First Impressions: Helldivers

Published March 26, 2015 by Amanda B. Greene

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Helldivers is a challenging game to master. You typically wouldn’t think that a top-down shooter would be all that complicated, but it actually is. There are a lot to the controls, but once you mostly get the hang of inputting commands with the directional pad, you’ll be all set there. But it’s actually all about the teamwork, especially considering the friendly fire. It’s addictive, and surprisingly strategic, fun to have with friends and family as you fight for Super Earth.

 Story

As said in the beginning cutscene before you jump into Helldivers, Super Earth is fighting a three-front war against the Illuminate, Cyborgs, and the Bugs. The people live in a managed democracy. It is your turn to protect liberty and hopefully reach and destroy the enemy homeworlds.

There is an Encyclopedia that goes a little more in depth with each of the enemies and so forth.

Gameplay

There are a fair amount of controls to remember, but it doesn’t take long to learn them. You got your Stratagems, grenades, your main gun, a pistol, and a secondary weapon (one picked up from a Stratagem like a flamethrower or a recoilless rifle). It seems like a lot to handle, but you’ll need them all to take out the patrols and heavy militia.

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You can’t play this alone, and even with friends, you will die a lot. It’s nothing to get frustrated at, but if you dislike higher, more nearly “impossible”difficulties, then this is not a game for you. With that said, you shouldn’t be intimidated. It’s funny to accidentally die sometimes, whether that be from friendly fire or your own Stratagem drops.

Exactly what I said in the beginning, it is surprisingly strategic. You got your favorite weapons and Stratagems to test out and upgrade, some are better than others and different combinations will either help or break you in combat. I’ll give my own beginner strategy guide from my live and learn experience.

  • Tip: Take cover (press square) when your sentry gun is going off or when you’re on fire to avoid being killed so… gory?

You get to do a lot of various missions, including the wonderful escort jobs (being completely sarcastic there). They vary and get harder as you go along, the closer you get to taking back a region of space.

Sound/Music

I would say that the background music is good, kinda catchy. It fits well with the sc-fi and space exploration themes going on.

As for the characters you play as, they can get annoying at times with their catchphrases. Helldivers takes jabs at American patriotism by saying things like “Taste the cup of libertea!” It’s kind of funny though.

Final Note

It’s definitely worth $20 and your time. I love how this indie developer put a lot of work and detail into this game, please support them. They honestly did a great job and Helldivers even beats out some of the bigger games like Call of Duty I think, especially considering how Activision doesn’t really include local multiplayer anymore. I’ll give a review soon like always, so stay tuned for that. 🙂 

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