E3 2009: Hands-off with Rogue Warrior 8

BLAST’S BEST OF E3 2009
Best Multiplatform Game

LOS ANGELES — Bethesda Softworks has a lot of money to develop new games right now. Everything they touch is gold. Oblivion was huge. Fallout 3 is legendary. Video gaming is up in a down economy.

So Bethesda Softworks can bring in Mr. SEAL Team Six, Richard Marcinko and the voice of Mickey Rourke to put you in the boots of a real American badass.

But there’s more to this than just action and explosions. The SEALS have a special meaning to guys in their 20s. It’s the only reason Steven Segal had a career. We all watched Michael Biehn, Charlie Sheen, Bill Paxton and Rick Rossovich in “Navy Seals.” It’s an awful movie, but it’s the stuff of legends. We love that shit.

Enter Bethesda’s Rogue Warrior, which we saw up close at E3. Playing as Marcinko, you go behind the iron curtain to disrupt a suspected North Korean ballistic missile program, uncovering a conspiracy that could turn the Cold War in the commies’ favor. Death and destruction follow.

On your black ops, you’ll mix stealth and assault to infiltrate communist strongholds, swearing like a true sailor along the way.

In the hands off demo, done by Bethesda producer Charles Harribey, the best part of combat were any of the 25 different “brutal kills” moves you can perform by sneaking up on an unsuspecting bad guy, like throwing him off a ledge or stabbing him in the face. Yeah. Brutal.

This is a single player game with multiplayer combat modes. It’s very story driven, and it’s not a Solid Snake type stealth game. There’s a ton of overt combat as well.

The graphics and sounds are beautiful, and this will be a winner when it comes out in the fall for Xbox 360, PC and PlayStation 3.