- developer: Rebellion
At the end of the 21st Century, mankind made a near-fatal error. It handed over control of the machines that for decades had taken care of its menial tasks, assuming that its faithful servants would exist indefinitely in a life of subservience. However, once the machines realized the power their own, they took it into their own hands - and waged war against their creators and themselves, plunging the Earth into darkness.
You assume the role of a battle-hardened hero, Gunlok, one of mankind's last survivors. You must fight through 15 levels of futuristic mayhem in one of the most fast-moving and inventive strategy games of all time. As the game progresses, Gunlok recruits a squad of tough, maverick robots, each offering different skills, weapons and abilities that must be intelligently utilized together to defeat the enemy. Progression through levels is sometimes by brute force, sometimes by ingenuity and cunning but always by deploying your squad wisely to take full advantage of their individual strengths.
Gunlok is an interesting mix of strategy and action which has the player controlling a team of robots and a battle-armoured ex Special Forces trooper (Gunlok). Your task is to fight your way through level after level of enemy robots, run by a sinister Corporation. But the game is so much more than just firing larger and larger guns at larger and larger foes! There are involving strategies to be planned, equipment to be managed as well as large guns to be fired. This is where Gunlok excels, you can approach any situation in very different ways; either taking a more strategic approach or a more action oriented approach. For those loving action there are the aforementioned large guns, the Epulsar 'lightning' gun being a favourite. For those wishing a more thoughtful approach there is the 'Active Pause' that allows you to pause the game and set up series' of waypoints for your team members.
The adversaries within the game are extremely intelligent. Each uses a unique 'view cone' to patrol the landscape, which the player must avoid or risk becoming spotted. Similarly, players must evade the enemy's 'hearing range', which also alerts them to intruders. It's tense stuff - robotic guards hunting down Gunlok and his team if they suspect a breach of security; different evasion strategies offering many different styles of play. The most confident players will brazenly battle it out with the enemy, whilst those who wish to conserve health and weaponry will seek vantage points and battle the droids more strategically. A combination of force and cunning is the wisest approach.
Once the battles are underway, the power of the graphics engine becomes apparent. The display technology allows an astounding level of detail, with players able to view the action from any vantage point - from high up above the conflict, to right over the shoulder of the characters. Dynamic real-time shadows and coloured lighting make this a beauty to look at with some amazing enemies and stunning vistas. Control is intuitive, with all options fully customisable. Players can assign hotkeys for all major functions to suit their gaming styles.
The 3D graphics engine has been specially written for Gunlok allowing you to freely control the camera with which you view the action. You can move the camera up and down, rotate, zoom in and out, scroll north, south, east and west with no more than the touch of a mouse button. The graphics engine also features some incredible looking lighting effects. All the explosions, flares, laser trails, plasma and lightning bolts cast full colour, dynamic lighting over the landscape so when you get into a fire fight it's like the 31st December 1999 all over again! All the structures in the environment cast shadows, as do your team and their enemies, enhancing the darkly apocalyptic atmosphere.
You decide now is the time to strike back. Now is the time to take the fight back to the machines, and regain control of Earth.