Yesterday, Matchstick got Tom Clancy's Rainbow six: Vegas 2 from Amazon. I have mixed opinions about this game. On one side it represents a facade for years of racism against mexican immigrants by 'south americans'. It's also promoted by Tom Clancy, he claims to be a war veteran with enough experience to spawn a barn-load of books, films and yes, games. If he really was a war hero why isn't he dead yet? And he's a horrible old right-wing gun-lobbyist and I just generally dislike him. On the other hand it was developped by Ubi, a french company with a game studio in Montreal. Which I have in fact visited and I know that in the reception they had a big plasma screen showing videos of Rainbow Six. I really like Ubisoft and I fully support them. Also, the games they make are (mostly) the stuff of innovation and true art. I wouldn't compare them to Valve, but they're in my list of favourites. Firstly, they (like Valve) seem to do a lot of good-programming. I don't know how to explain this, but from how the game loads and so forth if you haven't experienced a bug or a glitch within the first 2 hours of playing it you're off to a good start. During my recent escapades using the open... ly avaliabe (I almost said 'open source there didn't I?) Source SDK. I found that the videos which play during the game (an example of which is shown below) are simplay custom levels/camera positions/character animation ect... So you can in fact go into a level like this and change it in some way so that the video plays out a little differently.
For example if the Gman dies halfway through. I'm just demonstrating the point that the game is versatile. In rainbow six the main focus is atmosphere. When raiding a building smoke bellows from the door, music strums triumphantly, people scream military-sounding terms over a radio. The ability to interact with your environment is a huge bonus. Instead of just crouching behind boxes in a firefight, you can sit behind the box and fire over it. Although this method results in whole magazines of ammo disappearing in seconds of inaccurate spraying it is highly entertaining. The interacivity does not extend to being able to hack toilet seats to bits when you're stuck fighting your way through a lavatory. Hopefully this will get put in some time along the franchise. It's impossible to call this my favourite game as Half-Life and Halo clearly already take the first two seats but Rainbow Six is brilliant. It has my reccomendation. If you already have Vegas 1 don't bother buying Vegas 2. As far as I can see the developers took in suggestions and criticisms levelled at Vegas 1 and spent a year getting them sorted, then they aded better levels and gave the world Vegas 2. Also, I have no idea how Ubisoft Montreal manage to come up with such a varied range of games. Montreal is a little french-speaking haven stuck in a completely un-noticed corner of the world. So far they have faithfully re-created islamist architechture in Prince of Persia. Their analysis of the israeili/palestinian conflict in Splinter Cell was deeper and more profound than it looks. The only nod towards Montreal was the fact that the opening level takes place in the French pyrenees and (if you were to buy it in france) you would notice that all the members of your squad had strong Quebecois accents. Below is what GT TV had to say about the game: