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November 2, 2005
Tom Clancy's Rainbow Six Lockdown - Review
Release Date Distributor Developer Players Rating Difficulty
8/9/2005UbisoftUbisoft Montreal1-2, MA15+Easy
Save Size Sound Format Vibration 60Hz Mode 50Hz Border Widescreen
340KBDolby PLIIYesNoNoneNo

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Some gorgeous graphics.
The three big Tom Clancy game series have been so popular because they appeal to all sorts of gamers. Splinter Cell is a one man stealth 'em up where avoiding combat and not being spotted is the name of the game. Ghost Recon is more of a hardcore squad based shooter were everything has to be planned out to survive. Rainbow Six is more of an arcade style shooter with squad based and strategy elements. Despite Rainbow Six Lockdown being the second Rainbow Six game to make it to the Playstation 2 (following last years Rainbow Six 3, the squad based shooter is fast becoming a crowded genre. So is this game another classic Clancy hit or is the formula becoming a little stale? Letís find out.

Rainbow Six Lockdown like all other Tom Clancy games features a near future world with a familiar terrorist attack on the cards. This time the terrorists are planning to attack with a devastating gas bomb that kills everything that it touches. The problem for the Rainbow Six team is that they donít know where the attack is coming from. So whenever they get some information they are off all over the world to find and eliminate the terrorist threat once and for all. The game takes place in locations such as the Netherlands, Scotland, South Africa and a few other places for you to battle it out with the bad guys and save the world in.

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Enemy above.
The game plays quite nicely with Rainbow Six Lockdown being one of the easier squad based shooting games to get to grips with. You take control of squad leader Ding Chavez and lead a squad of four into battle. Using your team mates makes the game much easier than trying to Rambo your way through single handedly. When you get to a corner you send one of your men to scout out any lurking enemies and they usually do a good job of it. When you come to a locked door you can just barge straight through and start shooting or you can instruct your team to take the door down and clear the room before you enter. Also your team mates have various skills that you will need to utilize to get through the game. If any of your team dies then it is game over, so you do have to take care of them.

One of the best new gameplay features is the missions were you control Dieter Weber the sniper. You are either in a chopper or high up on a ledge and you must provide cover fire so the rainbow six team to advance. These missions are fairly short but they do break the game up nicely and provide quite a lot of fun. The rest of the game is spent shooting bad guys with quite a large arsenal of weapons, everything from assault rifles to grenades are there for the terrorist hunt. Also as you complete missions you gain money which you can use to buy new equipment. The other gameplay elements to Rainbow Six Lockdown should be familiar to all squad based shooting fans with things like finding and defusing bombs and saving hostages the usual tasks you have to complete.

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Battle in the streets.
One area which Rainbow Six Lockdown is more than capable in is the multiplayer modes. The game features two player split screen mode were you and a friend can take part in all of the games sixteen levels or just go off on a terrorist takedown. The online modes are quite nice as well offering full support for up to sixteen players. The modes are the usual online fare, with team death match, rivalry mode and a capture the flag type game. While these are hardly original it is nice to see them included as of late quite a few games have been offering no online support for the PS2 at all. So if you get the opportunity to play this game in multiplayer you will find quite and enjoyable experience.

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One of the gritty levels.
Sadly, there are a few bullet holes in Rainbow Six Lockdown that really lessons the experience. The first and foremost is the ease of the game. Rainbow Six originally started out on the PC as a bloody difficult game; here it is so simple it hurts. Enemies rarely act with any intelligence at all and just stand there waiting to be shot or if they spot you chances are they wont be able to hit you from two meters away. If you donít turn off an alarm they will call for more reinforcements, but that is hardly a worry as you can easily mow them all down in no time at all. Also your team mates are not always on top of their games either, they too sometimes struggle to shoot an enemy who is only inches away from them. Another problem is the help you get to complete the missions, everything from arrows pointing where to go, machines that can be used lighting up in front of you to receiving tips on what to do next. Plus you get a set of goggles that can see through walls just to make things even easier. With the silly AI of both the enemies and your squad mates it really turns Rainbow Six Lockdown into a standard run and gun game. The new arcade focus will really annoy the hardcore fans of the strategy elements that made the game famous.

The visuals however are pretty nice in this game. The game features nice looking player models, weapons and environments. Rainbow Six Lockdown's visuals do a great job of making you feel a part of the war zone from standard environments, like parliament buildings, kitchens and prisons etc. The cut scenes before each mission are also presented in excellent fashion. There are a few glitches that lower the mood though, things like your teammates getting stuck on doors or each on each other, does look poor.

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Using the sniper rifle.
While generally good the sound in Rainbow Six Lockdown isn't award winning. The sound effects throughout the game are nicely done and add to the atmosphere while the weapons all sound nice and meaty as they should be. Unfortunately while the character voices all sound pretty good they do become annoying after a while.

The new arcade style may attract some new players to the series but it will really annoy long term fans of the series. Rainbow Six Lockdown is probably a great game for those looking for their first squad based shooter or those looking for a solid online title. Those that prefer more strategy should probably look elsewhere though.

Review By: Graham Darko

Order your copy now from Gameswarehouse (PAL version) or Amazon (NTSC Version).
GRAPHICSNice looking characters, environments and cut scenes let down by the odd glitch or two.
80%
SOUNDNice sound effects bring the game to life.
77%
GAMEPLAYPretty easy arcade style game. Multiplayer is much better though.
75%
VALUE16 levels and solid multiplayer support, there's some life in this one.
77%
OVERALLA bit of a departure from the strategy heavy emphasis of earlier games, but a pretty solid game worth a rent especially for those looking for a good multiplayer game.
76%

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