Battleborn hands-on preview

Battleborn Preview (1)
Battleborn hands-on preview.

Battleborn may look like Borderlands; however, it is an entirely new monster which is estimated to be released on the Xbox One, PlayStation 4, and PC sometime in the fourth quarter of 2015 or the first quarter of 2016.

During the course of July 2015, IT News Africa had the opportunity to get some hands-on time with Battleborn. So, if you have never heard of Battleborn here is a brief run down. Battleborn is essentially a co-op first-person-shooter (it’s not a MOBA which is a Multiplayer online battle arena).

While it looks and feels slightly similar to Borderlands, the game is essentially a new IP from the team over at Gearbox Studios. While we did not have the opportunity to play the game’s main campaign in its entirety it is described, by the team at Gearbox Studios, as a narrative experience that follows a band of heroes who has been tasked to protect the he universe’s very last star from a mysterious evil.

As explained by Devon Stanton, 2K’s Export PR Manager, Battleborn can be played solo or with 2-players via split screen. Additionally, Battleborn can be played online with up to 5-players.

Battleborn Preview (2)

Hands-on Impressions

Battleborn features 25 characters, which vary quite dramatically when it comes to class and abilities. Each character seems to be tailored to a different type of play style. For example: there are slower yet more powerful characters on the roster… as well as characters that provide support such as healers or snipers.

During the hands-on preview we went with a much more agile and nimble character called Rath. Rath uses his dual katana’s for quick, horizontal slashes, as well as vertical strikes. He moves much quicker than tank-style characters and also delivers some rather devastating blows when using his ultimate attack, which has been dubbed “Dread Wind” by the developers.

While venturing through the battle arena we noticed that the team at Gearbox Software has definitely paid attention to detail. While we only had the opportunity to play in one arena, it was quite large in scale and contained various mountain paths as well as in door sections where we had the opportunity to battle it out.

In addition to this, for a game that is still in development, it plays rather smoothly. The control structure is pretty spot on as well. This is due to the fact that you actually use most of the buttons on the controller in order to perform basic as well as ultimate attacks. While Most hack n slash/first-person-shooters only use one or two buttons… Battleborn lets you take advantage of the entire control.

Shifting away from the rather impressive control structure, Battleborn also features a great levelling system. The levelling system allows players to unlock various abilities and boosts, once enough XP has been gained. There is a catch however, instead of a skill tree Battleborn allows players to pick one of two abilities. This allows the player to make strategic choices instead of just picking random abilities here and there.

Battleborn Preview (3)

Conclusion:
Overall, Battleborn looks impressive so far. Graphically the games looks great, especially with the tremendous amount of bright colours featured throughout the arenas, on weapons as well as characters, which makes it visually striking. While still in development, it suprised us at how well it plays. Character movement is smooth and fluid, which makes it a title that we are definately keeping on our radar.

Battleborn was previewed by Darryl Linington