March 13, 2005

Freedom Force: The Review!

So I just finished Freedom Force vs. the Third Reich (FF2), the sequel to Freedom Force (FF), released in 2002 (possibly 2001, but I picked it up the Summer of 2002). I enjoyed Freedom Force immensely, and I've gone back and played through the single-player game several times. Both games have a similar format: In each mission, you control a squad of up to four superheroes from a third-person overhead view. As the story progresses, characters earn experience and 'character points', which allow them to purchase more spectacular powers. The game includes a 'hero builder', which allows you to create your own heroes, who can then be 'recruited' into the single-player game; with some 3D modelling experience and practice with the hero builder, a user can create just about any hero they might come up with.

The differences between the two games is largely cosmetic: FF2 uses a new graphics engine which allows for more spectacular special effects than in FF, though these aren't anything that will blow your mind. Controls are almost identical, so if you've played FF recently you'll just notice a few small streamlining touches here and there. FF2 includes several new characters, my favourite being Tombstone (whose Possession power makes the game ridiculously easy sometimes), and all of the characters from the old game show up at one point or another.

The weaknesses of FF2 are largely the same as the weaknesses of FF, and the primary one is the fact that I got this game on Friday night and finished it Sunday night -- with Saturday and Sunday largely taken up by homework. All together, I'd say less than 20 hours to play the entire single-player game, even shorter than I remember FF being. The writing can also get more than a little cheesy at times, and there are some out-and-out plot holes.

If you, like me, are addicted to superhero games, then I recommend FF2, though not everyone will want to spend $40 on a game they can finish this quickly.

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