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Friday, February 25, 2005

Bring order to chaos

OK - Swat 4 simply rocks. This is the game that Republic Commando could have been, except draped in police blues and not an oversized helmet. The immersion is simply great, with you not only feeling like you're part of a SWAT mission, but that you have some real control over how the tactics play out. Unlike RC, in Swat 4 you can select anything in the game world to serve as a cover point, or decide exactly who in your unit should be opening the door and tossing in a flashbang. Yell at suspects to try and get them to surrender before taking them out, recover evidence, remember procedure ... Irrational really hit all the bases with this one. Did I mention it will have coop? Oh yes. Ohhhh yes.

And they've also added in a quick mission editor. I'm tellin' ya - this is going to be a coming trend. It used to be that anyone could at least hamfist a Doom level which was moderately playable, but now you practically need a degree in applied mathematics to open an editor. Pariah has realized this and is shipping with a simplified level creator. Swat 4 allows you to change up the mission parameters for a given map. Make more enemies, give them different weapons, set different objectives and even write your own backstory. Very clever.

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