An outdated storyline delivers a rat-a-tat-tat of an experienceShooting games are, naturally, all about shooting. So what makes a good shooting game? Storyline, weapon options, colorful, life-like graphics and great sound effects. There are shooting games like the classic Rainbow Six series or the Counter Strike series, but these are for serious fans who expect to find a Barrett M82A1 sniper rifle among the weapon selections. In Freedom Fighters, less importance is placed on such details and more of the focus is on the storyline the game is centered on.
That does not mean that the storyline is unique. In fact, it is a little bit dated. The player is a rebel in New York City fighting in a world dominated by Russia. Not exactly original or timely, but it provides an alternative to the recent avalanche of vampire slaying exercises in the shooting-game market.
The player gains control of a squad of 12 people as he completes missions. Having the player lead a squad adds a dimension to the game that many others in this category lack. As the squad leader, the player has to make decisions about how to best use his players.
And completing a mission is not about shooting your way to victory. Ammunition has to be carefully conserved since your squad can only acquire more by pilfering it from dead soldiers. In order to complete a mission, there are a series of smaller tasks that have to be achieved to accomplish the larger objective. For instance, if the mission is to take control of a police station, snipers protecting the entrance have to be taken out first.
Freedom Fighters is a shooting game for the less-than-hardcore fans of the genre. The accuracy of the weapons is not as precise as some other shooting games. This shortcoming is compensated for by the well-developed storyline, which gives it a flavor more like a role-playing game with the fast pace of a traditional shooter.
Ratings: * * *
by Brian Lee