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Generation Zero Closed Beta – First Impressions

On Thursday, October 18th, Avalanche Studios released the Generation Zero closed beta for those lucky enough to receive a code.  Please note that this is a very early build for the game and I did come across a fair amount of bugs and this is not a reflection of the final product.

At its core, Generation Zero is an open world action game that takes place on the east coast of Sweden.  The game allows for solo play or up to 4 player multiplayer.  You can customize your character in all the classic late 80’s style tropes and prepare yourself mentally for what is Generation Zero.

LIGHTHOUSE_2
When we begin the game we are given a short introduction that is just eerie enough to set the mood for the game.  We find ourselves washed up on a shore – completely alone and at Night.  We are then tasked with finding a weapon and attempting to find a shred of human life other than ourselves. We set out in this empty world to find clues that will lead us to where everyone is.  The only thing standing in our way is the “Machines” – packs of animal-like robots that will not hesitate to kill you where you stand.  Either sneak past these enemies or try your luck and face them – but beware, where there is one Machine, there will be many.

SUNSET-RUNNERS

The game is absolutely beautiful.  The Apex engine really shines in this game.  The visuals of the game are truly breathtaking.  The game features a full day/night cycle, complex AI behavior, simulated ballistics, highly realistic acoustics and a 1980’s sound track.

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The sound design in this game is one of the things that I was personally the most impressed with.  While the game can get quite loud, after you adjust your settings and find that sweet spot – the sound will captivate you.  The aforementioned sound track sounds like something straight out of an 80’s sci-fi movie, I certainly felt Stranger Things vibes while listening to it.  The actual in game SFX are extremely realistic.  Gun shots are loud, you can faintly hear the Machine’s scanners from far away, and the cracking of tree limbs under your feet will make you watch your step when sneaking.

MULTIPLAYER

The gunplay in Generation Zero feels tight and satisfying.  Movement feels smooth and the sneaking mechanic feels polished.  The AI is pretty good and will change its behavior based on a variety of factors.  For example, on my first playthrough, I came across the main enemy type you’ll find, the “Runner”, and shot off the mounted SMG on its back.  I foolishly thought that it would be an easy kill.  Suddenly the dog like machine came running at me full speed and put me right on my back.

Generation Zero features a perk tree that will allow your character to grow and adapt as you level yourself up.  You can gain perks like increased hip fire accuracy, damage buffs, speed increases, and sneak effectiveness.  I would say that the perk chart is comparable to that of Fallout 4‘s where the perks build off of one another.

Ultimately, Generation Zero has a lot of potential and the feedback from the community could shape this into an excellent game.  This was only a taste of what is to come with Generation Zero but I can say that it will be a very interesting and immersive game.

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All images were taken from Avalanche Studio’s website

What are you most excited for in Generation Zero?  If you got a chance to play the beta, let us know your thoughts in the comments below!