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May 19, 2006
Rogue Trooper - PS2 Review
Release Date Distributor Developer Players Rating Difficulty
Save Size Sound Format Vibration 60Hz Mode 50Hz Border Widescreen
170KBDolby PLIIYesYesSmallYes

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Letting the sentry gun do the work.
As the current generation winds down itís inevitable that gamers start to look, and save for, the newer systems, but that doesnít mean we should neglect the current generation. In fact, if you do that youíre likely to miss out on some of the most original, exciting and technically accomplished titles the system has to offer. Is Rogue Trooper one such title? To an extent. Itís not perfect (what game is!), but it is certainly one of the most enjoyable third person action titles weíve played for a while.

Developed by UK developers Rebellion (who also worked on Sniper Elite on the PS2 among others) this third person action game is based on the 2000AD comic books. Fortunately even if youíre not a reader of the comic book series - such as myself - there is absolutely no problem in following the story in this game thanks to some wonderful cut scenes.

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Graphics look pretty neat.
In the game you play a genetically enhanced soldier known as the Rogue Trooper who is out to seek vengeance on a general who has killed all his comrades. As your friends fall, you can remove their bio-chips which contains their personalities and skills and add them to your own arsenal for improved abilities, be it enhanced weapons accuracy, a holographic image, or the ability to pick electronic locks and so on. Itís an interesting system that gives you new abilities as you progress further into the game.

Other neat ways your fallen comrades can help is with tasks they can perform. Gunnar, who is attached to your machine gun after he is killed, will act as a sentry gun to cover you while you open doors or complete other tasks Ė very cool. Bagman is a salvage expert who allows you to salvage scrap, but then also buy new items such as ammo clips, medi-kits or grenades. In terms of Rogues abilities he can climb walls by pressing L1, while L2 will see him take cover against walls, rocks or any other item. The circle button allows him to throw small detonators or drop one so any enemies following him will be blown up. While taking cover Rogue can either blind shoot hoping to hit enemies but remaining under cover or duck out, and aim more precisely, but run the risk of getting hit.

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Sneaking up for a kill move.
As well as the third person action section there are moments when the main character can jump behind mounted machine guns or AA Flak cannons. These moments, while few and far between are tremendous fun and offer a great diversion from the main action. One aspect I havenít touched upon yet are the stealth kills. No, you donít have to complete entire missions Sam Fisher styled, but you do have the ability to creep up on enemies, and when close enough behind press the X button to perform a stealth kill. These are brutal, but very enjoyable and wonít alert other enemies to your presence.

Rogue Trooper also includes a couple of multi-player modes to keep you playing. As well as 2-player split screen support Rebellion have includes some 4-player online death match styled options. Sadly we didn't find anyone else to play with - hopefully this will change when more people pick up this game in the coming weeks.

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Watch out for the flames!
I have to say that while incredibly fun the game is far too short and far too easy. We completed the game in around 8 hours, give or take, with the main problem being the virtually unlimited amount of ammo available as long as you salvage parts from any bodies or bonuses littered around the levels. We also selected the Normal difficulty (which is the lowest) so if you're going to play the game then you're better off selecting the harder difficulty. The game also has many checkpoints through the levels, perhaps a dozen in a map that takes 30 minutes to complete which means that dying isnít a big issue as youíve likely just passed a checkpoint only a few moments previously.

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Some visuals are breathtaking.
In terms of visuals Rebellion have yet again developed a technically polished performance on Playstation 2. Rogue Trooper's levels are littered with explosions, and scripted events and the Nu Earth look is impressive - in a barren desert and cavern type way. Think Total Recall and you can imagine what the barren levels are like. The game is restricted to a dozen or so type enemies however their animation is pretty good. Shooting out the tanks on their backs and watching them run around in panic before it explodes never becomes tiresome. It must be said though that there is the odd moments of slowdown, and some of the areas look a little angular, particularly on rock ledges to climb etc, but overall it's a positive experience graphically.

Audio in the title is also impressive. The speech is fantastic with plenty of hints and chatter during the missions. The music and effects are also suitable for the game.

Rogue Trooper is another very solid title from Rebellion. If youíre after a very enjoyable third person action title then this game will provide you with your fix. Worth a rent at the very least.

Review By: Dave Warner

Order your copy now from Gameswarehouse (PAL version) or Amazon (NTSC Version).
GRAPHICSA little angular at times, but overall an accomplished title visually.
SOUNDGood speech, effects and music make this a solid aural experience.
GAMEPLAYA solid third person shooter which is entertaining from start to end.
VALUESadly this game is over all too soon, especially on low difficulty.
OVERALLRogue Trooper is a solid game which will certainly suit inexperienced gamers due to ease of play. Hardcore gamers will breeze through the game but it's is one of the most enjoyable third person shooters we've come across in recent times and is well worth a look.

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