Freedom Fighters (Video Game 2003) Poster

(2003 Video Game)

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TBJCSKCNRRQTreviews28 March 2009
I can't be the first to realize it: The guys at IO Interactive think up awesome and interesting concepts, and their execution usually leaves little to be desired. I haven't tried Kane & Lynch: Dead Men(it does seem excellent, though), but Hit-man and this - impeccable. The plot of this is good, and the story well-thought out, with nice progression. It does have a couple of clichés, and a tad of predictability. It invents an alternate history, and in this the US is, in present time, being invaded by the Soviet Union. The people of New York aren't going to stand for that. You are to gather as many followers as you can and fight back, guerrilla style. This means precision strikes on key targets, planning and skill. You will engage in sabotage. You will retake your city from its conquerors. Two important words in this are "vantage point". The strategy and tactics available to you are fitting, without it becoming an RTS. This is shooter-action, albeit requiring thought to a greater degree than others. The command system for giving orders to the squad is simple, clean and to the point, and as soon as you're used to it, you might wonder why it isn't used in every game in which you are the leader of soldiers. The interface of this is just short of being sublime, if it is in fact, imperfect. The AI is almost beyond reproach. Your own men will move away from bombs and moving vehicles, and I experienced opponents moving out of the way when grenades were tossed at them, as well. This has extremely few exceptions. In general, this is nearly entirely devoid of bugs and glitches. The camera is third-person, with zoom being possible regardless of what you're holding, obviously the amount of it will vary. In fact, it's essentially that of Codename: 47, with a free, 360 degree one(think Blood Money) added. You can see that it's those same people from other things in this... they have "tells". How you feel about this is really based on if you like no less than one of their products, or dislike them all. Where they go, Jesper Kyd follows, and his music, as usual, is amazing. It consists of beautiful score pieces, and synthesized, techno ones(not at the same time in this). Another thing we get that can be recognized is big areas, without the LOD being embarrassing. Actually, you'll want to check your map. It's not only helpful, it's necessary. It doesn't give everything away. The level design: Marvelous, if the, at least occasional, sense of them being linear can be bothersome. You get to choose in what order you want to take care of the different Locations... take out the center of the troop transports or that of the attack chopper? What would you prefer to not have to deal with later? Thus, what you do in one affects the others. The scenarios and objectives are plenty varied. The graphics are gorgeous, they still know their stuff. The atmosphere and mood is outstanding. You really believe in your surroundings. The realism in the look, feel, the weapons(appearance, recoil, damage), buildings, all of it, help with this. Real life places are recreated, with the twist of the signs, all of them written in Russian and English. While this title is gloomy, it is also humorous, and it isn't the most disturbing they've done(it might be the least), and the violence is very mild. There is next to no, if any, harsh language. This doesn't hurt it, and besides, it is rated Teen, so it should be expected, going in. The ideas in this are fantastic. It's cinematic, too. If you don't get carried away at during the mass panic portion of the opening/tutorial, then you are tough to impress. Each chapter has one cut-scene. These are done all in-engine, and aren't half-bad. The characters are well-written and quirky, meanwhile, they went over the top with the stereotypes. This features a well-done rag-doll effect, and actually sometimes allows enemies to survive explosions(if they have enough health, presumably). There are not terribly many different guns(quality is not lacking... the picks are magnificent, with Molotov Cocktails, the AK47, the Dragunov sniper and others), and you may only ever carry one side-arm and one rifle. They're all useful, however, so choose carefully, and don't assume that ones dropped by the so-recently alive Reds you've taken out are going to be full(I'm sure you're aware what that'll make out of both of us). Ammo can prove limited, so aim and conserve. If you've got the gall to try that... keeping in mind that they can do the exact same... you can use close-quarters combat, at any time, no matter what you have equipped. You'll gain charisma(the more you have, the bigger the army you can Recruit, meaning, get serving under you, up to a dozen individuals), as you get further in this, and it aids in this to reach out a, well, healing hand, to suffering civilians, and completing secondary goals. This has no multi-player, and while it might have been doable, I respect that they chose not to include it(I have found no reason why making something that is one or the other, SP or MP), and if you wish to try a release similar to this with your friends, the company's 2007 one might be the ticket. This one is a lot of fun... although when the different missions are mastered, this ends kinda soon. Beating is begets you a Selector, so that you can revisit any part from the start of it. This doesn't have an awful lot of re-playability value. The range in the difficulty settings, arguably one thing that can boost it, should ensure that the majority of those who try it can get a challenge, and one that matches their abilities. I recommend this to fans of the group of Danes who made this and/or the rest of what they've given us. 8/10
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What a great game
leader-163 September 2008
Warning: Spoilers
IO Interactive really hit the money on this game, this is one of my favorite games for the PS2. No wonder this game received high ratings, its just plain awesome.

