Monday, September 12, 2011

W40k: Space Marine

The smarter side of slaughter (Joystiq's review of Space Marine).
I like the tag line for that review. I played through the demo twice, I liked it so much. You're darn tooting that I'll be picking Space Marine up tomorrow. I didn't realise it was out already! AND it has a coop mode being released soon? Mind readers is what they are.

There's something about games which feature any accent but American which agrees with me. English accents in particular, when in computer games (unlike the hollywood style he's English so he's a bad guy), speak to me of steam punk / Victorian era - I'm not even sure why as I can't think of a single example game which encouraged this....wait...waaaait a second.
I remember.

"Bless your weapons, and go."
It was the original Space Hulk. PC Zone Issue 1(?), 1993, demo was on the 3.5" floppy disk which came with the mag. 5 levels. 5 Cameras. Like aliens but better. Man, that was one addictive game. This retrospective on RockPaperShotgun is well worth a read, a veritable trip down memory lane.
So! That's where my English accent association came from. At the start of each mission you'd get a Space Marine belting out orders, and during the mission your marine brothers, all spoke in English accents. Go on, let the nostalgia in and have a listen (really, I insist).

I know I know, Space Hulk is neither steam punk nor Victorian. But! it shares the griminess and dark that I associate with them both.

I actually played Space Hulk sometime last year. Had a chore and a half amount of bother getting it to run on Windows 7. DosBox came to the rescue there.

The game has a fantastic mechanic, the 'freeze' button. You can pause the action to give quite complex commands to your squad. While paused you're amount of freeze time decreases. While (surviving) in normal time the freeze time slowly rebuilds. Huge tension builder right there.
Add to that the frequent Storm Bolter jams, and the excitement of choosing the right moment to make a move on that corner you think you've cleared out of's only 4 squares away. Any closer and you're too close to guarantee a genestealer kill before it's on you, but you have to push forward. Motion sensors say it's clear. GO GO GO. Will you get to the corner and turn in time enough to give you 4 spaces worth of range on any approaching enemy?

An awesome recipe for excitement. I get adrenaline rushes from playing chess for crying out loud! What possible defense could my 14 year old self have had against this game.

So yes. I'll be buying Space Marine. Perhaps in a misguided attempt to revisit the nostalgia of being 14 years old. More likely though, it's just going to be damn good fun.

Here's the trailer. You should definitely check this trailer out as well: I am a Space Marine (Lance Henriksen makes anything sound good).


  1. I've too much to paint to play this game, but damn, it's tempting...

  2. I've picked it up. Hot damn it's good. I'm sure the folks who have memorised the codex astartes will have many complaints, but I think it's all fab. Get it.
    I got it from here:
    for the princely sum of 28E. They give you a STEAM code and you download it from Steam.
    Make sure you have the PC to run it first...


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