Iron Marines : First Impressions

A new Sci-Fi adventure! Mechas included.

Iron Marines : First Impressions

by Lekku » Wed May 18, 2016 1:38 pm

Hey everyone,

I was lucky enough to be able to play Iron Marines a couple of times at PAX East and had an absolute blast. I was curious if there were other people here on the forum who had a chance to play as well. I know I really enjoyed my time with the game but wanted to start a conversation on what we have seen so far.

I played four levels total in the time that I had a PAX. The first three levels that were available and then the last where you had to find an alien ambassador and then return them to an extraction point. The gameplay was fast, especially in the later levels where you had to try and monitor multiple bases/paths that the enemy could come from. I found it was manageable but you certainly had to keep moving the camera just to check on things. It would be great if there was some kind of warning or notification that something is being attacked offscreen and indicate where. That was my one criticism of the current build that I was on. Maybe there is something too and I missed it, there was a lot going on and only so much time to spend with it, plus it was super hard to hear.

I loved just about everything else in there, the same art style and humour that can be found in Kingdom Rush was present. I even found an easter egg referencing Star Trek in the escort mission I played where there was a klingon up in the map and if you tapped on them they hit their comm and were teleported away! :)

Anyone else spend any time with the game, or have any questions for me about what I played? I was already pretty pumped about the game, but after playing it I am so excited and keep checking to see if there is anything new posted about it. It is going to be hard to wait as long as it will take for the game to come out.
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Re: Iron Marines : First Impressions

by Big Bad Bug » Wed May 18, 2016 10:58 pm

Welcome to the forums Lekku. :D You're lucky! I wasn't able to play the game, and no other member here has, either, to my knowledge. So, you're the first. ;)

So, all of the levels were escort missions? How much control did you have over the alien embassador? Did you have lots of options to buy things in the levels? Also, what can you tell me about heroes?
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Re: Iron Marines : First Impressions

by FeedDaKingdom » Thu May 19, 2016 12:29 am

i noticed an exclamation mark warning on the edge of the screen from the GDC footage when your units get under attack.
Image
What are the first 3 missions like?
also what does the units sound like (what do they talk)?
also for some reason i want to know if you use the orbital strike or mortar strike (the stuff on the bottom right), can you damage friendlies with them?
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Re: Iron Marines : First Impressions

by Lekku » Thu May 19, 2016 12:50 pm

Thanks for the welcome.

Big Bad Bug wrote:So, all of the levels were escort missions? How much control did you have over the alien embassador? Did you have lots of options to buy things in the levels? Also, what can you tell me about heroes?


Only the last mission I played was escort. The others were all your typical RTS style missions where you attack a base, defend a base, or work your way to an objective (and combinations).

Once you found the ambassador you had full control over their movements. They didn't have any offensive capabilities but you could direct them around just like other troops, which was really nice. Still allowed for the strategy and pace that you wanted to move at, so it wasn't like following someone on a set path and trying to save them from the crazy stuff they tried to walk through like you see in some other games escort style missions.

For buying things in the levels you had a few different options. Your base had a few options to choose from, adding turrets, increased radar range, and a shield for the buildings. The turrets build in preset locations so that was nice cause you didn't have to worry about having one in a useless spot, the areas they were in always seemed appropriate. The radar increased the area that was removed from the fog of war, and the shield added some protection for your buildings. The turrets had a couple of options for a machine gun or a long range missile that you could add. Both were very effective. For units there were marines, snipers, two kinds of mechs and an some alien ninjas in one mission. That was all that I saw, although there were some options that hadn't been unlocked yet. You can change your marine types between sniper and marine on the fly too which was very cool. You are limited in the number of squads you can have by the number above resources on the top left, so it was nice to be able to switch when needed. The squads functioned similarly to barracks from Kingdom Rush too in that if one marine died, you would be down a man for a bit then he would teleport back in with the group. If they all died though you would have to build a whole new squad in the base.

