Developed and Published By: Rebellion Categories: Shooter, Co-op Release Date: 06.15.21
They’ve done it again! Rebellion has made another fun third person shooter! This time there’s lots of treasure to find. Strange Brigade is the latest shooter from the Sniper Elite (and NeverDead, still my favorite from them) developers. It’s themed after those old serials that would play on the radio or TV, adventures deep in the woods, mythical creatures, gold, foreign lands, taking down the evil Witch Queen Seteki after being risen from her grave of 4000 years.
You’re going to want to play Strange Brigade with a friend…or two…or three! It’s a co-op game and there’s definitely a reason to do so as the enemy count is massive. Enemies can and will come at all angles, and can at times be overwhelming. It never felt like I was going to lose however. If you seem short on ammo, there’s always bound to be a stockpile nearby. This isn’t a game that exists to be as hard as possible or to push players. It’s just having some campy fun going on an adventure with friends.
Select your character from a small group of diverse choices, which all seem to be different eras or cultures, with weapons to match. Maybe even switch out your gear to your liking. All of the guns have their own stats, ups and downs. I chose to sacrifice other stats for strength at times. While you can accrue newer and stronger weapons by playing the game more and more, I found myself pulled in by the weapons you can find in levels. Often being stronger and more devastating, with elemental powers. They do seem like ancient, undiscovered treasures that would be lost to time. These weapons do have limited ammo though, so I try to save them for emergencies. For your default weapons or ones you pick up otherwise, you can upgrade them at the tent and workstations you come across with the gold you find.
Treasure is what you’re really after though. You’re going to want to track down all of the puzzles you come across as they all hold loot and most importantly, Relics. Getting enough of these relics can can grant you new amulet powers. I’m kind of mixed on the amulet powers. Most felt very contextual and seemed like wastes of time when my guns could do more damage. At least on normal mobs of enemies, an ability like grabbing and knocking around a mummy comes off as just being showy.
Sadly, while the game is fun, it’s not quite as satisfying at something like Sniper Elite, which made killing enemies feel exciting. Critical hits still feel good, but nothing matches that X ray effect. The massive number of enemies doesn’t quite help.
Stages are pretty big, which led me to getting lost admittedly, even if there is always a set path and goal. Thankfully, getting lost or going off the beaten path leads you to relics or gold, or weapons. When playing with friends, maybe split up, as long as you know you can survive getting ambushed.
Strange Brigade pushed co-op hard, and thankfully the online in my experience was fantastic. At no times did I get any disconnections, or lag. It’s always fantastic to see when a Switch game has decent online, to the point of it feeling like I’m playing right next to someone.
For a Switch game, let alone a port of a game that was on next gen consoles years before, Strange Brigade is a great looking and running game. Impressive is the feeling I got when playing, performance wise. Lots of players, lots of enemies, no drops in resolution or framerate that I noticed. That said, Rebellion’s previous outings were no slouches either.
Much like Rebellion’s other games, there is *a lot* of DLC. The more odd and fun stuff always ends up being DLC, which is disappointing, but at the very least, the game still feels complete and fun without the DLC. Though three years after a game is out on PS4 or Xbox, it does seem a tad disappointing to have it like this. At least it seems to be cheaper on Switch than PS4.
There might be a over abundance of co-op shooters lately, but I’ll probably never get sick of them, at least as long as they aren’t Left 4 Dead clones, which thankfully this isn’t. Despite complaints, I might end up being some of the DLC, I liked the game enough.
Buy Now: $34.99
*Game Download Code graciously supplied for the purpose of review