*Thanks to CarbonFire for original OP elements!
Welcome to the Ark!
Now available on PC, XBox 360 and PS3!
Currently retailing on consoles for around $40! Still $50 on Steam.
The Agents of Change DLC is (finally) avaiable on all platforms for $10 (or 800 MS Points). If you missed the free-to-download period during the first two weeks after its release, tough luck.
is at its core a class-based, teamwork-oriented multiplayer shooter
developed by Splash Damage (of Enemy Territory fame) that emphasizes speed, fluidity and flexibility above all else
. Matches can often become as unpredictable and violent as the ocean waves, so you'll need to think fast and be ready to change tactics or classes at a moment's notice to help your team stay afloat. Gameplay in Brink is very kinetic
: staying mobile and sticking close to your friends is just as important as gunning down enemies using your "l33t ski1zz".
Brink takes place on the Ark. Built in the near-future as part of a contemporary green vision, the Ark was a model for sustainable living. The massive man-made floating city became a home to the scientists and thinkers focused on making the vision a reality, while its wealthy patrons built a recreational paradise. But soon the threat of a global environmental crisis became real: glaciers melted, sea levels rose, and the very survival of humanity was threatened. Thousands from around the globe fled to the Ark as a last hope. Refugees clung to survival however they could, while the original founders and their descendants struggled to maintain the island.
Now, existing in 2045, A whole generation has grown up on the Ark, and while it was originally supposed to house around 5,000 people, it now houses around 50,000. Now, the Ark has lost contact with what remained of the mainland and exists in total isolation. As the Ark's supposedly renewable resources dwindle, the balance of power threatens to unravel and throw competing social factions into a horrific conflict.
At its heart, Brink is a spiritual successor to Splash Damage's previous two games, Wolfenstein: Enemy Territory and Enemy Territory: Quake Wars. Two teams battle over a series of linked objectives, one team attacking, the other defending. Objective types include destruction, capture-the-flag/item, escort and many more. Sub objectives like opening up side routes or capturing command posts can also be completed to give either side a tactical advantage.
The majority of Brink's gameplay is centered around a quartet of classes, each with unique basic abilities and specialized skills that can further define what role you'd personally like that class to fill in combat. These skills can be purchased upon leveling up your character, on top of general-use cross-class "universal skills". Choosing which skills to get is crucial; haphazardly picking ones that sound good in theory but don't mesh well with your playstyle can hamper your effectiveness, but you can always opt to "de-level" yourself by one and reallocate your skill points freely. You can switch classes at any time by visiting Command Posts placed in strategic areas around the battlefield that are under your team's control. Here's the basic rundown of what each class can do:
are explosives experts and the vanguard of most offensive charges. They can place High Explosive Charges on mission-critical structures that must be defended from enemy Engineers until detonation. In addition to the basic Frag Grenades all classes can throw, Soldiers have the ability to throw firebombs that instantly knock down and disrupt opponents caught in the explosion. They are also responsible for keeping their teammates and themselves stocked with ammunition. Soldiers can choose to further their effectiveness with frags by getting skills that increase their blast radius, damage or cooldown time, or opt for "specialty" explosives: disorienting Flashbangs and remote-detonated Satchel Charges. They can also get Armor Piercing ammunition for themselves, increase the ammo supplied to them and friendlies, get extra passive damage reduction and gain the ability to Scavenge fallen enemies to replenish some of their Supply Meter.
are versatile offensive and defensive supporters, and the only class capable of disarming enemy explosives and HackBoxes planted on objectives by Operatives. They can innately boost their teammates' or their own weapon damage, and strategically plant a landmine which will critically injure any enemies who trigger them; they can also construct and repair certain objects in the environment, such as machine gun emplacements and structures that provide new routes for allies. Special skills range from the ability to deploy sentry turrets of varying sizes; further boosting their team's damage capabilities; doling out protective Kevlar Armor; improving the stat bonuses of friendly command posts; placing an extra landmine; and improving their own ability to construct or diffuse objects.
