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    fishspit's Space Marine (360)

    [September 18, 2012 12:37:11 AM]
    Space Marine is a third person shooter/action/adventure game developed by Relic, released for the xbox 360 last November. The player takes up the mantle of a genetically/cybernetically enhanced super soldier fighting off an alien invasion of a human world. Now while that is hardly an original concept, the execution of the game is in my opinion brilliant. The multiplayer and single player campaigns play and feel very different, so this entry will be about multiplayer.

    When the game first released the multiplayer was a bit bland, having only a few game types that all boiled down to “shoot at people a bunch”. There has been some DLC since then, and multiplayer is now one of the most exciting parts of the game. Players customize their load outs and fight each other for objectives, or you can fight off hordes of enemies in a cooperative mode.
    One of the things that make the multiplayer memorable is the way “classes” is handled. There are three core classes the player can choose from: Devastator, Assault, and Tactical. The Devastator class allows the player to carry heavy weapons, trading speed and flexibility for raw power. The Tactical class is a flexible class; giving the player the most options for weapons and other perks that let them fight. The third class is what is innovative, the Assault class features a “jump pack” that allows the player limited flight. The options for this class are aggressive, and based heavily around melee combat. The fact that some players can fly means that even those stuck on the ground need to be able to fight in three dimensions.

    The maps you play on are built to accommodate these different play styles as well. Each one is decently sized and varied. There is usually a good mix of open space that lets the assault marines fly about, as well as a few high places to roost and recover health. But also has a more closed in, dense area for closer ranged fighting. For the devastators there are good spots to post up and snipe, as well as good fire lanes to protect objectives. There is always plenty of cover to duck and roll around for attackers to use on the approach as well as bolstering defenders. The environments themselves are at times as original as the game’s concept (read: not very). There is the obligatory sewer/factory map, storage yard, crumbling city ruins, etc. That said: the environments fit in very well with the grimdark far future they are meant to portray.
    Despite the radical differences in each class, Multiplayer seems fairly well balanced. You start with the most rudimentary wargear and must “earn” better/different perks and weapons. In many games this gives the players who have played longer a huge advantage, but Space Marine handles this problem pretty well. Each time you die you are offered the chance to “copy” the class of the person who killed you. This lets new players try out a variety of different (and proven!) classes, and ensures that veteran equipment doesn’t overpower the wielder.

    Another problem with games of this sort is a general lack of cohesion within the teams. Some people work together, but usually it’s just a jumble of bullets and explosions. This game suffers a bit from that, but it rewards people who work together. For example, one perk you can take allows people with a complimentary perk to respawn on your position. This sacrifices a bit of a player’s personal prowess for a more or less steady supply of backup, and makes for an interesting dynamic. Informal “squads” will form, with one man acting as a beacon for several of his allies. As a general rule, a group of average skill working together will do better than a skilled lone wolf.

    At first glance, it’s easy to write off this game as some Gears of War clone. But after spending a little more time with it I found it to be a lot of fun. While it lacks a bit in variety, it still will consume an entire evening if mine every now and then because of the emergent gameplay.
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    fishspit's Space Marine (360)

    Current Status: Playing

    GameLog started on: Sunday 27 November, 2011

    fishspit's opinion and rating for this game

    No comment, yet.

    Rating (out of 5):starstarstarstar

    Related Links

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    See info on Space Marine

    More GameLogs
    other GameLogs for this Game
    1 : Space Marine (PS3) by jp (rating: 4)
    2 : Space Marine (360) by richard (rating: 5)
    3 : Warhammer 40,000: Space Marine (PC) by dkirschner (rating: 3)


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