Publisher: Cubed Productions LLC
Developer: Human Head Studios
Release Date: Out Now
As the name suggests, Minimum is a minimalistic shooter recently released from Steam’s Greenlight service. The game itself is a third-person, team-based shooter. What makes this game unique however are the elements it takes from the Multiplayer online battle arena (M.O.B.A) genre. M.O.B.A typically has a player choosing a character and levelling that character up in that particular match. After each match, the character resets to the basic stats it was found in.
As stated, Minimum takes this aspect and carries it over to a shooter. The player must first create their class, choosing a main weapon, secondary weapon and finally a projectile (such as a grenade) or a ‘deployable’ (such as a stationary turret). When the game starts, the player has two types of resources, one of which is attained through killing players and the other through killing ‘creeps’.
This is another aspect taken from the M.O.B.A genre, but when brought to a shooter it balances the down time between major conflicts, forcing players to meet and fight if they want more resources. These resources are used to craft armour, which is made up of three pieces; head, chest, and legs. These armour pieces will not reset upon death, but will reset after the game ends. As each game progresses, the level of armour players can acquire will increase in quality. There are several types of armour, each offering different benefits depending on the role you are fulfilling for your team.
This increase in quality also crosses over to the weapons of Minimum. But unlike the armour, progress of your weapon resets after death. Weapons are levelled up in a similar way as armour, but instead of requiring resources kills will increase your weapon’s capability in one way or another. Killing a player may result in your weapon firing faster or your sword may catch fire and do more damage.
To acquire further weapons and armour the player must research blueprints and then build whatever they researched using raw and refined resources. These differ from those found in game and are used solely for this purpose. They can be acquired simply through playing a match, with more being awarded for personal performance and if your team wins the match.
The array of weapons available is standard of any shooter with the interesting addition of melee weapons, such as samurai swords. These are unfortunately, at the time of writing, quite over-powered. It can be assumed that the power makes up for the disadvantage of distance, however any skilled player can progress to the final stage of their melee weapon multiple times in a game quite quickly and easily.
There are three game modes available: team death match, horde mode (which is endless co-operative survival) and the most interesting being ‘Titan’. This game mode is the closest to its M.O.B.A inspiration. Each team will have an autonomous Titan making its way across the map on a set ‘lane’. This lane is the same for both teams and the game is won when one team’s Titan reaches the end and as a result destroys the ‘power source’ of the enemy base. The Titans are, as you would expect with their name, giant lumbering creations. When two opposing Titans meet, they engage in a monstrous duel, trading monumental blows until one is destroyed. It is a sight to behold but the relative fast pace of the game means stopping to admire such a sight would result in death.
In its current state, Minimum is worth the low asking price. It is generally well-balanced and the gameplay itself is entertaining. It offers far more in scheduled updates, which would lead to the recommendation of perhaps waiting for another update or two before purchasing.