If you’re anything like me, first-person shooters tend to start blending together after a while. It seems as if most of them offer the same challenges, similar maps, shared weaponry, and so on. The aesthetics and selection may change, but the end experience usually ends up a strikingly familiar one. I admit that I still often have a good time with them, I’m just rarely surprised by any of the moving parts involved anymore.
Lemnis Gate is a different story. It takes the classic method of pitting two teams against each other in a variety of modes, but this time around there’s a catch. Each player breaks out several characters of their own but plays them in an increasingly complex turn-based mode that’s composed of raw action. Confused yet? Let me explain.
Time and Time Again
Lemnis Gate is defined by both its action-packed gameplay and the turns that it’s played in. Six game modes are on offer that keep the experience exciting even if you end up developing a preference for a specific set of them. To begin with, the 1v1 option is split into two choices: turn-based and simultaneous. Turn-based introduces one character at a time. The first player will complete the round with a character of their choice and once it’s done, the second player will bring their soldier of choice in.
This goes for six rounds each with progressively more individuals running around the battlefield but only one of them being controlled by a live player at the time; the rest are continuing to do what they had done while under the player’s control to the letter. On the other hand, simultaneous turns kick this up a notch by having both players introduce a character each round. This means not only are you duking it out with the specters of the other player’s actions, but they are also out there live as well which can lead to some of the intense firefights that you would expect in a multiplayer shooter.
Things get really spicy in Lemnis Gate when you step into the 2v2 realm as there are four available modes for this setup. Turn-based continues on with a singular player going live on the battlefield at a time that alternates around the circle. Teammate Play Together brings both teammates out at the same time so that each team impacts the field of battle without direct human competition.
This mode has the craziest swings in the game as two players can cause some serious havoc to a formerly winning team’s setup when they’re backing each other up. Enemy Play Together is similar to the simultaneous mode of 1v1 as one member of each team is sent out onto the field of battle. Finally, we come to chaos incarnate, the 2v2 simultaneous mode which has all players playing in every round.
I found every one of these modes to be a good time and each had its own merits. The enjoyability factor was further augmented by the variety of mission objectives that are on offer. These range from a straightforward battle of who can kill the most of the other team, to a capture the flag-like mode, to destroy/defend the objectives, but it’s important to note that in Lemnis Gate, nothing is permanent until it’s over; one moment you may have the highest kill total by far and in a single round your opponents picked off your run-and-gunner MVP two seconds in thereby entirely nullifying everything that they did after that point. It’s an experience that has extreme swings throughout the ride and there’s always a chance for an incredible comeback.
Toxin: The Gas Queen
Lemnis Gate‘s gameplay is defined by its cast of characters. Each one brings its own weaponry and tools to the fight and each player can access them for exactly one round each game. The gasmask-wearing Toxin is the first that we’ll discuss.
Toxin bursts onto the scene sporting her deadly tox cannon, a grenade-launcher-like weapon that serves to poison her enemies and leave blobs of harmful waste lying around the battlefield. She further enhanced her effectiveness via her throwable displacer which allows her to instantly teleport to its location wherever it makes contact.
I found Toxin to be particularly situational in her use. Her tox cannon can be useful for a light deterrent if you cake an area with its goo and her displacer gives her a serious boost of speed if needed. I often used her to rush on capture the flag maps, though she’s far from the best when it comes to direct combat as she’ll lose a fair one-on-one fight with most of the roster. She also does minimal damage when it comes to objectives so I found her particularly weak on attack/defend missions.
Striker: Let’s Mess With The Timeline More
Striker is the sniper of the team. His zero-drop rifle give him the accuracy and punch that’s needed to fulfill the role. As an added benefit, he has the unique ability to slow time to line up the perfect shot. This makes him fantastic in an anti-personnel role when you’re trying to take down a character who’s shown themselves to be a particularly dangerous threat to your victory.
As a sniping fan, Striker was one of my favorites on the roster. I used him to clean up in the later rounds so that I could off as many of my opponents’ soldiers and nullify their previous accomplishments. It’s important to note that his talent for wiping out enemies is his sole strength; he’s exceptionally weak when it comes to achieving most objectives on his own due to his weak damage output toward destruction targets and lack of any tools to enhance his mobility.
