|Publisher: Runesoft Genre: Action|
|Min OS X: Any Version|
Cold War, an offering from Mindware Studios, is a stealth espionage action game for the Mac. The game is quite clearly a Splinter Cell knock-off, but it has a lot going for it that makes it worth a look for fans of the genre. For one, Iím just glad I didnít have to match any jewels to play the game, but that's beside the point.
Cold War takes place, you guessed it, during the late stages of the Cold War. In the game, you are Matthew Carter (who might look more than a little like one Gordon Freeman), a regular MacGuyver who has decided that freelance photography is his calling and has spent many years traveling the world, getting the hard shots. Matthewís latest assignment is the one that gets him into trouble, though. Heís lured to the USSR by a shifty KGB agent, then framed for an assassination attempt. The game picks up as Matthew attempts to escape and unravel the truth along the way.
The story is engaging and is told through a stark comic book style reminiscent of XIII. The solid voicework and cheesy, wise-cracking treatment Matthew gives everything make things inviting. Itís pretty clear that youíre not Sam Fisher and your goal will not be to rack up the kill count. This difference is one of the gameís saving graces. You are not a secret agent on a mission to slay the enemy. Youíre a photographer and you want to go home. You are, of course, conveniently handy with gadgets and infiltration and, inexplicably, a crack shot with a pistol, but youíre not out for blood, you just want out of this mess.
Cold War is a stealth game, which means the bulk of your time will be spent crouched low, sticking to the shadows and moving around the timed patrols of armed guards in government building. It's pretty universal for the genre. The game controls well overall. The x-ray camera Matthew finds himself in possession of is an awesome gadget, enabling the gamer to look through walls, showing a super cool x-ray skeleton view of any guards hiding behind walls. It is a sad moment indeed when you need to learn to live without the it. The camera is also a great part of sneaking in the game, which is far easier to control than it would be on a console system. To speed up while crouch-walking, move your mouse wheel, to slow down, move it the other direction. Itís very easy. By and large the camera behaves itself as well, something thatís always dangerous in third person perspective titles. At times it can be a little loose, not quite giving the gamer the necessary view to see around a corner, but it didnít haunt my gaming experience. Interaction in the game is simple as well. When an object can be interacted with, a menu option will appear on-screen. Right click to activate that option. If there are multiples, right click, then use the scroll wheel, mouse movement, or arrow keys to select the action of choice and simply let go of the right mouse button. That will trigger the selected action, making interacting with the many objects in the game a breeze, not to mention making even IDing those items possible.