Raiders of the Broken Planet is not what you would expect. It’s a third person shooter that feels really off when you start playing. It’s hard to pinpoint it exactly, but you can feel it nonetheless. However, there’s also something about it that kept me going. The art style, the presentation, and the gameplay is just different enough to make you want to stick with it and see what it’s all about. And you’ll be amply rewarded for it.
To put it simply, Raiders of the Broken Planet is a 4 player co-op game, which you could play solo, or you could play as an Antagonist instead of one of the protagonists, and try to disrupt other players’ progress. You take on missions across various areas, and from the beginning there’s a good scale of spectacle and grandiose. This is complimented by the game’s lighter tone that gives way to some genuinely funny moments.
Since this is a third person action game, there’s a big emphasis on the shooting. However, there are different characters you can play as, and each of them has their own particular strengths and weaknesses. One of them is a tank that moves slow and deals heavy damage, another has a jetpack and is incredibly mobile, and yet another is a sniper specialist and strikes from the shadows. All of the classes feel really different, and are suitable for particular scenarios.
There’s one caveat though – a meter rises as you move and perform actions, making it easier for enemies to detect you. The meter also rises as you start taking damage, and increases stress, eventually slowing down movement and leaving you disoriented. Keeping an eye on these meters, and managing them becomes a key part of the gameplay, and adds a new layer of strategy to the game.
Also, you have a limited number of lives across your 4 player team, and this leads to desperate moments of holding on to dear life. There’s an intensity to Raiders of the Broken planet that is rarely seen in modern shooters. While most shooters are relatively simple, with bullet sponge enemies and quickly regenerating health, here enemies will die fast, but so can you. Ammo is also limited, and you can only resupply it by killing enemies in melee combat. And the melee combat is also fairly deep with a mix of attacks, grabs, and dodges. Enemies will also pull off clever attack moves, and you can’t get away with simply spamming the melee button.
The Antagonist system adds even more to the game’s depth, with a 50-50 chance of another player invading your session and making things harder for you. It’s an interesting system worth engaging with, but can be switched off if you so choose.
Missions are spread across 4 campaigns and a free Prologue. Only one of the campaigns is available as of now – Alien Myths. Even so, there’s a fair variety and replayability here to make me eager to see more of the game and its story. There are six characters you can play as, with six more coming soon.
Raiders of the Broken planet might seem like more of the usual at a glance, but it’s much more than that. Sure, there’s an initial learning curve, but the game’s mechanics are interesting enough to warrant your time. Be it a the shooting mechanics, the melee combat, the PvP aspect or the mission structure – it’s easy to find something you like in Raiders of the Broken Planet, you just need to give it some time.