From February 23rd, KOG is conducting CBT for the new game ‘Return Alive’ through Steam. It is the first shooting game from KOG, which introduced Grand Chase, Elsword, and recently ‘KurtzPel’. Of course, it’s a top-down shooting game, so there are parts that are close to the action genre category, but it’s more correct to classify it as a ‘shooter’ for now.
I was pretty excited about what kind of ‘shooter’ KOG, which has been steadily developing action games, will show. Also, it was interesting that PvE and PvP are not separate, but simultaneous battlefields. In the case of the shooting genre, it is also a genre where the developer’s long experience, know-how, and R&D work a lot, so I didn’t think that I was half worried and half excited.
Surprisingly, however, the feeling of playing ‘Return Alive’ itself wasn’t bad. The goal of being a top-down shooter was implemented well enough to be felt in the game, and the sense of play itself created through this was sure to be the point of feeling ‘fun’.
Good shooting sense and battlefield, but growth is random?
Basically, players can switch between equipped weapons at any time, and can utilize special weapon skills with cooldowns and character skills. Basic attacks empty the provided weapon’s magazine and reload it before use. In this case, you empty the magazine and reload like a normal FPS, but the number of ‘shots’ provided is unlimited.
The point of view proceeds from the top view, and WASD is used to move, and the interesting thing is that the field of view and the position of the screen change depending on the position you aim with the mouse. So, since the character is not always centered, we need to secure the field of view flexibly. In addition, it is possible to stealth when entering the bush, but ‘sound’ is generated by the action, and if you use walking instead of running, it is basically silent.
These ‘sounds’ play a significant role in the game, and various factors such as attacking, reloading, or changing weapons generate sound to help you understand the battlefield. Basically, actions outside the player’s field of view are judged as ‘sound’, but sound play is not suitable due to the nature of the top view, so the occurrence of these sounds is shown as text. Sound text such as bang!
In general, these sounds are treated as simple effects such as “!” It was very awkward at first, but as I continued to play, I felt that each of these sounds acted as a very important decision factor.
For example, if there is a ‘jeobuck’ sound in the grass, the opponent may be a player or a roaming monster. However, if you hear a ‘clunk’ or a series of gunshots, you’re 100% a player, so be extremely vigilant. In addition, the top view is difficult to locate even if you hear gunshots out of sight, but looking for these texts can help you determine where the fight is taking place, which is a huge help.
Players can play as three characters, and each character can use a special skill. These characters and mercenaries can grow in three categories: genetic manipulation, battle suits, and firearms. By the way, this growing part is a bit tired.
The materials required for each growth are made through mods or goods and materials obtained by playing the battlefield. The crafting of the gun itself is a structure that can be obtained with certainty through materials, but it takes quite a bit of effort to tailor the performance of this gun to the player’s liking. This is because one of the three abilities is randomly granted, and this ability is also different for each grade.
The characteristics of each gun are well established, but the weaknesses are clearly visible, so the means to compensate for this is a little different from the general approach of gun tuning. To put it simply, compensator parts are attached, and depending on the probability, the range may increase, the noise may decrease, or the bullet speed may increase. And the range of each attribute is also random. Perhaps it is a form that is not easily understood by those who have experienced general FPS gun tuning. In addition, genetic manipulation and firearm tuning goods, which will be described later, are not likely to be able to be farmed much even if they are on the battlefield for quite a long time.
Genetic manipulation can also be done through special materials obtained from the battlefield, but success and failure are also determined randomly. So, inevitably, we have no choice but to spend a lot of time on the ‘battlefield’, which we will talk about in the future. You need to grow to a certain extent to get an advantage, so the more time you spend on the battlefield, the slower the cycle of ‘mode’ play will occur.
The whole game’s cycle structure seems to be designed to grow through the battlefield, and encourage other growth while enjoying light play in the mode. Instead, the randomness of growth is added to this circulation structure itself, which is a pity that the player’s efforts are destroyed or breathing is greatly slowed down.
‘Battlefield’ of farming, ‘Mode’ to compete
The game can be divided into two main modes. It is a ‘battlefield’ where you can enjoy general daily quests and battles without burden, and a ‘mode’ where you can proceed with survival and team deathmatch. Basically, ‘Battlefield’, where you get to play for the first time and get used to it, has some kind of time limit. It is set between about 40 minutes and 1 hour after entering, and you can only work on this battlefield during this time.
On the battlefield, you can only use the weapon you specified at the start, and enemies are both monsters and players. In addition, the equipment used in that battlefield and the level you have grown are valid only in that battlefield. If you re-enter the battlefield or move to another battlefield after escaping, you will have to farm and grow again from the beginning.
