Game Overview

Atlas Reactor is, at its core, a 4 vs 4 battle arena using turn-based mechanics.  The designers have made this formula even better by adding a time limit to each decision phase, distributing actions into three resolution phases, and polishing the character designs so that each one has a different and amazing feel to them. What emerges from that formula is a distinctly tense and action-filled battle between two sides.

The Game Feel

Imagine taking the tactics of XCom, the character design quality of Overwatch and mashing them together with the free-to-play deathmatches League of Legends and DOTA.  Now stop imagining, that game is here and is called Atlas Reactor.  The voice acting is fantastic and invigorating.  The levels are big enough to allow movement freedom, but small enough to encourage interaction between the eight players.  And the actions and movement feel natural and predictable enough to allow for a solid strategy to form.  Atlas Reactor fulfills the old saying about good strategy games: “Easy to learn, hard to master.”

The Five Phases

Each Atlas Reactor match starts with a 20 second Decision phase and a 4.5 second decision buffer.  You can only use the extra decision time twice per match. Next comes the Prep resolution phase, where a lot of buffs and heals happen simultaneously on the field.  After Prep comes the Dash resolution phase, where characters jump across the map to escape an attack, to get better position, or just to confuse the opponents. The Blast phase is the one we’re all waiting for: where most of the damage occurs.  In most cases, the resolution phase is quicker than it took to read this paragraph.

The Prep and Blast phases happen in sequence visually, but all three phases are actually simultaneous.  If your character lowers to 0 HP before using their attack, it will stay that way until the end of the Blast phase.  If no heal happens during that time to return the character’s health back above zero, your character will die at the end of the phase.

Characters

The Atlas Reactor characters are polished.  Play a match, tell me the voice acting isn’t brilliant.  Then play 3 matches with different characters. Not only each class, but each character requires a different play style.  There’s so much polish here.

Most characters have a similar template with the first skill having zero cooldown, and several others that take place during different phases depending on the character type.  Firepower, Frontline, or Support are the classes you can choose from.

Conclusion

Atlas Reactor is a collection of awesome and balanced features polished to brilliant shine.  With tributes to XCom, Overwatch, and its own unique story elements, Atlas Reactor emerges as a fantastic new multiplayer game, complete with coop elements.

Co-op Tips

If you want to feel extra camaraderie from this team deathmatch format, play as Quark and try to stay bound to another hero as you heal them. To increase co-op feel further, play the Vs. Bots mode for PVe gameplay.  The AI can be challenging, just make sure you select the higher difficulty.