Dreadnought – set course for ramming speed
There were only a handful of games at Gamescom 2016 that made me step back and say wow, included in the list of games that surprised me was Yager Development’s Dreadnought, a team deathmatch 5v5 space capital ship game.
At Gamescom, I had a chance to play it in both the business area and later in the public area of the convention. My experience in both areas of the convention was exactly the same, pure uncensored joy as the customizable nature of each ship allowed for some fun tactical play.
In my several instances of playing, I controlled a medium destroyer known as the Athos. It was equipped with a repeater weapon, torpedoes, auto guns, energy generator and most importantly of all a plasma ram. Before I start talking about the game, let’s talk about the customization. In Dreadnought you can customise its appear from making a black/grey ship with a reaper headpiece to a bright pink ship with a pig head as its centrepiece. You can also customise your loadout, but to make the best loadout possible you need to use real money or in-game currency to unlock them. Although, I did find the ships do an effective amount of damage with their base loadout.
Now let’s talk about the combat, and wow it is fun. When playing Dreadnought I was limited to playing on the surface of planets, one was a rocky desert world while the other was a rocky ice world. During my time playing I quickly learned that a key strategy in the game is to use your surrounds as cover and as such I spent a lot of my time low to the ground using the terrain to sneak up on my opponents. Apart from sneaking around I quickly noticed that energy management was far more important than I first realised, energy management at its core is about deciding if you should boost your weapons, shields, speed or just conserve your reserve energy, learning when to use reserve energy and what you should boost is an important survival tool.
Now as you can see from the title you can ram enemy ships, and of course I just had to have fun with it. At every opportunity I could get I would try to ram an opposing playing, I think by the end of my final play session I think I had a less than 50% success ratio with my ramming, although when I successfully destroyed an enemy with a ram it felt incredibly fun and hilarious experience. Before I forget I want to bring up at least one of my misses just because of the sheer hilarity of it, so in one game I found an enemy not moving and as I slowly snuck up on it I attempted to make sure we were level with each other, but alas my ability to judge height eluded me and I simply missed the unsuspected ship by several centimetres.
Now, I wish to talk about the intensity of some of the games I played yesterday (Saturday 20 August 2016) as I was involved in two amazingly close matches (my team won the first game 100-95, but lost the second 95-100). What made these matches so close was the excellent use of tactics and strategy by both sides. In one match the enemy had built what was an impenetrable fortress consisting of dreadnoughts, healers and some really good cover, but the enemy’s entire plan fell apart when an ally launched a well-placed nuke. In Dreadnought, just like in most team based games team composition and teamwork is key.
Dreadnought is an enjoyable team based capital ship game if you love customising and relying on tactics and strategy to win a match I highly recommend you check out Dreadnought.
Dreadnought is currently in closed beta, and I highly recommend visiting the game’s website and signing up for the beta.