Yesterday I reviewed AssaultCube, a realistic shooter game based upon the Cube engine, so today it’s time to have a look at Sauerbraten, another game in the series of games based on this engine. The version which I’m going to talk about is the latest available at the moment, “Justice Edition”.
Sauerbraten is the continuation of the original Cube game, which had its last release in 2005. Sauerbraten takes a different approach as opposed to AssaultCube, in that the environments in which the action takes place and the weapons are rather unrealistic.
Sauerbraten comes bundled with a huge number of maps which cover almost any environment possible: there are space maps, city maps, castle maps, all of them more or less realistic, with a high texture detail. The game features seven weapons: chainsaw, pistol, grenade launcher, rifle, rocket launcher, chaingun and shotgun.
The rocket launcher
Except for the single player and online multiplayer, there is also a series of campaigns. Although the AI is not very smart, the campaigns can produce a pretty good experience due to a high number of monsters that spawn on the map (the game includes 8 types of monsters).
The gameplay is somewhat different from the one found in AssaultCube, and so at the start of a round you get all the weapons, but you will have to pick up ammo packs to use them. Other items include the usual armor (100HP, absorbs 40% damage), heavy armor (200HP, absorbs 50% damage), quad powerup (damage four times bigger), health boost (which adds 10 HP which will last until the current map ends). Regarding modes, except for the usual DM, TDM and CTF, Sauerbraten introduces the so-called “Capture” mode, in which the goal is to capture and holding bases. In this mode the most time a team took hold of bases wins at the end of the game; if one team captures all the bases (which are initially neutral) it wins automatically. Holding a base gives ammo at certain amounts of time; capturing a base can be speed up if more players on the same team are within a certain radius of it.
A classic Instagib map
The background metal music is quite entertaining and, in combination with the highly paced rhythm of the game, produces a really dynamic gaming experience.
Regarding configuration, Sauerbraten is very rich. It runs in either fullscreen or windowed mode, offers many configurable graphics effects and it also includes an in-game editor for the autoexec.cfg file.
A weak point may be the fact that there are only four player models to choose from in multiplayer, and their look kind of lacks imagination.
Overall, I think Sauerbraten’s strong points are the fast pace, which makes you want to be always in motion, the detailed and very interesting maps, cool music, high playability level. All these ingredients make up a good action game on top of a great engine.