After landing on the beaches of Normandy, soldiers spread out to liberate Europe from the Nazi regime. In Call of Duty 3, single players focus on the stories of four Allied soldiers that begin at Operation Cobra and lead to the eventual Liberation of Paris. Game room generals will lead the group through 14 missions filled with multiple attack routes as a member of either the American, British, Polish, and Canadian armies. Each path requires the use of special tactics in order to navigate the course effectively. Soldiers come equipped with special skills such as the British SAS soldier's knack for sabotage, and the Canadian mechanized infantry's expertise at inventive vehicles.
Internet action is available for up to 16 people in a single or split-screen game. Players choose from five different classes of character such as medic and anti-armor, and then customize gameplay options. Several game types include "Team Battle," "Capture the Flag," "War," "Headquarters," and a single flag "CTF" that can be played out on many different maps. Environments include deformable objects such as piles of wood that move and splinter when shot, and players may destroy soft cover to flush enemies out in the open. Additional "Battle Action" invites gamers to shoot less and get their hands dirty setting C-4 charges, and fighting Germans with their bare hands. ~ Gracie Leach, All Game Guide
It's time to "make way for the bad guy" in this adaptation of Brian De Palma's 1983 film starring Al Pacino as Cuban drug dealer Tony Montana. The game picks up where the movie left off, albeit with the stunning revelation that Montana isn't dead. Montana survives the assassination attempt and vows revenge on the kingpin who nearly put him out of commission: Alejandro Sosa. Players assume the role of power-hungry Montana in his bid to reclaim his cocaine empire and extravagant lifestyle. This, of course, means resorting to graphic violence and colorful profanity as a means of "persuasion."
Montana can freely explore 1980s Miami and its surrounding islands as he tries to amass a fortune by smuggling drugs. Along the way, players must purchase fronts for laundering money, defeat rival gangs, elude capture from the DEA, and discover creative uses for a chainsaw. One notable feature is the ability to target individual body parts, with stylish moves rewarded in "balls points." As Montana flexes his machismo, he will gradually build to a blind rage, a temporary state that switches the default third-person view to a first-person perspective with time-slowing effects, allowing players to inflict heavy damage.
Another key element is the lack of loading screens while visiting different areas of Miami, including such familiar haunts as Freedom Town, the Babylon Club, and Lopez Motors. As he earns respect and power, Montana can use a satellite phone to hire henchmen, request vehicles, weapons, and other tools of the drug trade. The game also features Al Pacino's likeness as Tony Montana, and several film actors have lent their voices to the project, including original cast members Robert Loggia and Steven Bauer. Screenwriter David McKenna, whose film credits include American History X and Blow, penned the game's original storyline. ~ Scott Alan Marriott, All Game Guide
Painkiller is a first-person shooter set in the sinister world of gothic horror. Daniel Garner is having a bad day. On his way downtown, he dies in a car accident and is not permitted past the pearly gates. In order to get back into the Almighty's good graces, he becomes Painkiller and must mow down Satan's minions in whatever lair, tomb, or residence they may be lurking. Dressed in a black overcoat and wearing sunglasses to protect against the sun, Painkiller has earned a reputation for his no-nonsense approach to demon hunting. Yet he also hides a secret: a pact with a demon has granted him special powers at the expense of his humanity.
Painkiller must fight his way past hordes of undead creatures in 20 levels while freeing whatever is left of their souls. With every 66 souls collected, Painkiller can transform into a ghastly creature himself, using its physical strength and ferocity to engage multiple demons at once. Players will also have at their disposal an arsenal of ranged weapons including a shotgun and the "painkiller," all of which feature primary and secondary attacks. Painkiller uses the Havok physics engine (Thief: Deadly Shadows, Deus Ex: Invisible War) for its interactive 3D environments and details such as moving clothes, rippling water, and crumbling walls. The game features seven multiplayer modes such as "Deathmatch," "Voosh," "Light Bearer," "Last Man Standing," and "Free-For-All." ~ All Game Guide
Urban Chaos is a first-person shooter that has players donning the badge of one Nick Mason, an ex-Marine and current officer of an elite counter-gang task unit known as T-Zero. His task is to respond to the city’s most dangerous areas to help rescue hostages and combat a ruthless mix of marauding miscreants. Mason will be joined throughout the game with firefighters, paramedics, and police crews to quell uprisings throughout city streets, dilapidated buildings, and back alleys. Since Mason’s rivals are armed with Molotov cocktails, throwing axes, assault rifles, and more, players will be able to protect themselves with a riot shield that can also be used to bash nearby foes. Online support is included for team-based competition in nine emergency scenarios. Players can fight as the police or against them while they attempt to defend or to destroy each faction’s objectives. ~ Scott Alan Marriott, All Game Guide
