Designed by Rutam Rane
Commandos Imperial Glory Praetorians Eidos Pyro Studios
Commandos: Strike Force hands on (page 1/2)
A detailed report from Strike Force at Games Market Europe: Part 1

So we went to Games Market Europe today to have a look at Commandos Strike Force and of course the other games that were on show. I won’t bore you too much with the travelling details just that during the trip while I was listening to my mp3 player which was set to shuffle it mainly played the songs from the Commandos 2 & 3, Praetorians and Imperial Glory soundtrack. Found that quite funny.

I had arranged with sick to meet at 10 but when I arrived there, no sign of him, couldn’t reach him via his cell either. I already went in to meet with Michael Souto at the Eidos stand and we decided to wait a bit for Tom to arrive so I went outside and see or there was some weird (Dutch) guy walking there but still no sign of him and he was unreachable. After that I went back and Mike suggested to come back at the stand at 10:45 to show me the game. In the mean time I checked out the rest of the show a bit and took some pictures from the (Eidos) stand(s). The nice thing about this show is that there aren’t big masses of people. As it’s a press and trade only event there aren’t big masses of people wandering around and you have time to check out everything at ease.

But we’ll leave that behind us and move on to the reason you started to read this article in the first place. I went back to the Eidos stand where Mike took me to a closed room behind the stand to show Commandos Strike Force on PC. Mike started with showing the briefing screens of a few missions (well actually there were quite a lot of missions) and explained how they linked together. There will be missions in Norway, France and at the end Stalingrad. He further explained that certain missions will focus on a lot of action where others need a stealthier approach. With that out of the way he loaded up the first mission (on easy difficulty, there is also normal and hard difficulty). The mission took place in Norway and serves as a tutorial to introduce the Snipers' ability to you. I’ll try not to give away too many details but you start on a boat together with some allies when you are discovered and you’ll have to shoot your way out. Before I got thrown into the action, Mike explained the hot-keys to me. At the time of writing I had to use the TAB key to switch between Commandos, “1” to circle between your firearms and if remember correctly “2” is to use gas and smoke grenades and the likes and throw them by using the right mouse button. These might change later on.

After that it was time to hop in. The mission started with a cut scene and then it really started. I must say I needed to get used at the game at first, being used to the traditional isometric view it’s quite a change. That and the fact that I kept hitting the q key instead of the a key since my keyboard at home is a bit different (azerty keyboard). Not really an excuse though as Mike offered to change it as it was fully customizable. Nevertheless I had the sniper selected and pressed the left ALT key to bring up the scope and zoom in. If you’re in that mode and you press the right mouse button everything around you will slow down, the effect of that is really amazing. During the slow down it’s easier to shoot down your enemies, you will also be able to shoot down two enemies with just one shot and you’ll have a good view of the physics in action. While aiming at your enemies it’s important to remember that you get different points based on the place you hit the soldiers. Headshots give you the most points (30 if I remember correctly), you’ll see the total of your score at the end of the mission along with the number of headshots, your accuracy and more. The more enemies you kill, the higher your score will be at the end of the missions, you’ll get a higher number of stars and your rank i.e. captain will increase.

Commandos Imperial Glory Praetorians Eidos Pyro Studios
Commandos Imperial Glory Praetorians Eidos Pyro Studios

After shooting the first batch of enemies with the sniper I followed Mike’s (much needed) directions to take out the other soldiers with the Green Beret. Despite his advice and the radar I ended up being hit by enemy fire. Whereas in the previous games it would mean game over, in CSF you can continue to play. When one of your Commandos is wounded there will appear an extra icon on your radar, namely a medic/red cross sign which indicates the position of your Commando. I ran towards the GB (you can run by using the shift key) - who was laying on the ground - , looked at him and used my med kit to get him back on his feet. After reviving the GB I took out the rest of the Nazi’s although one officer managed to escape via a boat. While I was scoping the area with my sniper to take out some enemies which were quite far away I noticed that there was a boat lying in the water equipped with mounted guns, I didn’t use it but I asked Mike and it will be usable. I completed the mission with an accuracy of 25 %.

The next mission featured a more stealthy approach as it introduced the Spy to the scene. In this mission one of your allies is wounded and one your objectives is to meet with a doctor. One of the elements that separates CSF from other (WW2) FPS’s is that you can choose which objective you want to do first and which road you’re going to use to get there. – Around this time Tom got in and Mike brought him up to date. – After this small intermezzo we went back to the mission and Mike showed us the Spy in action. The Spy was equipped with a piano cord and a silenced pistol (the syringe will not be there). Before Mike attacked one of the patrolling soldiers he looked on the radar to see which direction the soldier was going to. He then sneaked up behind him – used the free vision/third person view which allows you to look around you, check for enemies or look behind a corner, rather than using the more traditional leaning keys – strangled him to death and put on the soldiers uniform. He then moved onwards to the next soldier, showing what happens if they recognize you.

When you’re in the sight of the enemy, a sign will pop up and a meter will move quickly and indicates when they’ll recognize you. If you move out of sight quick enough the sign of the soldier will turn yellow on the radar but after a while will turn back to green, the soldier will assume nothing happened. If they however see through your cover the alarm will be raised and you can expect some trouble to come your way. Mike shot his way out and turned on an invisibility cheat to take us to an objective in a brothel. While we came into the place we saw that the Germans we’re having a party, their state of consciousness or lack thereof was well portrayed by the animations. Although the Germans were either drunk or were watching the prostitutes doing a dance (Natasha was wandering in the bar as well) on stage, when Mike shot one of them all the others had their gun ready and the girls we’re hiding for cover. As Mike moved upwards killing Germans on his way, he explained the reason the bodies disappear: since the game is very realistic (especially the animations) they needed to do this in order to keep the age rating down. The disappearing bodies do have an advantage as well, for instance you don’t need to hide bodies. He also warned that it is important to watch the windows.

If you kill a soldier in front of a window and another soldier is looking in that direction, the alarm will be raised. As stated before, there are multiple ways to complete an objective which are for the player to find out. One of the examples Mike showed was using the spy to talk to a prostitute and have her distract a Gestapo officer. He showed another example as well but you’ll have to try and find them yourself as it will be more fun. I think this covered everything Mike showed us, the pc tour ended here as Mike had another appointment.

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