Operation Darkness is a strategy RPG developed by Success Corp, and published in North America by Atlus USA. It takes place during World War II in the European theater. Battles take place in North Africa and the European mainland. During these missions, the player commands a squad known as the Wolf Pack, which is a special forces unit of the British SAS that includes soldiers of other nationalities as well, such as French and American.
The game plays heavily into fantasy themes of Nazi occultism, with the Wolf Pack facing off against squads of zombified Nazi footsoldiers, vampires, and other creatures of legend. It is also revealed that the Wolf Pack is comprised largely of such beings as well, including werewolves and Frankenstein's monster. Large portions of the story are thus very much rooted in fiction and have little concern for maintaining historical accuracy.
Operation Darkness is a tactical turn-based RPG. When it’s the player's turn, the active character can be moved a certain distance based on a grid layout. After the movement phase is complete, the player can then choose to have the character attack with conventional weapon, use magic or an item, or in the case of some characters, transform into a werewolf.
The chances of an attack being successful are percentage-based. When selecting an enemy to attack, a percentage value appears, indicating how likely it is that the player's attack will hit. Variables that affect the chance of success include the weapon that character is using and the character's distance from the targeted enemy. For example, a character equipped with a machine gun faces a lower success chance to hit a distant target than a character equipped with a rifle.
Magic attacks function in a different manner. Every magic attack has a different range and area of effect. As long the enemy is in the target area, the enemy will be hit every time. However, the same also holds true for magic-using enemies that attack the player's forces.
Turning into a werewolf also has terrific benefits. When in wolf form, a character's speed and attack are greatly increased. However, the use of this power drains Military Spirit (Magic Points) from that character every turn, and so this power can only be used for a limited time.
Much like Fire Emblem, if one of the player's units dies, they're gone for good if they aren't revived by a certain character before the end of the battle. If a story-important character is killed in battle, the stage is lost and the player must start over from their last save.
Every character has his or her own inventory, with five slots for weapons and five slots for items. Weapons are in general based on real-world weapons of the era and include Thompsons, bazookas, MP44's, grenades, knives, and so on. Items consist of equipment such as med packs with ranges of intensity, ammo packs, rockets and magic-restoring water. Battle points earned for killing enemies can be exchanged for for supplies. The player's characters can also gather supplies from dead enemy soldiers. Each item has its own weight, and if a character is over-encumbered, they will be slowed down and appear less frequently in the turn order during combat.
Stats for character consist of Hit Points, Military Spirit Attack, Defense, Avoid, Speed, Hit, and Move. Characters earn experience points and level up by killing enemies, and as they increase in level, they gain stat increases and eventually more magic abilities. Perks can also be equipped on characters; some perks provide bonuses to stats like speed and attack, while others allow for special abilities. One such example of the latter is Auto-restoration, which causes characters to automatically heal themselves when their Hit Points are drained below a certain threshold by using a med pack.
These are the character that fight along side with/ meet along the way though out the story. The official website listed the following
Wolf Pack Members
- Edward Kyle: A young man seeking revenge after his family and fiancee Alicia were killed in a German air-raid. He enlisted in the army to avenge his family, but was assigned to the Wolf Pack after being saved on the battlefields of North Africa by James Gallant. (English Voice Actor: Yuri Lowenthal)
- Cordelia Blake (Cordelia Break in the Japanese version): A mysterious young woman who has served in the British Army since the age of 13. While other troops in the Wolf Pack use guns she fights with her fire-starting abilities. (English Voice Actor: Jessica Straus).
- James Gallant: The leader of the Wolf Pack, James Gallant is a seasoned veteran, especially when fighting the supernatural. He acts as the de facto leader of the Fang Clan, a tribe of werewolves in Scotland who has been in a bloody conflict with the vampires of the Blood Clan for centuries (English Voice Actor: Paul St. Peter )
- Jude Lancelot (Jude Lancerot in the Japanese version): His best friend and brother to his fiancee, Jude fought alongside Edward for the same reasons. (English Voice Actor: Liam O'Brien ).
- Keith Miller: (Keith Mirror in the Japanese version): The squad's fearlessly loyal point man, who has known Gallant since birth. Like James, he is a lycanthrope. (English Voice Actor: Daran Norris)
- Frank Gaunt (Frank Andrea in the Japanese version): Gallant's second-in-command, Gaunt cuts an imposing figure, specializing in close combat. (English Voice Actor: Jamieson Price)
- Cynthia Rivele: A top-heavy Irish sniper with supernatural marksmanship. (English Voice Actor: Colleen O'Shaughnessey)
- Herbert East (Herbert West in the Japanese version): The team's American-born 'medic', Herbert is versed in necromancy. Possibly inspired by the Lovecraft character Herbert West. (English Voice Actor: Liam O'Brien)
- Adolf Hitler: The leader of Nazi Germany. (English Voice Actor: Derek Stephen Prince)
- Heinrich Himmler: The distrustful head of the SS. (English Voice Actor: Dave Wittenberg)
- Alexander Vlado: An SS Sturmbannfuhrer(equivalent to major) from a race of ancient vampires called the Blood Clan. Appears pale and ghoulish. (English Voice Actor: Daran Norris)
- Carmilla: One of Vlado's officers, and of his same vampire race. Has little regard for human life. (English Voice Actor: Tara Platt)
- Lewis Canton: A reserve, Lewis puts his talents as a spy to use for the unit, gathering intelligence on the Germans and occasionally joining in the fracas. (English Voice Actor: Lex Lang)
- Jack the Ripper: Though he once misused his powers to terrorize London, he was rehabilitated by the Wolf Pack, who yet regard him with an uneasy acceptance. Jack can use firearms, but is most proficient with knives. (English Voice Actor: Derek Stephen Prince)
- Elisa Van Helsing: A professor at King's College, Elisa dusts off her Killer Sword and takes up her grandfather's work as a member of the Wolf Pack, when times are dire. (English Voice Actor: Wendee Lee)
- Max Neuman: The Wolf Pack accommodates their former enemy, a Panzer Daemon, when a malfunction leads him to defect to the Allies.
- Leona: A 17 years old Girl belonging to the French Resistance who is serving as a liaison. (English Voice Actor: Karen Strassman)
Though this a modern Xbox 360 release, the game looks like an early PS2 game. Bad textures make the environments is a drab to look at. Though some of the environment can be shot down like building, that doesn't make up for anything.
Character models look no better. They all have this straight bland look on their in game doing the same animation over
and over again. Animation is poorly done, they all move the same way looking very stiff, and at times you see things you shouldn't see. The hand drawn character profiles are not too bad, they have an half Japanese/American style to them,. But their all in the same pose and don't show emotion quite enough.
Operation Darkness was by and large not reviewed well by western critics. The game's current score on Metacritic as of April 2012 is 46 out of 100.
Xbox 360 Live Marketplace
Operation Darkness was added to the Xbox Live Marketplace as a "Games on Demand" title on January 11, 2011. $40 price tag or 3,200 Microsoft points.