Resistance: Fall of Man

I have to admit it: I’m an Insomniac fanboy. I played every single Ratchet & Clank game (except the PS3 one) and loved them. So when I first learned about Resistance: Fall of Man it was clear to me, that I eventually had to have it. Now that I finally have a PS3, Resistance was the first game (not bundled with the system) that I got.

I guess you can describe the game as a mix of Doom/Quake, Ratchet & Clank and Call of Duty. It takes the WWII-like setting of Call of Duty, the weapons-system from Ratchet & Clank and the Scifi-part from Doom/Quake … and it works really well IMO. The story is set in the UK in the early 1950s and WWII never happened. In its stead mankind is overrun by an an alien army that in good old Doom-fashion captures humans and transforms them into their own soldiers. The story is told in short in-game engine cutscenes and hand-drawn-style pictures of the events, which is my opinion also works surprisingly well and gives the game its own unique style. The whole story is told by a commander of the Britisch resistance who you meet early in the game.

My personal highlight, though, is the collection of weapons. The game features a Ratchet & Clank-style weapon-switch triggered by R2 that gives you a simple overview of the available weapons and pauses the game while you choose your next alien-killer. While in some games switching weapons is really annoying and more often than not just makes you stick with one weapon, in Resistance after just a few minutes you get the hang of it and fast switching to the right weapon becomes second nature. In good Insomniac-style each weapon feels unique and even the very first weapon you start with – a human rifle – stays useful to the very end of the game with its very straight line of firing and relatively fast rate. Every weapon also has 2 completely different firing modes. For example: One of the later weapons in the game – the Hailstorm – has as primary firing mode a … well, a hailstorm of nail-like projectiles and as secondary mode it can be converted into a stationary turret. And naturally (because it is mentioned in every single review out there) there is the Auger, which can shoot through walls and has a shield as secondary mode. And when you play the campaign a second time, you get new weapons ;-)

As much as I enjoyed the game, it definitely has its flaws, too. While the graphics are nice, the textures could have been in a little higher resolution. Up close they are far from being sharp. Also I’m not really sure that I like the German localization. While its very good in most aspects, calling the enemy throughout the game only “Biester” (beasts) is kind of uninspired. But perhaps your enemies don’t deserve to have a better name given their AI in the easy mode. At least coming after me would have been nice. And some enemies don’t even try to come closer to you when you shoot at them with your sniper rifle ;-) Also the maps feel a little bit too linear for my taste with absolutely nothing (apart from a couple of intelligence documents) to discover.

On the other hand, though, the maps never felt boring. Insomniac managed to get enough vehicle missions in there (with different vehicles) to keep the game fresh. Also the safe-point system works really well. I guess there are never more than 5 minutes between savepoints (unless you play really slowly) and I think these are even stored for when you turn off your system. There are also specially marked points in each maps, but they are more there to separate parts of the map than to act as a savepoint.

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