Syndicate just might be my GOTY

#1 Edited by Legion_ (1718 posts) -

Wow. Just now got about to playing Syndicate. Again, wow. That game really blew me away. I just love the shooting in that game. Never before have I experienced so perfectly tuned shooting controls, and that's super impressive. You go Starbreeze!

On top of that fantastic gameplay, they've crafted a game world that's just super fun to experience. And the sterile looking enviroments mixed with the ultra violence of the game just mixes really well.

While the story is certainly fun, it's in the coop the game truly shines. I don't think I've ever played a better coop game in my life. It's just so fun to play. In a day and age where games are blending more and more into each other, it's just so refreshing when a game like Syndicate comes along.

It's nothing revolutionary, but it's just a blast to play. It's a shame that the branding probably was the bane of that game, and that just goes to show how little a games quality actually means when people have made up their mind months in advance.

To those of you who did play the game, what are your impressions? To the rest of you, go play Syndicate!

Edit: Dang, forgot to attach this to the Syndicate page. Can a mod fix this please? Thanks.

#2 Posted by UitDeToekomst (797 posts) -

I just played it toward the end of last week. I am not particularly fond of FPS games in general, but something about the environments, the art, the interface, and the world that was created really appealed to me in Syndicate. I wasn't as fond of the shooting as you seem to have been, but I found it no better or worse than most in the genre. It didn't make my personal top 10 for 2012, but it came surprisingly close and was much better than I was expecting. I would love to see an open world 3rd person game in the vein of Sleeping Dogs, GTA, etc set in the Syndicate universe. I think that could be really stellar.

#3 Posted by HistoryInRust (6727 posts) -

I've just swung around to the game within the week as well. The coop mode is a lot of fun. I get the sense that once you understand the enemy AI routines and placement, you can probably cruise through the levels without a lot of variety, but the upgrade system and general resonance of the tactile feel of the weaponry nearly makes up for that.

I haven't slugged through the campaign yet, so I've no idea what I'll end up thinking about it. But, yeah, that coop is stellar.

#4 Posted by Giantstalker (1938 posts) -

It's good but there were better shooters to play this year, just being brutally honest here.

The DLC for Battlefield 3 continues to dominate my multiplayer time, and Far Cry 3 had hands-down the best singleplayer experience for me.

That said, Syndicate was a fine game. It deserved better reception, I agree, and there was some untapped potential there that justified a sequel (which it will almost assuredly never get).

But among FPS games, it just wasn't as good as the alternatives I played this year.

#5 Posted by jakob187 (22433 posts) -

Fantastic game. I had it on my Top 10 for most of the year. Unfortunately, it didn't last on there because of other games. Regardless, still think it's great.

#6 Posted by believer258 (13202 posts) -

I haven't played the multiplayer but the single player was "good, not great".

I liked the aesthetic and the style, and I'd like to see more of that - but in a better game. Strip away the aesthetics and it was a by-the-numbers shooter for the most part. The powers were interesting and well-utilized but I don't think they alone differentiated it enough from any other shooter.

I'm not saying that it was bad, just that it wasn't particularly noteworthy in my book, and I seriously doubt that any 4 player co-op could really save it unless it did something particularly revolutionary.

#7 Posted by Marz (5786 posts) -

Campaign was a little too short, little too linear for my tastes. The coop seemed to be the best part of the game, but there wasn't much of a community to keep it going :O (at least on PC).

#8 Posted by MasterVerhoffin (150 posts) -

As good as the controls and setting are I stopped playing it about a week after the TNT and haven't touched it since. There was just nothing particularly striking enough to keep me coming back. I also remember being super disappointed it didn't let you pick which weapons to bring into a mission despite having a per-weapon upgrade system.

#9 Posted by Humanity (12534 posts) -

@Legion_: I also really enjoyed it and even wrote a favorable review for it on this site. I really loved all the breaching mechanics and the signature Starbreeze first person interaction with the environment. IF only the playable character talked and was more of an actual character rather than just a vessel for the player to go about in that game would be so much better storywise.

Gotta say though, right before that game ends, when those first few beats of that original Syndicate theme chime in I got chills. It really brought me back in time to 1993 or something when I played the first Syndicate on my brothers 66mhz pc.

#10 Posted by HistoryInRust (6727 posts) -

@Marz said:

Campaign was a little too short, little too linear for my tastes. The coop seemed to be the best part of the game, but there wasn't much of a community to keep it going :O (at least on PC).

That seems to be the case on all platforms, unfortunately.

#11 Posted by OneKillWonder_ (2136 posts) -

It's an 'okay' game at best. It does like nice and the shooting is solid, I'll give it that. The campaign held promise, but it was far too short and poorly paced. I hated the way it was divided into 10-minute levels that ranked you for no real reason. There also wasn't much of an opportunity to use your powers, especially with the huge chunk in the final act where all your abilities are stripped away right after getting the last one. I liked some of the set-pieces, like the bit on top of the train, though. In the end, it felt like a cyberpunk CoD campaign with an even more arcadey set up. The world appears to be interesting on the surface, and with all that shit you find to read that fills in the fiction, you wouldn't be blamed for immediately thinking it was, but I never felt like any of that stuff mattered because the game never bothered to go anywhere with it. Deus Ex HR had come out just six months prior to Syndicate, and that actually has a fascinating cyberpunk world to learn about and be in, so maybe I was just spoiled by that. 
The co-op was fun for a little while, but held little replayability. I had decent fun with the game and managed to play it twice this year, but there were much, much better games released, especially on the shooter front. Personally I think Jeff is out of his fucking mind giving this game 5 stars, but maybe that's just me.