On the run from rival assassins, Agent 47 hops a plane to take care of business stateside in Hitman: Blood Money. Players will guide Agent 47 through a number of locales, including New Orleans, Los Angeles, and Las Vegas as he performs hits. It's up to the player to determine the manner in which a hit is executed, but the "rookie training" mode can show amateur assassins how to help targets have "accidents," by pushing the victim over a ledge or pinning him underneath something heavy. Money earned from completed jobs varies depending on the cleanliness and professionalism of the hit. Agent 47's paycheck can be spent in a number of ways including bribing reporters, customizing weapons with one of 15 upgrades, or paying pedestrians for information. An online message board allows players to post stats, skills, and other scores, determining once and for all who the sneakiest assassin on the planet is. ~ Gracie Leach, All Game Guide
Rebellion invites comics fans and action gamers back to the future with this video game adaptation of 2000AD's Rogue Trooper. Players take the role of Gerry Finley-Day and Dave Gibbons' genetically enhanced super-soldier, to fight for revenge in the disturbingly futuristic Nu Earth. The game plays like a third-person shooter, but tactical concerns such as stealth, reconnaissance, mobility, and timing are also important for continued survival in the unforgiving battlefields. Although a loner, the solitary G.I. is never completely alone, as he can receive guidance and advice from two former comrades, whose personalities are stored in computer chips that Rogue Trooper carries in his high-tech helmet (Helm) and backpack (Bagman). ~ T.J. Deci, All Game Guide
This stealth-shooter places players in the first-person role of an elite Black Ops agent and arms them with the cutting-edge technology they'll need to accomplish their crucial mission. The experimental, artificially intelligent "Sentinel" combat suit provides a wealth of high-tech advantages, while the versatile OIWC assault rifle offers the functionality of six different standard weapons. Considering the raw power and cunning adaptability of this new military technology, these devices must not fall into the wrong hands, and the player's objective is to make sure this does not happen. When the military scientist who helped create the Sentinel equipment goes missing, players suit up and head to the Balkans -- the inventor's last known location -- on a mission to investigate the disappearance and keep the technology from a mysterious enemy. ~ T.J. Deci, All Game Guide
Spanish developer Pyro Studios' World War II tactical strategy series undergoes a significant renovation in Commandos: Strike Force, as the overhead 2D perspective from previous entries is replaced with a first-person viewpoint in 3D environments. Players can freely switch between three individual characters as they engage in a unified series of 14 missions in Norway, France, and Russia. Characters include Colonel George Brown, a spy fluent in German and a master of disguise, Francis O'Brien, a Green Beret specializing in heavy weapons, and sniper William Hawkins, who can pick off targets from great distances and is an expert diver.
All three commandos will be involved in kidnapping attempts, assassinations, hostage rescues, creating diversions, sabotaging installations, and more. One of the game's distinguishing features is the freedom to complete objectives in any order and in multiple ways. Players can decide to which characters to use in a given mission, which paths to take on the map, whether to use stealth or force, and other decisions. Authentic weapons from the time period include a choice of pistols, rifles, machine guns, and explosives, but players are also free to use more clandestine means of killing, from strangling to slitting throats. Online battles for up to eight players are also supported via Xbox Live in multiple game modes and a choice of customization options. ~ Scott Alan Marriott, All Game Guide
As the title suggests, Far Cry: Instincts -- Evolution picks up where 2005's first-person shooter left off. Players once again slip into the well-traveled boots of protagonist Jack Carver, who is lured into an island heist by a comely vixen and then framed for murder. This kicks off a six-mission solo campaign that introduces three new weapons and an assortment of vehicles. Players will be able to subdue their prey with poisonous darts, pipe bombs, and Molotov cocktails, in addition to the armaments found in Far Cry: Instincts. New vehicles include armored pickup trucks, heavy transport trucks, and sampan boats. The game also features a complement of improved feral abilities and an enhanced multiplayer component. Xbox Live users can create their own maps with greater ease and with more varied designs, while an extra online mode called "Seek and Secure" involves finding and maintaining control of a station before time expires. ~ Scott Alan Marriott, All Game Guide
This console-exclusive release in the critically acclaimed squad-based shooter series revisits missions and key features from previous Rainbow Six games on the computer. Ding Chavez is once again in command of the operation and will explore classic maps from both the 1998 original and its sequel, Rogue Spear. The series trademark style of caution, coordination, and close quarters combat, where one shot can end a mission, is alive and well as players issue commands to squad mates and outfit their team with a choice of more than 20 high-tech weapons.
The four-man squad will travel the world to fight foreign and domestic terrorists within such locales as Idaho, Venice, Mexico City, and Siberia in seven campaign missions. The control scheme and graphics engine mirror 2005's Rainbow Six: Lockdown, while the artificial intelligence is designed to take cover, use grenades, and call for help. Xbox Live support for up to 16 players is available in such modes as Assassin, Free-For-All, and Persistent Elite Creation, with the latter allowing players to improve their character over time by earning points from online competition. ~ Scott Alan Marriott, All Game Guide