Rogue Ops Review

Developer: Bits Studios Publisher: Kemco
Release Date: October 28, 2003 Also On: GCN, PS2 and Xbox

Many games attempt to copy the greatness of previous games in their genre. Some do it well and others are a nightmare. Rogue Ops can be described as Splinter Cell and Metal Gear Solid without the polish, deep story, and intuitive controls. Rogue Ops definitely feels like Splinter Cell, Metal Gear Solid, and a bit of Tomb Raider from the beginning. Nikki Connors feels a bit like Sam Fisher with her movement, but the map system is unquestionably stolen directly out of MGS. Like both Solid Snake and Sam Fisher, Nikki uses crates, walls, and furniture to keep enemies out of view. Using stealth tactics, Nikki can sneak up and pick-pocket guards, along with kill them, by using a directional system, in which you must use the left analog stick and turn it in the right directions on the screen in order to execute a fatal move.

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Nikki Connors, the star of Rogue Ops, is an ex-Green Beret. Rocked by an explosion that cost her daughter and husband their lives, Nikki uses her military training and new role as a leading agent in a covert government agency to seek revenge for a personal vendetta. After receiving two years of training (20 minutes in the real world), she is set out to destroy Omega 19, a terrorist organization. Nikki must go into covert combat in 8 levels, including one training mission. Rogue Ops isn’t short on weapons, in fact, its wide selection includes 10 total weapons for combat; sniper rifles, automatics, explosives, shurikens, etc. Rogue Ops also offers its fair share of spy tools, including an infra-red laser and fly cam.

Rogue Ops could have proven to be an excellent title, but due to some major shortfalls, in areas that I will outline, it is barely worth a rental. Doing things, such as climbing ledges sometimes requires you to locate a green icon; why can’t you just climb objects, without having to find a useless green icon? When not knowing what you are looking for, Rogue Ops can get very frustrating. Some levels literally take hours, not because of their difficulty, but because you do not have a clue at what to do next. The first two levels, along with the training mission took me about 4 hours to beat. Not only are things hard to see in many areas and in places where you wouldn’t expect, but the layout is somewhat confusing in various levels. In order to find your goal, you must literally scowl every spot in each room to see if a green icon appears. If it wasn’t for the check-points, you would be starting the long levels over again.

Many objects throughout the game will not break when you shoot them, including pottery. The marvel of Splinter Cell was the lighting, so you would think that would be one of Bits’ main priorities, however, you can not shoot lights out and lighting has a minimal effect on the game at large. To the developer’s credit, Rogue Ops’ levels are large, varied, and have nice architectural detail. The camera can be easily controlled with the right analog stick and it rarely gets in your way. Glitches can be found throughout the game, such as bodies floating on steps, along with weapons. Again, it comes down to how much this genre has to offer. Rogue Ops brings little to no innovation and/or improvement to the table. Be careful when selecting this title; at the most, give it a rent. It is too bad that not even Nikki Connors can save this title.

Graphics: 6
Sound: 8
Gameplay: 3
Creativity: 3
Replay Value/Game Length: 6
Final: 4.7
Written by Kyle Review Guide

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