The story revolves around Christopher Stone, a 32-year-old plumber who gets caught up the "Soviet Invasion". He teams up with Isabelle, the leading spokespeople for the fight against reds, and other freedom fighters to battle the Russians. Your brother Troy, who gets captured byt the Russians is also a leading person.

Lets talk about game play: You get to recruit a max of 12 people to help you fight, now there cheats to get it automatically, but if you like the old fashion ways, then go through it with how many you get from things. Healing civilians and other fighters will raise up your charisma, which unlocks new fighters. I love the NYC graphics, grade A work, they did a good job with it. The kid, tells you whats in level in some way, mostly telling you about C4 and where to plant it. the weapons are great, my choice is the Assault Rifle. You can select what the fighters do, pressing triangle tells them to basically FIGHT, pressing square tells them to Regroup, and circle is to fall back.

The levels are just awesome, lots of nocks and craneys, if you look around enough, you can heal civilians to get more charisma, and recruit more fighters.

The soundtrack is just amazing, i love it. I forget who orchestrated it, but i give it 5 stars, amazing soundtrack. there really no bosses in this game, the only one that would come close is General Titarin, who is the leader of the Soviet group.

Weird Stuff: When you kill them, sometimes they fly and catch a wall and hang there, its really weird.

Stupid stuff: when ever you aim and your fighters are aorund yuou, the aim button goes in all directions, so when you fire you hit your teammates. I would highly NOT SUGGEST using the rocket launcher when your fighters are around you.

Great game! try it
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One of the more, overlooked games this past decade.
Spounge9 March 2008
Let me tell you a little story of how I came upon this awesome title. I was at a video game renting place. And I obviously was looking for a game to rent. Now, I have rented just about everything there. Except for Freedom Fighters. I looked at the case and read the description. And on the cover it said, From the makers of Hit-man 2. Sold.

I went back to my place and was instantly floored by the music on the menu screen. Not sure why, but I was. I'd spend a long time just simply listening to it. Jesper Kyd does a phenomenal job as almost always. Freedom Fighters was the game that got me paying more closely to music in games than ever before.

Freedom Fighters has you in the role Chris Stone. Not the most original of names. But no biggie. Anyway, you are suddenly thrust into conflict as the Soviets begin their invasion. The idea of their invasion is, Take New York and you take the entire country. It kinda backfires. Instead of the US falling to its knees. The entire country rallies around the New York rebellion and your actions. But all the action takes place in New York City.

Your actions in some areas can affect other areas. You will notice this on your first mission. You have to get C4 in one area, go to the other and blow up the snipers so you can get into the police station. This sort of thing is repeated throughout the game. One of the more common goals is to destroy a helipad to stop attack/transport choppers or destroying bridges to prevent further reinforcements. Doing both of those vastly decreases the difficulty of the area you are on. It does get a little tiresome though having to do it all the time. And I understand why they have the player do it because I would imagine the Reds have more than just one helicopter pad. They also try to mix it up a bit by having you rescue POWs and some civilians caught in the middle. And that is fine. You complete the level or area by raising the flag in a particular building or spot. Some see this as some political thing. I see it as just a way to end the level and move on.

Another neat thing about Freedom Fighters is the squad commands. They are fairly simple. You have 3 commands: attack, defend, and follow. Just tapping the keys will tell one rebel what you want him to do. Holding it tells your entire platoon or squad. I usually put these guys to work around heavy machine gun emplacements and have them cut down any unfortunate Soviet Sap who feels a bit more brave than the rest. But every now and then I get creative and have each of my squad-mates line up single file along the side of a car to maximize the firepower a bit. Some may see this command thing as something rushed or far too simple. But when you need to clear a room on a hard difficulty setting they are your healthiest bet.

