on 11 July 2011
Red Faction: Guerilla was one of my favourite games of 2009. A great sandbox game on a sandy planet. The open world idea has been ditched for its successor, Armageddon. In a sense, I can understand this; unlike GTA who can just go to another city, Red Faction would have been another game involving long drives across the same red landscape.
So, we have a third person shooter instead.
In recent months I have played a few sci-fi oriented games. Unfortunately for RF:Armageddon, these included Mass Effect 2 and Dead Space 2, both of which show this game up for what it is; a rather by-the-numbers shoot em up. The first 50% of this game is spent running a very pre-ordained path through bland (and annoyingly dark) looking caves shooting aliens, the variety of which barely changes. (It is worth a mention that Visceral Games' Dead Space series uses light and shade to a terrifyingly skillful degree. Here, its just sort of brown and more brown.) That is essentially half the game gone. In that time, we don't see any characters we care remotely about, or indeed much of a story line. When we finally reach the surface, there's a sandstorm, and you can't see all that much up there either. And then we're back down in the caves again until the end. Graphically, this ain't a stunner. What happened to the crystal clear visuals of Guerilla? Why do I feel like I've played through this game with cateracts?
The whole breaking up bits of scenery with a hammer is no longer a justifiably wonderful gimick to sustain the series if all that is left besides is a bog standard bug hunt.Perhaps the next installment should spread its wings and move away from the red planet once and for all, maybe take a leaf out of Mass Effect's book.
Having said all that, it is fairly enjoyable for what it is. Its just that what it is, is such a retrograde step. I really wanted to love this because I've always loved Red Faction since the beginning, but this is nothing worth writing home about. Certainly not from Mars anyway.
on 17 September 2014
You play as Darius Mason, grandson of Martian Revolution hero, Alec Mason. The surface of Mars has become inhabitable and a barren wasteland. A fanatical Marauder priest tricks Darius into reopening a mysterious shaft in an old Marauder temple. This awakens a long dormant race of Martian creatures. Darius is blamed for the incident and must team up with the Red Faction to save the people of Mars.
Darius is a more interesting character than Alec Mason was, although that doesn’t say much for the overall character development. The story is a lot more focused than RF Guerrilla, the simplistic plot of saving Mars from a deadly alien race will not win any awards, but it does enough to ensure the action heavy gameplay is at the forefront of the experience.
GRAPHICS & SOUND
If you were hoping to see more sand swept vistas of Mars’ surface then you can just hold your excitement right there. Gone is the open-world design of RF Guerrilla; say hello to a streamlined
linear shooter. Level design can tend to suffocate you and lead you towards a specific goal, or some gameplay sequences can leave your surroundings wide open and really make your life hell. A majority of the game you will spend underground, journeying from mines to alien settlements. The environmental design will take some getting used to; many of the caves are dark and lifeless.
I quite liked the character model of Darius; it’s refreshing to see his body revealing damage as he blasts away through countless aliens. There are a variety of alien types too, smaller ground troops, invisible hunters and huge beasts are just of the menaces that will do anything to get a piece of your ass. Sound design is very strong, the weapons sound absolutely fantastic and extremely powerful. Voice acting is generally good, though Darius is the standout contributor here.
The underground environments allow for some unique level design, but these are not on the scale they could have been. The soundtrack isn’t very memorable, there are a couple of pieces of music that help motivate the gameplay, but overall it is underplayed.
There are a variety of ways you can kick alien ass. i always felt that the balance of weapons in RF Guerrilla was its underwhelming feature. Thankfully, that particular area has been rectified and we are free unleash i some very tasty tools of destruction The highlight of your weapons arsenal will be the Magnet Gun, a personal favourite and pushing destructive gameplay to new heights. The first shot will fire an ‘anchor’ which will stick to any metallic/stone surface. the second shot will fire an ‘attractor’ onto any surface or enemy, this will then violently drag the anchor and its objects towards the attractor’s position. Many of the other weapons have been carried over from the previous game, but the selection is expansive and differentiated. The Singularity Cannon is another weapon of true beauty, unleashing black holes towards enemies. engulfing them and then imploding with immense power.
