by Irish Jim
previewed on PC
Popping off the baddies
Running around Vegas, popping off bad guys and watching them swan dive into the fountain at Bellagio sure sounds like fun, but your team isn't going to stand a chance unless you use proper tactics, and Ubisoft is setting this game up nicely in that department. All your new team members will have special skills, like recon, heavy weapons and electronics. Proper planning is needed to maximize their efficiency. The game promises a new level of realism, with your team members actually giving you tactical advice on the fly, so you can exercise an option you may not have thought of yourself.
To achieve this, the AI is also slated to be a higher level than any previous tactical shooter. You can probably expect to cut through the grunts early on, but each mission will bring you closer and closer to some seriously bad people. Rainbow Six is already known for being pretty unforgiving when you make a mistake, so don't expect it to get any easier.
Evolving is hip these days
Rainbow Six: Vegas is being simultaneously developed for the next generation consoles, and the PC version should benefit from those enhancements. The streets of Vegas and the myriad casinos are photorealistic beyond words! Walking through hotel lobbies, putting bullets through slot machines, overturning card tables... now THAT'S what Vegas is all about! All new motion capture animation is being filmed, including assault and recon techniques such as rappelling, fast-roping, blind-firing from behind cover, and more. These are all being captured by Hollywood animation experts.
For those who enjoy the multiplayer experience, Rainbow Six: Vegas upping the ante with a fully customizable multiplayer character. You will "evolve" online as you play, unlocking new equipment and achievements. Now, this sheer wealth of enhancements will mean a great game, but since Ubisoft is focusing on the next-generation consoles, you can expect this title to require some heavy computing power. But from everything we've seen, it may be worth the investment should you need an upgrade.
When can I get my hands on it?
The game is slated for release this fall on the XBOX360 and PS3. No firm date has been established for the PC release, but you might expect it before year's end. However, there may be some delay because there is already some controversy over the game's content. The Nevada Review Journal recently reported that Las Vegas Mayor Oscar Goodman is not at all happy with the idea behind the game, fearing an economic backlash against the city. As hard as that is to imagine, we must wait it out while everyone involved gets their ducks in a row and then we can enjoy this promising game.