Top 5 video reviews


Published 05.05.2023 00:00
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Omega Strikers review

Competitive multiplayer free-to-play games are almost always designed to be played over a long stretch of time. That's why I didn't rush this Omega Strikers review out the door. I wanted to wait until I had sunk a sizeable number of hours into the official release and engaged fully with its long-game monetization strategy before attaching a score to it. This wasn't hard to commit to doing, though, as its unique blend of sports and MOBA-like action is equal parts frenetic and compelling, and the free-to-play design of Omega Strikersis about as free-play friendly as they get.

Hero hockey

Omega Strikers is a 3-on-3 multiplayer game featuring a fantasy sport that most closely resembles hockey. The object of the game is to put a puck (referred to as a "core") into the opposing team's goal. This sounds simple enough, but Omega Strikers adds layer upon layer of systems and mechanics onto this straightforward concept, with the foundation of them all being built around a diverse cast of characters who all have their own stats and abilities.

Many of these abilities help you hit the core more effectively in ways to protect your own goal or take shots on the opposing one, but all of them can also be used directly on opposing players to stagger or even temporarily knock them out of play. With your own team dynamics, it's up to you and the other two players on your team to figure out the best strategies for knocking out other players, protecting your own team mates, and consistently pushing the core into the opposing goal to come out victorious.

Sport first, slayer second

If I had to compare Omega Strikers to games that do similar things, I'd probably say this game feels like a cross between Windjammers and PokГ©mon Unite, though it's closer to the former than the latter. Despite the hero abilities, gear, and knockout mechanics, Omega Strikers is definitely tuned to keep its focus more on sports concepts like playing positions, passing, communication, etc. than more conventional MOBA-adjacent games that also place significant emphasis on direct engagements and winning fights to create advantages.

All of this somewhat depends on how matches come together and progress, though. You can find yourself facing a bunch of heroes with powerful map control abilities but low amounts of health, in which case trying to focus on knocking out players first makes sense. Or, if in the match you are playing you gain access to gear that assists with core striking, maybe you keep your focus on simply trying to outmaneuver the opposition.

Varied value

Omega Strikers is a multi-platform game but I contend that the game itself feels tuned for mobile play. The iOS version does have a few hinky UI issues but none of that gets in the way of the game in action. In my time with Omega Strikers, I've also been unable to tell the kind of device other players are playing on which is to say there do not seem to be discernable advantages/disadvantages to which version of the game you play. If you are averse to touch controls, Omega Strikers has flawless controller support (in-match only) and, if you are not, the default controls work fine but there are also tons of customization options that you can tweak to your exact liking.

Another aspect of the game's mobile friendliness is its various game modes that can fill both quick play session times and longer stretches through things like a competitive mode that are multi-round affairs with additional strategic layers. The only thing I'd say is missing from the game right now is a friendly on-ramp for new players. There is a tutorial and a co-op mode against bots, but neither do a great job of teaching you how to be a good teammate in a competitive setting or try out new characters.

On the free-to-play aspects of Omega Strikers, there are characters locked behind currency you can either grind or pay for, but outside of unlocking the full cast (which--by the way--you do directly as opposed to through some kind of gacha mess), all of the other purchasable items in Omega Strikers are strictly cosmetic. Earning the currency for character unlocks also does not take an unreasonable amount of time (somewhere around 20 hours by my estimation). As for the characters themselves, the full cast feels well-balanced such that characters locked behind currency don't seem to outclass the default characters by any stretch.

The bottom line

Omega Strikers is a fast and fun multiplayer game that is bursting with variety and feels quite unlike most other hero-centric games available. There's something magical about the game's fantasy sport dynamics and it's easy to enjoy completely for free thanks to a very reasonable free-to-play model. In short, Omega Strikers is excellent.

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