There really isn't a diversity of weapons. Americans don't have their own stuff with the exception of the Spas-12, pipe wrench, Molotov, and the revolver. Everything else is acquired from the Soviets. In a war zone such as this. I would expect a little more than that.

There is no blood. I reckon that's another flaw. It brings a little cartoon feel to the game. I know its not meant to be the most ultra realistic looking game ever. But from the makers of Hit-man 2. I expect to see some blood at least.

No lip animations or hardly any at all. May not seem like a big deal but a lot of times you get to see the characters faces clearly and its just plain weird having them talk and not seeing anything moving.

Overall its a exceptional game. I've played it on the PS2, Xbox, and my PC. Each time was still a good experience.
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Good Story lines and Epic Music is what Puts I-O on the map.
Jack Sessna28 December 2007
Warning: Spoilers
Let me first start off by saying I LOVE THIS GAME! I got rid of my PS2 ages ago and I was so POed that I could never play this game again. I had to write a little review about it because this game is 4 years overdue for my telling about its amazing gameplay.

You play a plumber in New York City (imagine that) who gets caught up in an invasion on the United States by the Russians (grandpa Joe WAS telling the truth). His brother is kidnapped and Chris places his trust on a band of rebels that are working out of a sewer cavern that looks big enough to house the nukes needed to bomb the hell out of the invaders. After you're introduced to the rebels and such you're set out on your first mission. To rescue Isabella, the imprisoned rebel leader. To do this, you must go through stages to ensure the rescue of Isabella. The stages are usually separated into three to five separate parts in your current area. Each of these parts need to be overthrown with sabotage to the enemy's resources in that area. To complete the stage, you will need to raise an American flag at the points with Russian flags. Once each flag point has an American flag risen, the level is complete.

For those of you who know Jesper Kyd, I don't think I have to go into details about the music in this game. But, for those of you who don't, the music is phenomenal. It's packed with epic scores sung by the Hungarian Radio Choir. Anyone from Hungary? I would really like to know if they do intros for the radios there, because I thought they were excellent. Better than our American radio jingles. Jesper Kyd, I-O Interactive's music mastermind puts in his best to make you picture running into battle with an AK and an American flag ready to kick ass and take names. Freedom Fighter's makers put their music in good hands. I have the soundtrack, believe me, I listen to it on my way to work and drum on the dashboard. I know, I know. But Kyd's got amazing talent. Just listen to the Hit-man trilogy.

SO. Final score. 8/10 Graphics -- 7/10 - Yeah, they were good. But they looked somewhat chunky. Everyone was muscular and well built, except for Chris's brother who looked like Super Mario.

Gameplay -- 8/10 - Truly epic gameplay. Actually felt like you were turning back the invasion. I could definitely see a movie adaptation with the way the actions in the game were. Everything is very Band of Brothers'ish. It has it's moments of running into the invaders guns-a-blazin' and it has it's stealth moments. Although the gameplay is excellent, I could definitely be seeing many of you punching in your cheats during gameplay. It's difficult to fight the Russians when everyone on your team doesn't want to follow your direction and ends up getting killed, leaving you buddy-less and hiding from gunfire with out any health packs. Unless you're on very easy mode, health packs are scarce, and so is ammo. You will sometime find yourself resorting to your plumber's wrench. Recruiting members into your squad is as easy as cooking pie in a microwave oven. But getting them to follow your direction is probably as easy as finding a unicorn in your glove-box. They'll go to where you want them to go, but then they'll run back to you and tell you they're "ready when you are." I often found myself saying, I'm ready for you to stop jerking off and go investigate the area I told you to. But they'd probably nod and laugh and say "good one, boss." Combat -- 9/10 - Like I said, much of the gameplay is epic and it will have you screaming into battle with an AK and a Molotov expecting to mow down the opposition. That is, if the opposition didn't have unlimited man power and a hell of a lot more firepower. Just think of the idea of running into combat without any backup as throwing a snowball into the gates of hell, then imagine that you're the snowball. You wouldn't last two milliseconds before becoming Rebel Hamburger Meat. That being said, you can use the invader's weapons against them, not the helicopters with high-powered machine guns, but the smaller 50 cal machine guns. Grenades are impossible to use not only because they can take out everything and it's mother, but because the Russians pussy out and run from them every time you throw one, but of course our guys yell grenade and stand over it as if it were a magical device capable of making you invincible. They guessed wrong.

