I’m Brandon, localization editor and narrative designer at Ocean Drive. With Blackout Protocol just 4 days out from Early Access, I have been dragged Gollum-like from the clammy comforts of seclusion to come and chat with y’all.
So today I’m gonna introduce you to the core cast of Blackout Protocol: who they are, what they do, and which one’s the coolest.
To understand who you’ll be playing as in Blackout Protocol, it’s important to set expectations. If you’re looking to play a game where the characters are the biggest badasses in their world, with a full suite of overpowered abilities to tackle any challenge thrown at them? Look elsewhere.
Blackout Protocol is a game about a globe-spanning secret organization’s lowest, most rank-and-file working stiffs. The ones with little to no field experience, who were unlucky enough to pick up the phone on a weekend, and get roped into cleaning up a mess.
(And by mess, I mean the enthralled avatars of a seething hive-mind whose dark nucleus lurks beneath the earth, with designs upon the heavens.)
But hey, who doesn’t like an underdog?
Every team needs a stick-in-the-mud. Boy Scout, voiced by SungWon Cho, is ours.
A former UN bodyguard, Boy Scout joined the S2P Corporation a few years back, and promptly became a diehard company loyalist. Now he works for Internal Security, where he spends his days heroically redacting emails and confiscating unauthorized thumb drives.
But this stuffed shirt has secrets, too. Like the circumstances under which he joined the organization. Or the fact that when he gets really mad, things tend to explode.
All of which is to say: if you’re looking for the tank character, you found him. Boy Scout’s special ability, OUTBURST, creates a 360° psychic AoE with knockback, which also ignores allies. Handy, in a game where friendly fire is a constant danger, and getting surrounded by enemies equals instant death.
Next up we have Red, voiced by Jennifer Losi. Fans of Lost Eidolons will recognize her as the voice of Klara, everybody’s favorite stabby mercenary girlboss.
But unlike Klara, Red is the fresh-faced rookie. Formerly a barista with a little too much curiosity for her own good, Red’s a recent hire at S2P, where she mostly works the metal detectors at the entrance. Where others might see a deadly mission to a monster-infested research base and think “hard pass”, Red is just stoked for a chance to prove herself — and amply over-prepared, after a trip to the local Trout Pro to buy one of everything.
But like any new hire, Red makes up for inexperience with sheer zeal. Her special, OVERTIME, turns her into the team’s full-tilt gigachad DPS monster, by massively increasing her reload speed and rate-of-fire with any weapon. That’s majorly helpful in a game where poorly-timed reloads are the #1 cause of death, and enemies mostly come in two varieties: “OMG TOO MANY” and “WHY DOES IT HAVE SO MUCH HP?!!”
Scalpel, voice by Camilla Hawkins, is a science-minded middle manager with a chilly disposition.
A physicist by trade, Scalpel is the original inventor of the technology that underpins S2P’s signature “Death Nullification System”, which allows even the most inept pencil-pusher to Groundhog Day their way through deadly field missions. But she views the technology as a corruption of her work, hates her job, and isn’t all that impressed by her fellow agents, either.
Fittingly for someone so self-reliant, Scalpel’s special ability, SEVERANCE, is a high-risk, high-damage melee finisher that also restores some health. With the lowest cooldown of any special in the game, it’s perfect for dispatching lone irritants who get in her face, or melting minibosses before they wipe the whole team.
Beaker, voice by Deva Marie Gregory, is your basic gal-next-door type… if you lived next door to a triple-PhD biochemist with a glint of madness in her eyes and a shed that glows at night.
Scalpel’s protege and right hand, Beaker has no illusions about the kind of company she works for… but on the other hand, they give her access to the cool chemicals. The ones your mom warned you about. Chemicals who wear leather jackets and smoke.
As a result, her special, RECOVERY VIAL, is one of the most useful in the game: a burst of happy green gasses that restores a chunk of health to all nearby Agents.
As the only character capable of healing allies, Beaker is a force-multiplier most teams consider essential to a successful run, especially if they suck at the game. Like me.
We’ve received unconfirmed reports that some teams even like to go multi-Beaker — but as doing so violates both the fiction of the game and the principles of general relativity, neither Ocean Drive nor S2P can officially condone the practice.
BUT IT DOESN’T STOP THERE
Throughout this Early Access period, the dev team will be paying close attention to character balance, specials, passives, etc. It’s impossible to say what tweaks we’ll make yet, but it’s a fair bet it won’t be “none”. Your feedback is essential to that process, so please don’t hesitate to share it!
We’ll also be dropping new characters throughout EA and beyond — some of which you’ve seen in promo art already, and some of which have been lurking in the shadows.
So yeah. Get hyped for that.
FOUR MORE DAYS, AGENTS!
– ODS Brandon