Helldivers: Four-Player Carnage on PS4, PS3, PS Vita

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Helldivers: Four-Player Carnage on PS4, PS3, PS Vita


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With a game of Helldivers going, shouts, curses, and laughter are never far behind. Arrowhead’s top-down shooter is coming to PS4, PS3, and PS Vita this Summer, bolstered by brutally difficult missions and gratifying multiplayer design. This is a game about outfitting an elite squad, dropping into procedurally-generated battlefields, and fighting to survive. The high level of challenge and the “always-on” friendly fire make victory all the sweeter.

But at a PlayStation event last week, I had more time to watch groups of four players (including Arrowhead’s own Designer Patrik Lasota) tackle the alien menace together. The results showcase just how smartly Helldivers has been put together, and how players must, must, work as a team.

For those that missed our original hands-on of Helldivers, the basics are easy to grasp for any passing fan of twin-stick shooters. Move with one stick, aim with the other. Each soldier in the squad had a default loadout of a primary weapon, sidearm, and grenades. There’s plenty of tactical options when building these loadouts, but doubly so when dealing with “strategems.”

These abilities allow each player to call in additional support from orbit, be it an ammo drop, auto turret placement, or even replacement troops for fallen friendlies. These strategems are activated by holding down L1 on DualShock 4, for example, and inputting a series of d-pad inputs. This demands additional precision and a palpable sense of calm when calling in urgent support during a heated firefight.

But watching players fight together through procedurally-generated environments (and mission objectives) and learning how to cope with the vicious enemies is its own special treat. Newcomers will inevitably kill their teammates with stray assault rifle fire or an ill-placed grenade, which — surprisingly — leads to a lot of laughs.


But then an instinctual sense of cooperation and survival begins to emerge, especially under the presence of strong leadership — like Lasota, who was ever present in battle. Players would begin to arrange in a line against incoming enemy waves, creating a powerful torrent of bullets concentrated in one direction. Players would rush to a downed friendly in the thick of battle to pull them up. Teams would arrange turrets and aerial bombardments along chokepoints. Anything and everything to stay alive and complete the next objective.

Arrowhead’s decision to keep friendly fire on at all times forces players to stick together, play carefully, and think about positioning. These necessities lead to more interesting battles, since players can’t kick back and shoot away with no concern for where they — or their teammates — are standing.

Helldivers employs rich strategy and requires constant cooperation. And fortunately, Arrowhead plans for cross play between the three versions, as well as any mix of online and local multiplayer.

Of course, even a well-coordinated team may still get obliterated by the enemy — Helldivers is no joke, after all. But being killed by a friendly supply pod drop is still too funny to get angry about. Feeling up to the challenge? Join the Helldivers community today.

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4 Author Replies

  • Honestly one of my most anticipated games to come out this summer along with the new Diablo III expansion coming to PS3/PS4. Any news on when we will hear about set date?

    • Hi! I know, I’m so pumped for this. No news to share on release date right now, but stay tuned!

  • Looking for a release date but super excited. I have all three systems and now I’m interested in game design because of you guys. Can’t wait to play this, hope it could be a cross-buy. Release a demo or a release day discount for plus and we good.

  • iamtylerdurden1

    Thank you for including a Vita version, but is there any way to play in a single player mode or with ai teammates instead? Do you have to play with 3 other “real” people?

  • Helldivers looks like a lot of fun, it;s both cross play and cross buy, right?

  • iamtylerdurden1

    Any idea on a price point? Does it have a platinum trophy/ how will the trophy lists between each version work? Will it be a shared list (hope not) or separate lists with cross-save ala Sound Shapes (hopefully). I know this is perhaps premature but people want to know & it WILL affect sales.

  • Ryan, I’m sorry to be so off-topic, but can you confirm whether or not the E3 press conference will be available to download from the PS Store this year? And, if so, give an estimate as to how long it will take to publish?

    But yeah, Helldivers does look like it would be fun to play with friends. I’ve played quite a few twin-stick shooters (not sure if this is technically “twin-stick” or uses different controls like Dead Nation) and the only one I really enjoyed co-op is Bunch of Heroes, which is on Steam. For single-player, Microbot was awesome.

  • They did say on the podcast, they were targeting summer so hopefully it hits that timeframe.

  • Been waiting for this game since announcement and I’m glad it still exists but this post didn’t add anything that we didn’t know already :(

    Give us a release date/month at least!

  • Can you play the game local with only one player if you wanted to? What about local 2-4 player? I think I heard on blogcast 121
    that you could play local, but I’d like to confirm if you have to have 4 players or if it will generate AI controlled players for you.

    This is a game I’ve been looking forward to since I saw it announced!

  • Really looking forward to this game guys. Love that your doing cross play across all 3 systems too!

  • Beyond! A Cross-Play title on 3 platforms is awesome. Now we can play it all together!


  • This and Secret Ponchos are possibly my two most-anticipated games that have been announced for this year.

    (Batman: Arkham Knight is currently number 1. Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare, Evolve and Destiny are also each up there….my caveat being that I suck at FPS.)

  • This game sounds like tons of fun i can’t wait for this to drop

  • i like top down shooters. wolf of the battlefield 3 baby ^ _ ^

  • If it is too expensive, It’ll be on a continued hold untill a sale.
    Waited this long.

    Sill, nice work.

    Randomly generated is great, but hope it has a little more strategy oher than avoiding frendly fire and waves of mobs.

    Defnately a genre I would like to see fully developed.

    Killzone PSP was pretty cool, just needed a few mods.

  • Five stars for being CrossBuy though.

  • (first of all I would like to say this is my first comment on playstation blog.)
    This game looks great. however I would like two questions if I may.
    1) can you cross play with your self? (i.e. buy the game once and play with yourself on your vita and ps4?) or do you have to buy it twice?
    2) If I’m playing on the vita and my “freind” is on the ps4 do I get my own screen? can I leave this screen and walk away from him? or do we have to keep close by each other?

  • CommandingTiger

    Is it cross-buy?
    Is it cross-save?
    Is it cross-play?

  • Is this a PSN game or digital or Physical copy

  • i hope get this game as crossbuy and playstation plus

  • Will there be perks for plus subscribers?

  • Honestly, I was really enjoying the FLASH SALES these past couple of weeks, What happened? Will we have more flash sales in the near future? I bought RDR and LA NOIRE in the last one, I was short on cash so I missed GTAIV ;(
    Hopefully you guys will put other titles for sale.

    Specially PS Vita games. We need more of those plus…

    MORE RPG SALES please!

    ~ Cheers ~

  • Now this is my kind of game I like top-down shooters. It’s been awhile since i’ve played this kind of genre I also look forward to this as well.

  • This is so on my list!

  • Awwww yeah. Been waiting for this since I first heard of it a while ago! Awesome!!

  • What about localization? What languages will supported?

  • Curious how the Vita version will look.

  • No physical format, no sale.

    Tired of seeing consumer’s rights eroded just so companies can try and kill the used games market.

  • Cant wait so is this cross play or just one platform

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