Sound -- 9/10 - Jesper Kyd really brings techno industrial music back from the tattered ruins of the 1990's espionage films and wraps it into a nicely wrapped gift-box. Other than the music, every other sound was standard. The voices were somewhat overdone, but nothing to bitch about.

Replay-ability -- Slim - Yes it was a good game to play with through the first time, but the whole Guy gets Shot At, Guy Rescues girl, guy runs through building, guy gets betrayed yadda yadda shtick gets a little repetitive after a while and you find yourself shouting "GOD I HATED THIS FRIGGEN LEVEL!!" at every turn. But, you still want to replay it on a day when the bullies at school told you you couldn't do anything right. Rescuing New York City from Russian invasion sure sounds right to me.

From the Review Square, JC
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Red Dawn: the Game
Michael A. Martinez26 August 2007
I was actually recommended this game by an actor "co-starring" in a movie with me while I was in Las Vegas. I told him I thought Red Alert 2 (which he was in) was one of my favorite recent RTS games and it had much better cut-scene acting than usual. He then went and said he was a lot more proud of this game, which I had never heard of before. Well, being a "Red Dawn" fan and upon hearing this game had essentially the same plot (except with adults this time) I think I went out and grabbed it in about the same length of time as it takes to say "Freedom Fighters".

This game is awesome - you get to lead a small group of insurgents battling against the commie takeover of America in New York. You get to fight your way through sewers, war torn streets, oil refineries, headquarters, military bases, etc. Nothing is much more fun than ordering squads of guys to take out targets while you sit back and chill with a sniper rifle and take out baddies at leisure with minimal risk. The engine is really smooth and fairly free of bugs, and the voice acting / plot is even pretty well-done as well.

However, there are a lot of things that fell short with this title. The first is that you're awfully limited in your ability to misbehave or do anything outside the linear time line of events. You can't kill friendlies who are essential to the plot or fully explore areas. There's a few instances where you get to fight tanks and helicopters but there's never the option to hop inside a T-72 and take it for a joyride in Greenwich Village. Also, there's no blood or gore which makes the combat awfully cartoonish... and a few levels are needlessly, frustratingly hard due to enemy helicopters with insanely good accuracy.

I'd still like to see a sequel, hopefully one that goes the distance and gets an "M" rating.
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fun shooter, stupid rpg story
winner553 June 2007
Pretty good shooter; levels are difficult but not impossible. Some amusing touches, like the Soviet newscaster who breaks for the weather every time there's bad news - just as the right-wing media of the current America does now.

The main problem with the game is the hilariously stupid story that grounds it.

The Soviets could never have invaded America, nor would they unless the US tried to invade them first. The Soviets were too isolationist, they didn't trust each other enough to launch such an invasion, which would have strained their always unstable inner political structure. If they had invaded, reaction would have been swift and devastatingly violent, whether the US was led by Democrats - like Jimmy Carter, who effectively designed the US nuclear submarine program, targeted specifically at the Soviet Union, long before he entered politics - or Republicans like Reagan.

The laughable scenario is underscored by the task the main character performs to end a mission And move on - he raises a flag over a building.

Oh, come on! Despite right-wing rhetoric, wars are not about flags (what the Amish call "painted rags") or buildings. In 1812, Napoleon thought he had captured Russia because he had captured Moscow; the Russians let him know different. 42 years later, the Confederate Army fought Union General Sherman to preserve Atlanta Georgia, because they thought he wanted to use the railway network that joined at Atlanta as a base; so he had the whole city burned down just to prove he didn't care about they're dam' railroad.

The kids who think such stories such as that of "Freedom Fighters" make sense, haven't any notion what freedom really means, and so would never know how to fight for it. You don't start by willing to kill - but by willing to die. To die, because "freedom" is only a codeword for "the next generation" - that is, our children and our children's children, and the kind of life we wish for them to enjoy.

