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Rogue Warrior

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Rogue Warrior
Rogue-Warrior-PC.jpg
"Rock 'n' roll, motherfuckers, rock 'n' roll."
Dick Marcinko
Protagonist(s): Dick Marcinko
Genre(s): First-person shooter
Platform(s): Microsoft Windows
PlayStation 3
Xbox 360
Release: AU: November 26, 2009
EU: November 27, 2009
NA: December 1, 2009
Engine: Asura
Developer(s): Rebellion Developments
Publisher(s): Bethesda Softworks
Country: United Kingdom

Rogue Warrior is a first-person shooter game developed by Rebellion Developments and published by Bethesda Softworks for the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and Microsoft Windows.

The game was banned in Germany, due to high-impact gory violence.

Plot

The game takes place in 1986. The main character is Richard "Demo Dick" Marcinko. Marcinko is a real-life Navy SEAL best known for creating SEAL Team Six in 1980. In the game, Marcinko is sent on a mission into North Korea and the Soviet Union to disrupt a ballistic missile program. The game is not based on Marcinko's autobiography of the same name.

Gameplay

Rogue Warrior is a first-person shooter game with tactical elements. Its goal begins as an infiltration mission to disrupt hostile missiles and evolves to prevent other potentially dangerous situations.

Why It's Rogue

  1. False Advertising: The game claims to be a tactical shooter where you have access to many stealth mechanics, and while that's technically true, the game manages to break its own nature even at the beginning of the game:
    • To begin with, the first mission of the game has an introductory cutscene where Marcinko and two of his squadmates are on a helicopter traveling to a North Korean base, specifically a Black Hawk transport helicopter, a helicopter that is not optimal for stealth missions unless it's modified, because helicopters themselves are really loud and aren't invisible to radars. To make things worse, they are not more than one kilometer apart from the base.
    • The minimap located at the bottom left hand of your screen shows up all of the enemy locations, whether if they are searching for you or not, which can be seen in the color of their icons (Green means that they're unaware of you, and Red means that they're searching for you). This kind of elements can also be seen in better games like Metal Gear Solid, but unlike that game, enemy locations are always shown, regardless of whether you're playing on easy or hard difficulty.
    • Even if you play in a stealthy way, the game will always trigger shootout sections at the middle of the mission. The worst part of this is that even when you go loud on a section that is supposed to be stealth only, the enemies will only try to fight you without calling for reinforcements. In other words, the whole game will behave exactly the same, regardless of what you do.
    • Some of the killing movements that Marcinko can perform are anything but stealthy. For example, if an enemy is located near a high place or a precipice, Marcinko will always throw the enemy off that place, making him scream and possibly exposing his body, something that is very similar to what happens with Velvet Assassin, a "stealth" game where you had the option of electrifying or burning the enemies alive. Strangely enough, no alarm is raised even as the victim screams like a banshee.
    • You can shoot power boxes to cut the electricity off to complicate the enemies to see you in the dark, but this only works in the scripted stealth sections; if you try to do the same thing while enemies are alerted, they will know exactly where you are, even if you try to hide.
  2. Almost all of the cutscenes of the game are incredibly ridiculous, make no sense whatsoever, and/or make Marcinko look like the purest definition of a Gary Stu:
    • The first offender is the introductory cutscene: after Marcinko and his teammates kill exactly four enemies near the North Korean base, one of the four downed enemies nearby them ends up pulling a grenade, and instead of topping him off or running away, Marcinko's teammates just look at themselves and at the enemy holding the grenade, and let the grenade explode. This leaves Marcinko the only one to survive. And it just gets worse when you notice that the Marcinko's teammates had almost ten seconds to do something before the grenade exploded.
      • To be more accurate, according to Rerez's review, they had 9.38 seconds to do something before the dying enemy decided to explode himself, as you can see here.
      • Marcinko doesn't even bother to check the bodies of his teammates to see if they're definitely dead or need some medical attendance.
    • After finding some intel in the first mission, Marcinko jumps out onto a balcony ledge with the help of a rope with a grappling hook that was conveniently placed there, and as you could expect, some group of enemies suddenly appear and start to shoot Marcinko. He pulls the pin of a grenade with his teeth (something that in real life could hurt you mainly by breaking your teeth) and throws it to them, and it explodes right when Marcinko rappels down from the balcony. This part tries really hard to make Marcinko look like a really bad-ass character that always has good luck, especially when you see that none of the enemies actually hit Marcinko or even the balcony where he's located.
    • After Marcinko escapes from the base of the second mission, he runs and jumps onto a moving train, something that can only be seen in movies and action games due to how painful and hard it could be in real life. And if this wasn't enough, the enemies that are near the bridge from which Marcinko jumped will not try to do anything to stop him, not even shooting him, and right after Marcinko gets on the train, his officer tells him to keep a low profile.
      • Even if Marcinko previously destroyed an entire missile base, the enemies in the next level will be incredibly quiet instead of being alert and patrolling the zone, making it feel like if nothing happened previously, if the superiors of the enemies didn't care about losing important assets or like if the Soviet and North Korean army were a bunch of idiots that can't hear anything from more than 10 meters.
  3. The gunplay is completely generic and awful, mainly because all of the weapons have no tracers and any considerable recoil except for the SVD Dragunov and the PKM machine gun, but even with that, the recoil of both weapons is considerably low in comparison to the one of a real weapon of that caliber. Also, there are some times where you can kill an enemy with only one single shot, but other times it'll take several shots just to kill them, even if you shoot them in the head.
  4. The silenced pistol Dick starts with is somewhat overpowered, because it has unlimited ammo and unlimited range, meaning you can beat the whole game with just the pistol.
  5. Excessive, frequent, and extreme use of profanity. Most of the time hearing Marcinko screaming a lot of incoherent quotes is unintentionally funny, but there are times where it can get seriously irritating due to how repetitive and annoying his quotes get. It gets to the point where Marcinko sounds more like an 8-year old squeaker on Xbox Live or PlayStation Network than a Navy SEAL.
  6. Marcinko is an extremely unlikeable character and a jerk. Besides the fact that he swears more than an angry kid playing Call of Duty on multiplayer, he often disobeys his superiors and even insults them if they try to give him an order.
  7. Use of knife kills can be easily exploited because Marcinko is invincible during kill animations, and since enemies cannot hear his footsteps at all, he can "stealthily" trundle up to them at full speed and stab them with his tiny knife while grumbling obscenities to his heart's content. Even if they're attacking you, you can still knife rush more than three enemies in a row. An example of this can be the knife-only speedrun from DX, which can be seen here.
  8. There is no real story, it just has Dick Marcinko infiltrate North Korea to seek out information on their nuclear capabilities before going rogue and preventing them from launching a nuke to the United States.
  9. There is no enemy variety. You fight the same goons over and over with the only difference being what they're wearing.
  10. The game has a cover system that causes you to go into the third person, which is useless since enemies die so easily, but at the same time can be exploited since the blind fire is so accurate.
  11. Marcinko has barely any health, even on Easy difficulty, which can make the game frustrating. This may have been done on purpose to prevent the player from running past everything since it was discovered that you can reach the end without having to kill everyone and enemies will keep firing at Dick during the cutscene.
  12. The PC version of the game crashes over almost everything, from killing yourself with a grenade, finishing a killing animation, climbing up a ladder or even right after a level begins. To make things much worse, these crashes are triggered for no apparent reason and are completely luck-based on your hardware. Apparently, the game seems to crash even more frequently on computers with Windows 10.
  13. Stiff animations like when firing a gun as there is almost no recoil.
  14. Terrible AI. The enemies have serious problems with basic operations like navigating the environment without getting stuck on corners, can take several seconds to react to Marcinko being directly in front of them, and as mentioned, can't hear Dick sprinting behind them.
  15. Poor graphics, including horrendous object pop-in and one of the worst attempts at motion blur you're ever likely to see. Visually the game looks like an HD port of a late Xbox or PS2 title like Black.
  16. The game can be beaten in around two hours, despite initially being released at full price for $60 (the Steam version is currently being sold for $5, which is more or less what this game is actually worth).
  17. Extremely limited multiplayer. There are only two modes for you to play in (Deathmatch and Team Deathmatch).

