If anyone named their game simply Space Marine, it would come off as a tad unimaginative and lazy. But let’s get something straight, we aren’t talking about yet another game about a group of sentient biceps with guns, these are the original space marines created just over 20 years ago by Games Workshop.
Moving away from their RTS roots, Relic shows us exacting what it means to be a space marine in the year 40K, with a mix of third person shooting and bloody melee combat. But does it just feel like all the other space marine shooters? Or does it truly bring something new to the table?
Here’s the set up. Your name is Captain Titus of the Ultramarines and you have been tasked, along with your fellow marines, to quell an ork invasion on a Titan forge world. Pretty much you’re standard Sci-fi shooter tale right there. There is a twist towards the end of the narrative that involves another famous 40K faction, but nothing you won’t see coming. So the plot isn’t that complex, but it is well executed with fairly decent writing and strong voice performances from the likes of Mark Strong.
|Please! Why are you even trying?|
Space Marine breaks away from modern game design somewhat, by opting to forgo the expected cover system found in this style of game. So instead of picking off enemies from a distance behind a conveniently placed concrete block, the game forces you to get straight into the thick of battle. The game is all about swapping between ranged and melee combat and knowing when to change tactics. Both the shooting and the melee are really fun, every weapon has weight and feels powerful when used against the Ork horde. Machine guns feel like rapid fire rocket launchers and your hammer makes the earth shake with each impact.
|Yep, got this for Christmas last year...|
Space Marine uses the same engine as Darksiders, and has managed to make a world that looks very good, but isn’t going to blow your mind. The game runs very smoothly with almost no texture pop in or screen tearing. All the character models look very detailed, especially Captain Titus whose armour is covered in imperial markings along with scratches and dents caused by years of combat. The environments look dirty and depressing in the way all war torn landscapes should. And the effects and explosions are all wonderfully rendered making every weapon feel just that little bit more devastating. But none of this is going to make your jaw hit the floor as there are many games that look significantly better.
|Ho ho! Just bring it on!!|
Are you a fan of Warhammer 40K? If you are, I’m pretty sure you will love this game. It has clearly been created by a team of people who love the source material, and have gone to great lengths to accurately depict the 40K universe. The game truly makes you feel like a 40K Space Marine. If you’re not a fan, you might not get as much out of it. Unfortunately, because so many games have space marines, the characters and setting may feel quite generic to those who aren’t familiar with the fiction. That said, if you want a satisfying and slightly unique combat system, Space Marine is worth a try.
Story = 8/10
Gameplay = 8/10
Graphics = 8/10
We Know Gamers Final Score = 8/10