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*The first paragraph of my previous reviews were missing, don't know how, hope the same doesn't happen to all my reviews.
Another game based on the new Windows Vista comes from Microsoft in the form of Shadowrun, after they tried the same with Halo 2. There are some XP patches available for the game, but it is still a game supposed to be run on Vista to get the maximum out of it. But it just seems to ask for more system requirements when run on Vista, and for the people who don't have Vista, the patch is going to be very useful. This game didn't seem to get as much attention or rating which it deserved, may be because people found the game too confusing or may be it couldn't stand the gamers who were waiting for only one game from Microsoft - Halo 3. But Shadowrun is surely a game which deserved a better reception from the gamers.
MINIMUM SYSTEM REQUIREMENTS FOR THE GAME OS: Microsoft Windows Vista CPU: Intel Pentium 4 3.2 GHz processor / AMD Athlon equivalent processor or higher Video: ATI X800 (256 MB or higher), Nvidia 6800 (256 MB or higher) Memory: 1 GB of system RAM Input: Keyboard and Mouse
RUN WITH THE SHADOWS Shadowrun certainly is a different game. The game seems to concentrate on deathmatch kind of matches, but its kind of complex most of the time. The year is 2031 and there is a conflict going on between a powerful multinational corporation RNA Global, and the local resistance which came to be called the Lineage happening at Santos, Brazil. Everything seems to be dependent on a powerful ziggurat and some ancient artifacts, but the fight between these two factions just reached its peak, as they used both magic and technology together to reign supreme. But RNA seemed to have the government support as well as the money power, thus looking much better.
The game is something more than a simple first person shooter, or a third person shooter as the camera changes at times with weapons or spells being used. RNA Global or the Lineage can be chosen by the player as well as the race of the character which varies
between Human, Elf, Troll, and Dwarf. The Humans look the best for beginners with a good mix of all the factors as well as having more cash than any other race, while Elves have low health but higher regeneration as well as speed and uses the Katana to perfection. As the Elves are the race which depends on magic, they may be able to cast the magic spells better too.
The Trolls have got better defence as their skin hardens while taking damage as well as brutal strength which also helps them to use bigger weapons. They also seem to scare away their opponents with their looks, but it is not the case. The last race known as the Dwarves may have enough strength and speed, but low essence which is used for casting spells. But they will be able to absorb some essence from enemies as well as allies and they may be even more magical than the Elves. So the player will need to make the right choices among these races. The Orks were also meant to be in the game, but for some reasons, they are not.
IT IS ALL ABOUT SOME CHOICES The player will be allowed to choose between various magic spells or technologies at the beginning and then assign them to the hot keys. The magic spells include teleport, which allows the user to warp a few metres in the direction where they are moving - straight, up or even down. The player can easily pass through solid objects and also use this as if he is jumping to a good height. Another one is the Tree of life, which instantly creates a tree nearby, which heals the player or anything which stays near it, as well as providing good cover from the gun shots. The Resurrect power can be used to bring the dead allies to life as well as their bodies are not destroyed, but the dead ally will keep losing health if you die and will have to resurrected again by some one else.
Strangle is another magic spell which creates a field of crystals to slow down the enemy movement as well as drain their essence. These crystals can be destroyed by shooting though. Gust can be used to push opponents as well as the objects away, and can kill the enemies if they are standing on the top of a building as it makes them fall down. Another commonly used one is the usual summon spell which brings a fiery creature to life, which kills all the enemies on sight for the player, and can also be used as a distraction while the player go on to steal the artifact. A very useful spell in the game is the Smoke, which turns the player into smoke form, which makes him invulnerable to everything for some time, except for the Gust spell. The player won't be able to attack for some period though.
The various technologies also play a major part in the game, with the most prominent one being the Glider which allows the player to fly for some distance as well as jump higher distances. The Enhanced vision allows the player to detect the opponents as well as the allies even if an obstacle or wall is present on the way, thus giving him the chance to make a surprise attack. Grenade option is also there as the player can have upto two at a time. Smartlink ability helps the player in tracking enemies as it doesn't let the weapon fire on the allies and also allows a certain amount of zoom. Wired Reflexes enhance the player's speed and also allows deflection of bullets when using Katana as the weapon. Anti-magic generators can drain the essence of any magical object or player in its field.
A FEW MORE FOR THE PLAYER The player will only have a certain amount of cash in the beginning which means that the choices should be made carefully. The weapons include a sniper rifle, SMG, a shotgun, a minigun, a rifle, a rocket launcher, and a katana which is used for melee combat more commonly used by the elves. At the beginning of every round, the player will be able to get some cash they earned in the previous rounds by doing something for the team which can be used to buy something, and what the player brought in the previous rounds will also stay with him until the whole game is over. The first person look of the game changes at the beginning of tutorials, while using a Katana or when the Smoke spell is cast.
The tutorial provided in the game will be very useful in learning all these and trying them in bot matches, as the multiplayer gaming is going to be really challenging. The tutorial also lets you play all the races atleast once so that there won't be any confusion in the real game. But the game lacks content as there is no usual campaign or story mode or any good cutscene. There are also limited game types as well as maps. As we already know, there are only a few races and factions which may disappoint the gamers upto an extent. But the game may still have a better replayability than the other games because of all these complex, but interesting spells and technologies included in the combat.
ANOTHER DIFFERENT GAME The game modes include destroying all the players from the game, capturing an artifact or defending on of them. The artifact seems to be the replacement for the flags in the Capture the Flag mode in the usual multiplayer games. The player will have to use the best weapons, magic and tech which are suitable for each map and game mode. Each gun may prove suitable for some type of opponent, and the Katanas can be used when the enemies are not aware which will cause them to bleed to death. Some of the abilities work better when undetected, but the game is not at all a real stealth game, so these factors just seem to confuse the players more.
The graphics of the game really looks good, and some areas are just amazing. It looks great when the spells are cast. The game will run fine with 1 GB of RAM and a good graphics card. The characters look good, but some of them which belongs to the same race and faction looks just too much similiar to each other. The trolls and elves are the better looking characters in the game, and if you avoid some areas, the game looks outstanding. The sounds are also good, but it can't be said that they are great. There are areas where the game can improve and game is in no way like Counter-strike to which it is compared to, but overall its a good choice, especially for the online gamers who can have an advance treat before Halo 3 :-)
THANKS FOR READING THE REVIEW :-) PLEASE DO CHECK THE UPLOADED SHADOW RUN PICS TOO :-)