Preview: Brass Tactics Arena – A Taste of What’s to Come
Essentially a fleshed out demo, Brass Tactics Arena is well worth a download.
There maybe another week to wait until Hidden Path Entertainment launches its long awaited real-time strategy (RTS) title Brass Tactics for Oculus Rift, in the meantime however the studio has seen fit to release Brass Tactics Arena. The release is essentially a demo for the upcoming full version, giving players a decent look at the gameplay on offer.
In this cut down version, Brass Tactics Arena is focused on the multiplayer aspect of the videogame. The main story mode is locked apart from the first two sections which teach you the actual mechanics of the title. These are all fairly similar to other table top style virtual reality (VR) experiences, where you can move the table horizontally with one controller, or anyway you please with both.
Controls need to be sharp and snappy for the type of gameplay involved. Anyone used to playing RTS videogames know that they begin slow and steady, turning into pure chaos by the end – especially if you’re losing. Once areas are captured buildings can be placed from a flick of the wrist menu, troops can be commanded individually or in groups, with orders to defend an area or go on an attack run available. These are simple to execute via the trigger or A button, whether your strategy works as well is another matter.
This free demo only has one map available, it’s actually the first map VRFocus saw when Hidden Path Entertainment first announced Brass Tactics during the Game Developers Conference (GDC) 2017. The full title is set to feature more than 20 maps but as you’re getting this for free you just have the one to practice on.
As mentioned this is multiplayer focused, so you can have PvP, and co-op battles online as well as against AI if no one’s about. The studio has added a nice little touch for those waiting to battle online in the form of an arena. Similar in form to classic Roman gladiator arenas, while the timer is ticking away looking for an opponent you can practice commanding troops and learning which are more effective against one another. Archers are good against warriors for example, however depending on the upgrades warriors can become deadly killers of archers.
Castle upgrades look to be a feature that’s been fully left in. Here you can improve your troops, reinforce your castle and more. Care has to be taken however as the castle onlly has a limited amount of upgrade slots, so maxing out one type of troop could mean having others that are weaker. This gives Brass Tactics Arena a nice balancing act that good RTS videogames are known for. While strategy in battle is key, the build-up before is even more important.
Brass Tactics Arena is a great showcase for Brass Tactics later this month. It does exactly what it needs to to make you consider purchasing. With upgrades on offer, warriors and Titans to use on the battlefield and a range of multiplayer options available, it’s almost unbelievable that Hidden Path Entertainment is giving Brass Tactics Arena away for free.