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Syndicate (DOS)

85
MobyRank
100 point score based on reviews from various critics.
4.1
MobyScore
5 point score based on user ratings.
Written by  :  phlux (4144)
Written on  :  Jan 13, 2002
Platform  :  DOS

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Summary

Very good and sometimes very frustrating game

The Good

The graphics are of very fine detail (thanks to the use of VESA modes) and very nice to look at. The overall atmosphere is immense - from the cool introduction video sequence to the dark, mood-enhancing ingame music, everything reflects this cold future world where the syndicates rule.

The missions are suspenseful and you really got many different tasks to master. Rescuing some professor, killing the other syndicate's agent teams or just gathering some innocent people as new recruits are just three of the diverse missions you can encounter. The mission descriptions are always informative and sometimes even downright funny. With the huge arsenal of weapons and other stuff to research, you really have something to do even outside the combat action.

The best thing of all is the really high level of detail. There are innocent bystanders, running away in terror when I draw my gun. There is the brave policeman, trying to stop my team - but he has no chance against four miniguns :) You can shoot waste baskets which would burst into flames, you can drive any car you encounter (and blow them up)... and it's so suspenseful when standing in an empty street with your agents, watching for an enemy to come around the corner, hoping he won't have a Gauss Cannon or Laser which could fry you instantly... and on the other hand, you DO hope he has some major gun in his pocket which you can loot when he's dead :)

The Bad

Sometimes, the action could be a bit confusing - due to the fact that the perspective was static. You couldn't always figure out where the enemy agents were (because you didn't see anyone). One or two missions (Atlantis for example) were simply unfair and could only be mastered if you had luck.

On most 1993 PCs, the graphics were a bit jumpy (hires graphics and slow CPU doesn't fit too well).

Spoiler Alert: the endgame sequence is hilarious - one page of "Thank you" text and the game will exit to DOS :(

The Bottom Line

Syndicate is a very good strategy game with LOTS of intelligent ideas. If you see it - buy it! And play it all!