If the idea of a first-person shooter where you fly around while commanding a small army appeals to you then here's a game to play.
I first played Disintegration back in January via its online multiplayer beta and it completely knocked my socks off. The gameplay basically involves flying around in a first-person perspective while riding a Gravcycle. As you do so, you can shoot down enemies, dash out of harm's way, and command your units. The latter has you point to enemies or locations for them to run to, issue commands to perform special attacks, and heal them whenever they're running low on health which will happen almost constantly. Whenever a unit bites the dust, you can swoop in to retrieve their brain can in order to revive them so as long as you stay alive, you can keep regenerating your comrades. Being able to do so will require a great deal of skill, though, as Disintegration can be a super-tricky game to master.
Disintegration features a single player campaign as well as a comprehensive online multiplayer component and I'll discuss the former first. All you essentially do is select missions then try and master them while hopefully completing some optional challenges along the way. The missions are surprisingly lengthy and are set in a wide variety of environments that look absolutely stunning. As I played, I found myself simply stopping and taking in the scenery which is something that I rarely do. You'll explore everything from forests to dilapidated cities and everything is extremely detailed and immersive. Speaking of which, the sound is phenomenal, too, complete with satisfying effects and a diverse voice cast that breathe life into each character. In the end, I'm very impressed with Disintegration's presentation.
The story of Disintegration involves humankind having the option to put their brains inside of robotic bodies which is called Integration. They do so to avoid rampant disease, economic collapse, and such. You know; the current times we live in. Although mostly robotic, the cast of characters is fantastically varied and I enjoyed each individual's strong personality as they all bring something unique to the table. As you progress through Disintegration's campaign, you'll generally level up and acquire upgrade chips that you can assign to each soldier's base stats as well as your own. Unfortunately, that's basically all that the customization system requires so it's disappointing that you can't experiment with elaborate intricacies which would have been more fitting for the strategy element.
Where the gameplay of Disintegration shines brightest is in its online multiplayer that you can enjoy with up to 10 players simultaneously. There's a variety of modes and each one allows for some highly action-packed and heated battles. I especially enjoy working together as a team to take out another team and one of my favourite modes involves trying to capture cores as there's a constant tug-of-war dynamic which is very exciting. In fact, the multiplayer is so fun that I recommend Disintegration just for its online modes.
Although the multiplayer is a blast and makes for some of the best competitive online gameplay that I've ever experienced, the single player campaign is much less enjoyable. I found myself becoming bored of the repetitive gameplay only a few missions in and nothing really alleviated from that repetition the more I progressed. Sure, there are new kinds of enemies, objectives, and such but the core gameplay is still quite monotonous while playing solo. It's strange that the same gameplay works so well while playing online multiplayer matches but it just does. On top of that, the difficulty of the solo campaign can be rather frustrating at times. Specifically, enemies have the tendency to spawn all around you thus making it very difficult to break out of their grasp. Once you fail, you can try the scenario again but you may be set back 5 or so minutes. On the plus side, you'll at least know what's coming the second time around.
Disintegration provides some of the best multiplayer action that I've ever played. At the same time, its single player campaign can be downright tedious and frustrating so I can only recommend it to those who enjoy competing online.
- + Awesome blend of real-time strategy and first-person shooting
- + Impressive visuals and spot-on audio
- + Multiplayer is a ton of fun
- - Single player campaign is quite repetitive
- - Could use more elaborate customization
- - Defeat sometimes feels unfair