Gaming Insights: Helldivers

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Helldivers is a top down shooter video game that encourages co-op play. To win, players must complete their objectives and call a drop ship while endless swarms of aliens converge upon you. Prior to the mission starting, you can select your equipment and weapons of choice. In game, players can hit combinations of buttons to drop strategems like mines, extra ammo, heavy weapons, etc. But stay clear of the falling strategems or you will be toast. Did we forget to mention that friendly fire is also turned on? If you want to know our take on Helldivers, we have put together these reviews for you to read:

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“Helldivers is the most fun I’ve had with a game in quite some time. It reminds me a lot of the Gauntlet remake made by the same studio, which I also loved.

I think I have a thing for games where I can move forward and kill anything and anyone that crosses my path. It’s such a great way to relax and sometimes, even helps me deal with any rough time I might be going through in my life. I just release all that anger on the enemies!

Gauntlet was great in that way, but as a game, it could get repetitive. It was too linear and didn’t have much more to it after you beat the game. With Helldivers, though, it’s absolute perfection. Shooting everyone like there’s no tomorrow is so much fun and there are so many procedural elements and strategy possibilities that I find really hard to get tired of. I like to describe Helldivers as a dual shooter strategic procedural Gauntlet with a theme that is a hilarious mix of Starship Troopers and Warhammer 40k. How could you not love that?

First thing that made me want to play Helldivers was the visual differences between male and female characters (basically none). I know it’s nothing for some people but to me, it’s a huge deal when a female design doesn’t feature pink bows or boob plates. That sense of treating female and male character designs the same way was what made me want to play the Gauntlet remake too. I had never seen such a badass version of the valkyrie before. So, props to Arrowhead for treating women like people, yay!

Another thing that I love about this game is that not only does it have friendly fire, but absolutely everything that can kill your enemies will kill you too. It’s the kind of consistency we don’t see much in games anymore (Spelunky did it wonderfully) and it’s just so ridiculously fun. Several times, my husband and I would gloriously beat all the missions on a planet just to be squished by one of our own extraction shuttles right at the end. Getting used to stupid ways to die and being able to laugh at your own mistakes is essential when playing Helldivers.

The game is also a great way to bond with people. I had a few friends over and we played Helldivers for a while. After some playing time, we decided to switch to other multiplayer games like Smash Bros and Mario Kart. The sessions were quicker and the controllers were passed along more frequently. Everyone was laughing and having a good time, but I felt like I was missing something and couldn’t quite tell what it was. Only after they left I realized that I had missed the bonding, the deep connections. Although I love the other multiplayer games, our connection just wasn’t quite the same way as when we had bonded over Helldivers. You see, my friends didn’t know each other very well, and even I didn’t really know some of them well enough. Also, we’re a bunch of anti-social nerds and sometimes, it’s really hard to start a conversation. I guess what I was missing was the feeling that I was getting to know them better, because that’s how it felt when we were playing Helldivers. One of the guys was a great leader, the other one was fantastic as a supporter, and everyone else that wasn’t playing would give ideas and suggestions on what mission we should do next, or which new stratagems we should try out and why. We were all a big team, having to communicate constantly, and it felt amazing. All in all, Helldivers is a unique game that can bring a group of outsiders together and allow them to bond over their shared experiences.”

-Amora B. aka @amora_b

“My favorite co-op game to play with the hubs is Helldivers. I feel like a vegetarian who just discovered she loves bacon.  If you have ever read my blog or know anything about me as a gamer, I normally despise shooter games.  I have often stated loudly that I am just not an FPS person and I do not like games that require me to use guns. There have been short lived ventures into shooting games like Borderlands because the art and story were so compelling. Ultimately, I did not finish the game.  Helldivers is the longest I have ever played a shooter and I don’t plan on putting down my controller anytime soon. Recently, my hubs travelled to a conference with me and we brought our PS4 with us. We didn’t want to put down the game for the three days we were away.

I haven’t encountered any problems but I hate fighting in snow. I love fighting bugs and if it were up to me, I would fight them anytime I want. We already conquered that world but I’d do it again. Take that freedom!

There were lots of memorable moments that were mostly related to the times and ways in which we died.  Usually at the end of a level, I will either accidentally kill the hubs or myself. I had to change my settings for co-op because like the Wicked Witch of the West, things kept falling on me and killing me (specifically other players “dropping” into the game).

Similar to my real life, I am incredibly stubborn in Helldivers and always like to play my mec.  I have tried some other strategems but ultimately, the flame thrower and mec are my weapons of choice.  It would be an epic failure if the hubs did not have a healing robot following behind me to mend my wounds.  The robot is an awesome compliment to mec loving players but really the tip is finding someone to play with who can anticipate your next move and is willing to find strategems that harmonize with yours.

