Concept Rogue Warrior is a “personality-based” first-person shooter based on the books of the same name by ex-SEALs operative Richard Marcinko.
Beards, ponytails and knives are all in check.
Pity about the game play…
The mention of certain game features during press events will always cause concern for expectant journalists: things like QTEs, bullet time and fetch quests. But developer Rebellion set a new standard for worrying game descriptions recently. When one member of the press, unimpressed by what they’d seen, asked: “what makes your game unique?” The initial response was unconvincing: “knives”. Clearly, something is amiss.
Rogue Warrior was announced three years ago and the original concept contained both coop and a tile system that would allow players to create their own multiplayer maps. Both features have now been removed, Bethesda apparently unhappy with the game’s direction and replacing such features with… well, nothing. The demo revealed a bland shooter, its ‘unique’ features comprising 25 kill moves performed using the aforementioned knives.
The emphasis is now on the personality driving the game, that of ponytailed ex-Navy SEAL Richard “Demo Dick” Marcinko. This is a man who caused so much trouble in ‘Nam that the Vietcong put a bounty on his head; became the first commanding officer of SEAL Team Six; and also founded Red Cell, a team tasked with testing the security of naval bases, nuclear submarines, and embassies. It’s even rumored that Marcinko sneaked onto Air Force One just to prove it could be done.
He’s an intriguing character, which makes Rogue Warrior’s generic nature even more unfortunate. The short demo saw Marcinko make his way across a bridge, taking out enemies with knives to the forehead, slashing throats and perforating kidneys. The first-person dota 2 medusa guide gameplay was as brutal as it was derivative, the most innovative features being the placement of bombs or shooting of explosive barrels. Furthermore Marcinko’s gravelly voiceover provided by Mickey Rourke – consisted only of daft one-liners and excessive use of the word ‘fuck’. The sneaking suspicion that Rogue Warrior is little more than a bog-standard shooter with a famous face slapped on top is hard to suppress – it seems 40 years of service has been condensed into immature profanity, gratuitous violence, and very little else.
Still, Rogue Warrior is only at pre-alpha stage, and we’ve seen but 15 minutes of actual gameplay. It’s in need of a great deal of attention before it’ll begin to feel worthwhile, but given the involvement of Bethesda – a company to which quality comes naturally – there’s the slight chance this game will scrape itself away from the mires of mediocrity.
Emphasis is on the world ‘slight’, however, because – tongue-in-cheek humor or not Rogue Warrior lacks both the skilful subtlety required of a great action game and the kitsch exaggeration exemplified in the comedy of Duke Nukem.