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Bravo Team Review

Emergency extraction requested!

There’s been no shortage of first person shooters since PlayStation VR launched back in 2016. Straight out of the gates we had, RIGS, and Eve: Valkyrie, soon followed by Farpoint, Arizona Sunshine, SUPERHOT, and Raw Data. It’s been fascinating to watch this space grow, seeing how different studios adapt what many consider to be the biggest genre in gaming.

Way behind the rest of the pack, however, is Bravo Team. Developed by Supermassive Games, who are best known for Until Dawn, it’s a draining, soulless, chore-like facsimile of the modern-day shooter that amounts to nothing more than a series of tepid shooting galleries. Even the added immersion of playing in virtual reality, with an Aim Controller in hand and a co-op partner by your side, isn’t enough to save it.

The game’s attempt to draw you into some kind of narrative falls apart almost instantly following a dull introductory sequence. As the titular Bravo Team, you’re tasked with escorting the president of some indiscernible nation in crisis through a hostile zone, only for her to get immediately snatched by – you guessed it – those naughty, naughty terrorists. Behind enemy lines with no back up on the way, it’s up to you and your partner (who can either be AI or another human) to fight your way out to safety.

As always, the game can lean on the simple joy of playing with a friend and chatting as you play. The world has been designed with two players in mind, letting you alternately lay down some cover fire and move, split up to take some of the minor diverging paths, and using voice chat to call out moves and incoming enemies. It’s easy to say that the game it at its best by far in co-op, to the point that it should be considered essential.

Bravo Team can be played with a DualShock 4, two Move wands, or a PlayStation VR Aim Controller. It’s great to see Supermassive make an effort accommodating as many players as they can, but what many probably won’t have been expecting is for the DualShock to come out on top. While arguably more immersive, getting you to position your arms like you’re holding an actual rifle, the Move and Aim controllers were consistently less accurate and more tiring to use.

Compared to the small list of games mentioned at the beginning of this review, Bravo Team doesn’t allow free player movement. Instead it adopts a cover-based system, allowing you and your partner to advance incrementally, manually selecting where you want your soldier to reposition. Every time you move, you switch to a third person camera, see your character run forward to cover and then snap back into first person.

It’s an interesting alternative and it’s somewhat reminiscent of light gun games as you pop in and out of cover, but it’s a system that quickly loses its appeal. Annoyingly, some points offer no protection at all, even as you physically cower behind them, and are finicky to switch between, especially when constantly under fire. What’s worse is how reliant on cover your enemies are, popping up for a split second before disappearing, like some carnival shooting gallery.

As a result, each and every gunfight is drawn out way longer than it needs to be and to exacerbate things even further, Bravo Team has a penchant for calling in additional waves of goons just when you thought you could move on. It wouldn’t be so bad if every shootout were different or dynamic in some way.

Although it’s a decent looking game, considering the nondescript modern combat aesthetic it adheres to, there’s no real sense of character or atmosphere. This may be easy to ignore if playing online with a friend in chat but there will no doubt be a sizeable number of lone gunmen out there, forced to suck up uncomfortable blandness.

What’s Good:

  • Decent visuals
  • Interesting cover system
  • Built for co-op with a friend

What’s Bad:

  • Repetitive gunfights quickly become a snoozefest
  • Fails to do anything creative or dynamic
  • Lifeless atmosphere
  • Aim Controller feels less reliable than the DualShock 4

Ultimately, Bravo Team adds nothing to the VR shooter scene and it’s somewhat baffling to see Sony pushing the game so hard considering how it has turned out. If you were considering paying top dollar for that tempting Aim Controller bundle then don’t.

Score: 3/10

  1. Tuffcub
    On the naughty step.
    Since: Dec 2008


    Comment posted on 06/03/2018 at 06:50.
  2. Jag
    Since: Feb 2009

    Wow, good thing I cancelled at my preorder at the last minute.
    I was thinking it’s strange how there’s been no decent gameplay or previews of this before release, now we know why.
    Sony need to be careful what they promote, especially with VR.
    I love my PSVR but I can see why people who haven’t got to try it are hesitant. Bad games like this will just be another reason people are put off.
    That’s not to mention people like me who have VR and are looking forward to good new experiences for it.
    We need more games like Moss, Doom VFR and Statik.

    Comment posted on 06/03/2018 at 09:08.
    • B_Cambo
      Since: Oct 2012

      Totally agree! I love my PSVR but if Bravo is as bad as the review then it would be a blow. Fun ‘kiddie’ games are not enough to justify the price, I want a surreal experience with awesome graphics and gameplay just like brave promised!

      If other games continue to disappoint then I fear VR will follow the same road as the PSVita

      Comment posted on 06/03/2018 at 10:16.
  3. leeroye
    Since: May 2012

    Gutted i was looking forward to this.

    “Bravo Team doesn’t allow free player movement”
    Thats crazy if you ask me, why not give the option, especially as it uses the aim controller which has two thumbsticks.

    Comment posted on 06/03/2018 at 09:38.
  4. B_Cambo
    Since: Oct 2012

    A painful read.
    Unfortunately had to order a new aim controller thanks to my dog who just love my first one so much he decided to rip it apart!
    It was one game I have been looking forward to for a good while!
    Loved the aim controller in Farpoint and had high hopes for this one as both trailers set it up nicely to be an awesome experience!

    Not allowing free player movement is an absolute sole destroyer! One thing I ask for is free movement rather than the ‘teleport system’ or automatic cover based movement. Farpoint should have been a solid competitor for this game and so far it reads that its got nothing on it.
    However I withhold judgement until I have played it myself.

    On the lighter side if bravo does suck I have Arizona sunshine to look forward to once the aim controller arrives.

    Comment posted on 06/03/2018 at 10:10.
  5. Nate
    Since: Apr 2010

    A real shame. I get the impression Supermassive have spread themselves a bit thin with all their recent average to poor releases. Until Dawn was fantastic so they are obviously a talented team, maybe they need a bit of space to work on a passion project again.

    Comment posted on 06/03/2018 at 10:18.
  6. MrYd
    Since: Mar 2011

    On the plus side, the bundle with the Aim controller is available for £50. Which is cheaper than the other Farpoint bundle.

    If the Aim controller hadn’t been as rare as rocking horse shit for months, I wouldn’t even consider this. What are the odds of the bundle selling out despite the game obviously being a bit crap?

    Comment posted on 06/03/2018 at 10:41.
  7. TSBonyman
    Since: Dec 2009

    So it sounds like this at least allows you to use standard “stick” aiming with a DS4?
    Farpoint still stupidly expects you to hold up the DS4 to your chin, completely ruined the game for me.

    Comment posted on 06/03/2018 at 14:37.

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