Spec Ops: Rangers Lead the Way (Windows)

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Developed by
Critic Score
100 point score based on reviews from various critics.
User Score
5 point score based on user ratings.
Written by  :  Evil-Jim (181)
Written on  :  Sep 01, 2002
Rating  :  1.6 Stars1.6 Stars1.6 Stars1.6 Stars1.6 Stars

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If these Rangers are the best, we are in deep, deep trouble...

The Good

Most of the levels are very atmospheric, the wind gusts, trees creak as they sway in the breeze and distant weapons fire fills the air in the war-torn city. The Rangers look good when they are running, a nice crouched over run, they look as if their equipment is rather heavy. The animations in general are pretty good actually, the 'on fire' animation in particular is spot on but is unfortunately is rarely seen.

The Bad

The game is made specifically for 3DFX with a software mode just thrown in for the heck of it, this results in entire buildings disappearing if you look at them from the wrong angle, you can enter a tent and find that there is no inside and then you have to try find your way out by guessing. The same goes for fences, except you can't shoot through or over fences, even if they are made of mesh. However, no one told the AI, they will be content to sit behind these invisible fences and fire off all their ammunition into it. Aiming is extremely difficult, unless you use a weapon with a telescopic sight, you have no way to tell where you are aiming unless you fire, the only way to aim is to move your player so the target is roughly in the center of the screen which is completely ridiculous. All the missions are at night which makes them rather bland and means you don't get to enjoy the nice textures, but you can still enjoy the massive pop up and disappearing buildings regardless of the time of day. The most mind boggling part of this game is the fact that there is a time limit imposed on every single mission, while I could understand a time limit to rescue a hostage, 4 minutes to traverse a huge level filled with an almost infinite number of enemies that you cannot reliably aim at, or even shoot at while moving is insane. The Ranger buddy AI is pretty bad, the path finding needs work as they will frequently get stuck behind objects, fall down cliffs or try run up hillsides that they cannot run up. They are not very good shots either, they can miss from point blank range and will often keep firing at something they have seen but now cannot see.

The Bottom Line

This is the developers first game and it is quite obvious, people would be better off looking at something like SEAL Team, Rainbow 6 or Operation Flashpoint for a much, much better experience.