Developer: Tick Tock Games Ltd
Release Date: 17th October
Price as of Article: $24.99 USD, £19.99 GBP
In this story you are Rogue, the last GI for the Southers, in their war against the Norts in a bleak future that has devastated the land to the point that normal humans cannot venture in the wastelands outside without wearing a suit and breathing gear.
Yes this is the same Rogue from Rogue Trooper the 2000AD comic book series, the makers of Judge Dredd and other classic British comic books.
Rogue and his squad are sent on a mission and one by one your team is killed, when they die their being is transferred to a chip that can be planted in 60 seconds or their persona will forever be erased. Their chips end up in your Helmet, Gun and Bag and they accompany you through the missions giving you support and dishing out witty remarks!
The story Arc follows the comic and is told over a campaign of 13 missions, its classic stuff and draws you right into the story.
The voice acting is great in the cut scenes and Bagman, Gunnar and Helm have some great lines during missions to add a bit of personality. Your enemies sound classically dastardly and the sound effects are satisfying from machine guns to mortars and laser beams.
This Redux version really overhauls the original 2006 graphics. The game is remodelled in HD with improved art, lighting and special effects. The cutscenes are action filled and all of the comic book favourites – Rogue, Gunnar, Venus Bluegenes and The Traitor General have all been modelled well.
The games setting is bleak and dreary with a rather repetetive set of maps, the same shades appear everywhere in the game and weather effects are OK but not great. Weapons and vehicles look excellent and enemies look suitably menacing!
The original Rogue Trooper title was released in 2006 and was a pioneering tactical shooter including elements like using cover and having a choice of approaching levels in a stealthy way or head on. 11 years later and elements such as the cover system and the controls have been improved.
If you have ever played any shooter you will pick the controls up in no time, they feel great whether you are playing docked on the TV or on the move which is something I didn’t expect to say. ZR is used to shoot and ZL provides you with a slightly zoomed in aim but is not needed to shoot which lets you aim and fire quickly. Pushing in the right stick enters sniper mode which I found myself using very frequently and its a joy to aim and pick off your enemies with.
R throws one of the many choices of grenades and holding R lets you aim before you throw which works well, I did find that when you are in cover throwing a grenade is a pain as you don’t get to aim and sometimes cannot throw over even a short wall if crouched.
L lets you place landmines either at strategic points in the game such as to blow up a landing pad to stop air support arriving or as land mines which can be blown up remotely at any time.
As you progress you can unlock a number of different weapons but Gunnar is by far your most important as your main rifle and sniper. The shotgun, anti aircraft SAM missile launcher and mortar cannon all prove useful in certain situations at the right time.
The bulk of gameplay is in the form of the roughly 6 hour campaign mode, you start out shooting like most games but where things get a bit different is when your comrades die and become chips that you equip.
Gunnar opens up the option to allow you to deploy him as a turret offering up a way to select how you approach certain parts of the game and sharpening your handgun skills. I found that some portions of the game really needed you to use this feature.
Bagman manages your inventory and lets you use salvage which is found around maps and collected from dead enemies to purchase weapons, upgrade your kit and crucially create ammo and medipacks. Its a novel way to manage resources and I found it an interesting angle, eventually you will have enough credits that you can create whatever you need but at first managing your resources and balancing upgrades and ammo encouraged me to be accurate with my shooting.
Where it can be a bit of a drag is when you need to dip into this menu mid battle which can detract from the action. The levels themselves generally include an objective which once met leads to another before completing and most are about 30 minutes, there are a couple of standout levels including the train journey and the last battle. As a short campaign I found myself not getting bored, you are exceptionally strong being able to take on hordes of enemies and the slaying action feels right for a comic book hero. This is where the games 11 years do take their toll a bit, the AI has not gone unscathed in the test of time and often I could stay back and pick off my enemies, they also killed each other accidentaly with cross fire or by lobbing a misplaced grenade. Whilst you can jump there is nothing clever here with some parts of maps feeling like you should be able to jump up them but not being able to.
Outside of the campaign there are two additional modes in Stronghold and Progressive. Stronghold has you defend your position against waves of Nort scum and Progressive has you take on a route to a safe zone to finish the level. Both are fine but with no achievements or other reason to carry on playing they wear off quick quickly.
There is no local multiplayer which is a shame but Online Multiplayer lets you play in Stronghold and Progressive modes together with friends or strangers to take on and slay the Nort.
At $24.99 or £19.99 the game falls at the lower end in between a lot of the Indie titles and mainstream games on the Nintendo Switch. This version of the games overhauls the graphics, improves controls and provides more difficulty options. Online Play is included but is limited to playing alongside your colleagues in Stronghold and Progressive Modes. No local multiplayer is a shame considering the original PC version had it included and as the main campaign only lasts about 6 hours there is limited replay value here.