previewed on PC
Out of oil – let's do battle!
Frontlines: Fuel of War is a new first-person shooter game, which is set to be released for the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3 and Microsoft Windows PCs in 2008. It’s being produced by Kaos Studios. We previously know Kaos Studios with a different name, though. As Trauma Studios, they created the Desert Combat mod for Battlefield 1942, which proved highly popular with gamers and myself alike.
Frontlines: Fuel of War, set in 2024, shows us a world in the middle of a global energy crisis. Alls supplies of oil and natural gas are starting to run dry, and diplomatic relationships between Eastern and Western civilizations become strained., Alliances are born between regions that traditionally hold up similar values and thus the Western Coalition is made up of the United States and the European Union, while the Red Star Alliance is formed by Russia and the People's Republic of China. As the last oil fields start to go dry, the countries move to secure what little resources there are left, leading to several small outbreaks that turn quickly into full scale war. It seems that even though oil is running out, there's always enough of it to produce weapons and vehicles of mass destruction (just think of all the things that require oil directly: any rubber parts in engines, wheels, weapons, and as fuel for vehicles; and all of them indirectly in the factories that produce them in the first place etc. etc.).
The game play revolves around a single focus; the frontlines or war. The rest of the world's struggle to live without oil is clearly a pretty dull scene, and it is naturally much more entertaining to focus on the one area where oil is still spilled without mercy. Also, the choice to stay in the frontlines allows the developers to develop a relatively small game area where the opposing sides have no chance to lose sight of each other. The developers decided to make the game more flexible for a more enjoyable game experience with intense game play, with more than enough in-game features on offer to keep any war enthusiast content. There are 6 unit types available, with 4 supporting roles to play as. The six types are the Assault class, the Heavy Assault class, the Sniper class, the Anti-Vehicle class, the Special Ops class, and the Close Combat class. These similar starting options can be seen in quite a range of war games these days, including the Battlefield and Call of Duty series.
With each different class offering different advantages, such as anti-vehicle classes being effective against armour, it’s important to try and find a supporting role to aid your team effectively with. With the available six classes, you can customise your load-out, giving a total of 24 different combinations to mix things up with. One promising feature seen with the roles is drones. Remote controlled vehicles used for scouting as well as attacking. There are six kinds of drones: MQ38 Hunter, 8Q431 Tracked Assault Drone, 8Q432 Mortar Drone, Red Star Tiger Runner Drone, Red Star Propeller Driven Recon Drone and the Red Star Flying Assault Drone. While each have their own significant advantages and disadvantages, you are left exposed when controlling one of these vehicles, meaning you and your team need to work together so they can cover the drone operator.
Multiplayer works in a similar fashion, focusing on the same frontlines mechanic working as a team to hold the current frontline and keep pushing forward. The objectives stay the same, controlling each of the three control points in the frontline, by completing objectives to take control of those areas. These objectives are killing the enemies in a target area;, locating and capturing/collecting a key location or object and destroying an enemy facility.
The multiplayer seems to be fast -paced with the ability for infantry combat and is packed full of vehicles to spice things up. There’s always something going on, as well as people dying all around you. Offering up to 64 players in a single match it is more than enough to keep things relentless as well. The multiplayer aspect seems to be shaping up very promisingly.
Eye-candy and battling to the music
The graphics look quite impressive, offering some of the nicest I’ve seen in a while. The amount of detail that has been put into the character and vehicle models is quite amazing, as well as all of the terrain and locations around the levels. It’s nice to see that a game really goes past the regular level to make their visuals really stand out from the rest.
There is also a good soundtrack in the game, giving a nice atmospheric feel to it, as well as making it feel like an epic action adventure. With constant action, there’s never a quiet moment to gather your thoughts, only an adrenaline rush through some of the greatest music in a war game I’ve heard in a while.
Looking forward to it
Frontlines: Fuel of War is shaping up to be a seemingly big hit of 2008, and one I’m personally looking forward to getting my hands on the playable demo released sometime between early December to mid December to test it out and see how it plays. Stunning visuals, epic game play and a decent multiplayer side make this one game not to miss out on!