Söldner: Secret Wars
Human history is bound together with war. Since the beginning of time, people have been waging war with each other for all sorts of different reasons. Take Egypt for instance. There the Farao’s waged war for water and now, only 5000 years later, water is still very important in this monkeyland. War has always been something of states or large amounts of people. But in the future this is going to change. At least, that’s what they’re trying to make us believe in Söldner: Secret Wars. War is done by a small group of mercenaries while states no longer participate. Time to see whether this army of mercs can do something or whether it’s just a nice facade.
Everyone remembers how revolutionary Söldner was going to be. It would change the world of PC gaming, and more important, the online playing of first person shooters in a way little games have done. And of course, everyone was anxiously waiting.
I’ll just say what I have to say. When starting up the game you quickly notice that on the graphical part, Söldner isn’t going to kick some ass. Things look pretty and explosions are nicely done but there’s nothing revolutionary to be discovered. Also on the part of sound effects there’s not much to report.
But we won’t let ourselves to be held back by that and with a large dose of self-confidence I started creating my character (which you can do with a lot of variation) and setting up the options for an optimal gaming experience. When all that was done I clicked the Singleplayer button and that’s when all hell broke loose.
After the almost never-ending loading time I was catapulted into the single player world and could walk around freely in the base camp of my organisation. Also I was able to drive around in cars, fly helicopters and shoot with whatever was available. I left towards the closest vehicle spawnpoint and treated myself with a fresh new army jeep. I hadn’t even moved 5 meters when the car flew out of a curve and that at a snailspeed of not even 30km/h. Ok, no problem, let’s do some shooting instead.
Head off to a bunker where you can buy some guns, stare for 10 minutes at the interface before understanding how to get a rifle out of the goddamn thing and after receipt heading off to the shooting range. Just a matter of having something useful to do.
This little anekdote clearly shows the problems of Söldner. First of all it was all but clear in the beginning what I had to do. You get dropped in a world with little to no explanation and the manual doesn’t shed some light either. The system of credits to buy arms and vehicles isn’t bad as such but the way it’s implemented here hasn’t been thought through. And then we’re not even talking about the plentitude of bugs that sicken the gameplay.
All cars slip like you’re in some kind of rallygame, the only ones that drive somewhat decently are the different tanks. My helicopter wouldn’t fly, no matter what I tried. And then there’s the story of the tank and the tree.
In real life, a tank can easily drive over a tree so in-game this is also a possibility, but once a tank encounters a tree that’s laying on the ground, the fun is over. You won’t be able to progress any further and will have to drive around it. And there’s a LOT more bugs like those. Really a pitty.
For the rest, Söldner isn’t any different from other FPS games from which there are 13 in a dozen and that’s too bad as the game has a lot of good idea’s, it’s just sad that they don’t come out.
Söldner: Secret Wars could be fun if all the bugs are taken out because at this moment there’s one big happy family of little critters that make playing impossible. There’s a lot of potential but it never gets the chance to show off with it so at the moment our advise is: No Söldner, No Cry.