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Dark Sector - hands-on

Oct. 15, 2007

Come to the former Soviet Union. It's Rubbish. Yep, the various fictional former Soviet states featured in games always look like the very worst place to spend a weekend. Bad news for preposterously-named Hayden Tenno, then; the poor fella's got himself dosed up with mutagenic goo and is stuck in the middle of an Eastern European wasteland between two warring factions - the hazmat-suited government soldiers and the massively freakish victims of a biological weapon.

Dark Sector started off a bit sci-fi, suddenly became somewhat Resident Evil 4 a year later, and since Leipzig, it's all a little bit Gears of War. Unlike the imperfect freaks he faces, Tenno is an exceptional mutation with a freaky metal arm that's spontaneously grown him his very own razor-sharp Frisbee - and, luckily, as a former CIA spook he already has the skills to survive in a war zone.

Above: Agent better have my money

Like Gears, Hayden locks to cover and can peek out to use his guns or shiny glaive. Launching the glaive towards power lines will electrify it, while tossing it into fire will ignite the blades, making it all the more effective against the very first boss you face.

Yep, after slicing and dicing our way through an army of banana-yellow hazmat men we faced the premier boss amid the ruins of an abandoned church. And while it's all a lot of fun with the slashing and the shooting, the Colossus is a run of the mill "cold" baddy straight from a Zelda game. Predictably, he's dispatched with the burning glaive and finished off with firepower. In another nod to the obvious, three strikes and he's out.

In truth, it all sounds a little underwhelming, yet we still like every influence Digital Extremes have drawn from and every trick they've borrowed. Who doesn't like RE 4 and Gears?