There were three heroes available in the version I played, but I only got to use two. The first was a bulked up marine. He had a rapid fire power and a shield that you could use to protect yourself. He was versatile but didn't stand out too much from the standard fair of troops. Just a stronger more resilient soldier. The other I tried was the girl from the GDC video, so the one in the mechanized suit. She had some missiles and could spin and damage the area around her. Both were fun and felt powerful and were the heart of the army as I moved them around for sure. Unfortunately I didn't try the last hero that was available.

One neat feature of the heroes compared to Kingdom Rush was that there was a button just above the profile pic that allowed you to teleport anywhere on the map. So you could move from one side to the other with your hero very quickly, or jump back to protect a base etc. It felt really great and allowed for some neat plays where you could jump between squads. I believe it was one tap to teleport up, then select where you wanted to come down. Was a lot of fun.

FeedDaKingdom wrote:i noticed an exclamation mark warning on the edge of the screen from the GDC footage when your units get under attack.


It seemed like an obvious thing to leave out, so I figured I must have just missed it in my excitement and trying to take everything in.

FeedDaKingdom wrote:What are the first 3 missions like?
also what does the units sound like (what do they talk)?
also for some reason i want to know if you use the orbital strike or mortar strike (the stuff on the bottom right), can you damage friendlies with them?


The first few missions were a lot of fun. The first has you start off in a small base and you build some marines and go out to support the hero marine. Once you clear the enemies around him you then push forward to destroy an alien base.

You know it might have been three total that I played cause I can't remember a specific set of objectives for the second mission. I know one of the other missions I played though you started in a base and had to take over two other alien bases around the map. Then you had to defend all of those bases for a couple of minutes as the aliens made a push to try and take them back. That one was neat because you were dealing with the defence of three separate locations at once and had to be aware of where the pushes were coming from.

Unfortunately I can't comment a lot on the sound as the floor of PAX was very loud so it was hard to hear the sounds from the game even with the volume all the way up.

From what I remember the items in the bottom right won't harm your own units. I believe I dropped one on my own guys at one point when they were being swarmed but I'm not 100% certain that they were in the blast either. The item on the far left of that bar though, the turret was very cool. It was just on a cooldown so you can use it over and over and it would drop a stationary turret wherever you want on the map (on the playable space anyway). So it was great when you needed a little extra support or wanted to distract some units as you made your approach etc.

I think I answered all the questions, let me know if any of this prompts any more. Just talking about it like this gets me so excited to play it again. I can't wait!
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Re: Iron Marines : First Impressions

by FeedDaKingdom » Thu May 19, 2016 1:47 pm

Did you fail any missions (or just feel like its really difficult so you get stuck) ?
altho this could not be always true since ironhide can just change the stats for the units.
Also about the stuff on the bottom right, do you buy them in between missions, or do you get provided with a limited amount each mission? if you buy them in between missions then what kind of currency you use?
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Re: Iron Marines : First Impressions

by Lekku » Thu May 19, 2016 2:18 pm

FeedDaKingdom wrote:Did you fail any missions (or just feel like its really difficult so you get stuck) ?


I believe the first time I played the mission where you have to take over the bases and then defend I failed. That was likely due to having conversations with the team at the time though as my second run where I focused more I didn't have a hard time with it at all.

The escort mission I came very close to losing twice when I played it. Once I almost got overrun by enemies and then at the end a meteor storm came down and took out everyone but the ambassador, but the meteor at least was because I wasn't paying attention to the warnings happening in game. I still completed the mission but only got one star.

The difficulty wasn't huge for sure and I think if I played those levels again I would do much better, but they were also from essentially the beginning of the game. There was some challenges for sure and it wasn't a cake walk so I left feeling like it was similar to Kingdom Rush in that some of the levels will offer a real challenge.

FeedDaKingdom wrote:Also about the stuff on the bottom right, do you buy them in between missions, or do you get provided with a limited amount each mission? if you buy them in between missions then what kind of currency you use?


