Genre: Action, FPS
Setting: Cyberpunk / dark sci-fi, Sci-fi / futuristic
Published by: Mad Genius Software Ltd.
Developed by: Mad Genius Software Ltd.
A fairly average game that sits somewhere between a combat Hoover tank simulator and a regular 3D shooter. The graphics are ascetic and do not particularly shine with frills, but the gameplay is very dynamic. For 1998, in principle, such a game still looked good, but this gaming product practically did not receive wild popularity.
The plot is pretty standard. In the distant 23rd century, power in the world began to belong to several powerful corporations. Each has its own special services and a powerful army. One such corporation is Nataka Corporation. One day, her installations were attacked by hostile forces from the so-called Network 53, owned by another corporation - Argus Industrial Corporation, a longtime ally of Natak. The war has begun. Confusion reigns all around. Volunteers for military service in the Nataka Corporation are already being recruited everywhere. The conditions are simple: “resident evil” for ten years, and then you will be guaranteed all kinds of benefits on behalf of the corporation. It should be noted that this Nataka Corporation is not just another typical “Umbrella Corporation” where any dissent and manifestation of human feelings are suppressed. There are doing a lot of very decent and noble deeds. For example, the revival of the whale population after their global extinction (yes, yes, there was such a thing, and you don’t have to turn your eyes away, reader ...). Therefore, you firmly know that you are fighting for a just cause ...
Newbie, welcome to N.I.A.C - Nataka Imperial Armored Cavalry. You will drive the so-called RPVs (Remotely Piloted Vehicles) - remotely controlled vehicles. It's kind of like a hoover tank. These cars can always be upgraded (for cash) in a special room that starts any level in the game. At the beginning of the first training mission in Japanese, the president of the corporation will personally address you (via video recording) and explain the great goals and tasks that confront the combat units and forces of the Corporation. Yes, as you already understood, the Asian model of governance turned out to be the most effective in the 23rd century, and the Japanese nation has now become the guiding and guiding nation throughout the world. Therefore, on each loading screen, at any of your free time (not in battle), in the game, quotes from the ancient Chinese treatise on improving the art of war - "The Art of War" will constantly appear before your eyes. This is necessary in order for you to be imbued with the spirit of ancient traditions as quickly as possible and become a real warrior, for whom the ideals of the Samurai Code will be the highest value in any age. The texts of this game "Bushido" are made in understandable English for the gamer, but there is one funny language moment in the game. In the room where you start the levels, there are even hieroglyphs claiming to be authentic (浙江興業銀行) - this is on the plate immediately below the inscription Nataka Imperial Armored Cavalry. However, these Asian signs mean something completely different - The National Commercial Bank of China, which is located in China and certainly has nothing to do with either N.I.A.C or the theme of the game. Of course, this is not advertising, there was simply no consultant on this issue among the developers ...
Your RPV is a pretty nimble car. If you remove the game panel from the screen, then you simply will not feel the difference between controlling a human character, as in a 3D shooter, and controlling this armored car. The only way you can understand that your character in the game is still not a person is the inability to turn back in a narrow corridor or aisle and the typical small “drifts” in a roll on sharp turns. As mentioned above, your "car" can be constantly equipped (for cash). Moreover, the new unit (radar, aiming system, etc.) will organically fit into your game panel, which has a wide range of settings for the area it occupies on the screen. The damage model is two-level. The first is armor damage (white bars around the vehicle indicator on the panel), and the second is internal damage, which is shown as a percentage. With an increase in the number of internal damage to your combat vehicle, its dynamics will begin to change and even black smoke will periodically appear. At 100% damage, your car will explode. Also, do not forget that with an increase in the number of “gadgets”, the mass will also increase, which will adversely affect the speed and maneuverability of your combat vehicle. You can pick up ammunition, armor and repair packs right in the battle. The game implements secret places, which is a "classic" of shooters of those years. I note that from the remains of the defeated enemy vehicles you can get some pretty round sum, at the end of which there is always a crossed out letter N, and this allows us to assume that Nataka-yena became the leading world currency in those years. For trophy sums, you can upgrade your combat vehicle well.
The gameplay, in its pace, is very dynamic and, one might say, addictive. However, there is still a certain element of boredom. The graphics in the game look high-quality, but rather strict, no frills - apparently, their own graphic creation was used as an "engine". The background scenery is very beautiful and bright. Dashboards and screens in all sorts of futuristic and industrial environments are very detailed and bright. The music is pleasant and does not interfere with the enjoyment of the game. The control is very simple and allows you to effectively control and shoot with just one keyboard.
I still cannot say why this game has not received serious commercial success or wide popularity. It is felt that the developers approached its creation very responsibly, but in the end did not add some very important component - a small gameplay feature. It is she who fascinates all of us so much in the more successful, masterpiece and addictive 3D games of the time.