The game's official boxart.
|Released||October 19 2010 February 18, 2010 (PS4)|
BBFC 15 ESRB M CERO D
|Media||Blu-ray Disc, DVD-Rom|
Vanquish is a video game developed by Platinum Games for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360. It is Shinji Mikami's first game under the Platinum Games brand. The game was in development since 2007; in January 2010, a full motion video trailer was released. The game is being published by Sega. Atsushi Inaba is producing the game. Mikami stated that the game was developed with the PlayStation 3 as its lead platform, commenting that it was a "great success."
The game was created by the team previously responsible for Resident Evil 4, including lead director Shinji Mikami. Vanquish is notable for introducing several innovations to the 3D shooter genre, including a fast-paced style of gameplay reminiscent of 2D bullet hell shooters, beat 'em up elements, and an original sliding-boost mechanic.
Plot[edit | edit source]
The story is set in the near future. Russia and the United States are vying for ownership of the world’s fast-depleting energy resources and the US has constructed a space station in order to harness energy from the sun. Russian forces capture this space station and divert its harvested solar energy into a blast wave that destroys San Francisco, aiming to force the US into a total and unconditional surrender. In response, the US tasks its armed forces with recapturing the space station before the Russians can annihilate their next target – New York. The player will take control of Sam, a government agent fitted out with a futuristic battlesuit. 
Gameplay[edit | edit source]
It is a game played from an over-the-shoulder perspective or as most people call a third person shooter (TPS); gameplaywise, it looks similar to Resident Evil 4, except that the character can move while using the zoom. Players control Sam Gideon, a DARPA agent armed with the Augmented Reaction Suit. If the player takes too much damage, the suit will automatically enter Augmented Reaction mode (AR mode), which slows down time, helping the player to avoid being killed. The player can also manually enter AR mode by holding down the target button while evading, allowing the player to target enemies easily. At any time, the player can use boosters on the suit to move quickly across the area. If the player uses AR mode or the boosters too much in a short time, the suit will overheat and will require a short period to cool down, during which Sam is less mobile. The suit will also overheat instantly if the player performs a melee attack, and certain areas will also overheat the suit.
Sam's weaponry consists of the BLADE weapons system and two types of grenade. The BLADE system can store up to three weapons at a time (from a total of eight weapon types), with the player able to swap weapons if he encounters a new one; starting weapons being the assault rifle, heavy machine gun and shotgun. These weapons, and the grenades, can be upgraded by collecting upgrade boxes, or by collecting the same type of weapon while it has maximum ammunition. Upgrading these weapons improves their abilities, such as their maximum ammunition capacity, accuracy, and blast radius. Players can aid injured allies on the field to earn weapons, or find them in crates or weapon lockers. In Normal difficulty or higher, weapons are downgraded if the player dies. Sam can hold up 3 weapons at once, the ; this is known as the BLADE system.
Other gameplay mechanics include the use of explosives during certain areas, commandeering enemy vehicles or turrets, the ability to use cigarettes to distract enemies, and quick time events during certain battles against larger enemies. It has also significantly improved upon the cover system, which it has been credited for taking "to the next level."
In contrast to previous cover-based shooters, Vanquish has bullets and missiles coming from all directions in a manner reminiscent of bullet hell shooters and the cover is easily destructible, forcing the player character to be on the move, while the game also penalizes the player's score for the amount of time spent in cover. Its most important innovation, however, is the sliding-boost mechanic that allows the player to slide into and out of cover at high speeds (and in slow motion using bullet time), acting as a defensive escape and an offensive set up, opening up new gameplay possibilities for cover-based shooters and increasing the pace significantly.
To use the slide ability you'll be using the left bumper/L1, to boost through areas. By holding the left trigger/L2 while boosting, you can enter slow-motion. It also automatically kicks in when you are low on health. Health is seen by the color of the armor, green for almost/full, yellow for medium and red for low/empty.
The game also has a unique end credits sequence, which is interactive and plays like a rail shooter, with the lead designer Shinji Mikami being the most difficult 'enemy' to take down
Demos[edit | edit source]
There have been two demos released. The first demo, dubbed "Vanquish HIGH VELOCITY ATTACK" allows the player to experience a tutorial for the game and the third mission in the first act of the game. The tutorial neatly explains the controls to the players, while the mission allows the players to battle a horde of enemies and the boss enemy, the ARGUS robot. The demo's run time is usually about ten to fifteen minutes of gameplay(not including the tutorial).
The demo is available on both the US/EU PSN/XBL marketplaces.
The second demo is exclusive to the JP PSN/XBL marketplace. Dubbed "Vanquish CHALLENGE DEMO", this demo allows the player to engage themselves in a relentless assault from robotic invaders. As of right now, there have been no announcements as to whether or not the second demo will be released world wide.
Reception[edit | edit source]
The game received positive reviews from critics, praising the graphics and fast paced action. A downside to the game was that it was short, an average playthrough would take around 4 hours.
- IGN: 8.5/10
- GameSpot: 9/10
- GameInformer: 7.75/10
- Gametrailers: 9/10
- Metacritic: 84/100
- GameRankings: 83.95%
Awards[edit | edit source]
Vanquish has received Game of the Year awards from the Classic Game Room, Zavvi.com, and TGN Times. X360 gave it the "Best Shooter" award, and GamesRadar gave it an award for Most "Oh Sh*t" Moments Per Minute. IGN gave it the "Best Sci-Fi Game" award in the PS3 game library, and nominated the game for the awards of "Coolest Atmosphere", "Most Challenging", "Most Addictive Game", "Best Visuals" and "Best Blockbuster Game". GameSpot gave the game the awards for "Best Game No One Played", both the editors' award and the Readers' Choice award, and "Best Original Game Mechanic" for its rocket-sliding game mechanic, which acts as both a defensive escape and an offensive setup, opening up new gameplay possibilities for action games. GameSpot also nominated the game for the awards of "Best Shooter", "Best Sound Design", "Best Original IP", "Best Xbox 360 Game", "Best PS3 Game" and overall "Game of the Year"
Legacy[edit | edit source]
The game has set a new trend, with its influence seen in recent shooter game that have incorporated similar sliding-boost mechanics. Some of the games that appear to have incorporated similar mechanics include first-person shooter such as Bulletstorm, Crysis 2, and Killzone 3, third-person shooters such as Sega's Binary Domain and Taito's Gunslinger Stratos series, and first-person shooter Titanfall.
References[edit | edit source]
- Ashcraft, Brian (2010-03-03). Resident Evil Creator's New Game Out This Year. Kotaku. Retrieved on 2010-03-03.
- Andy Robinson (2010-03-17). Vanquish dev explains PS3 lead platform. Computer and Video Games. Retrieved on 2010-06-16.
- PS3 'a success' as lead platform - Mikami. Computer and Video Games (2010-06-11). Retrieved on 2010-06-16.
- E3 2010: Vanquish has 'essence of Resi 4' - Mikami, Computer and Video Games
- Vanquish an intense sci-fi shooter, Toronto Sun
- Changing Gears: Xbox 360's smartest, sharpest cover shooters. Official Xbox Magazine (August 2012). Retrieved on 14 August 2012.
- Special Achievement: Best Original Game Mechanic, GameSpot
- Games Inbox: Assassin's Creed III hints, ninjas vs. samurai, and hydrophilia, Metro
- Bulletstorm Review for PlayStation 3. GameSpot. Retrieved on 2011-02-23.
- Killzone 3 Review, Computer and Video Games
- Trailer: Binary Age. The Sixth Axis (2011-04-28). Retrieved on 2011-05-08.