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Secret Service: In Harm's Way , A Not So Secret Review

by: Marie ; edited by: J. F. Amprimoz ; updated: 4/17/2012 • Leave a comment

Be an agent, protect the President and shoot to kill! Three basic precepts of Secret Service: In Harm's Way that promise to wow players, but are they enough? Is it really good enough to warrant a thumbs up? Check out this review to find out.

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    Activision thought to release Secret Service during the November '08 presidential election, in hopes to kick start the game and bring some media hype. Unfortunately, no amount of press work can hope to salvage this game from the wrecks of a horribly written plotline and seriously boring sections.

    Still don't believe me? Let's break it down one thing at a time.

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    There's a threat of assassination looming in the air and you don't know whether this threat is domestic or foreign. As someone sworn to protect the Presidenct, what are you going to do? A game for the likes of conspiracy buffs promising a lot of twists and turns and shocking revelations that are supposed to wow the players, Secret Service has taken the a classic (unorigininal) save the president route.

    Still, a lot of people will probably jump in on this gaming bandwagon, as the allure of being part of the Secret Service is great. You get to serve and protect and ultimately of course, uncover a great conspiracy plan. Areas like the Lincoln Memorial will be part of your zone of protection. After all, anywhere the President is, is your zone of protection. Check out leads, and find out how an assasination attempt was put together. For me, the gameplay ran a little short of bland. Some of the leads were, of course, predictable, but, there were instances where the storyline was very good. Extremists or inside man? You decide.

    Terrorists will attack from all sides and you have to be vigilant, run from various locations in D.C to find out who's behind this attempted assasination, save the leader of the free world and rid everyone of terrorists! Sounds familiar? Of course it does, you've played this game before, several times - with different titles, game engines, and so on being used.

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    Graphics and Sounds

    What's nice about the graphics does is the real time physics. Take down an enemy and you get to see him succumb to gravity just with astounding accuracy. Watch the blood, bullets, and gore spray as bullets develop real time effects and pierce certain objects (or people) as they go through their flight trajectories.

    Most of the time, the physics of this game are stunning and will actually make you want to keep playing, but unfortuantely there are so many bug laden areas that you simply just want to throw this game away in disgust. It would have worked, maybe if Activision hadn't been so adamant in pushing the release date for the election, getting the bugs out, and riding the Innauguration buzz.

    As for the sounds, what do you really need besides ratt-attt-att of the machine gun and the occasional groans of expiration? If you're that type of gamer, then crank up the volume when you play. Otherwise, mute is fine.

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    What really turned me off for this game was the actual FPS aspect itself. Overall, the storyline was passable, the graphics almost good and the sound was tolerable if limited? Unfortunately, the mechanics and how they are handled sucks. More importantly, the sensitivity of the mouse was impossible to set to a pleasing level. You'll hate how slow the reaction time is: moving around fast is something you need in an FPS game (you get crisp reponse in Halo, CounterStrike, Left 4 Dead etc.) and when it takes a down time of 2-3 seconds just to whip around and target the man to your left, who's attempting to gun you down - it just won't cut it.

    I wish I could say that the pros outweigh the cons here but I really can't. What happens is that well, Secret Service just failed to rise to the occasion. This game has a lot of potential but an assination was carried out by some nasty bugs and a sluggish interface.

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