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Game Profile
INFO BOX
PLATFORM:
PlayStation 2
PUBLISHER:
Sammy Studios
DEVELOPER:
Access Games
GENRE: Action
PLAYERS:   1
RELEASE DATE:
August 31, 2004
ESRB RATING:
Mature
 Written by Ryan Smotherman  on April 21, 2004

First Impressions: It's spy-licious!


Metal Gear Solid, Splinter Cell, and now this; yup, the sneak and peek espionage gameplay found within these games is a full-fledged genre these days. Latest of the bunch is Sammy Studios' Spy Fiction. Yeah, I know what you're thinking ? Spy Fiction? Not a real original title. However, the developer, Access Games, has a few surprises of their sleeves that make this a title you should definitely be excited about. Oh, and there's the fact that many of the members that comprise the development team also worked on a little game called Metal Gear Solid. That get your attention?

With a release date still a ways off very little is known about the title's story and main characters. The only thing really known thus far is that a bad man is planning to do some bad stuff and you, playing the role as a spy (go figure), are sent in to foil his plans. Though, we do have oodles of info on the gameplay status. Taking control of the hero in the third-person perspective (very similar to MGS), your goal will be that of every spy title out there ? that is to do your best to avoid detection, and by the looks of things the game will have you plenty stocked when it comes to nifty gadgets and doohickeys to achieve this goal. Most impressive of these is the optical camouflage transparent suit. This outfit let's you turn virtually invisible when you're crouched down and standing still and it also can morph you into anyone in the game if a clear picture is taken with your 3D camera. Not only that, but if their voice and retina are copied you can basically become that person with all the added access benefits. Yes, these guys are certainly taking the genre to new places here.

Taking second place on the super cool gadget list is your spider grips. These nifty attachments will let you cling onto a ceiling or wall while the mercs just walk beneath you unaware of your mad abilities of sneakiness. In addition, other weapons like the mini remote cam and patch grenades will make up your arsenal. Even with all of these cool doodads though, a lot of the gameplay should come down to your standard hiding in the shadows, shooting out cameras, and peeking around corners to make sure no bad guys will see you. The game doesn't sport a radar (such as in MGS), but you are given a Splinter Cell-esque safety meter to keep you informed of your? well, um, safety status. And if things go bad, pistol whipping a bad guy or using your character's mad melee skills are always viable options.

At first glance one can't help but notice how visually impressive Spy Fiction is. While there are certainly many similarities to Metal Gear Solid, Spy Fiction has it's own unique style when it comes down to it. Well-crafted indoor and outdoor environments, smooth character animation, and an overall sleek look are just a few of the things that make up the graphical package. Added to that is tense music that will keep you on your toes and some better than average voice acting that moves the Hollywood inspired story along.

Final Thoughts
When you throw in the fact that many developers from one of the best spy-based games of all time are putting their heart and soul into another, with the addition of some truly genre-busting additions, extraordinary visuals and still plenty of time for fine tuning, one can't help but to be impressed.


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