Gigantic is the underdog in this four way race for attention. Most of its Alpha and closed Beta period has been blocked by a strict NDA. In addition, limited server playing schedules have been confining. To make evaluation worse the game has again gone dark. Once again, closing its Beta doors to most everyone; except “the most helpful” community players. Gigantic is due to resurface again in late summer in a more accessible Beta. It’s main draw has been its community of Gigantic fans. are top notch. Jovial and helpful, exhibiting a friendly attitude of “making it work”. Motiga employees led chat sessions prior to entering servers. They did a good job of explaining the latest changes and what to test for during that day’s session. Players had the opportunity to toss ideas and ask questions afterwards. It was one of the more pleasant online testing experiences I’ve ever taken a part of.
Gigantic eschews team bases and minion laning in favor of it’s own unique control dynamic: Towering titans that duke it out midfield. These colossal behemoths eclipse everything else. Titans mirror the team vs. team tug of war, until one emerges victorious. Defeating heroes with a mixture of basic attacks and abilities helps the team, but there are other tasks that will aid in victory. Players can capture various control points around the map, thus building special stations at those zones (such as healing stations, defense turrets, or lookout posts).
Maps are large and varied, with launch pads to fling players to one of three starting areas on the map. Plenty of cliffs, plateaus, and caves for snipers, are worked into each arena. Heroes have fantastical abilities, each expressed with bright streaming flames or vivid swirls. While damage is counted up in numbers, you almost have no need to. Ability size and ferocity displayed runs parallel with the havoc being caused. Abilities are not the only thing to catch the eye, each anthropomorphic character has its own eccentric and unique charm to it. Taken as a whole the entire visual design feels like something out of a Mel Blanc cartoon — on psychotropic drugs.
As mentioned Gigantic is still in a state of flux, and could emerge from its latest incubation with much of it in a different state. Although the essence of titanic battles, and critical control point defense will (in most likelihood) remain basis of the game. Gigantic has the ability for players to break off into roles, mostly offense and defense minded tasks. In-game explanations are lacking, and thus can lead to confusion within matches. There are no items or character builds to worry about, so while streamlined also means less strategic differentiation. Instead each skill is leveled in a branching format, which is similar to Battleborn’s Helix System. For example, one jumping ability could be leveled up to either increase distance, or add a stun effect when you land.
For the Beta, Gigantic became a Windows Store title, which some gamers are not a fan of (I am not one either). Felt like a step back, but this week we received some good news. Motiga has announced a partnership with Perfect World Entertainment – Gigantic will come to all Windows x64 platforms in the future so that’s a step in the right direction. It is also free to play (and not pay to win). As well as, cross platform play planned with Xbox One players. I am very hopeful for what Gigantic could be when its development process is complete.
My personal hope is for more role definition for teams. Deepening in-game possibilities will help prevent each match turning into an of ability spam crap shoot for whoever ends up on top. Gigantic always ran very well with no crashes or issues even in early Alpha and Beta. Given more time for its community to flourish (without limited server up-time), more polish, and depth, this very vivid and pleasant game could easily end up as the best of the bunch down the road.