Commandos Strike Force

The first Commandos games was released in 1998 for the PC. Gamers warmed to its tough but rewarding brand of 2-D tactical action and a mission pack and two sequels were duly released. But Commandos Strike Force (CSF) is a different beast.

The most obvious change has been its re-casting as a first-person shooter, but apart from this, much of the original's spirit remains - the unforgiving difficulty, the adaptive gameplay, the enormous satisfaction gained from finishing a level - and the game is stronger for it.

CSF has you taking charge of the Sniper, Spy and Green Beret through 14 missions in France, Norway and Stalingrad. Some involve more than one member of the team, in which case you can switch between them with the press of a button. This allows the team to play on one of its real strengths - letting you choose how to tackle any task.

Each mission is broken down into a number of primary and secondary objectives. Both are often updated on the fly, which can test your tactical thinking and really put you on the spot; but whether you're stealing trucks, assassinating a General or blowing up a bridge, you're free to come up with your own game plan.

Fancy stealth? Use the Spy, preferably disguised in an enemy uniform. Good shot? Use the Sniper to take down the bad guys, one bullet at a time. Feeling aggro? Then use the Green Beret to take the fight to the enemy. Crucial events like the impending arrival of reinforcements or an escaping officer are shown in a window in the top-right corner of the screen, allowing you to take steps to avoid disaster.

Speaking of which, you'll often have friendly troops with you on missions. There are no squad commands, but they act reasonably intelligently and respond to your progress. You'll often have to give them cover or run over and heal them with a medikit, but it's well worth the effort. Not only can taking too many casualties cause mission failure, they're quite capable troops. It's not at all unusual, when playing as a Sniper, to draw a bead only to see your intended target go down in a hail of your comrades' bullets.

However, with relatively realistic damage modelling and the highly aggravating lack of any in-mission save points, you'll be playing some sections many times before you get them right. This is particularly annoying on long missions, where one mistake will have you starting from scratch. What prevents this from becoming a game-breaker is the sense of achievement you get from completion.

If you fail a mission, you can be sure it's because you stuffed up; either failing to check lines of sight or running headlong into a room of soldiers.

Click here to view screenshot 1 and here to view screenshot 2.

Verdict: In-mission save points would cut the aggravation of the sometimes trial-and-error gameplay, but if you're willing to mix tactical and all-guns-blazing with stealth and infiltration, then Commandos Strike Force is one for you.
Score: 4 out of 5
Publisher: Eidos
URL: www.commandosstrikeforce.com
Price: $89.95 ($99.95 console)

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Michael Butler

PC World

Comments

Comments are now closed.

Latest News Articles

Most Popular Articles

Follow Us

GGG Evaluation Team

Kathy Cassidy

STYLISTIC Q702

First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.

Anthony Grifoni

STYLISTIC Q572

For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.

Steph Mundell

LIFEBOOK UH574

The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.

Andrew Mitsi

STYLISTIC Q702

The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.

Simon Harriott

STYLISTIC Q702

My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.

Resources

Best Deals on GoodGearGuide

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?