Aftercharge: Is It Worth It?
A Different 3v3
“Invisible robots are uprising against their creators in this tactical 3v3.”
Let’s get a few things out there before we start this review. I love 3v3 games. Any game that has a 3v3 mode is the game for me. Aftercharge is still in development, but I believe the game has a lot of potential. I reached out to the developers before going to Pax East, and they were incredibly friendly and even gave me a test code for their game. Let’s find out what sets this 3v3 game apart from all the others, and whether or not it is worth it.
Aftercharge’s gameplay is not something you will feel accustomed to. Honestly, no one could prepare for the way Aftercharge is set up. While playing I honestly forgot it was an indie game, that is how challenging the gameplay is. Aftercharge is a 3v3 attack/defense style game. Robots perform the role of attackers, and I don’t mean NPCs. You get to take the reins of a variety of Workonics, robots whose sole mission is to destroy power nodes. The defenders are referred to as Enforcers, and they have to defend the power nodes and take out all 3 Workonics in one match. Sounds pretty easy right? Well, it isn’t as simple as a Call of Duty Search and Destroy match. The Workonics don’t just die after being shot; they remain disabled waiting for their teammate to revive them. There is a variety of Workonics, and each one has their very own unique abilities that vary from robot to robot. The same goes for the Enforcers. Each Enforcer has some style of ranged weapon as well as two unique skills. Oh, and did we mention that the Workonics are invisible? Workonics remain invisible until they are attacked, are pulled out of stealth, or until they strike a node. I believe that reviving a teammate will make you visible for a very brief moment.
Aftercharge also had a genius way to keep Enforcers from being too overpowered. An Enforcer has “energy,” and that is the only way they can shoot their primary weapon, or use their abilities. The only way to get energy back is by sticking to one of the nodes that the Workonics are trying to destroy. I guess that means you will never have to yell at a teammate to stay on the objective, right? Remember that the way to win as an Enforcer is by taking out all the Workonics so that communication will help you in the long run.
To win the game as a Workonic, you will need to destroy all the power nodes on the map. Power nodes take around ten hits per node, and that doesn’t have to happen all at once. To win the match as an Enforcer, you will need to take out all the Workonics. This can be a challenging task because getting too distracted can mean losing the match. Next, let’s talk about some strategies to win.
3v3 is competitive
I always thought that the most competitive game modes were 3v3. Aftercharge’s eSports potential is incredibly high. Teams will not be difficult to manage or put together. Scrims will be easier to find. Once the population for the game increases queue times will be as quick as the game is fun. 3v3 games give you all the benefits of team-based competition without the negatives. If you have a rough match then you have two teammates to help you out. Finding an active leader/shot caller will be much easier because all the other two have to do is listen. Communication won’t get muddled down by four people trying to talk over each other while all these aspects may seem insignificant in the grand scheme of things. Think about your last few competitive matches in your games. In a 2v2 setting, you are relying on your partner carrying their weight. If you or your partner mess up in a 2v2, it can set the game in the other teams favor. In a 4v4, 5v5, or 6v6 the odds of you carrying your team to victory alone are slim. You can’t carry the weight of an entire team, no matter how good you are. Communication is virtually impossible in a group of 4+ members. Communicating with random people in a 3v3 is incredibly easy.
You all have a task, and you will need to work together to accomplish that task. You can hold teammates accountable without being toxic. That is the one significant downside though. 3v3s can become toxic. Especially if you end up queueing with a random two stack, if you are the odd man out in a 3v3, expect to hear some unkind words and do not let that get to you. I had to deal with that a lot in World of Warcraft, but you eventually get used to it, and it isn’t always going to be like that. I still believe that 3v3 is the purest form of competition there is.
I’m not going to beat around the bush. This game was amazing. I spent hours theory crafting some strategies. There are undoubtedly many ways this game can be played. The versatility of Aftercharge is what will bring the game success. I loved the gameplay, and the graphics were stellar. I have always loved the 3v3 aspect of videogames. 3s was my favorite arena mode in WoW and Halo. It takes the pressure off of having to have a full stack of 4-6 players, and you can game with your two closest friends. Aftercharge has the making of a tremendous competitive objective-based shooter. Many games have tried something new and fell flat on their face. Evolve was a game that had promise couldn’t live up to the hype. Aftercharge has the potential to reach Brawlhalla levels of popularity. My main hope is that they emphasized competitive gameplay. That is one of the few ways to create hype, fans, and keep a game alive. The game is still in development, so I am sure we will see Aftercharge having a huge eSports scene in the coming future. As long as the creators make it easy for players to compete, then I am sure that this game you are just hearing about will be your new favorite video game. Be sure to follow them on Twitter @Aftercharge, and their developer account @Chainsawgames. Make sure to join their Discord server, the team behind Aftercharge holds weekly tournaments every Thursday. Check out heir website for more information http://www.afterchargegame.com/. Add it to your steam wishlist below. Farewell Traveler.