Archive for the ‘SceneGamer’ Category

(Editor/FiveDollarGamer note): I am not the SceneGamer. The SceneGamer is another budding writer like myself who wanted a platform for his creativity. After much discussion, we decided to team up and I provided a semi-established platform for him. Look for more collaborations from us in the future!) 

 

Welcome to the first article by me, The Scene Gamer! I’m bringing to you the most underground games ever made.  Don’t worry just because you haven’t heard of them, it’s ok, because I have, and now I’m bringing that knowledge to the interwebs to share with you folks.  So without lollygagging about, let’s hop right into this thing.

RAPTOR ASSAULT V

Actual cover art.

This game had me worried from the moment I heard about it.  It’s the final installment of the movie based gaming franchise created by Oppressive Creations Studios, and the last two games in the series were awful abominations that should be purged from the earth via rocket ship to the sun.  But the developers at Oppressive Creations Studios say that this game is different, better in almost every aspect from its predecessors. I can’t lie, they delivered on this almost tenfold.  Raptor Assault V is the best game in the series and it almost makes me sad that it’s the final chapter of what has been one of the most bizarre stories ever told.  Let’s start with the history of Raptor Assault briefly and point out some key plot points you should know going into this whole thing.

Raptor Assault was a movie released in 1999 by GodHead Studios and went direct to DVD at the time.  It was directed by a man named Fredrick Ghusikski and slowly gained popularity as a cult movie classic.  The basic plot of the movie is that a raptor comes back from underneath the Florida Everglades and begins killing people in a nearby town.  A man named Addler, a local croc hunter, ends up being the one to figure out what’s going on and kills it by the end of the movie.  The raptor lets out a sharp screech as it dies and a scene showing several hundreds of raptors rising out of the swamp is shown and then the credits roll.  Somebody at Oppressive Creations thought that making a game based on the movie would be the next best thing to sliced bread.  The game, although clunky and highly reminiscent of Dino Crisis for the PSOne, was actually a very well made adaptation of the movie it was based on.  So the same treatment was given to the rest of the movies that were released as well, which is how we ended up here.  2012, Raptor Assault V The Game.  Now I’m not going to bore you with all the intricate details of the story of Raptor Assault up to this point. If you want the full rundown you can watch this video I made here (FDG Note: Video was not made available at time of press. A link will be made available at a later date).  But what you should know is that a Cybernetic Raptor, aptly named Cyberaptor, came back in time ala The Terminator and caused a chain reaction of nuclear explosions around the globe causing all of the raptors to evolve faster or mutate into fucked up raptors.  This was the plot of the fourth movie……seriously.

Fucked up Raptor… seriously.

The Single Player Campaign

Now the back of the box says “multiplayer” on it, but as far as I can tell from the start up menu it doesn’t support multiplayer at all. More on that in a bit. So for now I started up the single player campaign.  When you start a single player campaign the changes between Raptor Assault V and its predecessors are very evident from the opening cut scene, which instead of stock footage from the film of the same name, are hand drawn comic book panels ala Max Payne.  I find this very well done and a great alternative to previous titles.  I’m looking at you Raptor Assault 2:  Arctic Nights.  So after the first cut scene/comic thing in which we are introduced to the main characters Jason Asmos and recapped on the story-so-far the game kicks into full gear.

The first thing I noticed was that the game HUD was in first person, something new to the RA series which usually stuck to the standard over the shoulder view.  The game engine had received a complete overhaul, the controls were tight and responsive and the game looked almost photo realistic. No surprise there as the team at Oppressive Creations had been dabbling in the use of the Crytek 3 SDK engine for the purpose of making the visuals in this game the best that they could be.  So as the game starts, you and your squad are ordered to check out a city that has been ravaged by the nuclear bombs set off by the CyberRaptor in the previous game on a report that there is some sort of new Super Raptor.  As the helicopter lands I got this overwhelming sense of fear.  The surroundings were all very “Oppressive” for lack of a better term. Besides my squad mates chitchat amongst each other everything was silent except for the occasional building creaking or wind blowing by or flames licking at the air.  Everything clicked just right to give you that sense of alone but not alone feeling, much like Metro 2033.  As I pressed forward my squad started talking about what had been going on and my character mentions the Super Raptor and the second in command, Davis instantly came back with this wonderful line:

“Super Raptor? Is that like Super Metroid? That game is my shit!”, and began acting like he was shooting things and singing a ridiculous song about the plot of Super Metroid.  If you want to hear the song I will be posting an audio clip here (FDG Note: The audio clip along with the aforementioned video will be posted at a later date).