The Nano Forge ability helps you to repair damaged structures instantly, it can be used to get across broken bridges or a means of fixing faulty components. I guarantee it’s something you will use often, especially when you become more attached to the Magnet Gun. Darius also has some offensive and defensive abilities that are derived from the Nano Forge’s power. This ability is known as impact and it provides our hero with some pretty cool techniques. Shockwave is a violent blast that knocks enemies away with ease; it’s a very effective way of getting yourself out of tight spots. There are other abilities to unlock through the upgrade system. The upgrade system is pretty deep, it will improve the abilities of your Nano Forge, strengthen your weapons, increase your health etc. Feel free to take a break and hop into one of many oversized mechs to continue your destructive spree. These sequences provide a breath of fresh air and really allow you to go nuts! There are a variety of suits/vehicles to control, these machines are extremely powerful and you can expect a lot of resistance when taking on the bad guys.
Enemy Al. is generally very good; the aliens are very agile and constantly move about the environment. Larger enemies don’t fall easily, they can also use kamikaze attacks in a desperate attempt to take you out. It’s always wise to keep moving too, aliens can infest areas with birth pods. which rapidly produce more of these freaks. There are also alien spores that can strengthen the enemies; these have to be destroyed quickly to ease up the onslaught.
After you’ve blasted your millionth alien, it can all start to seem familiar; furthermore, some environments lack in imaginative level design and hamper the ability for you to manipulate some destruction. The finale does seem like an anti-climax. the potential was there to incorporate a truly epic final battle.
The Geo Mod 2.0 engine looks better than ever, but the environmental design is confined to a tighter leash. The campaign will clock in at around 10 hours. It’s a relentless experience, but the open-world setting is sorely missed and would have worked wonders upon the final product.
on 17 September 2014
Red Faction Armageddon is a fast paced 3rd person shooter set on the desolate Red Planet of Mars. The game's 8 - 10 hour single player campaign sees you take control of Darius Mason, a macho one-man-army descendent of a long lineage of military prowess. Mars is overrun by a new and previously unknown alien threat from within the planet's subterranean core, and yes, it's your job to blast your way through it all.
RFA sports an impressive arsenal of weaponry and upgrades to help you along your way. Enemy attack patterns are quite varied, though many of the environments are dull and repetitive; I mean, hey, what do you expect the inside of Mars to look like?!
Where the game really shines is in its destruction mechanics. Basically, every man-made object (vehicles, buildings, walls, generators, doors, ceilings and the rest) are totally destructable. This brings a nice element of variety to the way you tackle the hordes of aliens. Want to snipe those three menacing looking bad dudes on top of that building, go ahead! Want to blow the whole building into a firy ball of death and carnage, be my guest! Mason is also gifted with the technology to rebuild things he destroys which also makes the game very fun. It's very satisfying to blow up a massive bridge letting all the nasty alien scum standing on it fall to their doom only to rebuild it moments later to get you across to your next objective.
So it's fun, satisfying and fairly innovative. So why only 4 stars? Well, RFA's shortcomings are, while minimal in my opinion, still rather annoying. As said before, the environments are very repetitive, often dark and dingy affairs. This creates a good sense of being on Mars and all, but it really makes the game feel like a bit of a grind towards the latter parts of the campaign mode as you begin to yearn for a little more variety and eye candy. The campaign story is also totally forgettable with shallow characters, average voice acting and at times a rather confusing plot.
RFA also boasts some quite nice online play functions which will extend the game's replay value beyond the single player campaign. Infestation mode pits you and up to 3 other online players against wave after wave of aliens in the "co-op survival" style. Ruin mode allows you to simply take advantage of the game's impressive destruction physics to make as much carnage as possible in an allotted time.
Overall, a good game and definitely worth a purchase at its current price. It's not going to become your favourite game of this generation but it will keep you entertained and introduce you to some interesting gameplay mechanics along the way.
on 15 April 2012
I'm so glad that I managed to grab this game for the bargain price of 97p, because without such a price I do fear I would have been put off getting it due to the reviews which stretched from the 'alright' to the 'awful'.
After an hour of playing it, I began to suspect that most of the reviewers were either too harsh or just plain wrong because the gameplay mechanics I had experienced thus far seemed perfectly up to scratch with other shooters out there. And after completing it, I must say that I actually prefered this over Guerilla. I never though that would happen. I thought, if the reviews were correct, I would play it for a minute and then throw the disc out of my window. That definitely hasn't happened, and I'll be keeping this game for quite some time to come.
Instead of giving you a spoilerific walkthrough, I'll instead give you my top three 'strengths' and 'weaknesses', which I think will serve to create a relevant and succinct review.
