Gigantic Review

Richard Walker

Gigantic is yet another entry into the free-to-play multiplayer RPG/MOBA sphere, a genre that's becoming increasingly crowded, as developers strive to acquire itself a piece of the League of Legends, Overwatch (yes, I know it's not a MOBA, but you get what I mean, right?) or DotA action. But before you go running for the hills, come back a minute. Gigantic is actually rather good, despite having more than a few glaring problems.

We'll get to those in due course, but first let's explain what Gigantic actually is, and why it's worth your precious time. Gigantic is one of those hero-based multiplayer games that are currently all the rage, boasting its own eye-catching, colourful art-style and a unique mechanic in its rival teams each having a Guardian to fight for and protect. It's a remarkably simple premise that makes for some great 5v5 battles.

Heroes assemble!

Summoning creatures at waypoints across the map grant your team healing areas to retreat to, enables you yo reveal enemies through walls or build barriers to protect your side of the map, while vanquishing the opposing team's summoned creatures or accumulating kills makes your Guardian more powerful. The first team to reach 100 points will set in motion a 'Clash', seeing your Guardian swoop across the map to pin down the rival Guardian, exposing its weak point. This is your opportunity to whale on the opposition's vulnerable beast, hopefully scoring a wound against it for your team.

Inflict three wounds upon the rival Guardian, and you'll win the match, victory following the final Clash to land the killer blow. It's a fun push-and-pull competitive affair, and for the most part, each of Gigantic's 19 characters seem fairly well-balanced. There's the swift and deadly assassin Tripp, able to zip into skirmishes and back out again stealthily, while at the other end of the scale are heroes like Bastion-esque robot HK-206, able to sit back and pick off other players from range using its minigun.

There's a broad selection of characters, in fact, each entirely unique, each fulfilling a specific role, be it a damage dealing bruiser like The Margrave, range-based shooter or caster like Beckett or Mozu, a melee-based fighter like Tyto the Swift or a support-based summoner or healer like Uncle Sven or Aisling. No two heroes are the same, so mastering them is part and parcel of Gigantic's learning curve. Discovering the abilities and various nuances of the game's eclectic cast factors into the fun of playing Motiga's colourful PvP beast, and Gigantic is indeed good fun.

Yet, as enjoyable as Gigantic can be, there are some fairly major flaws that conspire to spoil the party. Like the inability to change characters mid-match, or even as you're waiting for a match to load up. You might take one look at the rest of your team and immediately see visible deficiencies, but if you've already chosen your hero, it's too late. You're already locked in. If you're not getting along with a character, being unable to mix things up can be frustrating.

Matchmaking times aren't great either, and if the game does successfully find you a match, there's a 35 second countdown during which each player needs to press A to accept the game and start. More often than not, the countdown expires as one or more players fail to hit the button, and you're left having to wait through another round of matchmaking. You can see the logic behind the countdown screen, as you need a full team of five all present and paying attention for a game to be properly competitive, or else you may as well throw in the towel from the off. That doesn't stop it from being irritating.

Add to the list of shortcomings the lack of a statistics screen where you can marvel at your progress, and just an ever-so-slight lack of polish, and you can't help but wonder how these things weren't addressed during Gigantic's numerous open and closed betas. Badges, card collections, character mastery medals and other rewards give you something to work towards, although the unlockable skins aren't particularly great. More elaborate premium skins would have been cool, but for the most part, you get palette swaps and perhaps one or two skins for each character that change their look.

Smash that Guardian!

The fundamentals of Gigantic are robust; it's just the trimmings that are lacking. Its lane-based maps are similar, although the terrain differs even if the left, centre and right lane layout doesn't. This is a good thing, so you instantly know what you're doing and where you should be going; it's just imperative that your team is all on the same page, carrying out their roles properly. Failing to reach 100 points to initiate a Clash to potentially wound a Guardian means having to defend your own Guardian against attack so it can recover, so it helps if the team is all pulling in the same direction.

Every achievement ties into these core facets of Gigantic, though predictably, it's heavy on the grind, with levelling up to 100, mastering characters to level 10 and acquiring certain badges and cards bound to take forever. Clearly the list is designed to have an incredibly long tail, but whether Gigantic will be able to retain the audience for long enough is another matter, and there don't seem to be many people currently playing it. It certainly deserves better.

Why? Because, if you haven't already gathered, Gigantic is a good game, if not necessarily a great one. Round up a crew of five players all communicating properly, and Gigantic's tug-of-war matches can be genuinely awesome. Playing solo isn't quite so enjoyable, but you can clearly see the makings of something quite special here, even if there is still room for improvement.


A consistently engaging and enjoyable MOBA-type experience with shooting, melee combat, magic and more, Gigantic is one of the better examples of free-to-play multiplayer shenanigans that we've played in some time. Despite its niggling flaws, Gigantic is still worthy of your attention.

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Booming Guardian voices, loads of character chatter, epic orchestral music... Pretty much what you'd expect.


Gigantic's art style is wonderful and its distinctive roster of heroes each have their own characteristics that set them apart. Maps too are very pretty indeed.


Getting to grips with your character's range of upgradeable abilities can take some time, but the core mechanics are pretty tight. The only problems occur when the action gets too chaotic, and it's hard to see what the hell is going on.


A single 5v5 mode is all Gigantic needs and the 19 characters are more than enough. But the lack of things you'd normally take for granted in a game like this are sorely absent.


A typically grind-laden list of achievements that will take an age to complete. There's a good, varied spread here, but yeah, grindy.

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