After my character Jason tells him to “stuff it before I stuff my boot up your ass,” the level returns to being eerie.  It stayed like this for almost twenty minutes, but I hadn’t noticed how long it had been since the level started because it felt like it had only been five.  There is so much to take in visually in this game that you lose yourself in it almost immediately.  But then the silence was broken and this time it wasn’t sing along time with Uncle Davis.  Raptors distant screeches and calls started becoming all too close for comfort.  Out of nowhere sixteen raptors were on us and my squad opened fire.  For each one we killed two more replaced it.   The whole scene was incredibly terrifying and chaotic.  I felt overwhelmed and ran. I ran all the way back through the level trying to get back to the helicopter.  I could hear my teams’ screams over my commlink and echoing off of the buildings.  It was completely surreal.  I was almost to the helicopter, but as I started to jump on something hit me and knocked me to the ground.  The camera blurred and I tried to focus on whatever hit me.  A dark blurry object in the sky.  I got up and hopped into the helicopter and took off, ending the first level.

The team at Oppressive Creations Studios has stated that though the outcome of situations in the game all happen no matter what, the ways you can get to the outcome can be enormously different.  I watched a buddy of mine play the same level and he stayed and fought the onslaught of raptors.  He almost didn’t make it, but at the last minute the helicopter made it to him and picked him up leaving his dead squad mates behind.

After the first level you are brought back to the “War Room” a large room with a hologram of the planet in the middle, and debriefed.  They show you a recording of what the blurry object in the sky was.  A Raptor.  They’ve learned how to fly.  Those aren’t the only new enemies you face either.  Mutant Raptors with wings, raptors that breathe fire, Human Raptor Hybrids that can shape shift, and Raptors that have begun using guns.  That’s right. Raptors with guns, but anyway back to the campaign.

At this point you can choose where you go via the world map.  There are over 3000 levels to go to from all across the globe all in an effort to defeat the raptor menace.  This map also acts as a real-time strategy game as well.  You will be able to allot so many troops to different battlefields, move troops when needed, and call in supplies and raids all via the world map. This is also where multiplayer comes in.  Once you unlock the world map in the single player campaign you are then able to access the multiplayer functionality.

The Multiplayer

Players can play on either side of the battle on any of the maps.  And if you’re playing the single player campaign and are feeling adventurous connect to the server and watch, as all of the NPC enemies become real people trying to kill you.  Very innovative stuff.  I got the chance to play on both sides and I will say I think I had more fun as the raptors.  There are twenty different kinds of raptors to choose from. Starting with your basic raptor all the way to the CybeRaptor from the previous game.  The only problem I have is that you have to play enough to unlock all of the playable types of raptors.  Playing as a raptor is as awesome as it sounds, you’re fast and when you get a successful jump attack in on an enemy it’s a visceral instant kill of you slamming your claws into your opponents chest and tearing out its throat.  Truly one of the greatest moments in gaming history and oddly satisfying.

In Conclusion

Raptor Assault V is definitely a must have for any fan of the series and non-fans of the series alike.  It sticks to the plot of the fifth movie very well and plays like a dream come true.  The single player campaign took me about twenty-two hours to complete (offline) and the multiplayer is so innovative in its implementation.  The Raptor design is the most realistic I’ve seen outside of Jurassic Park, and the Mutant Raptor design is out of this world.  I cannot recommend this game enough.  Go play it! Now!

Next Time On Scene Gamer:

We are going to take a close look at a game from the nineties, Midnight Samurai Ultra Neon Orange Concerto.  Hurray!!!!!

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