Islands of Nyne: Battle Royale was launched in a closed-alpha state into Steam’s Early Access program in July this year. Developed by Define Human Studios, Islands of Nyne’s price is at $24.99 on Windows 10. Some of its gameplay features deviate from what we have come to experience in first-person shooter battle royale games.
Islands of Nyne – Setting
The arena is a medley of futuristic architecture, huts, Roman Colosseums and pirate ships. A mysterious, time-traveling alien race has chosen 50 players to fight each other to their death until there is one man standing. The three battlefield arenas keep shrinking with a drop in the number of players, and the completion time for each match is a maximum of 30 minutes.
Islands of Nyne – Gameplay
Players start in a pre-game lobby where they participate in a deathmatch and get the opportunity to practice using the game’s weapons. You must eliminate two players with a pistol to progress to the next weapon. Players are thrown into the arena when the lobby is full or the game countdown force-starts the match.
In all, Islands of Nyne has five game modes: a solo battle, 25 pairs of two, squads, the aforementioned gun game during the warm-up, and a training room with a virtual shooting range, target dummies and a recoil pattern wall.
Unlike PUBG, you don’t descend from a parachute – you just dive from the sky onto land in style on one knee, fist on the ground. Here’s where you notice the first difference from existing games: you don’t learn about the safety zone after landing. There is a safety zone but it is small and you will jostle for space. But you also have the option to steer your sky diver quickly to land at almost half of the map. You can look up to glide further and cover bigger distances or look straight down to drop exactly below where you are falling.
Weapons and Armor
Islands of Nyne doesn’t offer anything radically new in terms of weapons. There are military-grade snipers, pistols, semi or full automatics and shotguns. However, bullets contain a powder that send trails across the sky. You can look forward to more weapons, two more maps and a number of other features in the near future.
There are armors for the head, chest, arms and legs and another category that you can use as a shield. While the options are likely to be tweaked, they can currently be chosen tactically. For instance, one helmet option turns it into a compass to guide you to safe zones while the medieval option enhances protection.
If you were expecting realistic combat movements, you will be disappointed. Islands of Nyne has arcade-style movements but the serious first-player shooter experience remains intact. It will test your skills and accuracy, requiring you to move agilely and fluidly. You can bunny-hop – which many FPS battle royale games miss out on – and this movement is important to gameplay because it is tougher to get a perfect hit when the target has the ability to jump up during their forward movement.
Good marksmanship is critical to moving forward and avoiding hits. If you haven’t played many FPS games, more skilled players could get the better of you.
The closed alpha state is enjoyable and challenging. Tweaks and new additions are likely to produce a more interesting and well-rounded game. Islands of Nyne’s PS4 release date is not yet announced so keep your eyes peeled for the latest news from Define Human Studios.