Never Cross the Lines
Who are we without our humanity, and given the right circumstances will we abandon the social pre-conceived idea of humanity to survive. That phrase appears to be the idea that Spec Ops: The Line is trying to push. When faced with a difficult decision, sometimes the best decision is to just do what seems best for better or for worse. Yet those decisions can carry a heavy burden on one's conscience. As you play through Spec Ops you are given difficult decisions in an unconventional way for games. The game does not simply give you a choice of two buttons to press and clearly show you whether it will have a positive or negative impact. The choices are laid out for you through events, and you choose. The good or bad effect will be presented to you afterwards, and it is up to you to decide how that makes you feel. While this may not sounds very inviting or interesting it carries a profound impact on the idea of what is socially acceptable and even what real soldiers may face on a day-to-day basis. While exaggerated quite a bit the choices can cause collateral damage, so choose wisely. The game-play is your basic over-the-shoulder shoot'em-up, Gears of War style game. You move from cover to cover picking off enemies as required. You are given a fairly diverse arsenal of weapons throughout the game to play with. Some weapons can be silenced to take a more stealthy approach to a particular scenario. The stealth in the game is very difficult to do, and at some points seem impossible. One can run through the entire game without being stealthy and have no issue. After finishing the game I revisited some areas that seemed impossible to stealth through, and was able to get through them without anyone noticing me. This being said, there is no real incentive to do so, nor any real reward other than not having oodles of bullets flying at you. The controls can be clunky at times and become frustrating, but not to the point that it made me personally want to stop playing the game. Your experience may vary, especially if you are not a fan of shooters. The game does provide many beautiful scenes of a sand-covered Dubai. This Dubai does seem devastated, and war-torn, but there is a diverse color-palette. This is much better than the largely grey color-palette provided in similar games. Audio quality in the game is not really great or bad, just okay. The weapon sound effects are pretty standard fare of normal gun-shots with a bit of bass added for a little more punch to them. Nolan North voices the main character and the performance is good. The other voice acting in the game is not bad as well. Overall while Spec Ops: The Line does not innovate with game-play, graphics, or sound, the story and choices made during the story really make it well worth playing.