, as one can imagine, are a team's literal lifeline: they are responsible for healing and buffing teammates or themselves by one extra "pip" of health, and can deploy important Revive Syringes to incapacitated teammates and mission-critical VIP's to get them back on their feet. Special Medic skills range from further improving their Health Boosts; gaining the ability to revive themselves on the spot rather than wait for other friendly Medics; providing temporary Boosts to allies' sprint speed and natural healing capabilities; Adrenaline Boosting teammates so they can ignore damage done to them until the effect wears off; and a getting a special Lazarus Grenade that can revive multiple friendlies in the blast radius with minimal health.
are Brink's "spy" class, specializing in sabotaging and disrupting enemy operations. They can plant HackBoxes on objectives which need their full attention while the hack is in process, though they can suspend and later continue the hack if they need to do something else. They also have the unique abilities to spot enemy deployables like mines and disguise as killed enemies, infiltrate their ranks, and conduct operations from behind their lines. Good operatives use stealth and surprise to their advantage, drawing unwanted attention away from their teammates while messing up their enemies in various ways. Operatives can gain the abilities to Comms Hack downed adversaries, revealing their whole team's positions to your allies' radars temporarily; hack enemy turrets to make them yours and control friendly turrets remotely; firewall controlled command posts so enemies take longer to claim them; toss Caltrops Grenades which shower areas with spikes damaging enemies who move quickly through them, Sticky Bombs that can attach onto areas or enemies and explode after time, or EMP Grenades that disable mission-critical devices and turrets temporarily; and the option to detonate a Cortex Bomb when incapped, heavily damaging any unwary enemies close enough to your body as a final "eff you".
One of Brink's most unique mechanics is the S.M.A.R.T. movement system, short for "Smooth Movement Across Random Terrain". S.M.A.R.T. allow you to seamlessly vault over, mantle, climb up or slide under objects and obstacles in the environment; you can hold down the S.M.A.R.T. button to perform these maneuvers automatically or manually do them with the appropriate control inputs. This video details the basics of S.M.A.R.T.:
Remember that your movement abilities are affected by which Body Type your character currently is, so be careful!
Adding to Brink's depth is the ability to change your character's Body Type, which affects their constitution, movement abilities and weapon choices. This can be done between matches in the Appearance menu, but not while in-game.
The default, starting body type. Can perform basic parkour and some advanced parkour like wall climbing. They have a moderate amount of health and can use up to medium-class weapons.
(unlocked at Level 5): Big, fat, and hard to kill, heavies are the tanks on the battlefields of the Ark. They have lots of health but slower movement speed and cannot climb anything above their height. In return they have access to all weapons including special heavy weapons - Light Machine Guns, a Minigun, and automatic Grenade Launchers and Shotguns - which can devastate opponents when used correctly.
(unlocked at Level 7): Running here there and everywhere, the Light class are the darlings of the S.M.A.R.T. system. They're able to climb anywhere, jump off walls and get to places other classes couldn't dream of, trading lower health for increased mobility. SMGs and Pistols are the Light's tools of the trade.
Brink's Campaign mode can be played in Single Player, online Co-op or Versus multiplayer. The story and gameplay are the same in each mode, and the missions can be played in any order (though there is a story progression through both of the 8-mission campaigns). There is no traditional on-rails single player story against waves of enemies. Freeplay Mode allows for a more flexible experience, with Objective games similar to the Campaign's setup, and Stopwatch games where each team plays a full game as both Security and Resistance, with the attacking team who completes the map the fastest (or makes the most headway before time runs out) winning overall.
There are also challenge maps that can be completed to unlock weapons and weapon attachments. Challenge maps will reinforce basic gameplay mechanics as well as teach advanced gameplay techniques, and will feature multiple levels of difficulty. There are three tiers of difficulty for each challenge, and completing the third tier will allow you to post your time onto the online Leaderboards.
Customization is Brink's other big touted feature. You can tweak your character's look, voice, clothes, weapon loadout/attachments and skills. Like an RPG or MMO, you can have up to 10 different characters, each with their own look and skill loadout.
THERE ARE NO FEMALE PLAYER MODELS IN BRINK. SORRY, THAT'S JUST THE WAY IT IS.
There are dozens of pieces of clothing and character customization options, including tattoos, piercings and headgear. Clothing options are faction specific, and you can customize the look of each of your characters (up to 10) separately. Clothing items are unlocked by earning XP and Leveling up, which is accomplished by completing just about any action in the game.
Weapon and attachment unlocks are only obtainable through completing challenges, which are short bits of gameplay used to teach both basic and advanced tactics in the game. These provide various tweaks that improve some aspects of weapons (such as stability, accuracy or reloading speed) while negatively influencing others, so think carefully about how you want to trick out your guns. Light Weapons include accurate and fast-firing Submachine Guns, trusty Pistols that provide an offhand knife for extra melee damage rather than knockdown, and Light Rifles for sniping purposes. Medium Weapons include Assault Rifles that do great damage at mid-long range but can get rather inaccurate with prolonged fire, a pump-action shotgun, and a single-shot Grenade Launcher. Heavy Weapons add powerful Light Machine Guns to the mix as well as an intimidating Minigun, Auto Shotgun, and a six-shot Grenade Launcher.
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