|System: PS3||Review Rating Legend|
|Dev: Insomniac Games||1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid||4.0 - 4.4 = Great|
|Pub: SONY||2.0 - 2.4 = Poor||4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy|
|Release: Nov. 4, 2008||2.5 - 2.9 = Average||5.0 = The Best|
|Players: 1-2 (60 online)||3.0 - 3.4 = Fair|
|ESRB Rating: Mature||3.5 - 3.9 = Good|
February 13, 2008 - As a launch title, Resistance: Fall of Man did much to dissuade potential PS3 owners from holding off on taking the initial plunge with a huge financial investment for the system. The title showcased a substantial portion of the PS3's technical might as well as the skill of developers Insomniac Games and landed its way as the top-selling game within days of the system's release.
Mixing a touch of sci-fi horror into an intense, stunning first-person shooter on the next-gen console was a winning mixture for Insomniac, whose track record is well proven with the hilarious and engaging Ratchet and Clank series. With two great PS3 titles under their belt, they're out to up the ante with what looks to be one hell of a sequel in Resistance 2.
While FOM centered on the invasion of Britain by the alien Chimera forces, Resistance 2 takes the battle to American shores. The game's story will pick up precisely where players left off at the conclusion of the first installment; protagonist Nathan Hale is captured by unknown troops and whisked away to Iceland. Their chopper is shot down, and Hale eventually makes it back to the U.S. where he joins a group of fighters who are resistant to the Chimera virus. From there, the conflict will unfold across the 1950's era American landscape - in an alternate reality where WWII never occurred and we failed to overcome the Great Depression - as the Chimera mount a massive aerial and ground assault from all sides.
Some will be pleased to learn Resistance 2 completely does away with FOM's third-person narrative style storytelling in favor of sticking with Hale's perspective throughout the game. Also, this time around Insomniac plans to incorporate a much greater level of in-game storytelling to help players feel they are driving the story with their actions and progress. The scale of engagements is expected to be ramped-up significantly with a larger number of enemies on-screen at once, immense boss battles (including one 150 foot tall robotic monstrosity called the Goliath), and impressive backdrops in unique and varied locations around the U.S. Of course, players can also expect improved visuals as demonstrated by early in-game screenshots.
So far, Insomniac has provided few details on exactly what additional variations of Chimera units Hale and his gang will face, but it sounds like beasts both new and old won't be pushovers. Hybrids will now have detachable armor making them tougher to dispatch, and the new Chameleon can fully cloak and attack at close range with blades. Large-scale boss encounters - reportedly bigger and grander than those in FOM - will play a big role in Resistance 2 as well. The game will feature greatly improved enemy A.I. that will adapt to factors playing out around Hale. Enemy units in a player's direct view and in close proximity will react with increased A.I. than enemies further away.
Playing solo through the main story campaign promises to be an intense and rewarding experience, but fans of online play will enjoy a new realm of possibilities in Resistance 2. Support for 60 players (rather than 40) for multiplayer matches is impressive, yet there's more in store with the addition of an online co-op mode for up to eight players (the game supports two player offline co-op play as well). Even better, the co-op campaign will follow a completely different story that runs parallel to the main game. It's also rumored to be of similar length as the single-player campaign, and it will change slightly each time you play. One can only imagine the replay possibilities.
In the co-op campaign, players can choose from three different classes, and each have their own unique attributes which come into play on the battlefield. The soldier class can wield powerful weapons and has substantially more hit points than the other classes. Those who choose the special ops class will specialize in dealing long-distance damage with greater speed and accuracy. The medic class is perhaps the most unique; they wield a weapon which can heal allies, but it must be recharged by taking out foes. This requires medics to balance offensive and defensive duties in order to continue to be able to utilize their healing skills. Additionally, the difficulty level in co-op mode will adjust accordingly depending on the skill level of your team as you progress through the game.
Many interesting details are still being ironed out as the game continues along in its development cycle. With Resistance 2, it certainly seems Insomniac is taking to heart some of issues raised by players about the first game. At the same time, they're building up and expanding on a solid foundation with some exciting ideas and technology which could easily make this one of the bigger titles of the year. One thing is certain; FOM set the bar pretty high, but its sequel is going to raise it substantially.
CCC Staff Contributor