I have recommended Helldivers to every gamer I know.  I have dedicated more writing on my personal blog to Helldivers than any other video game.  If you are looking for a fun game to play with someone you love, Helldivers is perfect.  You can get sucked in for hours or just put in a ten-minute level when you can get a game in between work, parenting, and life.

Couch co-op aka playing while sitting next to someone is one of the most important aspects of a game for me and on that scale, this game rates a 10/10.  The only reason we bought Helldivers was because it was featured on the PS network.  Before then, I had not heard of it and I could not have possibly predicated how much I would play it. When marriage is hard, call in the turrets.”

-Chris Cruz-Boone aka @ProfessorCCB


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“Helldivers is one of those indie games that actually gets you hooked. It is by far the best indie game I’ve ever played on the PS4. I must admit, I was a bit skeptical when I first saw this game in the PS store. I was about this close to not download Helldivers as I have encountered a few bad experiences with indie games. With its cheap price tag (I’m cheap, haha), I eventually downloaded it. Little did I know that it would come with such a surprisingly simple and satisfying game play. It got me hooked! Plus, that classic top-down shooter style really did it for me.

This game features some of the awesome elements I found missing in other top games like Mass Effect 3 MP or Destiny. Co- op? Check! Strategy based? Check! Friendly fire? Oh yes, TRIPLE CHECK!! The game play is totally fun. The fact that you can’t turn off the friendly fire mode adds more fun to it. With that in mind, no doubt it promotes team coordination. Plus, people will have to be more cautious while using their guns! Yay! No more bullet spray!

Pros and cons come together, no? There are few flaws I found in this game. For example, it is a bit inadequate in its graphic details. (Ah right, I shouldn’t complain since it’s cheap and an indie game). Sometimes, there’s a connection issue. Here’s the scenario: you’ve completed all the objectives in your mission and have been sprinting like crazy to the extraction zone only to be brought back to the menu screen. *face palm!* I really hope Arrowhead can fix this since this game has so much potential! Another thing is that since I’ve been told that the game supports cross platform, I have yet to find or join friends who are on the PS3 or PS Vita (I’m on the PS4). Players have also been complaining about a particular trophy glitch (Peace and prosperity reigns again & Spreading managed democracy) though I must have been lucky since I didn’t experience that glitch (space magic)! Imagine when you’ve poured hours into fighting enemies in your galactic campaign or during your region’s liberation. When the time/war is over, the trophy simply does not pop up for some players. This is quite puzzling and I had no idea that the trophy was one shy fella.

There is just one feature I would like in the game. Please add an INVITE button, Arrowhead!

If I had to think of any funny moments, nothing beats watching your shuttle or your supply drops land on your teammates. Need I say more? Haha, the dialog is also quite cool and funny.

Tips: if you want to level up quickly, you should play high level missions. It helps if you have good teammates but after some time, (especially when you have unlocked the distractor beacon stratagem), you’ll find it a lot easier to go solo. Don’t forget that cardio is your best friend. Move a lot and don’t waste your time shooting the enemies because they will always outnumber you. But if you’re grinding for that 100,000 kill trophy, that’s another story.

I would recommend buying this game to others and I would rate the game an 8 out of 10.”

-Nora aka @NoraSnorts

“One of my favorite games so far of this year would have to be Helldivers. Now, saying that, I should probably back that statement up, and I will do just that. Helldivers to me is one of the best games to reach my Vita, as it offered a unique experience coupled with intense multiplayer action, and great gameplay along side it. The game can be quite a challenge but that’s one of the things that makes this game great. Having a good group of friends to play with makes it a joy as this game really does rely on teamwork.

I can remember a lot of funny moments, but the one that out shines above the rest would have to be the time my friend Kyle and I joined a random player. We had just landed and we decided we should throw down our strategems to better equip ourselves to fend off these aliens. Well, the random did the same so we all had strategems counting down. Mine was just about to drop and without noticing, I walked under mine and got smashed by it. Laughing it off as just a silly mistake, I look up to watch both Kyle and this random do the exact same thing. It had to be by far the funniest thing I had ever seen in this game and I will never forget that moment.

If you’re looking for a fun multiplayer focused shooter, then I would highly recommend this one. Like I’ve said, it’s one of the best games to grace my Vita. If I were to rate it, I’d have to give it a 4.3 out of 5.”

-MrPsVitaReviews aka @MrPsVitaReviews

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Thank you, everyone, for taking the time to review Helldivers. This game was developed by Arrowhead Game Studios and is available for the PlayStation 4, PlayStation Vita and PlayStation 3. If you want to stay updated on more Gamer Compatible reviews, you can follow us on Twitter: @gamercompatible or on Facebook: @gamercompatible.

Game on! And signing out.

Images taken from the PS4 Helldivers page.

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