When it comes to multiplayer shooters, most games “innovate” through level design, fun weapons, and game variations that go beyond the simple deathmatch or objective game modes. Double Action: Boogaloo is not one of those games.
The spiritual successor to The Specialists, a popular Half-Life mod originally released in 2002, Double Action is a third-person multiplayer shooter that has more in common with bullet-ballet action movies like The Matrix and stylish action-shooters like Max Payne than its traditional deathmatch brethren. Think slow-motion sideways dives around corners, firing two golden pistols as a flock of doves takes flight behind you.
Double Action: Boogaloo was created by Double Action Factory, a collection of modders including a few who originally built The Specialists. It’s been in development since 2011. Despite a failed $18,000 Kickstarter in mid-2013, the team forged ahead, and the free-to-play standalone multiplayer game launched on Steam last week.
Like Max Payne, the game features “bullet time,” which lets players slow time to nail precise shots. Players are awarded style points for landing shots while diving, flipping, sliding, and generally looking awesome, earning both precious seconds of slow-mo and points. (Matches are won by the most stylish player, not the one with the most kills.)