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Soldier of Fortune: Payback - first look

Oct 22, 2007

Shooting - or knifing, or just trusty old punching in the balls - someone that you’ve already killed has been a gaming guilty pleasure since Castle Wolfenstein, but never before has it been a reason to buy a game. Yet so much work has gone into the enemy damage system in the upcoming FPS Soldier of Fortune: Payback that you may find yourself spending more time devising creative ways to maim prone enemies than playing the actual game.

This is hardly an exaggeration: developer Cauldron has done dismemberment due diligence. In the build we saw, limbs detach themselves at the slightest provocation - as if they’re waiting to jump ship and your bullets are a good enough excuse. The long-distance amputations are so abundant that it occasionally seems like Cauldron has invented joints - thighbows and choulders - for the sole purpose of coming apart and producing unreasonable amounts of bright-red liquid. Anxious to show off how white they are, the fibula and vertebrae also make startlingly frequent appearances.