Strange Brigade is a cooperative shooter in the same vein as the Left 4 Dead series. Strange Brigade puts you in the shoes of one of four adventurers in the 1930’s set off to find the Tomb of Seteki to finish what Edgar Harbin started. The four characters you can choose from each have their own set of special abilities and personalities to boot. These adventurers make up the Strange Brigade, a mysterious team that operates under a branch of the British Secret Service. The team must use a variety of weapons, supernatural abilities, and their own wit to find out what happened to Harbin and lay Seteki’s soul to rest.
There are three different modes that you can choose from when you start Strange Brigade. The campaign, which is shockingly and disappointingly short, a score attack mode and a horde mode. Naturally, the campaign mode was the first thing that I chose to do. Accompanying you on your journey is the charismatic and colorful narrator. If not for the narrator, I don’t think the campaign would’ve been as enjoyable as it was. You have the choice of going through these modes by yourself or with up to three other friends, or random people if that’s what suits you. The campaign is flashy in terms of aesthetic, between the old-timey tv setting and the 1930’s timeline, there is a lot to take in here. Each level is light on exploration and heavy on the wave-based combat. Strewn about each level are different puzzles that lead you to extra goodies, like items that allow you to buy new supernatural abilities as you collect them.
Paired with your supernatural abilities is a loadout of different weapons to dispatch the undead with. There are different kinds of weapons to pick, from machine guns from single-shot rifles to shotguns. Each of these weapons can be augmented with these stones that you find during each level. You can only augment the weapons at the weapon stations that are placed in each level. These augments can do things like add life-steal to kills and increase damage on your headshots. The augments are great but didn’t feel like they really changed the gunplay in Strange Brigade. The guns feel strong enough without the augments, so it wasn’t really a big deal once I found these. You can unlock different weapons with the gold that you acquire in each level. To amplify your loadout, there are boxes during each level that you can spend gold to open that give you a limited weapon that is really strong like a flamethrower.
The enemies that you face are various different versions of the undead and mystical. You start out by facing regular ol’ run of the mill undead creatures. These creatures shamble towards you and try to attack you head on. Luckily you have a melee attack that knocks most enemies back. Unfortunately, the melee attack feels stiff and out of place, almost like the animation wasn’t fully fleshed out before the release of the game. The more you get into each level, more enemy types are introduced. You are swiftly introduced to the giant scorpions which are the most NOPE enemies I have encountered. These bastards are swift and will even roll out of the way of your attacks.
Strange Brigade is a great time to have if you have a group of friends to play with. The solo campaign is doable but after the short time you spend on it, the other modes in the game heavily encourage multiplayer. There is a lot packed in here, from the beautiful graphics and well-designed enemies to the witty narrator and diverse characters. Unfortunately, with such a short campaign and some lackluster animations, Strange Brigade leaves you wanting more. There will be post-launch DLC in the form of a paid season pass, but I feel like the game should’ve launched at a lower price point. Definitely check this one out if you’re a fan of games like Left 4 Dead.
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Review statement: This product was supplied by the developer for the sake of this review.