In the version I played I always seemed to have one major missle strike, several small strikes, and a few resource cubes to top up what I could spend so I'm not sure the mechanism to buy them was in place. If it was I didn't get into that system at all and just went from mission to mission. I asked if they were similar to the items you can get in Kingdom Rush with crystals and they said yes, but I don't know if that was just a generalization on their part to make it kind of familiar or if it will actually be the same.
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Re: Iron Marines : First Impressions

by Oof_Shunt » Thu May 19, 2016 2:58 pm

Cool! I can't wait either...is Sha'tra in it? Or I guess you only did some of the first levels
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Re: Iron Marines : First Impressions

by FeedDaKingdom » Thu May 19, 2016 3:12 pm

you said something about stars, so how do you earn more stars in a level?
In KR it just depends on the amount of lives you have left but obviously you cant do that in an RTS.
Does it have something to do with amount of units you lose, or maybe you need to do a secondary objective?
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Re: Iron Marines : First Impressions

by Juice Box » Thu May 19, 2016 3:23 pm

What could you say about the enemy units? Were they cool or anything? How many types were there and what abilities did they have?

Ironhide once said something about the game having troop diversity, sometimes a marine would be male or sometimes it woule be female, etc. Did they follow through on that? And did the unit's voice change accordingly?
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Re: Iron Marines : First Impressions

by Lekku » Thu May 19, 2016 3:30 pm

Oof_Shunt wrote:is Sha'tra in it?


I didn't see anything that indicated that they were, but like you said it seemed to just be early levels and lots of things still had locks on them so it could still happen.

FeedDaKingdom wrote:you said something about stars, so how do you earn more stars in a level?


As I was walking away this was a question that I thought of, but didn't think of it in the moment while playing. I did lose a lot of units in that mission so that was my thought, that the number of units (or probably more whole squads) you lose would be a factor in the final star count that you get. Objectives would likely contribute there as well.


Some other random things that I thought of that I could mention.

You could double tap to bring up a circle on the map that allowed you to select all the units in that area. It was large enough that I never had any issues fitting everyone into it if needed.

The map could be zoomed in and out with pinches that allowed you to change how much of the field you could see.

The squad limit (above resources in the screenshots) could be increased by finding items on the map that you had to stand in for a certain amount of time to activate. Similar to building a new base where you have to fill up a meter before something happens.
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Re: Iron Marines : First Impressions

by Lekku » Thu May 19, 2016 3:39 pm

Juice Box wrote:What could you say about the enemy units? Were they cool or anything? How many types were there and what abilities did they have?


There were several types of enemies that I saw over the few levels that I played. There were alien soldier type enemies that seemed to be your usual cannon fodder type stuff and would just rush in. There were some larger more armoured versions of those troops as well in the final mission I played. There were a few different types of jelly fish type enemies as well small and larger ones that would float towards you. There were also some large and small worms that were tougher to take down and seemed like they would really cause some trouble if they got to you.

The enemy bases also had turret type encampments that were really tough and would take a lot of effort to take down, if you damaged one enough it would retreat into the ground but would come back, so you had to take out the structure it was linked to to really make them go away. That was a neat mechanic and forced you to be offensive and get close as you couldn't guarantee your safety for long.

Juice Box wrote:Ironhide once said something about the game having troop diversity, sometimes a marine would be male or sometimes it woule be female, etc. Did they follow through on that? And did the unit's voice change accordingly?


I didn't notice the diversity of the troops to be honest but it wasn't something I was paying too much attention to. I couldn't hear as well as I would have liked so I wasn't able to make out if there were voice lines and what they sounded like either unfortunately.
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Re: Iron Marines : First Impressions

by FeedDaKingdom » Thu May 19, 2016 4:20 pm

what are the global upgrades in Iron marines like? (the ones you purchase with stars)
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Re: Iron Marines : First Impressions

by Lekku » Thu May 19, 2016 4:55 pm

FeedDaKingdom wrote:what are the global upgrades in Iron marines like? (the ones you purchase with stars)


Unfortunately I didn't get to see any of those options (if they are there). There was a menu but I didn't spend a lot of time on it, I mostly just got down to playing the levels I could.
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Re: Iron Marines : First Impressions

by Juice Box » Thu May 19, 2016 6:03 pm

The way you describe it makes it seem really interesting, I'm all the more excited for its release now :b .

