Now most gamers have tried the singleplayer beta-demo of Breed and we are still eagerly awaiting the multiplayer demo, we thought it was time to write a decent preview of the game here at Fragland, so you could all know what to expect from this promising shooter.
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The game industry nowadays is more and more controlled by big publishers, who let numerous developers work at different games because a title needs to get finished on time and time is money, even in the magic world of games. This is one of the reasons why attempts to develop a game with only a small team of people are neglected or mocked at. Not with CDV apparently since they still believe in the 10-men strong develoment team Brat Designs, who are doing everything to get Breed done after more than 3 years of hard labor. Experience is the backbone of the team, there are people there who’ve been in the business since a very long time now and who have worked on games like Shadowman, Soldier of Fortune and Forsaken. They don’t care that the team is small in number, on the contrary, they find it even an extra motivation to continue with what they’re doing in order to prove the big-budget publishers wrong once Breed has been released.
What is/are the Breed now actually? Litterally you could say it’s a some kind of species and that’s the case in the game also. Breed are aliens which in 2602 start to attack distant human colonies. Earth troops are sent out and become victorious after a long and exhausting battle with the Breed so in 2610 they want to return back to earth since their mission was complete. Problem is that the Breed assault on the human colonies was merely a diversion of the aliens, because in the meantime they attacked earth itself. That battle was won by the Breed and now they are terraforming the planet to their needs. They never expected earth troops coming back from the colonies. Well ‘troops’; only one sophisticated spaceship remained (the Darwin) after the colonial wars. The player will see for himself/herself if the Darwin can exploit the element of surprise in order to conquer back earth for the sake of mankind.
Breed will be a science-fiction shooter like Tribes and Halo (but come on, Breed totally doesn’t look like Halo. red :sarcastic). War on land, sea, in the air (even in space!), on gigantic maps (largest one has about 250 km� of terrain), vehicles wherein multiple players can take their positions, a destructible environment, … that and a lot more is to be expected from this game. Very nice to behold is the fact that you’re descending in-game with a dropship from the Darwin straight to earth to kick some ass. Not that you can control the dropship always yourself but to make that descent without a loading screen is pretty stunning and good for the atmosphere. In the game you can always switch between a 1st person or a 3rd person point of view, which could come in handy at times.
Once you’re playing you’ll need to choose between different kind of classes: grunt, sniper, medic, engineer and heavy gunner. All these classes can control the more than eight different vehicles, like the APC, the Fast Assault Buggy, the Falcon-fighter, the Avenger tank and the Humvee Assault jeep. Qua weaponry there aren’t any big surprises since this will be quite standard in comparison with other games. The environment (buildings, trees, etc.) is destructible but it’s a pity that the ground itself cannot be influenced by a grenade hit for example.
The team aspect in singleplayer is quite well worked out: you are able to change team member by pressing one button. Another way of playing is possible also, where you can give teamorders very easily so you don’t have to worry about your buddies getting in the way. The AI and the reactions of your team will create a good and realistic atmosphere. The certain amount of missions isn’t known exactly but there will be at least 18 singleplayer-missions. Those missions will consist in the defending of certain positions, the taking-over of Breed-bases or stealing some important artifacts. It’ll even occur that you’ll need to protect the Darwin against Breed attacks in space by becoming a fighter-pilot or manning a turret. People who were disapointed in the singleplayerdemo should know that this demo was still based on a beta-build of the game. The singleplayer will be much better in the final game and there will be a lot more variation too (we hope).
The classical multiplayer-options are available on specific multiplayer maps. It’s more than likely that players are also allowed to play the singleplayer missions in cooperative mode. The official site still claims that there can be only 16 players in a Breed-multiplayer session but that number will certainly double, so says Brat Designs.
The minimum system requirements have been recently raised up to a PIII 900, 256MB Ram and a GeForce2 MX but that’s understandable because the Mercury engine (which Breed is using) has lots of eyecandy to offer. The screenshots speak for themselves, especially the far landscapes are beautifully visualised and they’ll be very different: rural, snowy, mountaineous and desert regions will be the background of most missions. Let�s hope that most other elements in the game will have the same graphical perfection. The design of the Breed was inspired by movies like ‘Aliens’ and the newest Star Wars incarnations (more specifically the battle droids). Personally I don’t find it a ‘terrifying’ mix, but hey, a preview shouldn’t be about positive things of the game alone not? Modsupport won’t be included in the final version of the game but will be put available for download after the release. The Breed-community has already various plans for mods of for example ‘Space: Above and Beyond’ and of ‘Starship Troopers’.
As conclusion: Brat Designs claimed in some interviews that they see Breed as a sci-fi version of Operation Flashpoint but then only with more emphasis on the pure fun than on the realism. That doesn’t sound bad at all and it seems that they will succeed, but it remains a question if Breed will have the cool marine-atmosphere and that the multiplayer will be as addictive (and fast) as other games in this genre…