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Chicago Enforcer Review

Developer: Touchdown Publisher: Kemco
Release Date: February 22, 2005 Also On: None

I have a family connection with Al Capone, the legendary Chicago gangster from the 1930’s. Back in the 1930’s, my great grandfather was a head-chef, working for a hotel in St. Joseph, Michigan, a vacation town on the Lake Michigan coast. He was invited by Al Capone to work for him, as his personal chef, in Chicago. He turned it down, and somehow managed to not get whacked. Because of this, I’ve always been interested in Chicago, my favorite city, and the lawless life of gangsters. Chicago Enforcer is the latest in a growing number of gangster gangs for home consoles.

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In the 30’s, Capone was as much of the King of Chicago as Mayor Richard Daley, part of the “Daley dynasty�, is today. You work for Capone in Chicago Enforcer, carrying out hit-man jobs, protecting your boss in the final level, and other modest jobs, such as setting dynamite off in rival’s liquor warehouses. One of the levels puts you in the Lexington Hotel, where a giant staircase reminds me a lot of Scarface.

The concept of the game remains in-tact from start to finish: kill everyone that gets in your way. This means all the shot-gun shooters, rifle-snipers, and cocktail throwing bad guys that you’ll run across. It’s also not limited to rival gangs. Killing the cops, while not quintessential, is oftentimes a necessity to avoid being killed yourself. Don’t make the mistake of killing a civilian, however, as you’ll have to restart the mission.

Chicago is commonly referred to as both the ‘Windy City’ and the ‘Second City’. You don’t get the impression of either from the game’s graphics. While not nearly as bad as some other games on the market, the streets of Chicago look more like the streets of Flint, Michigan. Being America’s ‘Second City’, you’d think there’d be more hustle and bustle, but you rarely run into civilians. In fact, from this game, one could assume cops and gangsters outnumbered regular citizens 10 to 1 in 1930’s Chicago.

Equally disappointing is the audio. There’s no music to speak of, little voice work, and barely any commentary throughout the game. There are more load screens in the game than in-game videos, or lines from enemies. It’s a tad bit ridiculous that you have to wade through run-and-gun missions with nothing but the sound of guns. I will say, for what little voice-work there is, it is done relatively well.

Now, on to weapons selection. You shouldn’t be disappointed here. Starting off, you’ll be equipped with a standard pistol. You’ll obtain a shotgun, Tommy gun, sniper rifle, lead pipe, automatic rifle, among a few other things, throughout the game, including Molotov Cocktails. Don’t holster any weapons around cops, or else they’ll fire on you.

Aside from the drab city streets, Chicago Enforcer does offer some straight-forward locations. You’ll wind up in prison in one mission, having to take a pipe from the toilet, and use it to bang your cell wall out, leading to an escape route. This level involves some minor puzzle work, if you’d even call it that, offering a bit of variety. The game keeps a steady pace of first-person shooting action though, so these types of missions feel a bit out-of-place.

Xbox Live multi-player is an optional side serving to the single-player experience. When I logged on, no players were available, but the game that I set up allowed for up to 8 people, with Deathmatch, Team Deathmatch, Capture the Cash, and Turf War as the game modes. Basically they’re the same levels that you played in single-player, with slight alterations.

In the end, Chicago Enforcer screams ‘average’. Everything done in this game has been done before. The only change is the atmosphere, being 1930’s Chicago. For me, that’s good enough to beat the single-player one-time through. Depending on who you are, you may or may not appreciate this title for what it is; a budget recreation of old-town Chicago. If you’re low on cash, and need a quick fix, Chicago Enforcer might be the way to go. Just don’t expect anything but standard everything.

Graphics: 5
Sound: 3
Gameplay: 6
Creativity: 2
Replay Value/Game Length: 6
Final: 4.4
Written by Kyle Review Guide