Aside from being one of the best looking games we’ve seen in ages, there are a few other things in Gigantic that make it one of our top picks for upcoming esports games. Sitting somewhere between a third-person MOBA like Smite or Paragon and a hero-based shooter like Overwatch, Gigantic pits teams of beautifully cel-shaded characters against each other as they struggle to awaken and fight alongside their massive guardian creatures. Due to the third-person shooter nature of the game, there is a welcome sense of speed and verticality in Gigantic, but this is just icing on an already very tasty cake.
In many respects, Gigantic recalls the competitive elements of Battleborn (don’t stop reading, please), with the heroes fighting their way through a third person version of a three lane MOBA map. When the game begins there are no creeps or mobs on the map. Instead of these AI creatures being a constant spawn, players instead have to cap certain points around the map to summon creatures to act on their behalf. These creatures may not necessarily act as normal mobs, either, instead functioning more like a tower or turret. Some summons heal allied players within a certain radius, while others can slow enemies.
Each of the 16 heroes currently available have unique skill trees and abilities making for some excellent variety when it comes to play styles. There are melee characters capable of doing damage up close and personal, with a selection of tanks and DPS characters, including the giant, demonic Margrave (a tank), the mystical little girl warrior with a huge sword that houses the spirit of her dead father, Aisling (utility), and the frog martial arts monk Wu (mobility/ DPS) and an equal number of ranged combatants and support characters.
Mobility is a huge factor in the game given the verticality of the environments. Less mobile characters may be forced to travel along the bottom of ravines unless aided by support characters, while other characters, like Beckett, a ranged mobility DPS character equipped with a jetpack can fly over obstacles or find vantage points difficult to access by conventional means.
As fast and fun as the action is, the real spectacle of the game comes in the form of the massive guardian creatures that represent each team. These creatures are essentially the final boss of a battle and must be taken down to end a match. Trying to take one on solo is suicide, and even team based it’s a fool’s errand as player attacks can’t hurt them. The only way to combat a guardian is with another guardian. These are activated by a team amassing 100 points through combat, summoning, and collecting. When you reach 100 points the guardian's activated and makes its way to the enemy. Players then have 20 seconds to do as much damage as possible.
Gigantic will be free to play when it is released some time in 2017, but people interested in jumping into the beta can purchase a Founder’s Edition of the game giving them access to all the characters off the bat and some exclusive skins.
SITS SOMEWHERE BETWEEN A THIRD PERSON MOBA LIKE SMITE OR PARAGON AND A HERO BASED SHOOTER LIKE OVERWATCH
Gigantic's gorgeous cel-shaded visuals help distinguish it from other MOBAs on the market