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Game Profile
GENRE: Action
RTX Red Rock

 Written by Kyle Williams  on June 19, 2002

First (and Last) Impressions: Beyond Star Wars, LucasArts plans to "Rock" the house.

This year, LucasArts is turning twenty and all of us are invited to their party. Fortunately for us, the house that Lucas built knows how to dish out the party favors. Their adventure titles have always been excellent (Maniac Mansion, Full Throttle, Sam & Max) and this coming year is promising more of their excellence. One of the new action-adventure titles that they announced recently is RTX Red Rock. Sure, this title might not feature characters we already know and love, but let's step back and see what's being offered up.

At the heart of every great action-adventure game is a solid story base. From what we know so far, RTX Red Rock has that corner stacked. The game is set to take place 100 years into the future on the first Mars colony, Red Rock. When the colony is brutally attacked by an alien army, Earth calls upon Radical Tactics Expert (RTX) combat unit. The RTXs are the elite of the elite, having evolved out of the military's special forces. As a member of this elite unit, E.Z. Wheeler has been trained to insert himself into those situations where a group of soldiers just won't cut it. This story may not make for a solid movie script but the premise sets us up for all of the action in the games 10 levels.

As you may have guessed, it will be up to us to take the role of Wheeler as he investigates the attack on Red Rock. As you take Wheeler into his first reconnaissance mission you will find that your simple monitor & report mission objectives don't cover all of the bases. You will intercept a distress call from inside the base and, without any back-up, head inside to set up a rescue operation. Of course, the aliens that ransacked the base will still be lurking around and will do everything within their power to stop you.

The action in RTX Red Rock is going to be made up of fierce tactical combat, swimming through underground rivers, piloting vehicles across the frozen martian deserts. The tools that will help Wheeler to make it through all of these tasks come from the various cybernetic enhancements that have helped mend his previous combat injuries. His prosthetic right arm will be used as grappling hook, taser, and grenade launcher (and whatever else LucasArts dreams up). Wheeler also has an artificial left eye that will help you locate hidden items and aliens and identify items you don't recognize. Of course, what may be his most versatile tool is his Independent Removable Information System. IRIS will come chattering to life when loaded into various computer systems and will help Wheeler make his way through his challenges.

As of right now, RTX Red Rock is sporting pretty respectable graphics. Wheeler exploring the ravaged colony looks pretty good, but the game is still too early in development for us to see any great visual effects. As this game comes along, you can be sure that LucasArts will continue to wow us with pictures of what Wheeler and IRIS can do.

Final Thoughts
LucasArts knows how to handle their adventure games and RTX Red Rock is looking to blend that expertise with some intense third person action sequences. It is still a little bit too early for us to pass judgment on this title, but things are definitely starting out on the right foot.

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