A New Type of War (E3 2012)
Modern military shooters seem to dominate the western market, with Battlefield and Call of Duty running the show. Therefore, it makes both sense and no sense at all that 2K Games would try to revitalize and resurrect the Spec Ops series. In a saturated genre, 2K Games will have to do something different. Luckily, from what we saw at E3, it looks like they’re doing just that.
A big part of Spec Ops: The Line was the setting. The game takes place in Dubai, and for those of you who know what Dubai looks like, you already know this is probably one of the neatest settings for a modern military shooter since Rainbow Six: Vegas. Dubai homes some of the richest people. With towering glass skyscrapers and insane architecture, not to mention some of the most bizarrely built locations on Earth, it’s the perfect place to set a game. Now we throw in the second huge crazy aspect: a giant sandstorm is currently ravaging the city, turning Dubai into an even more bizarre and ultimately creepy place. The same sort of unnerving tension you get playing a horror game comes about. The sand mechanic not only looks amazing and builds tension, but it completely puts a twist on gameplay. One example is that you are able to trigger sand avalanches to bury your enemies. Already, you can tell Spec Ops: The Line has something completely different going for it.
Theme and story also seem to take a huge precedence within the game. Spec Ops: The Line promises to offer a gritty, real, and interpersonal story rooted in the trials and tribulations of war, more than the patriotic hoo-ha we often see in other military shooters. To help bring this to light, there will be moral decision-making throughout.
Spec Ops: The Line will be heavily based in squad tactics. Players won’t just be running and gunning, pulling the trigger and spamming grenades to get by. They will have to utilize the meticulously-crafted level designs and cover system, along with the weather / sand dynamics to make things really work. The A.I. works brilliantly and will make your execution of tactics feel worthy and important. With ultra-tight controls, I was into the game right away, experiencing a whole new level of third-person military shooter. The addition of Nolan North (the voice of Nathan Drake) made everything that much better.
With so many modern military shooters out there, and way too many third-person shooters, Spec Ops: The Line is a worthy attempt at doing its own thing. With carefully-crafted gameplay and a theme and mood direction we don’t often see in the genre, this will be a game to keep an eye on. Better yet, it'll be one to check out when it launches in just a couple of weeks.
Three things describe Rando: Good beer, good food, and video games. On occasion, Rando flies a zeppelin through time seeking power crystals.
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