Red Faction: Armageddon is a step backwards for the franchise


Red Faction Armageddon is a middle of the road third person shooter that combines decent graphics with a fun system for using a variety of weapons to destroy everything in sight.

The title is set on futuristic Mars and the protagonist is Darius Mason. The story begins after a device known as the “terraformer” is destroyed by terrorist Adam Hale, who bears a striking resemblance to G.I. Joe’s Destro or the Grim Reaper from Bill and Ted’s Bogus Journey. The device’s destruction disrupts the ability to control weather on our nearest planet and forces humankind underground where they predictably encounter scary looking aliens. From here, if you can believe it, most of the fights take place in dimly lit areas.

The problem with Red Faction: Armageddon is that nothing it does is great, mind blowing or ground breaking. The storyline is a familiar one, something you’ve heard, seen and played before. Additionally, the levels are linear and can get repetitive and while it is fun to destroy the environment around you, even that gets old after awhile.

The best comparison is, in fact, a television show or movie where you keep watching because it’s not bad though you hope it gets better.

This game just never does.

Though there is no particular aspect of the game that comes up short, the overall package is something that leaves you disinterested and wondering why you should keep playing. It’s important in reviewing games to consider whom a title is meant for. A fan of Portal, for example, probably isn’t the same type of player who really gets in Grand Theft Auto.

This is the big question for RFA. Who is going to shell out the money and spend the time playing the thing over the bounty of other quality titles in today’s market?

There are much, much better futuristic third person shooters out there including the Mass Effect and Gears of War franchises. In a day and age when there are just so many fantastic games on the market a title being “so-so” just doesn’t cut it.

The one advantage RFA has over its peers, if you want to call it an advantage, is the fact that it’s one of those titles you can play with the sound off. Since the story is obvious and not largely compelling, the best way to take in RFA is by turning off the volume and putting on something heavy, like Black Sabbath.

It might not be fair to offer this advice on a game that doesn’t do anything wrong, but I’m doing it anyway. Pass on RFA. Your money can undoubtedly be spent in a better fashion.
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