#12 Posted by Cold_Wolven (2416 posts) -

The game was pretty fun to play even on single player, Starbreeze did a really good job fleshing out the world with the dialogue entries you find scattered about. Also the ability to hack enemies to commit suicide or turn on each other was really fun and the controls felt really tight.

#13 Posted by Vonocourt (2187 posts) -

Missed the boat on the co-op I think, thought the singleplayer was middling.

#14 Posted by Mnemoidian (1010 posts) -

Played silly amounts of the Multiplayer... and yeah, once you really started getting good at that, the game really flowed - extremely rewarding at higher levels of practice. Personally, one of my favorite parts was how much the parallell hacking mini-game added to the game - it really feels amazing once it gets intuitive, and can end up in situations where you find yourself barely keeping up with the number of events you need to deal with at the same time.

Unfortunately, being sent out to die with no marketing in front of Mass Effect 3 (especially it's multiplayer), with little to no marketing... Meh!

Don't think it's my game of the year, but I really liked it.

(Singleplayer is pretty average though, and the combat system didn't really click for me until I had played a lot more multiplayer).

#15 Posted by Guided_By_Tigers (8020 posts) -

Yeah its definitely my GOTY, most fun I've had playing coop since the original Halo: CE

#16 Posted by Legion_ (1718 posts) -

@Guided_By_Tigers: I totally agree. It's just so fun to play. Can't really put my finger on it, but it's close to perfect in my eyes.

#17 Posted by Napalm (9230 posts) -

I don't like the shooting in this game at all, and hilariously, it has what I've been (in secret) pandering about that I want in first-person shooters: more nuanced animations when shooting, reloading, aiming, etc. Also, this game suffers from the whole you-can-take-about-five-bullets-before-you-die syndrome. I got to the first "Boss Fight" before I said, "well this is just about the worst thing ever," and promptly shut the game off.

I really want to go back to it, but man. Man.

#18 Posted by Christoffer (2142 posts) -

I love me some Syndicate and is certainly up there on my GOTY-list (if I ever bothered to make one, that is). There were segments in the campaign, mostly towards the end, that felt less exciting. But all in all it was fine. The multiplayer on the other hand is superb. I can't fault you if you picked it as your favourite game this year.

Would love a sequel but that will never, ever happen... unless I get filthy rich.

#19 Posted by Guided_By_Tigers (8020 posts) -

@Christoffer said:

Would love a sequel but that will never, ever happen... unless I get filthy rich.

It sucks that it sold so poorly that DLC didn't even get made for it, I would have loved to have some more co-op maps to play on.

#20 Posted by Klei (1799 posts) -

I didn't really enjoy Syndicate. The campaign didn't cut it for me, with it's odd pacing and bizarre weapon loadouts at times. The MP felt just as flat. As for raw shooting mechanics, Rage remains untouched to this day.

#21 Posted by Legion_ (1718 posts) -

@Guided_By_Tigers: Agreed. I would pay a lot of money for Syndicate 2. Just the thought of using that pistol in more enviroments. Come to think of, the standard pistol is probably my favorite aspect of the whole game. The animations are so awesome. The running and shooting animation... Pure awesomeness.

#22 Posted by Fattony12000 (8007 posts) -
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#23 Posted by KittyVonDoom (447 posts) -

It's easily one the best FPS games I've played, and I still have most of the co-op to get through. I was never fond of EA before, but finding out that they left this game to die so they could remind people that Mass Effect is still a thing just makes me like them even less.

This game even made using flame-throwers and mini-guns fun in 2012! I did not think that was possible :D Not that it matters, but yes, this is my GOTY.

#24 Posted by HistoryInRust (6727 posts) -

@KittyVonDoom: That first spot in the campaign where you can use a minigun. Holy shitballs. You're literally sawing dudes apart and spilling their stringy viscera across the floor. I was blown away by how brutal it was.

#25 Posted by CaptainCharisma (348 posts) -

The game does what I wish more games did. From the way the hud sort of works as if it's what your character really sees, the artsyle, music, thought the story was pretty good, and was a total blast to play. Definitely one of my favorite games in the past few years.

#26 Posted by KittyVonDoom (447 posts) -

@HistoryInRust: Deffo. Totally took me back to the first time I saw the chainsaw execution in Gears of War. Gross, yet oddly satisfying. I both hate, and love that about games, lol.

#27 Posted by darkvare (856 posts) -

i really like it but it was too short still very enjoyable i plan of playing co op with my buddies though

#28 Edited by KittyVonDoom (447 posts) -

@darkvare said:

i really like it but it was too short still very enjoyable i plan of playing co op with my buddies though

I felt the same initially, then I found out it actually took me at least 8 hours on Normal! I guess it's true what they say about how time flys when you're roasting dudes with a gigantic flamethrower.

#29 Posted by Getz (3582 posts) -

It made it on my GOTY list but I couldn't really put it at the very top.

#30 Posted by Legion_ (1718 posts) -

@HistoryInRust: Yes, this! Times eleven! The ultra violence really fits the world they created. It's kind of disturbing that I love it when I blow off some dudes leg with a shotgun.

#31 Posted by warmonked (415 posts) -

The lame campaign story keeps this from being in my GOTY list. BUT, the shooting and gameplay is damn fun. I'm really bummed that the multiplayer isn't better supported.

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