By – Carlin Au

Dirty Bomb Review He

Thirty seconds until the end of the match. Twenty-five seconds until our bomb explodes. One second until the enemy team disarms it. Most of the team is waiting for the next wave of respawns, but a couple of us survived long enough to protect the bomb. This wave of respawns will decide whether we win or lose. As soon as the camera changes perspectives to our characters, we pull out our knives and dash for the bomb.  In the eleven hours I’ve had with Dirty Bomb, I’ve never encountered so many close wins and losses in such a short period of time. If I were to look at a playback on a match, I’d be able to give a play-by-play on what people are doing and why. A combination of interesting objectives, meaningful character abilities, and challenging gameplay make Dirty Bomb a great competitive shooter.

There’s a clear emphasis on teamwork and playing for the objectives that makes winning feel really rewarding. In each map, there is an attacking team and a defending team. Depending on the map there are a few different kinds of primary objectives laid out in the environment including escorting vehicles, planting bombs, or retrieving items. Around those primary objectives, there are secondary objectives that can help or hinder either team.

Sometimes blowing up the controls for a gate can become a much needed advantage over the other team. I’ve been in countless games where the defending team had locked down all the entrances to the bomb sites they needed to protect. Once the ventilation system in the gas-filled subway tunnel was repaired, the defenders had to shift around to make up for the extra entrance. The defending team would either have to try and live with the extra entrance or blow up the ventilation system to close it off. Secondary objectives like these make the game feel very dynamic; it’s never clear what the outcome of a match will be.

Dirty Bomb Review

 

Objectives can have a lot of impact on how a match will turn out, but only in the long run. Players and the characters they play as will always have a more immediate effect on the game than objectives. The skill of a player with their character and knowing the ins and outs of their abilities can really make the difference between pushing an objective or letting the other team take it. A good player will know the right times to use their abilities and how to get the most out of them. In Dirty Bomb, clutch situations happen almost all the time. A wave of freshly respawned players can make or break a match. A really well-placed Nader can lob grenades at the objective to deny the other team a chance to try and take it as well as disperse anyone around it. This gives players on the Nader’s team to try and eliminate the other team. A Vassili, with his sniper rifle, could pick off players that are distracted by the Nader, while a Rhino lays down a steady stream of bullets from his minigun to clean up the rest of the team. Many of the characters available at the time of this preview have abilities that seem to revolve around helping the team or pushing for objectives.

Even with character abilities, the player has to be good without them. Most abilities will only last for so long. Everyone needs to be able to do the basics; shooting and maneuvering are still important aspects of Dirty Bomb just like in any other shooter. People are a little more bullet-spongy so being able to land every shot can make a difference. A decent amount of bunny hopping can help, but it’s not like Tribes or Quake. You can jump as much as you want and double jump off of walls, but you’re not going to do any parkour like in Brink. Dirty bomb feels very arcadey because of this, but it still feels competitive.

At 1600×900 on High settings, I had an average of 77 FPS. It’s a decent looking game, but I think I should have gotten better performance. I haven’t encountered many bugs throughout the eleven hours played, but there was one bug that was pretty annoying. When repairing a vehicle and then dying, my weapon doesn’t show up after getting revived. I have to cycle my weapons in order for them to reappear and work. Other than that, Dirty Bomb is looking good so far. Keep in mind that at the time of this preview, Dirty Bomb is still in open beta and is still being worked on.

Dirty Bomb Review 2

Conclusion – Is It Worth The Download?

If you’re looking for a competitive FPS with a strong focus on objective-based gameplay, Dirty Bomb is definitely a game you should consider checking out. There are plenty of experiences where fighting for these objectives can get really hectic. Even in the short time that I’ve played, I know I’ll remember those really tense and close moments in Dirty Bomb.

Dirty Bomb Technical Summary:

Dirty Bomb Review Sum

  • Time Played – 11 Hours
  • Widescreen Support – Yes
  • Resolution Played – 1600×900
  • Windowed Mode – Yes
  • FOV Slider – Yes
  • 5.1 Audio Support – Yes
  • Bugs/Crashes Encountered – None
  • Control Scheme – Keyboard and Mouse
  • DRM – Steam
  • System Specs – 3.5Ghz i5 4690k, 12GB RAM, Sapphire Radeon HD 6870
  • Game Acquisition Method – Free Download
  • Availability – Steam
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