PS2PCGameCubeContact UsDVDSearch

PC Reviews: The Sum of All Fears


The Sum of All Fears Screenshots

The Final Say!




The Sum Of All Fears
 - reviewed by Tory Favro
Review Date: 11 September 2002
Review Score: 8.5/10 
Distributor: Ubi Soft

Based upon a book written by master scribe Tom Clancy, The Sum of All Fears is currently a new release film starring Ben Affleck and a new game starring some polygons and a vamped up game engine incorporating the best parts of both Ghost Recon and Rainbow Six.

Within the game world you have joined an elite anti-terrorist unit rescuing hostages through eleven missions. The emphasis on the game is giving you the feeling of being part of something bigger than yourself and it manages to do this nicely with quite canny AI team mates.

One of the beauties of SOAF is that for the first time you can actively invite your mates to take a bullet for you. An intuitive menu is available at the press of the control key with many options. Orders can be given from the simple, "open the door", through to the more complex such as "open the door and throw a flashbang in". Team members are quite smart and can look after themselves nicely. A good touch is when you get a team member to open a door, they will immediately crouch to avoid a barrage of enemy fire.

In essence your team in some instances will mimic your movements which assists nicely. In other missions, they will leave you altogether as they make their own way through the mission on their own objectives. There is an onscreen map that will show you the location of Tangos (enemies) and what course you should be taking to achieve your objectives. Surprisingly the quick command buttons are not included in multiplayer which would have made for quicker gameplay.

The title in essence is a pure shoot em up as you do not need to plot as you do in the Rainbow Six games, which I personally found to be a relief. A quick briefing by your commander John Clark will set you straight and even if you don't wish to listen to him, it will not hurt gameplay one iota.

A recommendation for this game is to NOT play it on easy difficulty. It is waaaay too easy and does not do the title any justice whatsoever, whereas on even the medium setting you will get some intense gripping gameplay.

The title looks extremely nice and weapons effects are brilliant. I especially like the affect that using a flashbang grenade would have. The whole screen turns white with only the outlines of your enemies showing. This is of course if you stand too near the damn things as I did!

Weapons are based on real life weaponry or just a little bit into the future so that it is easily believable that these weapons do exist. The sounds that the game makes are sensational and contribute to the overall immersion factor of the title. Fire a weapon in a room and it really sounds like it is being shot in a particular environment rather than just some generic sound.

As for weapons selection, it is a bit more of a streamlined affair with the only character that can have itemised weaponry being the default character. This basically means that if you think you need a particular weapon brought along on a mission be sure that you are the one carrying it as there is a very good chance that your team mates won't.

One of your most trusted items is the mini map that is located down the bottom of the screen showing you the direction that you need to take to carry out objectives and also the location of enemy forces. Do not rely on this too much however as your foe is well armed and will move around the map unexpectedly.

In summary, The Sum Of All Fears is a well fleshed out title. The storyline is strong, compelling and well realised graphically. The game itself provides a true challenge without being over the top and easier to get into than some of the more planning intensive games such as Rainbow Six (itself a stellar game). With a nice multiplayer element incorporated into the title, The Sum of All Fears is worth the purchase price. On that note, to their credit, The Sum Of All Fears is a brand new game selling at the time of writing for only $49.95 which is awesome!

- Tory Favro

Copyright 2002 www.impulsegamer.com