Death From Above is a short, approximately 90-minute single-player arcade-style drone piloting game set during the Russian invasion of Ukraine. You’ll play as a Ukrainian military drone operator who fights enemy forces, rescues valuable equipment and reconstructs important communication lines disrupted by the conflict. But that’s not all. What makes Death From Above special is that it’s not just a game, but also a way to contribute! 30% of the net proceeds will be divided equally between the two Ukrainian organisations that support the Ukrainian Armed Forces: Come Back Alive and the Drone Army. This way you can be sure that you are contributing to a noble cause. Once the company reaches break-even, they will increase this contribution by devoting 70% of their net income to these good causes. The remaining 30% will be invested in further development of the game.
Death From Above storyline
A soldier is concussed in battle somewhere in Nenets, he is dragged from the battlefield by an old woman, who pulls the soldier into the cellar. The soldier wakes up and does not understand where he is, he only hears bodies falling in the street. The old woman comes into the cellar and says smiling: “Good day, my heart! Don’t be afraid. They are dead. Apparently, they didn’t like my mushroom pies.” You can tell just from this phrase alone that the developers have a good sense of humour. She then gives the soldier a large box of grenades, saying, “You can definitely use them for something good.” The soldier slowly regains consciousness. All he has is a drone and a good supply of explosives. The goal in the game Death From Above is simply to clear the entire game location of enemy soldiers and tanks.
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Before you start the story, you are advised to first visit a proving ground, where you can practice dropping bombs on tanks or returning washing machines. Yes, to return washing machines that the Russians are stealing. Yes, on a drone. Once you have understood the mechanics of the game on the range, you are sent into the storyline.
You can play separately either as a drone operator or as a drone. The drone is released on the T key, only from the drone you can destroy Russian soldiers and tanks. On the Shift key the “Thermal Imaging Camera” is activated. The drone also has two cameras, one for normal flight and terrain viewing and the other, which is triggered on the Tab key, for dropping bombs. Ammunition replenishment and changing the grenades you attack with can only be done next to the drone operator. Drone pick-up is also done on the T key.
The drone has its own “health”, meaning that if it gets shot down, you just have to release a new one. It is also possible to kill a soldier, and here the first thing I don’t quite understand is that there are no saves in the game. That is, if your drone is shot down, you can release it again, but if a soldier is killed, the game starts from the beginning.
A little more about the soldiers we’re fighting – they’re stupid, just like in real life. There are three kinds: some shoot with Kalashas (not very good), the second with MANPADS (a missile launch is reported to us by a red circle, which tells us that it’s better to fly away from this area). And the third are running around with shovels. And if the last enemy is left exactly with a shovel, he can be taken prisoner.
There are a total of three types of grenade that you can use in the game:
- Frag – the drone can drop 6 units in one flight, but they inflict little damage, I recommend using them only for infantry
- Anti-Tank – drone can take 3, but as it’s already clear, they deal more damage and should be used against enemy vehicles
- Sausage – does nothing, but you can… yes, drop a sausage!
A huge problem with the game. There’s no graphics as such, and it’s optimised rather poorly. In my experience, I didn’t even understand why FPS was falling, at first everything seems to be fine, and then all of a sudden FPS drops to 20, although at that moment I wasn’t even doing anything, just flying and evaluating the terrain. But the developer seems to be aware of this problem and will solve it soon. Just a reminder, the game is still in pre-release, all bugs can be fixed when the game is in final release.
Death From Above is an interesting and short game that will let you enjoy its mechanics. There’s some fun humour in the game, the grandma at the beginning of the game alone, and some gorgeous soundtracks (how could I forget about them). But it also has its own problems like optimisation and dumbfounded enemies (although it’s realistic). All in all, I can recommend it, but only if the developer fixes the optimization problems, because it’s not very enjoyable to play so far.
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