So far, all things considered, the beta has been pretty fun. Gunplay is great, smoother and much improved over Insurgency, and the new reload mechanics are much needed. There are, however, some problems that definitely need rectifying before launch.
The first on this list is definitely the most annoying. When holding W and walking into pretty much any surface, your character will suddenly start sliding as if they're on ice. I have died a couple of times because I couldn't jump into a window because my character would literally slide off of the boxes i'm standing on, or because I didn't time a jump right or something of the sort. I've only really had this problem with windows in particular.
Suggestion to fix: Maybe add more friction to walls window sills, and boxes when your character is literally hugging them and sprinting into them.
This was never really an issue in Insurgency. When walking into a window, you would sort of grip to the wall and jumping into the window was made very easy. Doing this in overkill would probably suck, especially for doorways, so maybe a middle-ground somewhere would be good to find.
Another annoyance. The automatic bipod system, in particular. I don't have a problem with it deploying automatically when you go prone, however I have literally been killed multiple times because the bipod auto-deploys on a railing or window. What usually happens is I see someone's head poking through the railing, I move up to get a better shot through the railing, and then my character snaps onto the railing, leaving my entire body completely exposed and me unable to depress my gun enough to hit the guy I was trying to kill to begin with. On the one industrial map, with outdoor silos and tons of indoor walkways, the autodeploy feature is a literal killer. I must admit though, the auto deployment system does have some good upsides. It allows for quick, easy, and seamless transition in and out of MG positions and never interrupts actual gameplay. However, I personally think this would be a small price to pay for being able to have more control over when and where I put my bipod.
Suggestion: Add the ability to toggle on/off manual or automatic bipod deployment, and maybe to something in between the two, sort of what like Insurgency has, where if you go prone, the bipod autodeploys, but otherwise it requires manual deployment. I think this would pretty much fix the issue by letting people pick what suits them best.
EDIT: Manual deployment is an option in the settings, however I still stand by my suggestion of adding the option for a system similar to that in Insurgency, with auto-deployment while prone and manual deployment while crouching or standing.
- This issue is a bit of a more serious one. For every single co-op map I've played, the spawns have been, well, very messy. Every time I spawn in there is a minimum of one AI who is either behind the spawn or next to it. If I don't die instantly after spawning, I die seconds later because well, the AI camping our spawn decided to wait a couple seconds before firing. This hasn't happened every match I've been in, but I've noticed the less people who were alive during a capture/defend objective means that, well, they kill fewer AI and that leaves significantly more AI in the area around the objective itself which is often a spawn. What I've not really been able to wrap my head around, though, is why we spawn in the objectives themselves. The maps are more open in Sandstorm than in the original insurgency, and having people spawn on objectives usually meant they never had to worry about AI behind them or five feet infront of them. A great example if this, honestly, is Tell. Numerous objectives on Tell have iron gates barring the flanks, and this leaves the AI to only come from really two areas, front and back, but back would require the AI to somehow move from one end of the map to the other and if you know Tell, well, it's a long trip and actual people get super confused and lost half the time. This means that people can usually spawn in objectives without any real issue of AI sitting in the spawn. To be fair, it still happened ocassionally but this was the mostly the exception, and it was usually due to AI entering the objective half a second before it ticked, or a last-man-standing scenario.
In Sandstorm, however, maps seem to be more open and objectives are attacked from pretty much all directions or at least most directions. This is great, gameplay wise, as it offers more challenge whenever you're defending an objective but it sucks when you spawn inside of the objective or close to one and you get destroyed from the rear or side by an enemy M249 gunner or rifleman or something. I one of the games I played literally three people were killed not five seconds after spawning because an AI was in a window not ten feet from our spawn. It nearly killed me as well but i was able to gun him down before he annihilated the rest of our team. This combined with the next issue can be pretty frustrating at times.
Suggestion: Separate co-op maps like how they are separated in Insurgency, with extra barriers to chop up the map and turn it into what they were in Insurgency, more long, spindly maps consisting of one or maybe two pathways that snake along the map and objectives scattered throughout.
Or, move the spawns further back. Where, exactly? Well, even with some spawns that are distanced from the objective a bit, I've still been killed by AI close to the spawn. But I don't think I've ever seen AI at whatever the team's previous objective was. Why not move the teams to a spawn closer to that? It doesn't have to be right ontop the last objective, of course, but most objectives are well separated by a fair distance from eachother and walking an extra 50 feet is preferable to not being able to walk five feet out of your spawn area, assuming you were able to press the W key before dying to begin with.
- This is another big issue, at least coupled with #3. Whenever you spawn in, you play an animation where you reload your gun with a fresh mag. To be honest, this looks awesome, however in co-op this takes a number of seconds to complete and whenever you have AI right infront of you, well, it's very frustrating that I have to go through an arbitrary reload animation in order to kill an enemy that is literally shooting at me in spawn. Most of them are cool, have alot of work put into them, I'll agree, and I doubt are as much of a problem in PvP, but in co-op it can be incredibly frustrating. In Insurgency, most of the animations are short and simple like cocking your gun, and in the instance you had some AI in your spawn you could easily dispatch them as your gun was ready to fire very quickly after spawning in. Personally, I think this was the best of both worlds, at least for co-op.
Suggestion: Replace the reload animations with shorter, and simpler animations similar to what Insurgency had in order to allow people to engage and dispatch AI in the area around the spawn faster.
Or speed up the animations. Maybe instead of slowly reloading the rifle like a calm reload, your character can use the significantly faster and arguably cooler tactical reload animations whenever they spawn in. It doesn't seem like it would be too hard to implement as sequential animation already exists.
Or refer to the suggestions for #3. After all, if there are no AI in the spawn area, then there is no need to rush a reload or weapon ready animation.
On a smaller note, the pistol animations seem to cut out halfway through the animation of putting the clip into the pistol. I don't know if this is a known bug or not but I want to put it here just to be sure. Also, I would have video sections or screenshots of my game but due I have poor performance as-is due to my poor PC. It's not the game's fault.
I honestly hope for a dev response. That's all I have to say. Thanks for reading my big block of text, or, maybe not. If not, no tl;dr for you.
EDIT: Here is an example of some of the AI spawn camping issues. I can record replays without suffering bad frame loss.