Top Critic Average
With noble intentions but scrappy delivery, Verdun is a bit of a mess.
Its goals are noble enough, but this low tech shooter takes its realism too seriously – as the drudgery and unfairness of trench warfare is made all too real.
Verdun brings multiplayer shooting to World War I in all its glory, as well as the frequent boredom.
Verdun’s goal is an admirable one, to capture the feel of warfare on the Western Front, on occasions it manages to do that and be fun. The rest of the time, it’s an unintuitive slog. It might be a better game on PC, but on PlayStation 4, it’s almost certainly not going to be this year’s most fun or engaging WWI shooter.
A brave attempt at creating a more thoughtful shooter hindered by poor execution and messy technique.
It’s realistic, historically accurate and sometimes satisfying gameplay can’t make up for the fact that the game’s community is almost non-existent, gameplay is riddled with technical issues and the lack of a proper tutorial can make the game downright frustrating.
Rampant server issues, poor performance, badly designed UI and a non-existent player base have crippled what should have been a really interesting change of pace for console shooters. Verdun may improve with time, but as it stands, is an absolute mess.
Much like The Great War itself, Verdun is rough, grim and wholly unforgiving. A perpetual lesson in patience and poise which decisively punishes fools but rewards frugal armchair tacticians, Verdun makes the player work in every way that a good shooter should. Emboldened by an impassioned take on one of history’s more overlooked conflicts, Verdun’s rough appearance is not enough to detract from one of the finest shooters on PS4.
Despite that problem, and the overall roughness of Verdun, I still find myself enjoying it. I can’t stand to play it for more than an hour or two per night due to the default match length currently being thirty-minutes. Sometimes it can be a very boring or frustrating game — one where I die much more often than not and barely get to engage with the enemy. Other times I can pull off a long distance shot to take down an enemy or make it through the enemy trench unscathed. Those moments are great, but it doesn’t make the lack of a large player count or the lack of teaching its mechanics any easier to deal with. Verdun is at its core a good game, but one that is hard to recommend beyond a niche audience who enjoy punishing and somewhat accurate World War I shooters.
I wasn’t able to find many full matches in Verdun, but when I did I actually had a pretty good time. It’s too bad that most of my play time was spent in matches with three or four people, not 32. Nobody is playing this game because it’s a technical mess, and I can’t recommend it to anyone due to that. If you want to play Verdun, then pick it up on PC. Sadly, the PlayStation 4 version is an inferior version that launched dead on arrival.