Amazon's free-to-play shooter 'Crucible' is now available on Steam

Yolanda Curtis
May 23, 2020

I had a chance to sit down with the game on PC ahead of its launch to see for myself, playing both with controller and keyboard and mouse.

Essence harvesters are scattered across Crucible's surface. This unusual force, once harnessed, dramatically changes all things around it.

So, this is not just Crucible but the Crucible, the moment of truth for Amazon's gaming ambitions.

The free-to-play team shooter from Amazon and developer Relentless Studios is available now on PCs via Valve's Steam platform, and a new launch trailer debuted today to hype up fans.

Heart of the Hive and Harvester Control are a bit unique in their approach. Every win, however small, helps your team level up, so you'll be rewarded as a whole. Capturing the hearts they leave behind as they die is your key to victory. Capture and hold certain points for Essence. The first is called "Heart of the Hives" and it sounds like an interesting take on PvPvE (player versus player versus environment).

Alpha Hunters: Eight teams of two take the battlefield and fight to be the final team standing.

I love the Alpha Hunters mode, especially its novel team-up mechanic.

Crucible is free-to-play for everyone from 20 May via Steam. This means players must be more tactically minded when it comes to engaging others. Avoiding them means not drawing attention, but killing these Essence-enhanced creatures means leveling up your personal character throughout the match and unlocking specialized perks for their loadout. "Both of the streamers played the game with "#ad" in their title, denoting they were being paid to play. It turns out Sazan is one of the hardest hunters to learn, purely because - just like League of Legends' Aphelios - she can cycle through multiple weapons during a game. "That's not a blanket statement, but the art style is a little more whimsical". There's no time for camping here, as you rush to level up as quickly as possible. There's fun to be had in discovering and specializing in a favorite character and unlocking character skins, player cards, and more cosmetics. You can grab the game on Steam here. Before a game starts, players then choose which upgrades that character will work through in the course of a match, giving a world of variation to how each character plays. I realize that Crucible isn't just another BR game, but that can be the bait that draws the player in. Time will tell, but we're atleast on board for the start on May 20. This is Amazon's first big-budget game since the creation of Amazon Game Studios back in 2012, and the company probably won't be able to avoid comparisons with Xbox Game Studios and PlayStation Studios titles.

Early response to the game are mixed, with Ars Technica giving it a lukewarm review, The Verge noting that Crucible "will find an audience that's been itching for this particular mashup of design ideas and genres in an accessible package", and Engadget praising its "surprisingly solid gameplay foundation".

Crucible is developed by Relentless Studios, a Seattle-based development team of Amazon Games led by Louis Castle, co-founder of Westwood Studios.

This preview is based on an early build of Crucible supplied by the publisher.

TJ Denzer is a player with a passion for games that has dominated a lifetime.

If you've been thinking "there aren't enough video games where I can team up with my friends and shoot some stuff", I have some good news for you!

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