Nobody asked for Spellbreak. Yet somehow its developer Proletariat, Inc. gave us a magnificent and one of a kind battle royale. Since 2017, the battle royale genre was dominated by huge games like Fortnite and PUBG. Since then, there have been more and more games being released by huge companies like; EA, Activision by giving us Call of Duty: Warzone and Apex Legends. Each of them takes their spin and rules on the battle royale format. Recently Proletariat, Inc. An independent Game developer started by game-industry veterans introduced us to a 42-player magic-based battle royale called Spellbreak, a free-to-play game that’s launched on PC and all major consoles.
Yer a mage Har…. Mage? Wait, what?
Spellbreak provided us something new to the table, a gameplay experience that’s unique to its given genre. By mixing RPG elements and fantasy into a fast-paced battle royale game. Switching out from the guns and vehicles like your average battle royale to a fantasy style is a fresh experience.
As mentioned, what separates SpellBreak from the other battle royales out there is the weaponry. Before the game starts either solo, duo, or group (max. of 3 players), players must choose one main element or gauntlet from the six elemental classes: Frostborn (Ice), Conduit (Lightning), Pyromancer (Fire), Toxicologist (Poison), Stoneshaper (Stone), and Tempest (Wind). Each of these elemental gauntlets has unique spells, magic elemental damage, and specific playstyles. Each player can equip up to two gauntlets, and you can combine its unique spells for a devastating attack against opponents or teammates (friendly-fire is on).
You also have these things called Talents where you have to choose three out of fifteen. Each of these unique talents has its properties that will help you in combat or enhance your chosen playstyle in-game.
In-game, it’s pretty much your average battle royale where you have to pick-up various equipment; Belt for your armor, Amulet for mana (it’s like increasing your weapon magazine size), and lastly, Boots (which is kinda totally useless IMO since you’re going be either levitating, jumping, teleporting or flying most of the time). Each of these items can vary from its quality ranging from common to legendary (best quality).
But speaking of flying or levitating etc. There is this thing called runes. These are crucial items or abilities that will help you move around the map, escape, chase or even better, outplay someone. There is a total of 7 runes (for now) Springstep, Dash, Invisibility, Wolf’s Blood, Featherfall, Flight, and lastly, Teleportation. Runes are scattered around the map but you can pick up the better ones by opening chest or mana vault.
The map has its charms and the scenery is superb. The map includes fallen castles, crevices, open fields, and much more that will make immersed into the fantasy world. You can also find lootable items in each area.
Fantastic concept for gameplay, the flexibility of combat, and being able to mix and match the various elements is a breath of fresh air for the battle royale genre. It also supports cross-play on its covered platforms. Microtransactions are limited to cosmetics which is nice. Controls are great as well! Although the keys are a bit confusing at first you’ll get used to it as you play a lot of matches. It’s also nice to see Spellbreak makes you come up with a strategy concerning your weapon loadout.
But here are the issues. The map is unnecessarily huge and dull. You can see the same burnt buildings everywhere scattered around the map like zero creativity from the developers. I also spent most of my time aimlessly running around trying to get to the safe zone where I’m just hoping to run into somebody and kill them. But in reality, it’s the other way around as you’re going to get ambushed by well-equipped players instead and I always hated the fact that you just spent most of your time looting for the best equipment only to be sniped from halfway across the map by an ice shard (Happens on almost all of my battle royale games or matches so far). Regarding the animations, it still needs tons of work. Moving from left to right feels off and bland. Its Cartoony graphics like Fortnite is plain as well, nothing so interesting or special about it. The game is also unforgiving for casual players. It’s a git-gud type of battle royale because the mechanics are easy to learn but so hard to master. The runes are unbalanced, some of them are trash and some of them are God-like.
Hopefully, future updates will fix all of these issues. This game doesn’t deserve to die yet and it deserves to be recognized and loved for its unique fantasy style gameplay and mechanics. I enjoyed playing Spellbreak but there isn’t enough to keep me coming back and stay to play some more as it needs a lot of patching up and extra content.