Microsoft may well be rueing the day they ever green-lit this game, such has been the cacophony of online complaints and whining. Shadowrun was originally a tabletop role-playing game, a curious mix between Tolkien-esque high fantasy and sci-fi cyberpunk, and was adapted for two quite different but equally admired role-playing games for the SNES and Mega Drive, back in the mid-90s. The reason online fans are getting so upset is that this game is absolutely nothing like them, in fact its a first person shoot em-up although quite an unusual one at that.
Since the peculiar Shadowrun universe features both magic and technology the end result is a sci-fi version of Counter-Strike, with added elves. As such you have access to a wide range of different magic and technology-based gadgets, ranging from hang-gliders and X-ray vision to the ability to teleport through solid walls, resurrect fallen comrades and create life giving trees. You can only use three abilities at once though, with many limiting the amount of magical energy you have stored. Tactics are further complicated by which race you play as, from the stealthy but weak elves to the magical essence-stealing dwarves.
As in Counter-Strike theres no single player mode, just a series of tutorials and some basic simulations of the online mode against the computer. Microsoft is also terribly keen to promote the fact that you can play against both PC gamers and those using a 360 although the difference in controllers and potential set-ups means its not exactly a level playing field (not that the graphics are particularly extravagant.) The graphics arent the problem though, but the fact that there are only nine maps, which does seem rather stingy for what is otherwise an impressively unique and imaginative online shooter.
Intense cross-platform multiplayer action - For the first time ever, Xbox 360 and Windows Vista gamers can compete as a team or as foes. Shadowrun tears down the walls between friends and gamer communities on the console and pc by allowing up to 16 gamers to play together, regardless of platform. Shadowrun also brings all the features gamers love on Xbox Live such as Gamertags, Achievement points, Friends` lists, Integrated Voice, etc. onto the pc through Games for Windows Live.
Four ancient races with unique strengths and weaknesses battle in three-dimensional environments - Humans are joined by elves, dwarves and trolls in a battle for supremacy among soaring corporate towers, warren-like slums and an ancient ziggurat of power. Strike a balance on your team with races possessing unique abilities that complement your weapons and tactics. Battle in three-dimensional spaces that allow cunning uses of spells and techs such as Glide, Teleport, Gust and Enhanced vision.
The ultimate online (and offline) battlefield - Fight against or alongside AI teammates or join up with friends against all comers via System Link and Xbox Live. Fill out your team with intelligent AI characters that respond to your tactical commands and provide an unparalleled team experience. Train offline with the robust AI, or play through a host of training sessions as you master the magic and technology of Shadowrun..
For use only with Xbox 360 entertainment systems with PAL designation and PAL TVs capable of displaying a 60Hz signal