Forced Review | Co-op Done Right

Posted 2013/10/24 by William Manzo in Gaming

Every now and then there comes a game funded by Kickstarter that does relatively well and even exceeds expectations. A game like FTL: Faster Than Light is a game that comes to mind when we hear of a well-rounded gaming experience. Now another certain Kickstarter funded game by the name of Forced is up to the plate. Forced has a lot to go on, but is it the next FTL in terms of being everything that fans wanted from it? Let’s find out if Forced knocks it out of the park or ends up striking out.

A game like Forced usually comes out every now and then (League Of Legends, the Diablo Series, etc.), but in terms of its unique puzzle solving while in hectic co-op battles with other players, Forced is second to none. Along with having satisfying combat throughout, Forced also has a mechanic that adds several layers of depth to it. That mechanic goes by the name of Balfus, a spirit who guides your warrior to the ends of the world through storytelling and puzzle solving. Some people may go far as to say that Balfus is ‘gimmicky’ but those people would be dead wrong (using  Balfus for puzzles can take some getting used to in co-op, but it’s nothing too difficult). Without Balfus the main driving force for this game would be like any other game in its genre, a typical MMO without any layers of depth.

Combat in Forced can be explained in two words, “Holy shit”. There’s a reason that co-op is advertised so heavily for Forced and I’m glad that the team at Beta Dwarf Entertainment have let people know it’s in the game. That’s because the game is freaking difficult when playing alone. By playing with several people you’ll have the advantage on the field, covering more ground using different characters and getting things done faster than you would alone. We’ve recently seen the rise of difficult games being made, but difficulty itself isn’t a bad thing, and neither is the difficulty in Forced.

If anything, hard, even punishing difficulty keeps players playing even more. It’s that sense of wanting to overcome certain goals in a game that makes the end run of the goals so much more satisfying. I wouldn’t go so far to say that Forced has punishing difficulty (ie Demon’s Souls, Dark Souls) but I would more so place it around say a Gauntlet meets League Of Legends. Take that as you will.

As far as the aesthetics of the game go, the game itself looks excellent (minus a few visual glitches), with characters and environments meshing well together as well as an overall well designed user interface. I was first drawn to Forced from its Gauntlet like feel. As I continued playing the game I got a God Of War: Ascension vibe to it (if it were more cartoon like). Other than a few instances of screen tearing and subtitles not showing up in the correct language, visually, there’s nothing that I’ve found that isn’t well executed.

Like I previously stated, Forced for the most part should be played with more people like the developers have advertised. Each of the four warrior classes help in different situations and are much better if used with multiple players.

– The blue warrior is based on defense and crowd control. Getting ganked? Call on the blue warrior for help and he’ll get those pesky enemies out of your way.

– The green warrior is based on speed with his quick attacks and his ability to get to places faster compared to other classes.

– The red warrior is your average damage dealer. When players are going against bosses, other classes should make it their priority to defend this warrior as much as possible.

– Then there’s the yellow warrior, a ranged bow class that may in several peoples opinions may be the best class to pick when playing co-op. Quick attacks with this class can help players avoid taking large amounts of damage if played correctly.

With these classes, players are also able to gain several perks and abilities throughout the campaign. The more gems collected, the more perks and abilities the player can get. Players can get three gems in each level, one for finishing the level, and the other two can depend on several different factors (ie Time Attack, No damage challenge, etc.).

Overall Score: 8/10

If you were to strip Forced of everything that makes it unique, you’d have…well you’d have another basic MMO (cough League Of Legends cough). Forced sets the bar for what developers should try achieving when funded by Kickstarter. Forced manages to engage players in intense memorable battles time and time again. So whether you’re in it to survive in surviva, or in it to battle through hordes of enemies in the campaign, co-op for Forced will keep you on your toes every step of the way, aching for more.

You can purchase Forced on Steam here: [x]

About the Author

William Manzo

Gaming since I was in diapers.