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Dirty Bomb moved it’s development phase to open beta earlier this week.  If you are unfamiliar with the title it’s the latest release from Splash Damage (The studio who brought you Brink and Batman: Arkham Origins).  Taking the form of a team based shooter that relies heavily on building the perfect squad from various mercenaries and taking on a variety of objectives every match.

One interesting aspect of assembling your team before each match is due to the availability of specialized mercenaries.  Each of these bring with them a specific skill set along with unique special abilities and can be swapped out after each death.  Before a match starts you can pick three mercs from those available.

Players in Dirty Bomb’s Open Beta will initially find 12 Mercs to fill out their squad. Two Mercs – Combat Medic Aura and Fire-Support Specialist Skyhammer – are always available free to players, and there will be a variation of additional Mercs free on an ongoing basis. To kick off the Open beta, the following Mercs will be in free rotation beginning Wednesday, June 3:

  • Kira, a powerful tactical character who can rain down hell from above with her Orbital Laser Strike, perfect for clearing out defenses and campers
  • Sawbonez, a frontline support medic equipped with a Submachine Gun and Defibrillator Paddles, who is highly effective at reviving his teammates to full health
  • Fragger, an aggressive pointman and straight-up player-slayer, with a big gun, lots of ammo, and devastating Frag grenades

Players also have the option of purchasing Mercs for their squad, including long-range sniper Vassili and the Minigun-toting walking tank, Rhino.

I found this very handy as it basically mimics the various loadouts used in other popular shooters, except in this game you are actually changing characters.  You can also augment the mercs with loadout cards bringing a wide variety of effects.  These can range from purely cosmetic changes or performance enhancing effects bringing quite a large variety of players in every match.

The Open Beta is launching with Five Maps which actually isn’t too bad and take place in a futuristic London.  With the time I have spent playing the game so far, I found the maps to be structured fairly well.  There are plenty of different vantage points on giving every type a player areas to exceed.

I found the gameplay very reminiscent of Brink, especially with the objective based matches.  To be perfectly honest I made a comment about it reminding me so much of Brink before I did my homework and found out it was being developed by Splash Damage.  So to me it’s very obvious were the inspiration is coming from.

The weapons feel solid enough and generally the shooting mechanics hold their own.  There looks to be plenty in store for this title and I highly recommend everyone keeping it on their radar.  You can find more information and jump into the beta from The Official Steam Page. 

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