For a good while now, we’ve been hearing about a rather interesting and in-depth endeavor coming to Facebook from console and core-game developer 3G Studios. The game is Brave Arms, and it is set to be one of only a few first-person shooters on the Facebook platform. Scheduled for an open beta release on July 15th, we decided to take a look at some of the buzz a day or so prior.
From what we know, it is a 3D, cartoonish shooter (think Team Fortress or Battlefield Heroes) in which users will be able to create an avatar of varying styles (there’s a guy in a banana suit, if that gives you any idea on the level of variety), and compete with Facebook friends in Death Match and Team Death Match modes. Furthermore, players will also be given the ability to change out accessories of both the aesthetic and functional variety. This includes hair, hats, and clothes, as well as gun clips, scopes, and gun barrels.
While the specifics of purchasing the virtual goods is not completely clear yet, 3G Studios has unsurprisingly said that these will be available for real currency. Perhaps, the final version of the game will take a page from Electronic Arts‘s Battlefield Heroes, and provide earnable currency for playing and virtual currency for direct purchase but making the more useful weapon items cost significantly more?
In addition to these features, the developer has also noted that the game will be supplemented with a mobile rendition as well. It won’t exactly be the full game, but users will be able to customize their weapons and avatar, make purchases, or view the game’s leaderboards from a supported mobile device. The company hasn’t said which devices will be supported, yet.
As for the game itself, it feels a lot like your standard first-person shooter’s multiplayer mode. Be it a Deathmatch or Team Deathmatch, it’s really just kill everything with a red name. All the basics appear to be covered too as far as weapons go: Sidearm, machine gun, shotgun, grenades, and sniper rifle. The real uniqueness will come in to play with the weapon customization and how unique a player can make them.
For what it is, Brave Arms looks solid, but it will be interesting how the game ends up differentiating itself from the rest of its ilk. As it stands, it feels a lot like Battlefield Heroes, only on Facebook, and with simpler objectives. That said, such games can still do quite well, as Facebook’s first FPS, Paradise Paintball from Cmune still earns north of 250,000 monthly active users. Moreover, its MySpace version even won an award for “Best New MySpace App,” signifying that there is certainly a social networking interest for the shooter genre.
Be sure to check out our full review on Brave Arms when we check out the fully fleshed-out version later this month.