alien being significantly different from one other, Super Earth now must go into their first intergalactic war. This is where the Helldivers come into play. These are the most efficient soldiers that are tasked with the responsibility of clearing out the aliens and regaining the planets for Super Earth’s government.
Helldiver’s gameplay feels very similar to other top down twin stick shooters. The best example would be Dead Nation, but instead of running from point to point clearing out zombies, you are faced with a set of missions to complete. These missions are pretty standard, from activating oil extractors to destroying a bug’s nest. The game is primarily made to play online, even though playing by yourself is still fun. Some missions are just designed to be played with others, especially the harder missions. When playing with 4 players it’s extremely fun. The aliens come in extreme numbers and overwhelm you fairly quickly, but the good thing is you have these things called stratagems. Stratagems are items you can call down from your ship. It could be a selection of things that provide you with more ammunition, a giant mech, or a turret. You have the ability to preset these items before heading out for a mission , so you have more of a tactile strategy once on the battlefield. Helldivers must use precaution once on a mission. This becomes very difficult for the player because if your teammate is behind a large amount of bugs, you are going to need to shoot them or risk becoming the reason for their deaths. This also requires you to carefully place your stratagems, because if they do fall on a teammate or yourself, it most certainly means instant death. Arrowhead also created an in-game universe that changes with how the communities play the game. Each time you and your squad take on a specific region, your influence is depicted on the main map, showing how much control you have over Super Earth compared to the Aliens. This in-game universe gives players a reason to keep fighting this war. Eventually when there’s enough influence, you can reach the alien’s home world and dominate control of their area. But for all the things Helldivers does right, there’s a host of problems they could improve upon. With many games nowadays, there’s always a list of launch bugs and Helldivers isn’t spared from this mishap. For the first week now the game has been facing a huge matchmaking problem. It could take you up to 15 minutes to find a game, and most people will give up before finding one. As if that isn’t annoying enough, the game for some reason deletes all your saved data should you remotely die anytime during your gameplay. This setback will bring you back to level one, and all your time would have been wasted.
Graphics-wise, Helldivers reminds me of Destiny. Even the maps share some similarities to Bungie’s ambitious first-person shooter, from the open deserts to the icy terrain. There are actually enough maps for Helldivers to not become overly repetitious. The aliens are very different from each other as well. The majority of the aliens are rather difficult to combat especially when faced with big bugs like the tank or when there are many smaller ones attacking at once. The bugs are the easiest race to defeat. The Cyborgs are robot looking enemies. That was once part of Super Earth’s low-end troopers. The Illuminates are the most difficult to face but they are also the most interesting. They have these little drones that scout out and call in their big heavily armored warriors.
The music in Helldivers feels like an ordinary sci-fi movie from the 90s. The way the music starts to kick up when finishing a mission is so epic, it’s hard not to crack a smile. Even when on the ship, when the background music is playing it has a very sci-fi feel to it. When on the battlefield, the Aliens will make different noises that are unique to each species type. The guns also pack a good punch. When using a heavy machine gun you can feel how powerful that weapon is from the sound alone. The gun sounds really powerful especially when calling down a turret.
Helldivers seems to promise a strong game if the community stays involved. Once everyone starts to leave, the game could face some major problems. Helldivers is an excellent game and for $20.00 it’s a steal. With or without friends the game creates great cooperative gameplay which is just pure fun. Helldivers is extremely fun. The addictive gameplay will have you coming back for more. Did any of you guys pick up Helldivers? What do you guys think about it? Let me know in the comments below and for all your latest game reviews, keep it locked to FGE!