Previously our managing editor here at Mech*Spectrum composed some insightful overviews of three of the initial titans included in the very first round of Battle of Titans (BoT) beta testing. If you’d like to learn more about them you can read his breakdown on the Little Shon, Ravager, or Tirpitz from our archives. If you’ve been following the development of BoT you will notice that the game’s two other medium chassis, Nelly, the unique six legged climbing titan and the brutish and heavily armed M.A.O. are still awaiting their own articles. As much as they each warrant a closer look, they’ll have to wait a bit longer. With some significant changes and the addition of two new light titans in the recently announced second beta build I couldn’t resist covering one of the newest additions in our continuation of BoT titan profiles.
Having been fortunate enough to participate in the BoT beta thus far I’ve had a great time playing with both the new titans. Since the Mite has already received a little extra attention on MECH*SPECTRUM I decided to give some love to the overlooked and somewhat ironically named Bully.
I’m increasingly hesitant to draw comparisons between BoT and War Robots as both games are obviously trying to capture different and unique gaming experiences. It should be noted that several of the key creative minds who were part of the initial War Robots team are now leading the development of BoT, so some sense of familiarity is to be expected. With that knowledge it seems reasonable that any gamer familiar with War Robots will likely first compare Bully to the Schutze. Both are designated as light chassis and have a single weapon mount designated as heavy. I don’t think that it can be stated clearly enough that their similarities end there.
Bully, like all of BoT’s Light titans so far is equipped with a light “backpack” mount and comes standard with a close range EMP device that can immobilize enemy titans for brief periods. Currently the EMP, called Fulgur is the only available piece of equipment for light backpack mounts. This will doubtlessly change as new content is added and one can’t help but speculate what types of special abilities might eventually be available to assign to BoT’s collection of Titans.
Since there is no benefit to playing without the Fulgur, the Bully has two options at the moment. Those options are the games two current heavy weapons, the Hammer, and the Sarisa. The later comes as standard equipment on a newly purchased Bully. Both weapons are powerful at medium ranges, but for use on the Bully’s light frame the Sarisa stands out as the obvious choice.
The Hammer has a significantly shorter reload time than the Sarisa but it is challenging to utilize on Bully, which is not suited to maintaining a prolonged direct attack in which it will likely receive counter fire. Hammer is better suited on tougher titans that can go toe to toe with opponents.
Bully does have a natural synergy with the Sarisa launcher. The titan’s special ability, (yet another point of distinction between it and Schutze) is a rapid sprint with a moderate cool down period. Using Bully’s sprint to maneuver in and out of concealment to alternatively reload and discharge Sarisa rockets is a great way to not only harass enemy titans with painful barrages, but also keep the little guy alive! Keeping in mind that BoT requires line of sight for targeting (a player can target enemies that their team sees with indirect weapons even if they can’t see them independently) a small profile and high maneuverability make an enemy Bully difficult to keep track of on the battlefield.
If you value maneuverability and enjoy guerrilla tactics you’ll have a lot of fun with Bully. My gaming style is typically one that relies on high damage and high hit point archetypes but I had a great deal of fun playing with this little guy over the last week. One aspect of the titan that was really enjoyable for me was how natural and immersive the running mechanics felt. I’ve seen a number of comments on social media wondering about the merits of BoT’s walking mechanics. All I can say is that experiencing them yourself should answer any questions and that each titan feels like you would expect them to in reality. That can make maneuvering your titan a challenge sometimes, but it significantly added to the experience to me.
Keeping in mind that the current BoT scoring system accounts for team points toward victory in the same manner that it limits and balances a player’s squad choices, Bully should have a worthwhile place in players squads regardless of their level of competition. A BoT squad is limited to six squad slots and each Titan occupies a set amount of slots. Light Titans take up one space, Medium Titans two and Heavy Titans take up a sobering three squad slots. When I first saw this system I was skeptical but it seems to be working very well so far.
There is a real difference between each class of titan in terms of combat role as well as attribute values. The towering and heavily armored Tirpitz is a significant investment in squad slots, but it’s so hard to kill it warrants consideration. Light Titans on the other hand don’t require such a steep wager in squad slots and if a player is skilled or lucky enough to kill even one opposing medium titan before losing his own light chassis he has moved his team a net value of one point closer to victory.
I’m glad to see that the BoT system seems so well thought out and am optimistic that diverse squad choices will remain viable and fun. That is good news for Bully as well as players who like to experiment and and spice things up. Please follow us and check back soon for more on Battle of Titans. Next week I’ll be be taking a look at M.A.O. and how it performs and fits into a squad.