Review: GoD Factory – Wingmen Review / Developer: Nine Dots Studio / Publisher: Nine Dots Studio / Platform: PC, Mac, Linux / Release Date: Beta Available Now/Full Release TBC
As a whole, the space flight simulation genre is one, which has seen resurgence in recent years. Between the release of a fan-made Wing Commander instalment and Chris Roberts’ return with Star Citizen, interest is picking up once more. Another addition to this genre is GoD Factory: Wingmen, a team death match title with an extremely distinct visual look and vast customisable options.
Looking like the illegitimate child of Freelancer and Asura’s Wrath, the game’s main mode consists of two carriers facing off against one another and four player teams making up each side. The fighters engage one another as they attempt to take down various sub-systems on the opposing ships, and blast their enemies out of the skies. A major incentive for doing so is to temporarily deny a foe use of a customised ship. Each player is permitted to enter matches with two vessels of their own design, which cannot be used after being wrecked, limiting them to inferior drone vessels.
A superior version of the starship combat of Star Wars: Battlefront II, Wingmen’s fast-paced combat is well designed and relatively well balanced. It’s easy to pull off slides, full 180 turns and utilise wing weapons both with and without the joystick, no matter which design you utilise. Speaking of the designs, the game offers a fairly extensive customisation system for each vessel, which is balanced via a series of stats: Weight, Power and Heat among others. While allowing significant customisations to the basic designs, it prevents one version being innately superior to others. At least in theory, as there are some designs which do have a distinct edge over others with the right ad-ons and designs. It’s an issue that is being ironed out with updates, but it’s also the title’s biggest weakness: it’s still under development.
While truly game-breaking bugs are rare, basic flaws remain. You can find yourself and other players being frequently kicked from matches on bad days and the UI interface for ship selection/customisation can be overwhelming at first. The in-game manoeuvres and mechanics are explained by an extensive tutorial, but that desperately needs to be broken down into shorter segmented lessons. Furthermore, matches can be infrequent what with their being only a small community at the moment. This said frequent updates and a recent tournament are helping these problems.
For all its issues, the game is still fun. With constant updates and even an Occulous Rift addition being touted as a key feature, it is the single most promising game we have played this year. Does it have problems? Definitely, but even in an unfinished state and one gameplay mode it’s still solid.
The beta of GoD Factory: Wingmen can be downloaded from the game’s Kickstarter page with further details on Steam Greenlight.