BRINK

You can have fun playing Brink especially if you play in multiplayer mode; playing online however can be tedious as the lag makes the game impossible to play

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BRINK Brink won’t win any awards for its visuals. It looks dated and the motion blur is just too damaging to gameplay
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By  Jason Saundalkar Published  September 19, 2011

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Key Specs

Online play: Y
Price: $73

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British game development company Splash Damage and publisher Bethesda Softworks are the companies behind Brink but while we've seen their names attached to great games in the past, this is a title that struggles to find its way.

Brink is based in a once-utopian city known as The Ark, which floats above the waters of a now flooded planet Earth. The game tells the story of two factions; Resistance and Security. You can play as either faction in Brink though the overall objectives are somewhat different in that one faction is trying to flee the Ark, whereas the other is trying to create order and return it to its former glory via any means necessary. This creates a bit of tension and so the two factions frequently collide in battle.

Before you choose which side to play, Brink asks you to customise your character and weapon load-out and while there are initially only a few options to work with, you later get sucked into hours of customisation when you've unlocked some of the other goodies. You can, initially, also choose what body style you want and what class of combatant - Soldier, Medic, Engineer and Operative - you want to play as, and depending on your choices here, you can contribute to battles in varying ways. As a Medic you can look after your allies for example or, if you want to provide support, you can choose to be an Engineer and build nests at critical points across the map.

When it comes to gameplay however Brink struggles to make a compelling argument for itself. For starters its controls are a bit vague which makes moving and aiming difficult. At the same time the shooting mechanics themselves aren't what they should be, which makes taking down enemies quite annoying; you can empty clip after clip and find yourself either missing or simply unable to take down enemies for whatever reason. This is quite a shame as the objective-based setup of Brink creates a real sense of urgency and tension when you play.

The game's visuals don't make playing easy either. When you're running around the battlefield there's a considerable degree of blur and, if you look closely, the visuals in general just aren't that great. This is a bit of a shame given the game manages to produce some great looking cutscenes.

On the audio front Brink offers reasonably fast paced music though the sound effects won't blow you away when they really should. The weapons just don't sound as loud and as brash as they should.

Given enough time and patience, you can have fun with Brink however, especially if you opt for the online multiplayer mode. Unfortunately when we played online, we found ourselves in a hopeless situation, as even a little bit of lag makes the game impossible to play competitively. This isn't a massive surprise considering the movement and shooting mechanics aren't great even when you're playing a local game on your console.

Pros: You can spend hours and hours customising your character and weapons in Brink.
Cons: Vague controls, iffy shooting mechanics.
Verdict: While Brink offers an ambitious and interesting gameplay concept a number of annoying flaws get in the way and ultimately make this game less fun than it could have been.

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