Vendetta: Engineer Reporting!
Vendetta is the classic engineer that gamers are familiar with. She wields a shotgun that does significant damage at close range while being effective against both enemies and objectives. Her turrets serve as excellent support firepower chipping away at enemy health while having the versatility to be set up either on the ground or in the air as immobile drones.
Engineers always offer some great support and assault capabilities and Vendetta is no different. She is absolutely fantastic at quickly taking down enemy characters that aren’t being controlled by an enemy and her drones can be rapidly built to harass your foes and give your allies an edge. Her range leaves a lot to be desired though, as a shotgun is still a shotgun and comes with the expected weaknesses.
Kapitan: Call of Duty in a Nutshell
Assault rifles and frag grenades are the brick and mortar that shooters are built upon and Kapitan embraces them fully. Her assault rifle offers rapid firepower that can quickly take down her targets while her grenades do significant area of effect damage that’s great against both bunched-up enemies and objectives.
Kapitan is the everyman, the infantryman, and the old faithful. She’s got a knack for putting things in your favor, lacking only a speed boost to get her from point A to point B, though she’s still no slowpoke. She’s well-rounded and useful in a variety of situations. Her only flaw is that as a jack-of-all-trades, there tends to be a character on the roster that’s better at achieving whatever specific goal you may be chasing at any given time.
Rush: Tracer, Is That You?
If you’re looking for raw speed, Rush is your man. With a pair of automatic pistols that can fire off a wild number of rounds in a short period of time, he can pump your enemies full of lead at a second’s notice. Even more notable is his kinect booster which allows him to bolt ahead at breakneck speeds. Yes, if you’ve played Overwatch, saying that he plays similarly to Tracer is an understatement.
I found Rush to be a great pick when you need him for one of two key reasons. First, he’s absolutely excellent at speeding across the battlefield and picking off an enemy before they’re able to do anything. Second, he is absolutely ridiculous when it comes to the capture the flag mode as he was reliably able to snag multiple objectives in his round while moving so quickly he wasn’t as easy to pick off.
Deathblow: Bringin’ the Boom!
Every team needs a heavy and in Lemnis Gate that heavy is our man Deathblow. He comes packing a rocket launcher that has incredible stopping power whether it’s decimating enemy personnel or objectives. He’s also equipped with handy proximity mines that will make short work of any foes unaware enough to step on one.
Deathblow was an ace in the hold fairly often for me. On objective destruction missions he’s the absolute best at blowing up enemy assets. At other times, he excels at one-shotting those that you want out of the picture and, although it’s not a sniper rifle by any means, his launcher can be surprisingly accurate once you get the hang of it.
KARL: Support Mech Activated
So you say you want a robot at your back with future tech, eh? KARL’s got you covered with his slow-burning laser rifle and his protection orbs that nullify attacks against allies and objectives. Though he’s most effective in a support role, any enemy that sits in that laser for too long is going to have a rough go of things.
In a title that requires your plan to go off without a hitch multiple times, KARL is a wild card that can subtly change fate itself. Though I found his precision beam to be a bit underwhelming compared to some of the other weapons being brought to the table, his shield was a game-changer under the right circumstances. I watched several games swing entirely in a player’s direction when a well-placed kill was ruined by a shield that made it so that the intended soldier didn’t die from whatever snipe or blast had originally offed them due to the shield eating it. I enjoyed him each time I used him, though I have to admit that he was the least played on the roster for me.
The Bottom Line
Lemnis Gate is an excellent round-based shooter with some exciting elements added in to spice up the genre. I had a reliable friend who I played with almost daily while I was getting a feel for it and both of us agreed that it was a blast without any big flaws that marred the experience. Well, no big flaws except for one… no one’s playing it. There were some nights where we were only able to play 1v1 due to the player base not being there.
Fortunately, there’s a Discord where you can reach out for games and you’ll usually get an answer, but it was disheartening to see a title with such potential seemingly being a hidden gem and not widely known. I’d recommend this game to anyone who enjoys shooters, especially if you’re looking for something new, but I’d be wary of the population if you’re going in solo.