Released in 2005, Without Warning was a game that actually had a fair bit of build up behind it. Studio Circle the team behind the game was led by one of the men responsible for the Tomb Raider franchise. This along with the fact that Capcom decided to publish the game had many people excited.
6 In One
One of the things that makes Without Warning sound interesting is the fact that this is a third-person shooter that lets you play as more than just one character. The cast of characters is actually pretty diverse. You have three special forces soldiers which is pretty standard, but it is the other three characters that are interesting. These are a secretary, a security guard, and a cameraman.
Like A TV Show
Clearly, the people behind the game were inspired by TV shows like 24 as the game has a very TV show kind of feel to it. The basics of the story are that a terrorist has taken over a chemical plant and a crack team of special forces soldiers are sent to take care of the situation. The fact that the security guard, secretary, and the cameraman are caught up in it is what makes the story rather interesting and not the same as your typical 3rd person shooter.
A Different Perspective
Playing as the three special forces members is pretty much the same. There are some differences with them, but nothing that is worth writing home about. The security guard actually plays very similarly to the special forces team. When playing as one of these four, shooting first and asking questions….. well never, is the best approach. They tried to shoehorn in some kind of cover mechanic, but in all honesty, you are best just running around and shooting anything that moves. Playing as the secretary forces you to play stealthily. She can make use of her pepper spray or even fire extinguishers in order to stun the terrorists. This is best to be avoided as it is supposed to stun them, but it very rarely works. As a result, you have to sneak around and try to avoid them at all costs. Playing as the cameraman is rather interesting in that he is a mix of action and stealth. He can actually kill the terrorists (if you can manage it) but he has a bit more of an interesting gameplay mechanic. That is he is supposed to be recording what is going on. I think this is actually a really neat idea and trying to get the best shot is usually what gets you in trouble with the terrorists.
A Product Of Its Time
Back when this was released it was not exactly given glowing reviews. It came out at a time when people expected more from a third person shooter. Without Warning has some great ideas and from a gameplay point of view it comes off as a game that needed more time in the oven. The controls are kind of clunky and the camera can be super annoying at times it makes going back and playing it more of a chore.
Without Warning is not a perfect game by any means, but I do think that there are some great ideas here. Letting you play as six different characters with three of them being not your typical soldier was a great idea and I especially love the idea of the cameraman risking his life for the story. Still, the clunky controls and camera that fights you every step of the way make getting through the game harder than it should be. It is also worth mentioning that Without Warning is also on Xbox.
- Play as six different characters
- The cameraman idea is pretty cool
- Mixes action and stealth
- The story is actually quite good
- The presentation is not that bad
- The camera fights you every step of the way
- The soldiers all feel the same