Recently, while in the midst of perusing the Steam store for something new to catch my eye, I stumbled upon a store page bearing the name Nosgoth. Now for a nerd like me this set off some bells ringing in the back of my memory. Surely this cant be THE Nosgoth? You see back in the mid nineties a game called Blood Omen: Legacy of Kain was released by a studio called Silicon Knights.
Blood Omen was a vampire RPG that was one of the longest games (play time) released for the Playstation, where the player took on the role of Kain, a newly resurrected vampire in the fictional land of Nosgoth. The game then led you on a roughly 50+ hour adventure as the blood sucking fiend on his quest for revenge against the assassins that killed him in the first place. I loved this game. There was something immensly satisfying about being able to play the monster for once.
So naturally when I saw the name Nosgoth, my interest was piqued. And low and behold, the games were related, though loosely (I’ll explain in a bit). Noticing that the game was running on the Unreal engine and after a quick browse of some videos of gameplay and some light reading I purchased a founder pack for the Closed Beta that it is currently in and hopped right into the action.
The game is a multiplayer only game which features combat similar to Left 4 Dead in which two teams of four players battle each other, with one side taking the roles of the Hunters and another taking the roles of the Vampires. Combat takes the form of asymetrical gameplay, meaning that the Vampires are melee based and the Hunters are armed with a wide variety of ranged weaponry with which to fend off the enemies. While this may seem unfair given the lack of NPC fodder that similar games like Left 4 Dead throws at the players, it is deceptively well balanced.
Currently the game has five distinct maps with which to play on. The maps range from the shanty town of Freeport to the war damaged fort at Sommerdamm and even to a secret Vampire city, known only as the Fane. Each arena offers a well balanced environment that favors both teams equally, with plenty of buildings and cover for the vampires and good defensible positions from which the hunters can make their stand.
The Hunters may hold the advantage of range but with the amount of abilities as well as the uninhibited traversal of the environment, the Vampires are able to throw some large wrenches, errrr…fangs into the best laid plans of the Hunters. With four classes per side to choose from, your team’s composition and ability to adapt to the enemy’s decisions can be the tipping point between a solid victory or a complete defeat.
But don’t worry, if you find that one side or the other is more difficult, each match switches sides each round so that all players play as both the Hunters and the Vampires before totalling the difference in points and declaring the winner. Currently there are two game modes available with more in the works to be released in the near future. Team Deathmatch and Siege which is similar to a typical King of the Hill gametype though the Vampires simply attempt to keep the Hunters dead and off of the points for as long as possible.
Overall I have been nothing but impressed with the game, upon release the game will be Free To Play, with microtransactions that are entirely optional, similar to games such as League of Legends. All perks, equipment, and weapons can be purchased using in game currency earned by playing matches, so the pay to win gripe is unwarranted. The only transaction that can not be purchased with the ingame currency is, you guessed it, skins. Though as usual these are purely for aesthetic reasons.
As of my writing of this article the game is in Closed Beta that can be accessed through Steam Early Access by purchasing one of four Founder Packs which range anywhere from $4.99 to $49.99 based on how many extra goodies you want. Personally, I would recommend taking a look at this game as it is a fun game to get into. I know I’ll be waiting for more Hunters to drag around by their ankles before drinking their blood.