Don’t let the name deceive you; Brutal.io isn’t a dark, graphically violent game. Instead, it’s a 2D, kid-friendly multiplayer game with neon colors and quick action. Brutal.io challenges gamers to think fast and use logic to score. That’s why it’s ok for Mattias to play, especially with some down time while we are in Jordan! Just based on the name of the game, I would’ve said “no.” But after I played and reviewed it, I realized that there’s a lot of positive value in Brutal.io. On the surface, it might look like another free-for-all battle game. In reality, it offers much more.
Brutal.io has a bright, fun color scheme. Each player gets to drive a glowing car. There are neon blue, purple, pink, and yellow cars. Each one controls a matching flail, which looks like a spiked circle. The flail doubles as each car’s shield and weapon (more on those later).
The arena looks like it would fit perfectly in the Tron movies. A black background is covered in glowing aqua, red, and green parts. Aqua-blue sections of the map represent walls. These can provide the perfect opportunity to hide from foes and avoid hectic parts of the arena. Red parts of the map represent danger. There’s a small wedge in each corner of the map, along with two larger rectangles above and below the center. Red zones electrocute any entrants. Thus, clever players may use red zones to lure other cars into danger. Beginners should stay away.
The small, green circles planted across the arena are known as “energy balls.” In Brutal.io, cars need energy to keep moving. Without energy, the flail will shrink and the car will disappear. Players can gather energy in many different ways, with energy balls being one of the most stable. At any point during the game, any car can drive up to any energy ball and recharge.
More on Energy
Energy is good for two things: staying alive and growing flails. While the first benefit is obvious, the second might not be. Players should try to grow their flails as much as possible. As a reminder, the flail acts as a shield and a weapon. A bigger flail can protect the car from many attacks at once. If the flail is big enough, it can block other players from nearly every angle. Not only is a big flail great for defense, but it’s essential for scoring fast. If any other player touches another’s flail, they will lose. A car can also throw its flail across the arena and retrieve it at will. That provides two opportunities for scoring: one on the initial toss, and another during the retrieval. More energy results in a bigger flail and easier scoring opportunities.
All players are put into the same arena, regardless of skill level. As such, there could be a fairly steep learning curve when playing for the first time. However, the smallest players can defeat the biggest ones at any time. Brutal.io is an evolved version of other .io games, and it’s one that your kids can safely enjoy.
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