Review by Greatest One

"Without question, the best FPS I have played so far"

''Lets move to Mars honey.'' -Arnold Swcharzenneger in Total Recall.
I still can't figure out what he saw in Mars that made him want to move there. I mean all that Mars offered was living in a dome with a bunch of weird people, bad working conditions and the frequent lack of oxygen. Anyway, I guess the things he saw were seen by a bunch of other people too, since that is why Red Faction is set in Mars.
You play the role of Parker, a normal guy like you and me. Well, not exactly. He did get accepted to Harvard. Anyway, for some reason he decides that going to Harvard wouldn't be the best thing for him, so he decides to leave home and go to Mars to work as a miner. Why did Harvard accept him anyway? Once he gets there, he finds the usual waiting for him. Bad air, horrible working conditions and the works. Him, along with a bunch of other miners are tired of working in brutal conditions on Mars and can't wait to get out of there. To add to their happiness is a mysterious plague that is deforming and killing people all over the place. Hmm, sociology class with Proffesor Gustarfsson in Harvard sounds better every day, doesn't it? For a few days, pamphlets have been showing up in the mines telling the workers to revolt. One day Parker sees a miner revolt in front of him and get killed and he instantly finds himself in the middle of the revolution. This is where the game starts and it is up to you as Parker to help leads the revolution and free the miners.
To assist you in doing that you have at your disposal a bunch of awesome weapons. How Parker learned to use all of them is beyond me. But still, having weapons like submachine guns, rail drivers and fusion rocket launchers make leading a revolution in Mars seem like child's play right? Well, not quite.
You see, it seem that all the enemies in this game seem to have taken a few courses in Harvard themselves. They are quite smart. In fact, the enemy AI in this game is possibly the best I have ever seen. They will duck for cover when the run out of ammo, attack in groups, use teamwork and even ambush you. Thus, running into a room with your guns blazing will usually end up not too good for you. Of course, if the enemy is too strong for you, you can always hide and whimper in fear. But, Mars may not have too many ideal hiding spots,right? Not to worry though. Thanks to the cool new Geo-Mod system, you can create your own hiding spots. Just blast a few rockets into the hole next to you and you will have a nice freshly made tunnel to crawl into and ambush unsuspecting guards. Dig a little deeper, and you may find hidden rooms with useful items in it. This system doesn't work everywhere, but works in enough places to keep you happy.
The game itself moves along quite nicely with a very good story and great gameplay. The levels are loaded in brief sections as you go along, but thats about the only loading screens you see.
There is a pretty nice multiplayer mode with this game, with a bunch of levels and a few characters. I wish there were more characters, especially since a lot of the key characters from the single player mode are missing from the multiplayer mode. It is obvious that the game developers worked a lot harder on the single player mode, which is perfectly fine by me. At least they got that part right. This is by far the best FPS I have ever played. I should mention that I haven't played Half Life yet and am waiting for the PS2 version to come out. Still I would definitely reccomend Red Faction to any FPS fan and to non FPS fans too.

Reviewer's Rating:   4.5 - Outstanding

Originally Posted: 05/28/01, Updated 05/28/01

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