Quick Attack: Awesomenauts

Quick Attacks are Vagary.TV’s way of giving you, the reader, a glimpse at a game we are playing. This could be a game we are reviewing in full or just something we picked up for a few days to kill some time but, either way, it will highlight thoughts and impressions from the first hour or two of gameplay. 

In this Quick Attack, we take a look at Awesomenauts for Playstation Network and Xbox Live Arcade.

  • Awesomenauts, like League of Legends, DOTA, and Demigod before it, is a multiplayer online battle arena game. A what now? Yeah, don’t worry about it. What that means is that you ,some human controlled buddies, and some computer controlled tiny dudes (creeps) have to shoot and blast your way through enemy turrets and a similar troop assortment to destroy the enemy base. Watch the video above for a better idea!
  • The six characters are spread out across different specialities and are all extremely well balanced
  • The in game currency system is smart. Kills, assists, and healing your buddies gives you money to use on powerful upgrades that change the way your character plays in meaningful ways: One upgrade turns the amphibian brawler Froggy G’s tornado move into a damage reflecting attack that’s great for attacking turrets, while another turns support sniper Yuri’s slow aura into a healing spell for allies. The currency system works both ways, so trying to avoid feeding the enemy money with careless deaths creates a lot of tension and strategic risk vs. reward decisions.
  • The two to three player splitscreen online and offline is incredibly easy to set up, even in tandem with friend invites. Unfortunately, there are occasional drops in frame-rate during spawn animations when splitscreen is used.
  • The art style is vibrant and visually interesting while making it easy to tell what’s going on in even the most frantic of situations. During our preview at E3 2011, the developers said that much of the art was Bucky O’Hare inspired and it really shows.
  • A real-time ping counter on the scoreboard gives you an idea of the connection quality of the match, and host migration works well for the most part. Both of these features are sorely lacking in many online games today, so Kudos to developer Ronimo games for getting it right.
Every friend of the four I’ve shown this game to has had the same reaction. Their first impression was frustration and outright indifference. Without fail, they all came around and mirrored my sentiments on how addicting and incredibly fun Awesomenauts is once you get around the learning curve of a few games. Unlike many MOBA games, which last 45 minutes to an hour, the quick 5-15 minute matches of Awesomenauts make even the most disastrous game negligible in the span of the daily hour or so us adults have to play games.
Awesomenauts is one hell of a 2D action game that somehow manages to cater to busy lifestyles while having an incredibly balanced, strategic, and approachable design that breaks new ground in the often unforgiving heroes vs. towers and creeps MOBA genre. I’m hesitant to use gushing hyperbole when talking about a game, but trust me when I say that it’s worth giving a chance.



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Author: Kyle Baron View all posts by
It all started with a 30+ page FAQ on Mechassault back on his high-school lunch breaks. Since then, Kyle has graduated from the award winning journalism program at Humber College and has written for and managed several game editorial/news publications.