'Hell Let Loose' Asks 50 Players to Work Together, or Die

A peevish, flat Midwestern voice hisses from my headphones. "Hey squad leaders, we need more people on the point. Stop screwing around and get to Yamki."


This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at https://www.vice.com/en_us/article/y3dkkv/hell-let-loose-asks-50-players-to-work-together-or-die
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OK, but that last story is very funny.

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It’s a bummer to hear that it’s so dependent on other players buying in for it to be enjoyable. I love hearing Rob’s stories on the podcast about this game, and reading this makes me worried he won’t stick with it for much longer. Fingers crossed we get a few more stories and maybe a stream before that happens!

I laughed so hard at the last line that I started choking on my ramen.

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Stories like this one make this game sound rad as hell and something I will never ever play.

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I have the weirdest case of FOMO with this game. I know that my computer cannot run it well, that I have nowhere near the time to invest in it, and that my social anxiety would mean that I could not participate fully in it. Nonetheless I really want to play this goddamn game.

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It is fun. I don’t care to engage sometimes but there are decent servers out there with friendly players. It does take a lot of time, but I think it can be rewarding.

With the sudden interest in Hell Let Loose I feel as if everyone has forgotten about similar past games like Natural Selection, Empire, and the ill fated Nuclear Dawn.

Those games all lived and died by community buy in. If you played NS2 and had a team that did not use coms it was game over. Hell Let Loose will run into the same as those I think. If too many “casual” players start trying to play who do not want to communicate it ruins the experience. It also gets cliquesh fast where regulars know each other and squad/team up and steam role the competition.

There was even a Battlefield 2142 mod that tried to build on this by running a long term campaign where you signed up and were recruited by one of the two factions before being put in a company and then a squad. Each week there were battles that took place with territory being won and lost. I really wanted to get into it but I was a high school sophomore with a garbage microphone and parents who were weirded out by the idea that I was talking to random people some of which were much older than me so that didn’t last long. Not sure what happened to that mod but I remember thinking it was so incredibly cool at the time.

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I’d been rolling a list of now largely forgotten hardcore/milsim multiplayer only shooters back and forth between thumb and forefinger for about a week before I decided it would be too curmudgeonly and against the general spirit of this place to do so, or whatever.

Of course, nothing gold can stay. At some point I will play perennial single-player favorites like Disco Elysium and Sleeping Dogs for the last time in my life, and that is okay–but there is a necessary distinction between running the clock out on my own mortal coil and a mandatory buy-in for an entertainment medium with a necessary shelf-life. I will never get to play Lead and Gold: Gangs of the Old West again even though that game is lovely and satisfying and fun, simply because there’s no one else playing it, and there never will be again.

I’m reluctant to be too critical of Rob’s coverage, because if this is the first time he’s ever come to the subgenre, then fine–we all start somewhere (and God knows I’m no old hand)–but it makes me sort of wonder who this pitch is for–or, alternatively, why the die has been cast for Hell Let Loose and not for, say, Verdun, Red Orchestra, Red Orchestra 2, Red Orchestra 2: Rising Storm, or Rising Storm 2: Vietnam, or Tannenburg, or Squad, or Insurgency, or Insurgency: Sandstorm, or Beyond the Wire, or any other AA, multiplayer-only FPS that lives and dies by token of coordination, voice chat, and a well-populated playerbase.

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