Twilight Warsis, surprisingly enough, a hardcore action game for Facebook
Twilight Wars is a Facebook-friendly take on simple multiplayer deathmatch gameplay. While this sort of game is popular in FPS format on consoles, Facebook’s platform calls for something a bit simpler and scaled down. Twilight Wars uses a top-down perspective, similar to the first two Grand Theft Auto games, and cartoony graphics that seem conceived with appeal to anime-loving kids and teenagers in mind. Twilight Wars does have a backstory, but it’s a mish-mash of manga-style post-apocalyptic clichés that’s much less interesting than the actual gameplay.
Since Twilight Wars runs on the Facebook platform, the real names of most players are displayed in-game. There is no in-game voice chat or text chat, but the top-down perspective makes these features far less necessary. Where multiplayer deathmatch console games often play host to some truly vile examples of online rudeness, Twilight Wars matches are entirely different. Players cooperated with others of their faction immediately in every multiplayer match played during the test period. Games were fast-paced, tactical, and generally satisfying.
Twilight Wars has players begin matches with a default pistol for ranged combat and a knife for melee combat, but players can usually gather up more powerful weapons as they move across the map. A lot of FPS staples appear here like shotguns, machine guns, and a powerful sniper rifle that can only be fired once before you need to reload it. Melee weapons include claws that make you move more quickly, a boomerang that offers a little bit of range, and a katana that reduces your movement speed but offers a wide hitbox.
In most multiplayer matches, you simply need to survive until only one faction’s players are left standing. You can respawn three times per match. The Royal Knights and Skydow Knights factions oppose each other, while the Third Force Mercenary faction opposes and is opposed by all others. The factions don’t differ substantially in gameplay terms, only in look and feel. If you don’t want to play online, there are single-player practice matches that help hone your skills and missions that you can eventually accept. Waits for online matches aren’t long so long as you’re on the US East server, but other servers are more thinly populated.
If Twilight Wars has any weaknesses, it’s the controls. It’s not that they are sluggish or unresponsive. On a gameplay level, the controls are unimpeachable. The problem is that the game seems to use PC keyboard controls exclusively. You move with WASD, aim with the mouse, swap weapons with Q, reload with R, etc. While controls like this are standard in 3D FPS, it feels a bit awkward given the game’s top-down perspective and fast-paced play. Twilight Wars seems to cry out for being played with a USB game pad, which doesn’t seem possible right now. On the other hand, if you can get used to the controls, it means Twilight Wars is one of the very few high-quality action games available on Facebook.