Redeeming Qualities

  1. The game has received a reputation of being extremely amusing thanks to its extreme profanity and Mickey Rourke's "why-the-hell-am-I-reading-this?" performance.
  2. The icing on the cake is the rap song played at the ending credits.
  3. While the cussing may be excessive and immature, this is actually how Dick Marcinko talks in real life and Dick himself even signed off on it. According to Pete Hines, "he curses more in real life than he does in the game".

Reception

Rogue Warrior received extremely negative reviews and is considered as one of the worst games of all time.

GameZone's Natalie Romano gave a 2/10, describing "A very disappointing game from start to finish, Rogue Warrior is a game that brings nothing new to the genre nor does it make for a fun first-person shooter worth the money. Simply put, this isn’t just an awful shooter but it's also a terrible game. Sorry, but this is one hero we would like to leave behind."

DX declared it one of the worst games of all time, but has gone on to say that it's the best worst game because of the sheer hilarity of how poorly made the game is and because of Marcinko himself.

Trivia

  • It was originally going to be a squad-based tactical shooter game developed by Zombie Studios called Rogue Warrior: Black Razor set in present-day North Korea, but this was canceled and the game reworked to its current state. The most obvious sign of this is that the game introduces Dick's two squadmates, only to kill them off in a cutscene before they can even speak.
  • In the recent episode of the Storymode YouTube series' review this game, has credited this page for being the only one, has a dedicated a page on it.
  • Richard "Demo Dick" Marcinko died on December 25, 2021 at the age of 81.

Videos

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