1) Linearity - not often you hear that word being used as a good thing, is it? For me Guerilla was a lot of fun, but it suffered because it was incredibly shattergun like, there was no real focus and the fact you had to travel for such a lengthy period of time in a vehicle that was probably going minus five miles per hour (exaggeration, but it was rather slow) did take away the sense of urgency. Armageddon, by being linear, is better because every mission has you knee-deep in all sorts of danger, which is a fantastic thing indeed.
2) Story - Armageddon, by being linear, allows itself to focus 100% on the story and I must say that it was a rather good one in that you could relate to the characters and laugh at the main character's quips.
3) Shooting - the game's greatest strength, it feels really immediate and powerful and you'll enjoy going through wave after wave of enemies as you do so. And then you have some vehicles which add to the calamity.
1) Length - it is a blast, ableit a short one. I beat it in five hours which is around half the time it took me to beat Ghost of Sparta. Maybe if the single player had been lengthened a bit, the game would be better overall? There is dlc to download that fills in a gap around the start of the game, but that is payable and not in this box!
2) Trophies - some are quite vague in terms of how you achieve them unless, of course, you refer to youtube.
3) Not as good a shooter as an Uncharted - but then again, what is?
Overall, a surprisingly good game which will keep you entertained from start to finish. There is 'Ruin' mode that I still haven't played and that sounds like a lot of fun, and then there is a Zombies-style mode for multiplayer, which I have also got to try out.
Recommended game - just ignore the negative reviews! I've a feeling that they slate it because it isn't open world, but I'd wager that if Guerilla was linear too that Armageddon would have done better in the reviews department.
on 18 January 2012
I love this game so much, I go on a downer when I have to stop playing. I am on my third run with the unlocks and it is just superb. I don't have time to read dozens of drop down menus, consider a myriad of options, and be bogged down by meaningless tattle. I'm a working adult after a little bit of fun on down time, and this game delivers just that, with it's wonderful destruction ballet, crazy atheletic creatures that you will dispatch with imaginative fun to use weapons. As this game was fairly locked down in terms of discovery, maybe the next game might be crossed between this one, and the previous Guerilla title, but with free roaming, teaming with dodgy humans and monsters, on and within the Martian landscape.
on 21 March 2013
There are a lot of bad reviews here from people saying Armageddon is nothing like the first one - by which they mean Guerrilla.
What they don't seem to know is that Guerrilla is actually the third Red Faction game, making Armageddon the fourth.
The first 2 games, back on the PS2, are FPS games. Thus making Armageddon truer to those games than Guerrilla because it is linear, just like they were.
Guerrilla is the odd one out in terms of structure and gameplay. It is a fantastic game, I'm simply writing this review to counter the ignorance of this generation's gamers who are slamming Armageddon for not having the same structure as Guerrilla.
Armageddon is a true Red Faction game. Plus, it takes the storyline throughout the series full circle - the alien creatures are akin to Capek's monsters featured during the middle of the first Red Faction game - and a statue of Capek even features inside the alien tomb in Armageddon and he is referenced by S.A.M.
Therefore, it expands upon the brief section in the middle of the first game in which you fight monsters instead of people. Capek was clearly inspired to create these monstrosities based upon the aliens in Armageddon that he helped to entomb.
Armageddon is not without its faults, but it is a true Red Faction game and it is a lot of fun to play - especially using the magnet gun, which is one of the best game weapons ever conceived.
on 11 February 2012
I didn't expect much from it ! But ... I really like everything about it. Story line, graphics, it does copy Dead Space a little bit but for that price, it really is one to play. Enjoy it !!!
on 17 July 2011
Here's a list of things that shouldn't be put in caves: parrots, solar panels, ex-girlfriends, formerly successful open-world games set on Mars. Because this time Red Faction isn't set on Mars exactly, it's set in it, which is more of a problem than you might think.
The last Red Faction was an open world smash-fest, a sort of red planet GTA with plenty of missions, a range of challenges, and big space vehicles to drive around. Here, all that's been cut in favour of an entirely linear action game that spends 90% of its running time underground in a series of identical caves. Playing as Darius Mason, a man who unwittingly unleashed a race of killer bugs on the underground colonists (um, woops), you must try to find out what happened and, inevitably, how to stop it. Here's a clue: it has a lot to do with killing bugs.
