Livelock – Review
Follow Genre: Action, Top-Down Shooter
Developer: Tuque Games
Publisher: Perfect World Entertainment
Platform: PC, PS4, Xbox One
Tested on: Xbox One

Livelock – Review

Site Score
Good: Amazing graphics and fun gameplay
Bad: No local co-op, cheesy voice acting
User Score
(0 votes)
Click to vote
VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 0.0/10 (0 votes cast)

Top-down shooters are a really popular genre, and it’s easy to see why. They’re perfect for co-op, but can still make an impact with solo play. Publisher Perfect World Entertainment along with developer Tuque Games bring us Livelock – a futuristic top-down shooter about a not so perfect world. Much like other top-down shooters, Livelock encourages teamwork in its action-packed gameplay, but is still a worthwhile single player experience. This is Perfect World Entertainments first non-free to play and non MMO based game, and it really is a hit.

Livelock Banner


In a futuristic timeline humanity has been crippled by a wave of gamma radiation, and the remains of humanity are left to design a way to ensure their survival against a coming cataclysm that is sure to wipe out all living things. The remaining humans (or “The ancients”) uploaded their minds into AI’s in a hopeful strategy to survive. You take control of one of these remaining beings, known as the Capital Intellects. However, some of the AI’s have been corrupted, and now you must battle the corrupted Capital Intellects that now inhabit the earth. It is up to you and your allies to restore earth and provide humanity a second chance. The story itself was written by Daniel H. Wilson, the author of titles such as Robopocalypse and Robogenesis, which is probably a good indication that AI/robot related things are his cup of tea.


When it comes to the graphics that Livelock has to offer, there are absolutely no complaints. The menus and player select screen are crisp and polished, and the movements of your character in the background are perfectly robotic. The cut scene animations are also smooth and well done, with no stutters or jitters.

Livelock’s 3D battle graphics are beautiful, with fluent movements and actions as the top-down view fills your screens with enemies, realistic colourful explosions and brightly lit weapon fire. The attention paid to smaller details, such as the waves of dust in the desert maps or the realistic beam of your torch in darker areas is really amazing and lovely to see. The whole game is really gorgeous to look at, and that includes the stages around you as you fight your way to victory. When your character receives damage, a glitch animation waves across your screen, which is a really nice touch as it drives the fact you are playing as a robot.

Livelock gameplay2


Livelock is full of beautiful and tone setting orchestral pieces. The main menu is filled with a haunting score that tugs at feelings of sadness that are still sprinkled with a glimmer of hope. The music throughout the action packed gameplay is underwhelming and easily drowned out under the sound effects that accompany the bullets and explosions of battles. When set to lower levels, you won’t even notice the lack of music and it won’t be missed. The sound effects for movement and objects breaking are consistent and fluent.

The voice acting is both hit and miss. Each playable character has a unique robotic voice and accent to go with their personality and faction. The catalyst characters female voice acting seems to have the mist range, which her tone changing with enthusiasm. The Vanguard has a thick accent and combined with the robotic drone can be hard to understand. The one liners within the gameplay are easily missed as they can be a bit hard to understand. The dialog actually sounds a little cheesy at times, but we did enjoy the snarky comments upon our characters death.

livelock gameplay3


Livelock is an action packed and futuristic top down shooter. Once you fire up Livelock, you’ll be greeted at the menu with a small selection of choices. You have Start Game, of course, and quick join which allows you to be placed in an online match. On this menu set you will also find the Machine Lab, which allows you to pick a character to play through the game as, sort of like a character save. This allows you to have 5 saves on one account. You also have the progression tab, which shows the progression percentage for each character type.

After you select the Start Game option you are taken to a small selection of modes, and by small we mean two. You have Campaign mode, which is the games story, and Open Protocol mode, which is a survival type mode where you battle waves of enemies for high score.

Once you pick a type you will be taken to screen where you will prepare your character for battle. This allows you to select your weapons, which are type based depending on which character you play as. For example Hex gets assault weapons and sniper rifles, Vanguard gets melee weapons and Catalyst has all-rounder weapons such as beam rifles. You can also adjust your characters Functions, which are character-based abilities consisting of drones, shields and traps. You will unlock more weapons and abilities by gaining experience and levelling up. At a certain level you will no longer receive new weapons and functions, instead receiving a boost to the ones you have already acquired.

Livelock 1

At the top of this screen you will find your characters current level, and the amount of currency you have. You can use this currency to upgrade your weapons. At the bottom of the screen you have firmware, which is essentially is changing your appearance. Once you’ve made your selection, you’re all set to battle.

Much like other top down shooters the control scheme on the console version of Livelock is twin stick, with left stick being your movement and right being your aim. The gameplay can be likened to that of Dead Nation, with a similar control scheme. The way you play is affected by your character choice, and teamwork isn’t essential but it is greatly encouraged as each character has a unique set of abilities that you can use to work together. You have Hex, who is best played at mid-range. He is your assault class. There is the bullet sponge Vanguard, a close range tank, and then last but not least there is Catalyst, who is a solider and a medic. Apart, these three are powerful, but together they are near unstoppable. Using proper teamwork by splitting enemies up and placing well laid traps mean that anything can be overcome.livelock gameplay

One of our favourite parts of Livelock is the achievements/trophies with names that play on popular sci-fi references and also the online gaming community. Some of these included  R2-D20, C-30PO, 1337 and Johnny 5, and each had us eagerly hunting for more. You can start unlocking these early in the game simply by playing through the stages and destroying everything in your path. With these fun achievements and the inclusion of secret areas in stages, there’s some fun to be had while you complete this game, and it doesn’t feel repetitive enough to turn you off 100% completion.

The only downside to gameplay that we found is that Livelock does not support local co-op, which some people may find disappointing as top-down shooters are best played with friends, especially on the same screen. Even in the case of offline play, you still do not have an option to split-screen. It may not seem like an important asset, but it certainly was a let down.


Perfect World Entertainment have found the perfect game to change it up from their usual free to play MMO genre. The slight down points surrounding voice acting and lack of co-op wont distract you from the hours of enjoyment and gorgeous graphics this top down shooter has to offer. There is always the option of online matchmaking if you want to experience the game in a co-operative light. Tuque Games can really be proud of the hit indie game they have created in Livelock. If you are a fan of the gameplay in titles such as Dead Nation but you’re over zombies, maybe try these robots?

livelock screenshot

VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 0.0/10 (0 votes cast)
VN:F [1.9.22_1171]
Rating: 0 (from 0 votes)

No Comments

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.