By MajorMitch 8 Comments
For anyone not in the know, Freedoms Fighters was a fantastic game, and had an even better soundtrack. I love all of the songs from this game, one of my favorites being Leader of the Resistance.
Freedom Fighters takes place in an alternate history where Soviet Russia straight up invades the US, and the entire tone of the game aims to capture the fear and paranoia one typically associates with the Cold War. Nowhere is that more apparent than in its soundtrack, including this fantastic song. While a lot of the other songs are awesomely epic and terrifying, Leader of the Resistance takes on a more subtle tone. If the other songs represent blatant, unrestrained communist oppression and terror, this song represents the more intricate fight that’s constantly going on behind the scenes. One of the game’s major themes is how even your average Joe can make a difference in wartime situations, and this song plays when you first join up with a resistance group formed entirely of “average” people. It’s a ragtag bunch that seems entirely ill-equipped to mount any kind of offensive. Instead, they more or less operate in the shadows (at least to start with), making precise, calculated blows that can have some pretty meaningful ramifications down the road.
That’s what I think about when I hear this song- it’s precise and calculated. It seems to know exactly where it’s going, and it’s confident that it will know what to do when it gets there. At the same time, it’s kind of on edge, like everything else associated with the Cold War. The minimal instrumentation does a great job at making the core themes stick out, while also making it feel like there’s a certain lack of support holding the whole thing together. It feels like it could all fall apart at any second, but never does- it keeps a steady hand from start to finish. If it’s possible to be both nervous and confident at the same time, this song is it. That fits incredibly well with the tense missions at this point in the game, as they are about planning, getting into position, and waiting for the right moment to strike. And the song eventually does strike- the latter part is a noticeable step up in intensity, and without changing the basic themes it sounds more determined than ever. Then, with its task complete, it quickly reels itself back in, not wanting to be exposed for too long. This matches the mission design it accompanies wonderfully, making Leader of the Resistance a great song that simulates how I think I would feel if I were in the shoes of the game’s protagonists. That it can take direct advantage of the interactive nature of the medium without sacrificing the thematic undercurrent that defines the entire experience is fantastic.
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