Preview By: Jared Black
|# Of Players:||1-4|
War games, and World War II ones in particular, have become the new "it" genre with a glut of them across all major genres. Two are already due on launch day in Call of Duty 2 and Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon: Advanced Warfighter, so it's somewhat of a relief that The Outfit will take a less realistic approach to warfare. This game's focus on just blowing stuff up should be enough to differentiate it from the crowd.
Players will take control of three different main characters, and lead their squads through 12 missions loosely based on events in World War II. The characters include J.D. Tyler (hand to hand combat specialist), Tommy Mac (heavy arms specialist), and Deuce Williams (anti-vehicle specialist). These missions will range from recon to search and destroy. The story is pretty basic; a Nazi general is running amok killing civilians throughout the countryside and it's your squad's duty to stop him.
As you alternate control of the three different characters during each mission, you'll have a custom set of skill sets and soldiers at your command that each have different abilities and gear as needed. Soldiers have automated artificial intelligence, which should free up the player to focus on blowing up as much as possible. As each mission progresses and objectives are met players will obtain points that can be used to purchase "Destruction on Demand". This D.O.D. can be used to order extra vehicles, troops, air strikes, and more to aid the player.
The environments are fully destructible (one of the "hot new things" with the 360), so you'll be able to progress as you wish. Destroy buildings and wipe out everyone inside, take out bridges or fences to alter progress, etc. Early screenshots show off some impressive environments and explosions, which should add even more to the immersion.
Naturally, The Outfit has the requisite multiplayer modes in the form of co-op and team-based versus modes either split-screen or online. Versus supports up to 8 players on Xbox Live or 2 players split-screen, while co-op supports 2 players in either mode. Relic also promises new downloadable content, including maps, character skins, vehicle graphics and more.
These days war games are a dime a dozen, but the focus on simply blowing stuff up in several different ways should help The Outfit carve out a decent audience among early adopters.
Posted: 2005-10-11 13:31:00PST