Lemnis Gate Review – Time Rewind Shenanigans
The new trend in gaming is screwing up over time. Lemnis Gate (a semi-goofy pun on lemniscate, the famous infinity symbol) is an online arena shooter with time loops. This game takes paradoxes of time and drives them down your throat, making its mix of 4D chess and noughts and crosses one of the unique online experiences. Our Lemnis Gate Review explains all of its intricacies
Each match has two halves, and each half consists of five 25-second rounds for each player. You can choose one of the seven heroes available for each round. Once your opponent starts their turn, the timeline becomes their playground, so they can aim for goals or try to stop you. If they choose the latter and manage to kill you, no worries, you can continue playing as a ghost. Make sure to eliminate your slayer on your next turn before they land the killing blow, so your dead character can revive on the next turn. Does this sound confusing?
Who needs a tutorial? (I do!)
Despite all its ingenuity, the principle of Lemnis Gate is a complex concept to explain. The lackluster tutorial would make the folks at Paradox Interactive gasp with envy. There is no story, no elaborate explanation or context for the setting and the game modes of the game. The game as a whole would benefit from some context (for example, as in Warframe) so that ‘it feels more organic. Nonetheless, once you’ve given it some time and won your first trick, the magic of Lemnis Gate will kick in. The upward spiral learning curve is indeed difficult but not impossible.
For each match, you have seven heroes. The generic group is: Kapitan, your ordinary soldier with a rifle and grenades; Toxin, masked poison dispenser with all-axis teleportation; Vendetta, an engineer armed with a shotgun who can place turrets on the map; Striker, the sniper with a time slowing ability; Deathblow, a rocket launcher with land mines; Karl, a robot who can deploy shields and fire a beam weapon, and finally Rush, who plays and looks like a child of Tracer and Julio from Overwatch. In addition to your generic team of agents, you have a reconnaissance drone at your disposal so you can scan the map between turns for a strategic advantage. Each turn offers a chance to deploy one of these seven heroes. You can deploy each hero once per half of a match.
The game modes are what we all expect from a game like this – Deathmatch, Attack / Defend, Domination and the inevitable grab something and bring it back to basics. Even without countless challenging modes, the amount of fun you can have here is potentially plentiful. All modes can be played turn-based or simultaneously. When you choose a simultaneous match, you and your opponents will deploy heroes simultaneously in each loop. The turn-based mode allows you to play your respective turns one by one, but it’s still the same loop. Think of it like multitrack and overdub in a music studio. As you might expect, simultaneous mode promotes faster FPS reflexes, and turn-based will be a tactician’s dream.
When you start playing, you will quickly be amazed at how simple and effective the principle is in practice. Complex on paper, hard to explain, but works like a charm. Soon you will be strategizing on the best way to ruin the opponent’s efforts as quickly as possible. In terms of OP tactics, let’s just say it’s good to save the sniper until a later round (say, the penultimate 4th) so you can turn the tide towards the end.
There is also leveling up in the game, but progression seems to have little to no effect on gameplay. Some of the skill trees are purely cosmetic. Others bring you new weapons. Not great, not great. However, the game values your intelligence, and it might be a little too hard to tell you that. Its fundamental value is also its most important potential weakness. Playing 4D chess with FPS mechanics isn’t everyone’s cup of tea. This is one explanation for the critical lack of players – you will be spending almost as much time in matches as in queues. Cross-play is an option between Xbox and PC, and it certainly helps (as does the inclusion of Game Pass), but the game still needs a significant influx of players to become viable in the long term.
Visually bland, but looks aren’t everything
Even though Lemnis Gate isn’t a visual stylistic / design masterpiece like Overwatch, it doesn’t have any major visual flaws. It can seem a bit bland at times and the maps can be a bit more diverse, but this is the beginning of an online game’s life cycle, so a little patience is needed. The textures and models are all fun to watch, but the game unfortunately suffers from some technical calamities. More than often, you will find that leaving the menu means crashing. Sometimes Lemnis Game fails to load etc. These issues need to be resolved quickly.
As a brave and revolutionary concept ahead of its time (oh, snap!), Lemnis Gate deserves your attention, but it also deserves the attention of its developers, who should be on this game 24/7. The core concept of Lemnis Gate is downright awesome, the firing mechanics are more than decent, so there is hope for some longevity. But the other outcome is also entirely possible, and unfortunately there is no turning back to the oversaturated and over-competitive multiplayer market.
- The concept of a time loop is downright amazing.
- There is a huge possibility for tons of different tactics.
- It is one of the funniest online games out there.
- No story / context.
- Some technical bugs.
- Not enough players, causing long queues.