Video Games

Synced Open Beta Hands-On Preview: Can This Nano-Infused Looter Shooter Do Enough to Stand Out?

Those who want to shoot through hordes of enemies with a friend have plenty of options, but I don’t think anyone would let you do that with a pet that doubles as a metal superarm. Enter her Synced, a roguelike looter his shooter that will make Bucky Barnes jealous. The emphasis is on creative buddy systems between humans and their best bio-organic frenemies. That emphasis kept me hooked throughout the limited Early Access play sessions, but it also highlighted some unimaginative elements like very basic gunfights, repetitive level design, and hit or miss skill progression. I was.

What immediately stands out is the setting that throws more science into the sci-fi post-apocalypse. In the bleak future of Synced, nanotechnology moves swiftly from miraculous bioengineering breakthroughs to society-disrupting superwoogies. The nanoparticles in everyday people’s bodies have been disrupted, with most nanoparticles turning into mindless crystalline shells, or other more brutal shapes and rock-like monsters. There are still ways left, and that’s where super-powered survivors come into play. In the end you will end up shooting a lot of despicable monsters. Even if it doesn’t functionally change the “zombie” formula, it at least gives Synced some style his points.

A big unique feature that tries to separate this looter-shooter from the pack is the ability to weaponize these nano-beasts as companions in combat. They come in four varieties that smash, shield, and shoot enemies at your command, making them great additional attacks for your fireteam, or resilient tanks to draw enemy fire away from you. But they’re not just techno Pokemon. When not summoned to Smash, he offers unique passive and active abilities, diversifying his kit options and making his presence impactful at all times. This is certainly the feature I’m most interested in in future iterations.

When not summoned into Smash, Nano Beasts offer unique passive and active abilities.

Runners themselves come in all shapes, sizes, and temperaments, as well as having inherent active and passive abilities. Glory deals bonus damage when hitting an enemy’s weak point and can throw poisonous smoke that obscures vision. Some characters are more useful in PVE or PVP, mainly depending on these skills. Any of Dr. Stone’s or Deadcut’s abilities are useful in his PVE, but Ragna’s ability to detect rivals her runners does not apply in non-existent modes. These can inspire very bare-bones third-person shooters that lack cover or stealth.

With practice, your tactical acumen and good loot can offset these potential drawbacks. But his three-stage mission, which I played in my allotted demo time, was tough. Each had to wipe out a tidal wave of nano-energy, competing for surge counters, making stages progressively more difficult the longer they stayed on the stage. You took continuous damage until you destroyed the surge formation. The storm surge was the epicenter of enemy activity. A horde of monsters of various shapes and sizes all protect Prime her Nano, the mini-boss causing all the commotion. Regular nanos were easy in small groups, so these primes were often surprised at how tenacious they could be.

The layout is randomized each time you start a new run, but not in a way that feels significantly different from your last run.

You can clear more storms than you need if you want more loot and opportunities with more mods, but the clock is ticking, explore and reach the end as quickly as possible. I felt the tension between doing. What I didn’t feel was the urge to explore. The first mission’s stoic warehouses, ghostly marshalling yards, and rolling hills weren’t very appealing. The layout is randomized each time you start a new run, but not in a way that feels significantly different from your last run.

During missions, you can earn currency from your enemies and use it to upgrade the Runner and his allies’ attack and defense in a roguelike style. I really kicked out of this system, especially when the RNG had an advantage, getting 2x and 3x skills over each other. These upgrades added talents that I really lacked without the weapon. I was. You can also find runner mods that you can equip during your run. This adds even more nuance and customizability to gameplay. However, these felt more like misses than hits, as some boosts had a less noticeable effect and others didn’t seem to work at all.

All in all, this looks like a good first attack on the dense wall of router shooter service games Synced is trying to break into. Of course, there are some open questions – how monetization works, whether there is crossplay, etc… and looting, inconsistent character skills and mods. When the Synced Beta goes live on December 10th, you can drop by and bring it to the nano-apocalypse.

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