Sunday, 1 January 2012

Starting the year with a boom... and a bang... and crash!

Over the Christmas period I mentioned buying a lot of games for my Sony PlayStation 3, one of which was 'Red Faction: Guerrilla'. Guerrilla was developed by Volition and published by THQ in 2009 making it a fairly dated game.

The game takes place on the planet Mars in 2125. Mankind has successfully colonized Mars and a government body called the 'EDF (Earth Defense Force)' takes charge.  Earth's natural resources have run scarce, and as a result, its global economy has collapsed from rampant speculation of commodities and lack of production. Under pressure by Earth's corporations and leaders to acquire the resources of Mars at any cost and at a pace to meet Earth's high demand, the EDF has forced Martian society into a permanent state of unfree labour. The newly-reformed "Red Faction" arises to rebel against the EDF, drive them off the planet, and begin fairer negotiations with Earth.

This is the first time I have played a Red Faction game and here I my views on what I've experienced so far...

The game's main highlight is its Geo-Mod 2.0 destruction engine. I'm not joking here, about 99% of all man-made objects in the game - anything from buildings, to vehicles, from signposts, to power-stations - can be completely and utterly destroyed. Your primary weapon is a very powerful sledgehammer that can literally take down a building in minutes if not seconds. The physics are the most realistic I have ever seen in a video-game with buildings falling in clouds of dust and rebar flying everywhere. Very rarely the physics can screw up for example if you attach a bomb to a throwable barrel it sometimes catapults to the ground instead of being thrown normally like it should. Very few things are indestructible. I cannot explain how cool it is when you see buildings collapse so watch this video:

The graphics are average. Nothing too impressive but when there are a lot of explosions and things collapsing then it does look really good and the game itself handles surprisingly well and I have experienced 0 lag over nearly 10 hours gameplay! There are a lot of minute details that I have noticed and they really do make the game more life-like. Colonists smoking or using a welding torch to repair a fence etc. There is also radio/tv consoles at each Red Faction safehouse which broadcast news on raids or missions the player has been on.

The sound is brilliant! There are so many sound effects for different materials on buildings - glass shattering, buildings moaning when they are unstable and about to collapse, bricks breaking, walls hitting the ground, rebar clanging - you name it there's probably some sort of SFX to go with it! It sounds twice as good with a headset too, you can really here the building falling around you.

In gameplay terms there are guerrilla tactic missions as well as the storyline missions which are long but there don't seem to be a lot of. Of course you can also freeroam mars and smash anything you want! The aim of the missions are either to:

  • Gain 'Salvage' the currency of the game which you can earn by breaking practically anything or completing missions. You can use salvage to buy upgrades for weaponry or buy new weapons.
  • Minimize 'EDF Control' of an area. There are 6 regions to liberate and you have to get the EDF Control bar to zero by doing missions before you can do a final mission and liberate the sector.
  • Gain 'Morale'. More morale means that colonists will stand and fight for you and not just reject you. This makes raids and other guerrilla tactics much easier.

I'm actually really enjoying this game but I'm not sure how long it will last seeing as the gameplay will probably get a bit repetitive over time and none of the buildings respawn so once it's gone... it's gone!

1 comment:

Chalgyr said...

Good overall impressions. I only recently played this title myself about 3 months ago at a friend's house. I liked it, but have such a backlog of games I haven't picked it up yet for myself. Good post - and Happy New Year!