Nosgoth is a free to play team-based first person shooter that was published by Square Enix and is currently in early access on Steam. In this game humans and vampires are at war with one another and each side has their own strengths and weaknesses. Each game you play as either a human or a vampire, and then after that round is over you swap sides to play the opposing side. The game is very simple and easy to learn with very few buttons that need to be memorized. As such combat is fun and easy, but timing and skill tie in to decide how the game will end up.
Humans are skilled in ranged attacks, and as such every class on human side is able to defend themselves with some sort of a ranged weapon from throwing axes, to crossbows, bows, cannons, and even pistols. As such humans are skilled at killing vampires at various ranges. A scout is able to do decent damage to vampires at long to medium ranges by charging their shots. It is even more epic to play scout when you are able to shoot arrows that can explode. The ranger is able to use a crossbow that is similar to automatic or burst fire rifles depending on the one you are using. It gives you great versatility to be able to do damage at short to medium ranges. As such the ranger is most likely the easiest class to play. The alchemist uses a cannon that shoots potion-like projectiles that explode on, or after impact. This class is much more difficult to use as defending yourself is much harder. The alchemist is more of a support class that should never be seen by the enemy while the alchemist themselves can always see their team to provide cover fire when vampires least expect it. Vanguards are a new class that was released recently that has the ability to use throwing axes. He uses a shield and can resemble the tank healer like priests from other games. He can block attacks, heal team mates, and even put out great damage himself which makes him quite fun to play. The last human class is called the prophet that specializes in using dual pistols and magic. The prophet can be made for doing damage, or supporting as she has the ability to slow enemy targets, drain life from them, or heal her own team mates by transferring her own health to them. She can also place energy shields on team mates that absorb damage taken which can save your team from death and turn a fight in your favor. Humans overall though require cooperation in order to successfully win against the vampires wrath. While humans can provide great ranged damage, when it comes to close quarters combat, that is not their specialty and usually results in humans losing if played uncooperative.
Vampires are quite strong, and while their mainly melee based they do have long ranged attacks to make things a little more fair. Reavers are one of the classes you an play right from the start which is actually one of the strongest vampires in the game when played well. When playing as a vampire team cooperation is less important and your survival is more skill based. In a 1 verse 1 situation most situations a vampire will when, and as such the goal of a vampire is to seperate the human team to turn the situations into your favor. Reavers are fast, and can throw toxic gas to make human life dwindle. They can creep along roof tops and jump right on you when you least expect it, doing lots of damage to any human they land on. If your team is not paying attention this can mean a swift kill for a reaver without humans ever knowing what is happening. Reavers on the other hand do not have very high hp and can be killed just as fast if the humans are protecting and covering one another from all sides. Tyrant is another vampire class that is quite the opposite of what a Reaver is. They are slow moving hulking vampires that have a lot of strength and do a lot of damage. He can charge into humans knocking them out of his way while also making his own escape. He also has the ability to grab a human and throw them away from their team mates. This is a great combo to use as a Tyrant as it allows you to forcibly separate a key target from their team, and even giving you the opportunity to secure a kill for yourself. Next up we got the Sentinel class which is similar to the alchemist in that it is a skill based character that is quite difficult to learn. This vampire can actually fly, and it can also take humans along for the ride before dropping them to the ground. Picking up humans and dropping them is the Sentinels specialty but is actually quite difficult to do without much practice. There is also a flying mechanic that causes you to fly slower if you are flying up, and fly faster if you are flying down. Combining these movements to keep momentum and thus a swift speed is key to playing a Sentinel and is also the reason this class is so difficult to learn. A slow moving flying target is easy to spot which makes them a prime target for humans to practice their aim. Deceiver is also a very interesting vampire class that can be best explained as a rogue. They hide in the shadows, trick their prey, and when they least expect it they go in for that killer back-stab to finish their target off for a swift and silent kill. The final vampire class is called the Summoner and as the name implies they can summon two minions of their own which have the ability to chase an enemy target down and attack them for you. To back up their minions they can catch a human off guard by tossing a purple magical bomb behind them for even more damage. After this they can swoop in to finish the target off in close range where a human is less likely to succeed.
The classes in this game are quite fun to play and learn but each game has to have its pros and cons. What does this game do well, and what are some things that need to be worked on?
- Free to play
- Every class can be unlocked for free with artifacts you receive every five levels
- Mysterious weapons that are rewarded randomly provide minor changes to humans that are not over powered and visual changes only obtainable with that item
- Mysterious skills can be obtained that can make skills slightly better with some trade off
- All normal items, skills, and perks can be rented for a week for a relatively low price that is easy for any one to obtain
- No item in the game can only be purchased permanently using paid currency
- Skins, boosters, bundles, and banners are the only thing purchasable only with paid currency
- Has partial controller support
- Can be played in English, French, and German
- In game currency can only be bought in large quantities ($20 or $40 only)
- In game voice chat basically does not work and is in an unusable state (which leads to poor human public games)
- Premade parties will wreck most public solo que players
- Team Death Match is basically the only game mode that gets played
- Que times to start another match can be long, as well as waiting for enough people to start a game
- Occasionally settings and key bindings may get reset
- Game has some bugs that can cause individuals to be unable to play
- Has a bugged MMR system in place that does not do very well at matching players of similar skill levels resulting in some games where one team just gets demolished.
- Human camping meta
In the current state of the game there is a lot of work that needs to be made. It is currently a heavy human based camper meta where humans group up and camp in one area until they die and are forced to camp in another location on the map. Likewise the voice chat doesn’t work really, which means you can not communicate well with your team besides through the in game chat, which could result in your death. Likewise this game breeds a weird form of team based game play where as a vampire you could care less about your team and you can just roam around as you please. There is no fear as a vampire that a single human may chase and hunt you down and kill you by themselves. Vampires can very easily kill humans in a 1 verse 1 situation most of the time. As such vampires are purely skill based, with team work optional. In fact as a vampire you are more likely to use your team mates as decoys and distractions for your own personal benefit. This all is forcibly changed when the round ends and you are forced to cooperate with your team with the communication tools necessary. Unless you have friends who play this game and can use Skype or some similar voice chat program, you basically have to try and cover every one and watch out for every one at all times. You can’t tell a team mate a Reaver on the roof is about to Pounce them, you have to just try and do enough damage to the Reaver when they do Pounce to knock them off of your team mate. If you see some vampires on the roof you can tell your team without risking getting attacked while typing. Having to require skill as vampire while having to require cooperation for success as humans is odd and problematic. As such this mechanic in itself breeds toxicity in the chat. While the game is quite fun, this core mechanic of the game can be what makes or breaks it. In my opinion It would be better if the game was entirely skill based as the game would be balanced around the skill of the user and different people have differing levels of skill. This is why games like Team Fortress 2 are so popular as each class can be quite strong and seemingly overpowered in the right hands of a extremely skilled player, but become seemingly crappy to another player of much lower skill. This would make MMR much easier to calculate and would fix the current MMR system that essentially doesn’t work at all.