Inversion's main mechanic is the ability to manipulate pockets of gravity. We've touched on Inversion's story, but my latest look focuses on multiplayer. Utilizing its gravity mechanic, Inversion's multiplayer tries to shake up standard game types.
Inversion Video Preview
With a tool called the Grav-Link on your arm, gravity takes center stage in multiplayer matches. This gun works a little bit like the Leash in Bulletstorm , but can switch between high and low gravity modes. Low gravity floats enemies into the sky, while high gravity pins them to the floor. In simple operation, gravity bursts actually feel more like a stun gun. Whether you're using the high gravity or low gravity functions of the Grav-Link, it stuns your opponent before allowing them to fire back at you from their raised or lowered position.
Despite the gravity aspect, the multiplayer modes don't stray far from their roots. Head into a game lobby and you'll wait on deathmatch, capture point, or survival matches. But once you start manipulating physics, gameplay takes a turn for the original.
With the goals remaining the same, it's execution that attempts to set Hourglass (capture point) and Survival apart from other games. When a team conquers the point of contention in an hourglass map, the world flips upside down to indicate ownership. But with a single point to capture, the tug-of-war balance feels like someone screams "charge!" and everyone rushes to the same point until the world turns over. The back and forth flow of gameplay grew stale quickly. I only played a four on four game on a small map, so the final game's 16 player matches might shake up that feeling.
Playing deathmatch on a map called Plaza, gravity gained another level of importance. Floating rocks populate the airspace of the map's center, and by leaping off of green launch pads, players can float between the rocks, hide behind cover, and shoot down on enemies. While unique, this center airspace is a shooting gallery and hanging around here is a poor strategy unless you're role-playing a bullet sponge.
Low gravity's ability to float and shoot debris turned into a killer tactic. Barrels and bodies turn into bullets when flung through the air at an enemy and kill targets in a single shot. It's a lot like Half-Life 2's gravity gun. The standard guns play a lot like any ol' shooter, but the gravity breathes some fresh life into the fight. Floating someone into the air, then slamming them into the ground is a great combo to toy with.
Inversion still has a long way to go before releasing on February 7, but getting some extensive time with the multiplayer shed some positive light on the game. It pulls inspiration from a plethora of sources, from Gears of War to Dead Space, but the current build of the game still looks good – despite the lack of its protagonist's personality.