“The Geek” finally gets a video game.
(Reader Note: Game Revolution's database system only allows for one preview article for any game, and so we usually replace a preview if a more recent one rolls around. But this time, I thought it would a better idea if the article was retained somehow. Thus, here are four picture links of Chris Hudak's 2007 preview for Rogue Warrior: part 1, part 2, part 3, part 4. The now and then contrast between the two versions of Rogue Warrior is nearly completely different and interesting to note.)
Let’s not beat about the bush, because he certainly wouldn’t. Rogue Warrior is a tribute to the man with the same nickname (you will find other nicknames for him spread throughout this preview and the tagline) and the author of the book of the same name: Richard Marcinko. Now if you don’t know who he is, then I suggest looking him up before the “Shark Man of the Delta” chomps on you, or reading the following fun-filled biography.
“Demo Dick” was commissioned to the Navy SEAL Team Two before receiving orders for the Vietnam War, by the end at which he became its commanding officer. Then after the failure at Desert One during the Iran Hostage Crisis, he was assigned to head the Navy’s first counter-terrorist unit, SEAL Team Six, named in part to fool the enemy into believing there were SEAL Teams Three through Five. (Pwned.) After his three-year term ended in 1983, Marcinko was asked to lead a unit unofficially named Red Cell to test the security defenses against terrorism by breaking into “secure areas” like Air Force One – which his team did to the obvious chagrin of some security personnel. (Pwned again.) Since then, he has written his New York Times best-selling autobiography Rogue Warrior, become the CEO of the security consulting firm Red Cell International, and a consultant for the TV show 24 and the game at hand, Rogue Warrior.
As for his influence on the design team, producer Charles Harribey couldn’t wait to tell me about the “Kill Room”, a room at Bethesda Studios that supposedly has images of all 300 or so kill moves that Marcinko uses to full effect in this third-person shooter. If you can get Marcinko close enough to a weakened or vulnerable enemy soldier, he will execute one of many gruesome death-strikes, all of which were shown and approved by Marcinko. Yeah, just imagine a war veteran in a screening room and looking at a model of himself slashing a soldier in the legs, the back, and the throat, then commenting by saying “Yeah, that’s how I did it,” or “No one just stabs him in the back once,” or absolutely nothing… only a simple nod.
That’s where the surprises are in what appears to be a standard shooter - the details. The nondescript 1980s Cold War setting pits Marcinko in his heyday (that means a manly ponytail) in the blocked-off military sites in Korea on a covert operation to uncover and stop the smuggling of nuclear materials and state-of-the-art (well, at least then) technology from Russia. So expect plenty of firefights against the elite Russian special forces, the Spetsnaz. Could it based on real-life? Six Days in Korea? What do you think?
There, “Demo Dick” follows through on his nickname, doing whatever necessary, clean or dirty, to complete the mission, using the weapon technology of the period but still blowing everything to smithereens. All the while, he will employ realistic moves, like going down a ladder by holding on the edges and sliding down, curse like an “old salt” sailor (“April Fools, Mother******!”), and contend with the military version of Murphy’s Law: If a mission can go wrong, it “Oh, ****!” will.
But essentially, the groundwork is founded on the basics of the third-person shooter - having two primary weapons and one sub-weapon (normally, a pistol), mixing stealth with aggressive tactics, and hiding beneath a desk or in a dark lit corner until the redness on the screen fades away. Again, this isn’t reality; it’s a tribute.
Also as expected, there will be a multiplayer mode, deathmatch and team match-ups for up to 16 players. One nice touch is that the leader of the team on each side will change his lowly soldier uniform into Marcinko himself. Who’s the man?
Be on the lookout for Rogue Warrior to sneak onto shelves on the Xbox 360, PS3, and PC in Q4 2009. Or someone will find you.