Preview: With Its Closed Beta Period Over, Here Are Our Impressions of Arena Breakout: Infinite

The extraction shooter is a niche genre of first person shooters that seems to be gaining popularity with the hardcore shooter community. Even so, there hasn’t been one to break out into mass market appeal–despite games like Marathon and Exoborne hoping to achieve that status. Others, like Arena Breakout: Infinite are like variations and refinements of a proven formula.

Arena Breakout: Infinite touts its high degree of realism front and center. Graphically, it approaches that bar towards realism. Not so much from the gameplay—or at least that was our experience when we played the recently closed beta test. Arena Breakout: Infinite feels very much like the games that undoubtedly inspired it: Escape from Tarkov and Grey Zone Warfare. Both of these games are already extraction shooters that cater to the hardcore shooter demographic. A target Arena Breakout: Infinite seems to be trying to hit.

This puts Arena Breakout: Infinite in a place already crowded with competition by games with equally esoteric names and realistic settings. That means that Arena Breakout: Infinite has a real obligation to their player base to provide an above average experience if they want to stand out. And so far, Arena Breakout: Infinite has some pros and cons going for it.

Again, it's coming out of its first closed beta so any impressions are subject to change as this free to play shooter progresses in development before it hits the masses. 

In the closed beta there were two maps available for players: The Farm and The Valley. Each of these maps were competent, but somewhat sparse of cover and lacked any special characteristic to make one stand out from the other. 

As with any other extraction shooter, Arena Breakout: Infinite follows much of the same formula: you drop into a map, loot (while trying not to be looted) and get out. Arena Breakout: Infinite has a fair amount of guns with a good amount of customization. There are even some items that seemed ripped from Escape from Tarkov

Matchmaking was sparse in the last few weeks of the beta, and so that gave me a lot of time with the games’ AI. Unfortunately, in the closed beta, the AI  in Arena Breakout: Infinite was in a really rough shape. Most AI characters stood around not doing much most of the time.

When I was spawning into maps with other players, it seemed like spawn killing was rampant. It wasn’t too shocking to drop in just to be shot a few seconds later. Better spawn positions with more cover will definitely help with this.

While Arena Breakout: Infinite wants to say it's more realistic than its competitors, I can’t really agree with that assessment. Gunplay feels good, but not any more real than similar extraction shooters. In fact, long range gunplay felt a little broken, with my best experiences being in medium to short range engagements. It does have some great looking graphics, though.

Arena Breakout: Infinite is going to come out this year on Steam as a free to play game. Some early concerns I’ve seen from other previews and players is the speed in which you earn currency, making some fear this free to play title might become pay to win. Let’s hope that’s not true, because competition’s always a good thing, and Escape From Tarkov is about to have another capable extraction shooter to peel away players.

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Antal Bokor

Antal is video game advocate, retro game collector, and video game historian. He is also a small streamer, occasional podcast guest, and writer.