by Vincent Haoson (Ojogo)
Shooters have always been fun, frantic and enjoyable games that don’t require much thinking except for occasional critical moments where you need to decide which weapon is the best to get a kill.
However, modern shooters have become more complex. Developers have been adding one gameplay element after another. Simply being able to point the crosshairs properly on a moving target isn’t enough. As more shooters are being released, game developers are trying to find more ways to provide a richer experience for their audience.
There’s a certain group of people who want their shooter to be as simple as possible, though, and that’s the type of gamer that Versus World aims to capture.
Versus World is a Steam game from Two Zoos. It’s a shooter that throws you at the thick of things as soon as you enter the game. As you either join or host matches, you are thrust into shooting at other players without the fanfare of an intricate or elaborate storyline to follow. You just create your avatar, host or join a game, and shoot each other to win.
Currently, Versus World has three general game modes that you can jump into: Deathmatch, Siege or Heatmatches. Each game mode has a few variations which the room host can set prior to matches.
Deathmatches are basically the usual deathmatch tournaments where you or a team need to eliminate other people, using the equipped weapons or the other weapons that have been littered in the five maps available. The win condition in most deathmatchs is having the most kills, or reaching the kill count set by the server creator.
Meanwhile, Siege game modes are Versus World’s fancier way of calling check point stealingYou and your team fight to acquire bases as you face against the opposing team, who has to claim the base you are trying to hold.
Last, the Heatmatches are matches where you need to reach the heat count set for the game. You earn heat as you successfully land kills in the arena and lose heat as opposing teams kill you. The longer you survive as you kill the other players, the faster you earn heat.
The five arenas in Versus World provide a fun thematic mix into your matches in-game. These stages, aside from having weapons littered in specific areas, have random power-up boxes similar to the power-up boxes in Mario Kart. These provide you with weapons or random game effects that make the game more interesting and fun.
Characters in Versus World look like a better version of the Minecraft characters with a smoother, but still blocky look. The game provides you with a plethora of customization options that can help you create the stupidest looking character you can ever imagine.
The game’s customization doesn’t affect the overall gameplay experience. However, it does allow for a more entertaining experience as you plow through weird looking clowns, or Trump look-alikes in a barn that’s filled with weapons that cause destruction and mayhem.
This seems to be the current trend of a lot of games these days, but Versus World provides you the option of filling rooms with bots that you can play against if you don’t have friends, or at least friends that have the game. With rooms having a max of 16 players, it’s hard to expect that you have 16 friends who can play with you (or maybe that’s just me), so I like that Two Zoo provided the option to fill in the bots for maximum player base.
I actually really like the bots in Versus World because the AI isn’t as dumb as they are in other shooters. While I don’t like that you don’t have the option to control their difficulty rating, the default setting of the bots gives you a proper challenge. Of course, these are bots, so you’ll eventually see them bugging out like running to walls or shooting erratically, but most of the time, the bots allow you a bit more challenge especially if they’re swarming around you. Aside from shooting, bots even know how to use grenades properly. Most of my interaction with bots in shooters just have them just using guns even though they had grenades to use.
I also liked that the bots, while challenging, are still killable enough to not have you pulling out your hair while facing them. Normally, shooters either have walking body bags as bots, or they go for the nigh impossible to kill bots. Versus World’s bots though were able to balance the difficulty level; challenging yet killable.
Conclusion: Great (4.5/5)
Solid shooter, simple and easy to get into. Needs more players though.
Overall, my experience with Versus World has been a fun, albeit personless, venture into a simple shooter. Since the game is still in early access, I never had the opportunity to play with people. While the developers are offering free codes for people to pass around and have you play with, the game’s current lack of players will hurt its future. Yes, the current bot system fills-in the lack of people to play with, but nothing beats being able to kill other players instead of bots, especially in a shooter.
I like it that during the early access for the game, there’s a disclaimer that the game isn’t a complete yet and the final product may differ. At least it lets people set the expectations for Versus World from the start.
That said though, the game provides a simplistic shooter that maximizes on the fun factor without sacrificing solid core gameplay. Versus World is a refreshing shooter in world where battle royale games like PUBG and Fortnite have reigned supreme and a lot of devs are chasing in their footsteps. I love it that Two Zoos focused on the basics, and have a gem with Versus World. I hope the final version will just refine what the game is offering now and focus on making a simple but addictingly fun shooter. Two Zoos just need to find a solution to bringing in more players and they are gold.
Note: A game key was provided for preview purposes.