Well guys 'n gals, here we have it; Operation Winback! Nintendo's answer to Metal Gear Solid maybe? I reckon so. I wonder... will it enjoy the success that Metal Gear on the Playstation so obviously enjoyed? Only time will tell.
As the story goes, a terrorist organisation going by the name The Crying Lions, lead by their leader, Kenneth Coleman, have taken control of the Gulf Satellite by forcing there way into the satellite control centre. They used the Gulf Satellite to destroy The Centre for Space Research, just as proof of their power. They have demands and they must be met in order to stop a repeat performance... They're after independence for there nation, Saroczia by the withdrawal of all foreign military personnel. This is just one of their demands... unless all are met, trouble could quite easily break out! In order to stop these terrorists from unleashing more mayhem, a specialist commando unit which uses stealth as one of their main weapons is called into action. This elite fighting force is called SCAT! You take control of one of the units newest recruits - Jean-Luc Cougar. It's the job of you and your team-mates to regain control of the of the Gulf Satellite, and stop another catastrophe from happening.
Do you think you can handle it? ...it's all up to you! Go out there and kick some terrorist butt!
I think the game itself plays extremely well. The usual third person perspective has been used, to (I suppose) give us all a better vantage point when we're in the thick of it. I personally think it's the best view for this game. The game does give you plenty of opportunity to see Jean-Luc perform his vast array of movements at every possible opportunity. If you're the kind of person who finds doing to many tasks at the same time a bit of a challenge and frustrating - like me at times (lol) -, you might not appreciate all the different camera angles. Lets say for example, you could be in the middle of a fire-fight with god knows how many enemies - dodging incoming fire, maybe running around a corner to get out of the way, while manually altering the camera angle to get a better perspective on the current situation. You might even find your self in the situation of needing to override the targeting system slightly because it decides that it ain't going to work. Doing all that can tend to become a little tricky and distracting. It is possible to manually aim using the laser sight which is on the end of every gun. Unfortunately, when everyone is trying to turn you into Swiss cheese this ain't always an option. Because while you're faffing around trying to get the dot on your target they've hit you by that point. You try it - it takes a little time to get that dot on the target. When you finally line it up some other little tart goes pop then you get knocked off target and then have to start again or go for another option. I have to admit, the bad guys are bound to be better shots when it comes to manually aiming.
The enemies also seem to be quite smart. Each one of the enemies seem to be controlled by it's own set of duty guidelines that help to control behaviour. When I think about it, that could be open to debate. After all some of them do just stand there like lemons while you shoot them. But on the other hand though, some of the bad guys do have enough intelligence to leg it. I swear some are seriously lacking in the brains department. You can at times literally shoot one person dead and the guy next to him doesn't even take a blind bit of notice. Some of them on the other had are a bit of a pain in the back side. When they spot you then run, shouting: "Over here", and before you know it, Swiss cheese is on the menu. Another thing I've noticed is whenever I crouched behind a box, none of them ever bothered to go after me.
Some of the moves are pretty nifty. You can do rolls along the floor, slide across walls, popping out to shoot your enemies whilst return to safety. You can also crouch for when you decide to use a little stealth. It's a shame they didn't include crawling along the floor as one of the stealthier moves. I suppose the crouch does just as good.
The interaction/navigation is ok considering the kind of game this is. Naturally there's going to be a few different controls, but it's not that bad. Navigating around the menu is easy enough. It's the usual scenario - The analogue for making your choice and press one button to go forward to the next screen, and another button to go back. On the main menu is a tutorial which is an extremely good idea to go through. It doesn't take that long but it's worth the time it takes. I though I'd try an be a smart arse and play the game without doing the tutorial. I soon got stuck. I don't know if your interested, but I've found a cheat for this game. I won't tell how to do it but I'll tell you that its called Sudden Death mode. Its basically a One hit and they're dead mode.
While playing the game, pressing the A button flattens you character against the wall or crate. From here it's possible to shuffle closer to the edge. You must press the R button to make Jean-Luc pop out from behind his cover. But be careful, if you're not right up against the edge; when you do pop out to take a shot you won't be able to pop back to safety. If you did do it correctly, then all you need to return to safety, is let go the R button and he will return automatically. As I mentioned not to long ago. He can crouch. To do this press the Z button. To learn more of the moves, it's best if you go through the tutorial. :)
Graphically I think this game is quite nice, the game has a detailed 3D environment! But I found that after a while I thought I was suffering from De Ja Vu. A lot of the levels do look very similar and I think they could of put just a little more effort into their level designs. Good quality sounds all around with just enough to keep you ears occupied, I suppose. The characters did seem a little ridged at times. But generally the game was good, Hmm, one thing I will say though, some times I found sounds a little annoying. There was this female boss on god knows what level. I think she was firing a mini gun of sorts and she was constantly laughing. I thought she sounded like a bloody witch. She was damn annoying!
I have to admit, my first impressions of this game wasn't all that great. But after playing it for a while, I soon discovered that my initial opinion was wrong. It is an extremely well thought out game, with plenty of things to do and so many different levels that you'll be playing for hours and hours. On the other hand though, if like me, you have an extremely short fuse and are prone to blow your top at the slightest sign of an annoying end of level boss or over difficult task. Then don't be surprised if you end up turning it off. I find a nice strong cuppa coffee helps me to calm down. I mean some of the things that you have to do in this game is completely solid. I can't really say how many levels there in Operation Winback - I don't know. I got to level 24, got seriously annoyed and gave up. I'm afraid to say I haven't switched it on since! It's just too damn hard at times! Don't let that put you off though. Just do what I did and look at it as a challenge.