If this "kind of life" is all about money and consumer goods, then it amounts to nothing.

It is the ability to think for one's self and to define the self that thinks. It is the choice of morals, which admittedly deny us much of the grosser enjoyments in life, not a choice of objects to enjoy.

"Freedom Fighters" was a fun game to play - but I will not be leaving it to my children.
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An overlooked game
Warning: Spoilers
This was one of the best games of 2003 and out of my entire collection. There is an original story reinforced by responsive game-play. I loved every aspect of this game, the graphics and the setting were great too. The linked objectives from different maps really made this game more interesting and gave the player the ability to choose which way he/she wants to do it. The script of the game and the cut scenes are very well put together truly conveying the feelings of the characters. Apart from the fact that you take on a horde of soviet troops pretty much on your own the game is realistic in its objectives(no big boss fights, i was pleasantly surprised with the way Tatarin was dealt with)The ending points out that the forces that were fought are only the "security" troops left to watch over the prize, and the real battle is yet to come which is nice because it doesn't finish with you winning the war.

I give this game 10/10 for story and game-play, however i deduct 2 points for the lack of any extras and a quite disappointing multi-player mode.
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Excellent Game
Raan-117 February 2006
Warning: Spoilers
Freedom Fighters is set in a parallel universe, a universe where the Soviet Union got the A-bomb first, and used it on Berlin, ending the war in Europe. From there, the USSR grew in power, leading to a victory of the Mexican Communist Party in the 1996 election. 5 years later, the Soviet Union invades.

Take up various weapons as Chris Stone, a plumber-turned-soldier to lead your band of freedom fighters to victory against the USSR, and take back your city.

Audio: 4/5 Great music, excellent effects, but needs more death groans.

Video: 4/5 Some of the best visual effects for the PS2.

Gameplay: 5/5 Has a set storyline, but you are allowed to decide which objective to get first. Will you blow the bridge to stop reinforcements? or would you rather take their choppers down?

Story: 5/5 A plot line that hasn't been seen since Red Dawn.

Cheats: 5/5 All in game, effects not seen in many other games.

Overall: 4.6/5

Recommendation: Buy
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Freedom Fighters: Like a videogame version of Red Dawn
REBELRIK17 April 2004
This game is great. Its alot like the 1984 classic "Red Dawn". Freedom Fighters is about the Soviet Union takes over New York and the main character Chris Stone starts a resistance and have a rebel base underground. At the start of the game you'll see other resistance men and women but you can only command two of them, but don't worry throughout the game you get something called charisma and if you do good things (ie heal civilians,blow up helipads,etc) you can recruit more freedom fighters intill you get full charisma and can recruit up to twelve fighters. Its cool because then you can have a full on war. This game offers cool weapons such as the Revolver and AK-47 and the graphics are awesome as well. So for any of you thought Red Dawn would make a good videogame heres your chance to play it except its alittle different. 5/5 stars

Rated T (Teen) for Violence
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Good, but to short
Chances91117 November 2003
This game I liked it, but it was to short and it is kind of easy to beat. The game is about a guy named Chris who in the beginning gets shot at when he's in his house. You meet up with a guy who guides you and helps you through a few things so that you will have a feel for this game. After that you meet up with a few soldiers who with you go underground. They tell you whats going on the thing you have to do is go save this girl Isebella who is being held captive by the soviet army. You will need her to have freedom fighters fighting with you. After that you fight with soldiers and take out probably a thousand guys. Maybe more, but you should take my advice and just rent this game. It's as easy as Enter The Matrix, but shorter. *** out of **** would have been four if would have been longer and harder.
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One of the best ones this year
TheFiddler16 November 2003
The Second World War ends with the Russian dropping the atomic bomb on Berlin. Over the course of the next 50 years communism spreads over Europe and South America . You get involved when the Red Army attacks the United States, as the only hope for the Resistance to kick some oppressor butt. In the beginning you start off on your own , having the task to free not only your brother but also the female leader of the Resistance. As the story continues you will be able to recruit other freedom fighters, that follow your commands that you issue on pressing certain buttons on the joypad. A very nice made game , the classical soundtrack and the graphics give you the feel of really being the only saviour for the people in the US...
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