On the battlefield, PvE and PvP proceed simultaneously. While defeating monsters and robot creatures regenerating on the field, battles with other players take place at the same time. Fighting against these players is the PvP formula. Avoidance, tacit agreements, betrayal, and without asking or questioning, the aspect of shooting and seeing unfolds.
Also, since players’ time to enter a battlefield is different, there are some who farm better and grow better than me, while others don’t. Instead, equipment and levels on the battlefield are one-off, so there is no big burden. I want to finish the daily quest quickly, but it’s a little annoying if I keep getting into fights.
However, in this battlefield, the materials needed to make future weapons or consumable items fall, so you have to use them constantly. Also, the materials acquired on the battlefield are not disposable. You can acquire these materials when you officially ‘escape’ by moving to a perfectly designated point on the battlefield. However, if you die during PvP or PvE, these materials can randomly drop on the floor, so be careful.
In addition, special materials come with a low probability from field bosses or elite monsters that randomly regenerate somewhere in a designated area at a certain time. These respawn times can be viewed at any time by pressing the TAB key, so be very vigilant about PvP when you get close to that time. So, in one battlefield, there were quite a few users who remained to hunt elite monsters and field bosses even after completing daily quests, more than expected. Conversely, it means staying on the battlefield for a long time. It’s a very important place for mercenaries and mercenary growth, and it’s probably because it’s the only place where you can farm materials.
Unlike battlefields, it is safe to say that ‘modes’ have almost no growth factors. Team Deathmatch is, as the name implies, killing and killing each other in a designated battlefield area, and when a player dies, items that can replace equipment often drop. Also, even if you die, you can resurrect if another player protects you within the respawn time. This is how 4 people become a team and raise more points than the opposing team.
Of course, mod games also require a good strategy, as you can’t change the characters and weapons you select at the start. In addition, consumable items carried before the start of the game have a great impact on the battlefield, so it is essential to consider them.
On the other hand, survival mode is literally survival mode. 16 players fall onto a battlefield, competing with a base 3-minute survival time. This survival time increases little by little as you hunt monsters and obtain items, obtain regenerated items on the field, and kill other players. Of course, if you die in battle, you leave the battlefield right away. It can be said to be the biggest difference from other battlefields.
In this ‘mode’, you can acquire goods with a different concept from the goods that can be obtained on the battlefield, and it is designed in such a way that you can purchase various items from the season shop by consuming them. The gameplay of the mode itself is very short compared to Battlegrounds, so the turnover is very fast.
However, as mentioned earlier, the stay on the battlefield inevitably lengthened, and due to the nature of the CBT, which could only be played for 6 hours, the number of people was limited, so it was not possible to play smoothly. Perhaps more people are added, and it is predicted that it will run fairly smoothly at the point where the farming of users is completed to some extent.
The fun of basic play is okay!
‘Return Alive’ was a game with a surprisingly good shooting sense and fun on the battlefield. Of course, there was a point where the growth factor was very tight for CBT, and the daily missions took more time than expected, so I was tired. However, there was a feeling that it was surprisingly worthwhile, and the basic combat play had a good point to enjoy.
The shooting sense is refreshing, and the purpose of the battle or the player’s goal itself is very simple, but the battle situation is not. That’s why there are sections where you have to make careful decisions and fight. In particular, the tension is established depending on the surrounding noise. The fun of melee on the battlefield feels good enough. Also, the structure of the battlefield, the movement line, and various points themselves are configured to be used in a fairly ‘strategic’ way, and the concept itself is clear, so the atmosphere itself was not bad.
However, because it was CBT, there were parts that could feel regrettable. Production has to go through a more arduous process than expected, and gun customization and genetic manipulation require considerable pre-repetition work, but the randomness is strong, so it takes a very long time to set the desired setting. It takes quite a while to acquire overall goods, and since the battlefield play itself is a one-off, it grows quite quickly, and it takes a lot of time because it is beneficial to wander for a long time after farming to collect goods.
I could understand the content flow itself in battlefield-mode, but there may have been a side effect of recommending ‘content you don’t want to do’ to users who only want to do one thing. In particular, mod contents require a lot of players as the circulation is fast, but it is not circulated as much as expected, so it is difficult to give a complete evaluation.
Of course, there may be a purpose of testing to see the fatigue and flow of such content now, so I think the development team will be able to change the game significantly on how to solve future content. Fortunately, today (25th), the test has been changed to open 24 hours a day, so I think players will be able to access the content more leisurely and look around the content that needed time.
Still, the formula itself of ‘basic game play’, such as shooting sense and strategy based on skill use, is well established, and the tension generated by simultaneous PvE and PvP is said to have the personality of KOG’s top-down shooting in ‘Return Alive’. I think you can see it. CBT runs until March 4th, so if you’re interested, it wouldn’t hurt to try it once.
Reporter Yang Young-seok of Inven ([email protected])