Deep Rock Galactic Honest Review

For some, this situation is similar to a scene from a horror movie, but for the employees of the space company Deep Rock Galactic, this is just another working day.

A substantial screeching fly drags the machine gunner into the darkness, and the engineer accidentally touches an explosive bush and is now lying on the ground with a singed beard.

Squeezed into a corner, the driller made his way back in the rock until he found a giant abyss under his feet. Left without ammunition and teammates, the scout hangs from the ceiling on a hook-cat, but nothing will help him: the cave is rapidly filling with hordes of hungry beetles.

Deep Rock Galactic

For some, this situation is similar to a scene from a horror movie, but for the employees of the space company Deep Rock Galactic, this is just another working day.

Gimli VS Arachnids

The dwarves in Deep Rock Galactic have mastered interstellar travel and discovered Hawkes 4, a planet rich in valuable resources. But besides gold and rare hops, it also has enough dangerous flora and fauna – countless hordes of monsters desperately defend their home.

But the miners were not embarrassed by such difficulties, and now mostly.  Even the most innocent mission inevitably turns into a slaughterhouse with the use of chemical weapons, industrial explosives and large-caliber barrels.

There is no plot or lore in the game anymore: you choose a character, a task to your liking and go to the landing capsule – the minerals will not dig themselves out.

Deep Rock Galactic windows

With rare exceptions, Deep Rock Galactic’s gameplay is not about combat at all. As a rule, a detachment of miners parachutes into procedurally generated caves in order to extract certain resources, return equipment to a dead expedition, or, say, build an “oil pipeline” from a nearby tower. Alien dungeons are reluctant to part with their treasures: they often have to work in extreme conditions.

Gold deposits may well be waiting under the very ceiling, and a network of pipes may have to be laid right through the magma lake. Therefore, most of the time, you will not have to shoot, but do speleology: overcome abysses, build bridges, drill tunnels.

And it is played much more interesting than it sounds. Although the locations are randomly generated, the artificial level designer does almost better than the real one – the caves here turned out to be beautiful and full of dangers. Sandstorms, lava eruptions, stalactites falling, fields of explosive plants: because of the random generation of levels, you never know what to face on your next dive.

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Besides, peacefully working with picks will not work in any case – the caves are teeming with aggressive beetles. When you first see how a torch illuminates the roof of a massive cave for several seconds.

Along which dozens of beetles are crawling, the movie Starship Troopers immediately comes to mind. I want to push the trigger all the way until everything that does not have a beard stops moving.

And fortunately, Deep Rock Galactic gameplay is very enjoyable to shoot. Although the feel of the weapon itself is not particularly special. The situation is saved by the destructibility of the environment and the damage mode.

Your shots break the chitinous shells of monsters, exposing vulnerable spots. This not only looks and feels great, but also affects the gameplay beetles deprived of armor receive noticeably more damage, and for this, you still need to aim.

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Enemies, as is customary in such cooperative shooters, are not particularly smart, but they take on the number and variety. With the latter, Deep Rock Galactic is doing especially well: there are almost three dozen unique critters on Hawkes 4.

Beetles, spiders, flies, leeches and even aggressive plants,  all behave in their own way. And different combinations of opponents are capable of breaking through any defense.

Deep Rock Galactic review

Also, you never know what conditions you will have to fight in the next time. Fight with the boss at the bottom of the narrow “well” where the whole team went down like a turtle for the last five minutes? Or an endless swarm of little spiders in the middle of a viscous swamp?

Deep Rock Galactic’s main success lies precisely in the combination of combat mechanics and exploration. At high difficulty levels, you won’t be able to fight off opponents once or twice. You need to quickly improvise, prepare a defence, use the landscape.

A room dug in a narrow tunnel can save your life, but if you do not make a “back door” in advance. It will also become a grave for the whole team. Platforms can close up chasms and block passages. If you accidentally leave a hole in a makeshift crossing, then one of your comrades will surely fall into it.

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In the end, each of the four dwarfs not only exterminates beetles in their own way but also explores in their own way. For example, an engineer knows how to build bridges, and a heavily armed shooter stretches cable cars.

A driller can dig an entire bunker in a couple of seconds, and a mobile scout can illuminate even the largest cave for a long time. The squad has to not only fight as a whole but also conquer caves, helping each other at every step. In this regard, teamwork feels unexpectedly fresh.

It’s especially cool when Deep Rock Galactic picks up steam and changes its humorous (overall) tone to a serious epic. For example, in the framework of some tasks for the evacuation, the squad needs to break through to the landing capsule through endless hordes of monsters. The capsule falls wherever it pleases.

There are no guarantees that there is a direct path to it at all.  And it also flies back on the timer. The music picks up the pace, and tunnels are fill with monsters, gnomes swear at each other on what the world is. The only hope is small, flickering beacons that show the way. After such adrenaline episodes, the whole team pulls into a bar.

Bottomless Depths

But all this does not mean that the game has no problems at all. They just do not become noticeable immediately. One of the biggest disappointments is progression. In Deep Rock Galactic, not only is there no narrative, but the ultimate goal in principle.

Although the basic gameplay itself is capable of captivating for long hours, sooner or later the question arises. Why all this? Why tirelessly pump your character, reset the level and start over?

Of course, pumping opens up new difficulty and access to special events. But if the player has already started to get tired by that time, this is unlikely to pique the interest.

The pumping system itself is also not too happy. A significant part of the unlocked abilities and modules for equipment are either poorly balanced or give absolutely insignificant bonuses, like microscopic plus signs to damage. In addition, the arsenal of weapons here is very modest.

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All characters have a main and an additional barrel, and as the level increases, you can open only one alternative for each category.

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Deep Rock Galactic promo

In fairness, all the guns are unique and really different from each other, but they won’t last long. Especially if you enjoy playing the same dwarf. The situation aggravates by prices for almost everything in the game. Even for the most difficult tasks, we receive very small rewards. But the prices for any (even cosmetic) improvements are bite no less than beetles.

There are no micro transactions in the game, and grind is in bulk. Want that cool steel mohawk? Get ready to save four or five tasks for him. Also, not everything is smooth with the balance of complexity. It seems like Deep Rock Galactic puts too much emphasis on the constant lack of ammo. But unlike other similar games, the characters do not have serious tools for close combat.

Yes, no self-respecting dwarf goes out without a pickaxe. But fighting her against a swarm of beetles is pure suicide on almost any difficulty. Because of this, situations periodically arise where you do not need to fight. But run from opponents in circles in a desperate attempt to find some resources to call ammunition.

If you delay, then the game may well set another swarm of beetles on you in order to completely finish off the team’s morale. Needless to say, these moments feel ridiculously difficult and dishonest?

Deep Rock Galactic gameplay

But all this, of course, does not make the game bad. Deep Rock Galactic could have simply copied the mechanics of Left 4 Dead. Instead, the authors successfully refreshed the formula with their own ideas. It turned out dark and tense, but still cozy – with gunpowder, beer and hordes of bloodthirsty creatures. What else does a strong company of dwarves need?

1 thought on “Deep Rock Galactic Honest Review”

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