Narrator: Once again, we join our hero, Leo Melanson, currently in the process of picking out the game for this weeks review. However, this week, he searches for the perfect game, one special enough to mark the anniversary of his birth. He looks around and finds that none of them quite do it. Then, he sees it, his shelf of PC games. Few, but mighty, he sees the perfect game to review. And so, he reaches up for it.
Leo: Almost… got it…
Narrator: and with one final stretch our reviewer holds in his hands this week’s game: FREEDOM FORCE!
Freedom Force is a super hero game probably unlike any you’ve played. It’s described as a “Real-Time Strategy RPG”, which means you’ll have a team of heroes adventuring around a map and attacking in “real-time”, but you also get strength, weaknesses, stats, and leveling like those you’ll find in RPGs. It’s a great mix because people who aren’t necessarily good at Real-time strategies, but good at RPGs (like I am) can be good at this game, and vice versa. (It also helps that you can actually pause and chose what you want to do). Each level has a certain amount of missions and objectives you have to complete before moving on, most of them being “defeat blank”. Completing your missions and making sure a maximum amount of bad guys are defeated with a minimum of casualties, makes you earn prestige to recruit new Super Heroes.
You interact with objects by clicking around. And when I say “objects” I mean EVERYTHING. You can talk with civilians, pick-up telephone poles to use as clubs and even destroy buildings. We can’t forget attacking the bad guys too. Attacking uses energy, which it refills over time. Usually, the more useful or stronger the attack, the more energy it’ll use. You can also chose to make the attack all around better by using more energy on it. Don’t forget, all attacks have a certain element behind it (going back to strengths and weaknesses) and some have certain effects. Learning how to use all of this to your advantage will make you an expert at this game.
The story is… Super Heroes. An alien race gives an energy X to human and… Super Heroes. That’s the best way I can explain it. Random villains start popping up at the same time super heroes do and our heroes do their best to stop them. They all have their own plans and ways to what they want to do, mostly take over the world (clip: M. Bison: Of course!). Really, if you’ve ever read a comic book or seen Super Heroes cartoons then you know what I’m talking about. They even go all out in the cut scenes and artwork to invite that comparison. Sure, there is this underlying plot with the alien race and someone quote pulling the strings unquote, but like everyone else, he just has his moment. So yeah, the story is Super Heroes. Admittedly its nothing too original, the heroes themselves seem like knock offs: MinuteMan is Captain America, El Diablo is the Human Torch, The Ant is Spider-man, etc… But the story is still really fun to play through if you like Super Heroes. And I lauve Super Heroes.
Now, one thing that is probably the most enjoyed from this game for most of the fans is this game’s ability to customize it. First off, you have the ability to make your own Super Heroes and bring them into the game. But it’s not just that: The game makers actually encourage Moding this game, so much so they released a program to let you do it! You want your own Super Hero design in the game? You can do it. You want to play your own story? You can make that happen too! Even if you don’t have the patience for it yourself, you can go online and look at the fan community and see what they have to offer. Encouraging a game to be this customizable defiantly earns some props in my books.I just barely glazed over everything I love Freedom Force. I could keep going on about the story details, or the game play factors, or all of that stuff that makes this game just fun, but that would take hours since I love this game so much. This game was developed by Irrational Games, also known for making the well-received System Shock and BioShock games. It was published by Crave Entertainment and Electronic Arts (who once again managed to earn a mention in my reviews), but I believe the true credit does go to Irrational Games, especially since they later self-published the sequel; Freedom Force vs the Third Riech. But that’s a review for another day. To finish off, I would just like to say that I am honored to make Freedom Force the first game I give a full 10 out of 10 levels to.