It's third-person action, and as in Guerilla, the hook is your ability to destroy things with a big hammer and then repair them with a sort of magic glove - taking apart a whole bridge, say, then rebuilding it when you need it again. In the open-world setting of the previous game, this introduced a strategic edge and a lot of fun: why waste your ammo trying to kill all the enemies inside a building when you can just tear the whole structure down on top of them? That doesn't really work in the claustrophobic nooks and crannies of Armageddon's caves though, so you're left half-heartedly smashing things for salvage that lets you buy upgrades. That is, until you realise how uninspiring these upgrades are. Extra health, you say? What a game changer.
Also uninspiring is Darius himself. The grandson of Red Faction: Guerilla's Alec Mason, he's inherited all of his ancestor's genetic code: he's bald, he's loud, he's toting a massive hammer, and he's outstandingly bland. The main characters are only distinguishable because one's white, one wears a hood, and one's got boobs. Otherwise they all look like boiled eggs with faces drawn on them, and have the personalities to match. It's a mercy that you can skip the cut-scenes; sadly, skipping the banal in-game banter isn't an option.
Like a pest-control worker mad on his own poison supplies, you spend most of your time just shooting bugs. So many bugs. Bugs that occasionally look like necromorphs, sometimes look like the result of unprotected sex between a gibbon and a hedgehog, and frequently put up more tentacles than you'd find in a Japanese porno stash. You go into an area, get an instruction to break or repair something, and then you're guaranteed a deluge of enemies to kill. Don't even think about legging it, either: you won't be allowed to leave that section until you've cleared it. Sometimes you do it in a mech suit, sometimes in a giant spidery walker thing, but however you clear the critters out, it gets old real fast - especially as there are only five or six main types.
Even that wouldn't be so bad if there was a bit more oomph in the armoury. You get the standard stuff (pistols, assault rifle, shotgun, rocket launcher) plus futuristic nano-weapons that disintegrate solid objects and enemies alike, and a magnet gun that enables you to yank bits of scenery from one point to another. Sounds like a blast, but they just don't feel as powerful as they should, especially against bigger enemies, while dissolving stuff with the nano beam and nano blaster turns out to be a big yawn.
Even the rare set-pieces are tedious. One has you riding a big vehicle called an excavator through a tunnel, while continuously rebuilding cover and shooting enemies. Great, except you can only do one of those things at a time. Strategy goes out the window: you just have to press R1 to fire, and pray. The samey environments add to the feeling of anti-climax. Whether you're being chased by a big walker (through a tunnel) or manning a gun on a slow-moving barge (in a tunnel), only the red rock and lava make it obvious that you're not playing a spelunking sim set in the Lake District. The showdowns with the two main bosses hold no surprises, and the final battle is basically a slightly more exciting version of a loading bar.
Survive that and finish the game (which takes about eight hours), and you're rewarded with the best thing about Armageddon: an unlockable treat in the form of Mr. Toots, the rainbow-farting killer unicorn. Yes, really. He adds a touch of personality that's woefully absent from the rest of the game, but the problem is that, having slogged through once, you won't want to do it again, even with a magical horsey alongside you.
It's a shame because the series' PS3 debut was so strong, with ingenious competitive multiplayer and a huge open playground. Maybe the linear route was cheaper, but the lesson is if you want to go to Mars, don't do it on a budget.
on 15 December 2012
Having played the first installment of the saga Guerrilla, I bought Armageddon knowing this sequel was much different from its predecessor, but I still expected a good game since I very much enjoyed playing Guerrilla and enjoyed many THQ games; unfortunately it's apparent after a couple of hours of game play that THQ have not invested much time and resources to develop Armageddon; it's a real pity, and the game is decent at best.
Graphics are good, and controls are also good, but the creatures you fight are ugly and boring. The story line doesn't not seem to have many links with the Guerrilla game story, hardly any to be honest, with the exception that you play another "Mason", but a couple of generations have passed and the planet resemble very little of the one discovered playing Guerrilla.
3 stars is the most this game deserves, and if you are looking for something to play which involves little thinking and fancy shooting at silly monsters, then this will fit that bill; one thing is for sure, it's nowhere as good and enjoyable as Guerrilla, and I would not recommend it... spend your money on something else!
on 31 December 2011
A Christmas gift which has been played regularly since they received it, good value which gave room for more gift buying.