Does the game use armor the same way KR does? Or does it do something else entirely?
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Re: Iron Marines : First Impressions

by Lekku » Thu May 19, 2016 6:43 pm

Juice Box wrote:The way you describe it makes it seem really interesting, I'm all the more excited for its release now :b .


Me too. I was excited about what I had seen before PAX, but after playing it for the small amount that I did I really am so excited to get my hands on the final product. I felt comfortable with it right away where the art was similar to Kingdom Rush, and the control/hero mechanics are very similar, but it also had so many new things that I just want to really spend some time with it to figure it all out.

Juice Box wrote:Does the game use armor the same way KR does? Or does it do something else entirely?


This is more or less another of the questions I thought of after I had already left the booth. I wasn't paying that close attention to the damage that I was doing to each of the enemies as it was all new so I was just focused on getting to the objective etc, but there were a few different potential damage types in that you had the melee swords of the alien ninjas, bullets from soldiers, missles from turrets etc, and fire from one of of the mech types. So there seemed to be the basis for the same type of damage system that we see in Kingdom Rush and I meant to ask about certain enemies being weak to the different types etc but never got to it. In the levels I played there wasn't anything that stood out, but I was trying to mix things up and have a balance of the different units to try them all so it might not have stood out as much as if I just did all marines or something like that.
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Re: Iron Marines : First Impressions

by Big Bad Bug » Thu May 19, 2016 11:57 pm

So, you know that there was a third hero. What did he/she/it/they(?) look like? Also, when selecting heroes, what information was shown about them, such as abilities, stats, upgrades, and the like?

Thanks for all of these detailed, helpful responses. ;)
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Re: Iron Marines : First Impressions

by Lekku » Fri May 20, 2016 12:35 pm

Big Bad Bug wrote:So, you know that there was a third hero. What did he/she/it/they(?) look like? Also, when selecting heroes, what information was shown about them, such as abilities, stats, upgrades, and the like?


I really should have made this post right after I got home from PAX cause I am getting a bit fuzzy on some of the details I feel. To be honest I can't remember much about the other hero as I didn't have a chance to use them. I believe it was another human, so nothing alien or anything like that, but other than that I don't remember much about the character. I even asked my wife who was with me and she couldn't remember either unfortunately.

I don't remember seeing specific stats or details on the possible upgrades for the hero so I don't know if they just weren't available in the build that I played or I just glossed over them when getting setup to play.

Now that I think about it though I didn't notice the hero gaining any experience or anything like that so it likely just wasn't an option in the build.

Big Bad Bug wrote:Thanks for all of these detailed, helpful responses.


No problem. I'm doing the best I can. :) I'm just glad I have some other people to talk to about the game cause I have been thinking about it a lot!
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Re: Iron Marines : First Impressions

by FeedDaKingdom » Fri May 20, 2016 1:29 pm

Does your units regain health on their own, or is there some sort of healer unit in game?
also are you always limited to 2 squads of marines, what happens if one of the 3 marines in a squad die? do you get to reinforce the squad with a fresh marine?
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Re: Iron Marines : First Impressions

by Big Bad Bug » Fri May 20, 2016 1:37 pm

What an you tell us about the spells you had available? Also, did any units have special powers? Did any enemies have any?
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Re: Iron Marines : First Impressions

by Juice Box » Fri May 20, 2016 1:43 pm

FeedDaKingdom wrote:Does your units regain health on their own, or is there some sort of healer unit in game?
also are you always limited to 2 squads of marines, what happens if one of the 3 marines in a squad die? do you get to reinforce the squad with a fresh marine?


He said marines in the game work like Barracks in KR. If one of them dies another will come to replace him after a while, unless you lose all three.
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