Preview: 2084 – I died at least 2084 times in less than 72 hours

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2084 is a game that originated as a 72-hour jam session from Perception-publisher Feardemic and the team from their Kraków based studio, the team that brought you titles such as Observer and Layers of Fear called Bloober Team. Here’s what we thought of the games current state.

When I often hear of games being a part of a developer jam session to see how fast and how stable a game can actually be, I’ve somehow worked my away around avoiding them the best I can. However, somehow, somewhere, something about 2084 drew me in. I’m not sure if it was the fact I actually loved the Rutger Hower-led game Observer or the fact that Layers of Fear actually managed to make my skin crawl just a tad.

Hardware Used

Motherboard: MSI Z270 M7 Game Ready Plus
GPU: MSI Gaming Nvidia GeForce GTX 1060 6GB
CPU: Intel I7-7700K 3.6GHz OCed to 4.2GHz
Cooling Unit: Cooler Master GTS V8
RAM: Corsair Vengeance 16GB
HDD/SDs: 525GB Crucial SSD | Seagate Barracuda 7200 RPM HDD (Raid 0)

So, booting up this 72-hour jam session developed game, I decided to give it a whirl, booted it up, and getting my bearings straight. But I can’t expect much from a game that was developed in just 72 hours or could I? Getting to play it in its current state, I’m here to tell you about the experience I had and what to expect from this very title.

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What exactly is 2084?

Over the course of three hours, I had a lot of time to take in what 2084 actually is. It’s a fast-paced shooter with a design style using the many of the assets from Bloober Team’s title >observer_ (if you try to search for it on any digital storefront, it’s listed as Observer). Having played >observer_ just days before going head first into 2084, I instantly noticed more than just a few assets from the game.

The claustrophobia-inducing corridors, as well as the locations from >observer_, are present within 2084. You’ll notice that the corridors are almost identical in this shooter, making a perfect for just how fast-paced and adrenaline-inducing it actually is. To put it short, 2084 is a fast-paced action-shooter with hacking and horror mechanics, forcing players to constantly move forward while navigating a maze-like structure.

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The story thus far is good, but it needs expanding upon as development continues

As you start out, your story begins to unfold right before you. First, we get a glimpse of our playable character; your stereotypical cyberpunk-hanker with metallic blue hair and the attire to match; as she grabs a cold beverage after getting straight out of bed and on her way to work. Her job is quite simple, but awesome in many ways. She fights a cyber-threat in a VR simulation using her VR gear.

After loading into the simulation, she gets a message stating that the company you works for senior network architect Robert Bartos was terminated and that any and all assignments he had left are to be covered by Anna Zima. From there, you’re unleashed and sent out to do your job. The only downside is we don’t know what has happened to cause the threats that are appearing to appear nor do we even know anything about the character that we are actually playing. A shame really, the world itself already seems to have a plausible story of its own.

From here, all digital-Hell begins to break loose. You are introduced to several mechanics including dodging, hacking supply and healing stations, reloading your gun, using your secondary fire, and well — blasting your way through digital zombie-like enemies. Hacking itself is filled to the brim with puzzles, requiring you to use WASD to solve what they have to offer and making them available to you while on the fly. A mechanic you can easily learn after a station or two outside the tutorial.

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Navigation, however, is a task in its own

Feardemic, not being known for shooting titles, does manage to do gunplay rather well. It’s fun, it’s precise, and using the weapon we’re given’s automatic firing type and grenade-like attachment is easy enough to learn. Simple, right? Well, not really. Don’t expect to scope in, this game uses a very arcade-like approach you may recognize from recent releases like DOOM (2016) and the critically-acclaimed DUSK in recent times.

Left mouse button, as you might guess, fires your weapon. Right mouse button fires the hacking tool while the wheel fires grenades from your rifle. When combat ensues, you might find that you’ve taken to the intensity of the EDM-style music playing in the background while firing through countless waves of zombie-like creatures at a pacing similar to that of DOOM and Quake.

Once you get the pace, however, you’ll feel right at home while barreling down a corridor, gun blazing, and your hacking tool at the ready. The downside is, you can easily get turned around the maze-like corridors, having to navigate your way backward through whatever’s going on before making your way to where you need to go, using the enemies you haven’t fought as an indicator to the direction you need to be heading for.

Sadly, I was able to bash, shoot, and weave my way through the story in a matter of 30-40 minutes before facing down the first boss-like artifact, blasting at its core before finding myself back at the menu, and heading into 2084’s Endless mode. This mode, this is where the magic really happens.

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I’d be okay with an expanded Endless Mode and Scenario-Based encounters

What’s really weird about 2084 isn’t apparent when you first dive into what it has to offer. While I did enjoy what’s there of the campaign itself, I found a lot of meat in its Endless Mode, an option I wish I’d opted to play from the moment I booted the game up for this piece you are reading and there’s a good reason why.

The Endless Mode is where 2084 really shines. It’s the mode that you’ll find yourself getting your monies worth as you set off to blast your way through the zombie-like hordes before you You’ll find that int his mode, the horde combat setup, the bosses, the pacing, and even the level design along with the weapon handling itself all blends together in an elegant and nausea-inducing dance.

It didn’t matter how long I survived in this very mode. I was having a blast, I had a blast, and I continue to have a blast. I simply can’t get enough of what 2084 has to offer. To be quite honest, I would actually like to see more added to this mode in order to keep it going. It’s one of a kind that’s fun and challenges a player to use all of the mechanics of the game to the best of their ability.

It’s truly satisfying when you give it a chance. Trust me, you won’t regret it.

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The graphics and performance are actually quite pleasing all things considered

One of the most impressive parts about 2084 and the fact it was developed in just at or under 72 hours is the most important element of this game. It runs smooth. It runs extremely smooth in its current state. I had not one single crash or a game breaking bug appear. Instead, what I got were a few minor framerate drops that tumbled the game into the low 60fps area, but never under.

Even then, it’s impressive what Feardemic was capable of doing with their in-house studio and the engine they choose to use. It runs smooth, its graphics and animations are actually on par with some of today’s biggest hitters, which again, is a feat in its very own right. A task I’ve never seen done in the way Feardemic actually managed to do it.

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Logging Off – The Conclusion

My only concern is if Feardemic will continue moving forward with the game, developing it even further and giving us a cyberpunk story that we will enjoy. Perhaps then, maybe then, we’ll see something marvelous come from the game. After all, it’s already got the capability to become a solid multi-platform title thanks to it having native controller support that works rather well.

2084
Platforms: 
PC
Version Previewed: 
PC
Developer: 
Feardemic’s
Publisher: 
Feardemic
Release Date: 
Available now in Early Access
Cost:
 $14.99

But we see more, just think of 2084 as an extremely ambitious horde-based shooter thanks to the rather fun Endless mode it has to offer.


Our preview is based upon a retail version that was provided to us by the publisher of the game. For information about our ethics policy please click here.


About the Writer(s):

dustin_batgr_prof

Dustin is our native console gamer, PlayStation and Nintendo reviewer who has an appetite for anything that crosses the boarders from across the big pond. His interest in JRPG’s, Anime, Handheld Gaming, and Pizza is insatiable. His elitist attitude gives him direction, want, and a need for the hardest difficulties in games, which is fun to watch, and hilarity at its finest. You can find him over on Twitter or Facebook.

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