Published on May 18th, 2011 | by Mitch Concannon
Review – BRINK
Summary: Brink was weighed down by its ambition. What could have been a great game, became one of the most disappointing titles.
Among a busy spring release schedule we find Brink, Bethesda’s latest venture into the first person shooter market. In the game you really don’t play a specific character because your role in the single player is rather ambivalent. Instead you accomplish objectives based on your commander’s orders as you try to thwart a terrorist plot from reeking havoc on the innocent public.
Sound a little abstract? Well that is because it is. Brink really doesn’t have a single player or a multiplayer for that matter. What you have is a single mode, which can be played as a single player campaign. In this iteration of the game your team mates and the rest of your squad are populated by AI bots. If you decide to play this mode in multiplayer your goals are exactly the same but instead of AI bots running around the battlefield you have human players. The nice thing about designing a game like this is the drop in, drop out nature of the game. You don’t have to worry about player’s connections going bad or late night sessions running into the early morning hours. You can simply stop playing and the computer will finish your game for you. The bad part about the same functionality is that the story becomes incredibly weak and goes to the point of being insignificant. Personally I didn’t care for that since I prefer a little story to my shooters, but I am sure Bethesda wanted it that way.
The better parts of this game come from the customization and upgrade system in place. It is almost RPG like in the feel but has a fair amount of depth that will entice players to keep going for that last objective to level up. This specific system mimics Team Fortress 2 quite a bit with your ability to choose body type. However, Bethesda takes things a step further by restricting the map by body type so only certain body types can enter certain areas. I liked this addition and it made you think about your character beyond how proficient you are at first person shooters or what weapons to use. Customization is taken a step further with the ability to choose the outfits for your character. There are a large number of combinations and colors so you have a unique look just for you. Lastly you have the ability to choose a class to play as. The choices are rather uninspired and you have seen this layout before. As you would expect Engineers can lay turrets and mines, Medics heal other players, Soldiers have special incendiaries and Operatives can hack consoles. The twist to all this is how you are able to change classes on the fly. In the spawn point there are consoles that you can run up to and switch your class on the fly. This is a nice addition and I particularly liked the information given to you when the class change screen is up. It tells you how many players are each class so if you need more Medics or Engineers you know by just opening that screen.
The last thing that I didn’t particularly like was the artistic style of the game. It has a cartoon like appearance but they grossly exaggerated human features which make the characters look silly. For me it made the cut scenes really distracting and I would have much preferred a different, more realistic look for the characters. Sure the customization of the game helps to offset this specifically but it still reflects negatively for this game. Overall Brink just didn’t get where it needed to get to be a good game. It is definitely playable and you may even have some fun with this title. I can appreciate Bethesda trying to think outside of the box and for that I commend them. There is just too much holding this game back to joining the upper echelon of 2011 releases. This game is definitely not worth the full price for video games today but if you can find it for cheap or rent it one way or another I would suggest going down that route for interested readers.
Check out other great reviews by Joe Marchese @ NewGamerNation.com