A Unreal Tournament mod.

Tactical Ops is a freeware Unreal Tournament multi-player modification, which transforms the game into a team-oriented Action-Based-Semi-Realistic anti-terrorism simulation. Similiar to Counterstrike for Half-life, TacOps features real guns, such as the Glock 21, the Desert Eagle (for big brave balls), the 9mm MP5 Navy, the AK 47 and the Steyr Aug.

The entire game is based around two teams; the Special Forces (Police and SWAT), the protectors of the world against terrorism, and the Terrorists, who strike fear in the hearts of innocent and unwary civilians.

Unlike standard deathmatch gameplay, TacOps requires slow advances and caution. When you die in the game, you stay dead until the whole round is over. This can take several minutes, and therefore novice players who get killed early usually get bored, because the have to watch and wait a lot.
But when you get a feel for the game, and learn that you have to be a bit more careful than in other first-person shooters, this game can be a great rewarding experience.

The realistic weapons and detailed maps (featuring different "standard terrorism" scenarios such as a skyscraper, a dam, a ship, a subway station, a train station, etc.) give plenty of opportunities for both the SWAT team and the terrorists to play hide and seek.

Although many people are already playing the current release, Tactical Ops is still in development. New weapons, new maps, and AI players (bots, probably the most requested feature) are still ahead.

Unreal Tournament: Tactical Ops

Rogue Spear eat your heart out.

Note: This is a review for an Unreal Tournament mod called Tactical Ops, not Unreal Tournament.

For those of us who long for a realistic shooter in the tradition of Rogue Spear, only with a better engine, better game mechanics and better multiplayer, our prayers are answered. It comes as a reasonably sized download from any Unreal Tournament fan site, and provides one of the most fun mods for one of the best games around.

The Unreal Tournament engine might be an ageing one, but it can still hold its own. Graphics are on par with the normal Unreal Tournament game, but since the guns aren't futuristic, they seem to be rendered a bit more realistically than in the main game. Sound is much the same also, though IMHO the voices sound a bit more life-like.

Where this mod really shines is the gameplay. It is team-only play, and like the main game, all the fun is to be had online or over a LAN. There are two sides players can choose from, Special Forces or Terrorists. Each have their advantages and disadvantages, but the main ones are that Special Forces have access to better equipment, while Terrorists always have the advantage of defending. The Special Force objective is, simply, to stop the Terrorists and recover the hostages. The Terrorists on the other hand, must defend these hostages and eliminate the Special Forces. For the Special Forces victory is achieved either by eliminating the Terrorists or rescuing all the hostages.

This mod has really gone for realism, and its achieved it well. If you throw yourself off a ridiculous height, you will die. If you are shot in the face with a gun, regardless of what type, you will die. If you are not wearing body armour when you are shot, you will die. Other added effects of realism include very well done recoil, bobbing of the screen as your character runs around, and a few other nick-nacks you notice as you play the game. Beware - this game is not for the impatient. The biggest trump card for realism here is that you get one, and only one, life per round. If you decide to go in rambo style and get your head blown off in the process, you must sit and wait until the objective is achieved by a side and the next round commences.

Its quite obvious this game was engineered for LAN parties, because it plays perfectly for a LAN game. Players choose their sides, then they must purchase their weapons. Each player starts with a small amount of money, and they can therefore only afford handguns or a small Uzi. Those that opt for heavier firepower in the first round will be left with insufficient money for body armour, but this is where teamplay (and particularly face to face teamplay) comes into it. A team of players, each selecting different weapons to complement each other, is highly effective. As players kill enemies, they will find they drop money. At the end of the round, money for the next is calculated by enemies killed + money collected - allies killed. Later in the game, access to heavy rifles (such as AK-47s and M-60s) and sniper rifles (such as PSG-1s).

Overall, this game is very fun and is excellent for LAN parties. It is, however, rather slow paced; especially so for a newbie playing with experienced players. All the same, I reccommend this game to any realistic FPS fans, and definently to anyone who plays alot of LAN games (and has the patience).

Final Verdict:

Graphics: 3.5/5
Sound: 4/5
Gameplay: 5/5
Playability: 5/5
Overall: 4/5

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