PAX: ‘Awesomenauts’ Preview – Let The Carnage Begin

Straight from the Netherlands comes Awesomenauts; a 2D platforming team-deathmatch game (with some RPG elements thrown in for good measure). Said game is nearly done and headed to PSN on May 1st in North America and will be released on XBLA and PSN (everywhere else) on May 2nd.

The premise of Awesomenauts is simple. It’s the future and two robot armies are at war and it’s up to the Awesomenauts to tip the scales in one sides favor. Of course this whole premise is just an excuse to hold multiplayer battles so that you can blast your friends online and off.

Every battle in Awesomenauts is drop-in/drop-out. Before entering battle, you’ll have to select one of the Awesomenauts – each come comes with their own unique abilities and upgrades. Clunk is the lumbering dreadnaught, Leon is a sneaky chameleon ninja, Froggy G is quick with mad hops, Sheriff Lonestar is a good overall soldier, Voltar acts as a medic and Yuri the monkey can lay mine traps and has a jetpack! The build at PAX only had a few ‘Nauts unlocked too!

After selecting your character, you’ll have to equip/select 12 abilities for the match. These abilities are unlocked/purchased by accumulating Solar (the game’s currency). Solar acts as both experience and currency – you will accumulate it by killing enemies and can collect it throughout each level. You can purchase/unlock new abilities at your Base and players’ current level is displayed next to their name above their character.

When your Awesomenaut is ready, a giant spaceship will summon your dropship and you’ll plummet to the planet’s surface. You can move the dropship and collect solar on the way before you land inside your base. This mechanic keeps respawn times very short while still keeping players off the battlefield. The game is a hectic frag-fest with other players and computer controlled robot minions or AI-controlled Awesomenauts. Every level has several tiers and routes to each team’s base. The key to victory is overwhelming and destroying enemy turrets that act as gatekeepers and block your path into the heart of enemy territory.

Awesomenauts is already an entertaining multiplayer experience and features a great variety of soldier classes with an cool toon-inspired art style. Keep an eye out for this strategic and hectic multiplayer game in May.

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