Tuesday, 14 April 2009

Hands-on with Red Faction: Guerrilla

Long-term readers may have noticed a distinct absence of the old Hype Pipe lately and I personally have missed writing them. Whilst I loved gushing though, it has to be said that the feature had an inherent problem in so much that I was creaming my boy shorts over games that I was yet to play. On a few occasions this left me disappointed, and also embarrassed due to my fanboyish ramblings being broadcast and me having to effectively go back on my previous statements. So, what have I learned? Nothing! RED FACTIONGUERRILLA FUCKING ZOMG!! IT@S AWESOME!!!

Just kidding, I have of course, played the demo and more than likely, before most of you. I don't mean to brag, but for the first time, I can happily jizz away my fanboy syrup, knowing that I'm not simply blowing hot air, but actually recommending a game ahead of it's release, with first hand experience -almost like a proper website! This my friends, is the closest I may ever get to a review code/promo copy. A landmark moment indeed.

Having no prior experience with the other Red Faction games, it's surprising that this would even register with me. After all, I'm ridiculously hard to please and there are more than enough third person shooters on the market. I can only put it down to Guerrilla having the combination of communism, propaganda and blowing shit up.

For the record, even in the painfully short demo, you really can blow a lot of shit up. Everything, to be more accurate. Imagine the most satisfying physics since Half Life 2, then imagine that you can pilot a giant mining robot and that you have a load of remote charges and a big fuck-off hammer. There are some bad guys with guns on a bridge: BOOM! There's a big fence in your way: BOOM! There's some dudes in a truck: KABLAMMO! Then I drove another truck into a barracks and made it crumple like a house of cards.

I honestly wouldn't care if this game was completely lacking in direction or purpose because figuring out the best way to take down structures and using the physics as a weapon is some of the best fun you can have with your pants on- not driving Italian sports cars, as some sexy saleswomen may have you believe. So the fact that Red Faction: Guerrilla is clearly huge and brimming over with objectives, side quests and key destruction targets just makes it all the better. Whilst the mission in the demo is fairly straightforward, the amount of possibilities for it's completion are seemingly infinite. Of the 3 times I played through it before writing this, each played out differently, with me eventually realising that gun or no gun, no-one is going to mess with some guy in a huge truck who seems to have a death wish.

The visuals are a bit on the dull side, but this is an acceptable side-effect of the game being set on Mars. Thankfully the visuals are boosted by the art design which is awash with bold communist reds and soviet-inspired constructivist propaganda posters. The character design is painfully cliched in so much as once again you will be filling the boots of another gravel-voiced space marine type, who is reassuringly short-haired and comes complete with stubble, just in case there actually was any confusion over his sexuality.

The full game will obviously test the replayability to it's limit and the true test will be if the physics remain as enjoyable over the course of a full playthrough. I have every confidence though and I can't wait to see what else they ask me to destroy. I wholeheartedly recommend that you get the demo for yourself, all you need is a code: it's as easy as registering with THQ.

The Faux Bot