Need something blown up or somebody killed? Well, Sean Devlin is your saboteur.
Sean mostly relies on stealth to at the very least get to his objectives. Players can sneak around the streets of Paris by holding a button and have the ability to subtly kill his enemies. When trying to infiltrate German strongholds(indicated by barbed wire on the mini-map) it's usually best to get into the mind of your enemy. To do that, you'll need to dress like one. When performing stealth kills on enemy soldiers, Sean will be allowed to wear their uniform as a disguise. If he kills them any other way, their uniform will be ruined. Besides, blood ruins the new duds anyway. There's also the high ground which is almost always the best way to go as it's the easiest way to avoid German soldiers who will become suspicious of you if you get too close.
That's not to say you won't occasionally have to shoot your way in and out of an area. As a matter of fact, there's plenty of areas where Sean must resort to using a gun especially for those who take a more aggressive approach with their stealth. Thankfully, the shooting is pretty solid and there's a plethora of guns for players to use. There are the silenced and long ranged weapons for those who prefer stealth and plenty of guns and explosives for those who want action. If you're disguised, it's easy to look suspicious. Running around, breaking boxes, killing(obviously) and planting bombs will make Sean more noticeable to enemies. Explosions, gunshots and dead bodies also create suspicious zones which Sean should avoid. If Sean's suspicion meter fills up, that's when the real fun starts up. Sean will be identified and if a soldier manages to blow his whistle, an alarm will sound and an alert level will pop up. If Sean is quick on his feet though, he can eliminate the guy trying to blow the whistle and alert his buddies. That doesn't usually work when there's a lot of soldiers though. Think GTA IV's wanted level mixed with Assassin's Creed social stealth. The area gets larger depending on the alert level and there are plenty of ways to lose your pursuers with hiding spots and fight back areas. However, a level 5 area covers all of Paris and will have you running across Paris to escape.
As you play through the game and complete certain objectives, Sean will unlock perks and earn contraband. Perks unlock weapons, cars and much more. Some perks will require players to collect vehicles and another asks players to win races and even blow up train bridges. Contraband is Saboteur's form of currency in which you use to purchase weapons, cars and upgrades from the black market. Contraband is earned through doing a variety of things. All of them involve kicking the Germans in the teeth really. Blowing up German emplacements like artillery guns, fuel depots or even saving the citizens of Paris from being executed earns you contraband. This encourages players to get out there and explore Europe and of course, wreak as much havoc as possible while you kill lots and lots of Nazis.
The game has plenty of faults. The climbing mechanic is rather slow and clumsy. It's also very annoying to repeatedly press a button to make Sean climb when the Nazi's are looking to mount your head on their wall. Stealth isn't really that deep and suspicious zones often randomly pop up. Sometimes right on top of Sean when he didn't even do anything to make a suspicious zone appear. Cars are a pain to drive, and the tank is nearly impossible to drive. They don't take any structural damage aside from blood splatters and bullet holes. NPC's also crash them so much, cars randomly explode and may interrupt you during a mission. Bodies will on rare occasions fall from the sky and machine guns, zip lines and other objects will some times float in the air after their structure was destroyed. During my play through I didn't run into anything game breaking thankfully but plenty of frustrating occurrences due some of these minor glitches.
The wonderfully noir styled and colorful environments in Saboteur look very good. As you complete missions and liberate the noir styled black and white sections of Paris from Nazi control, color will return. While in the oppressed section of the city, certain details will stick out. The color red to signify the Nazi oppression in the area whether it be the Nazi flag or pools of blood. Blue is the color of the resistance. Other colors like yellow will point out to helpful objects in the environment like zip lines and drain pipes to climb. When the color returns the city is bright, pretty and full of life. Less soldiers fill the streets and people happily crowd the sidewalks to gossip about the resistance. If you downloaded the Midnight Show content, the topless dances are surprisingly well animated. The sound effects aren't great and the voice acting is good but it's far from top notch. Some of the guns have a rather low volume and the roar of a cars engine virtually disappears at high speeds. It's always fun to hear Sean talk to the locals and crack jokes to Nazi's as he mows them down though.
The Saboteur is a pretty solid game. The story is fun and can easily provide players with hours of entertainment that's easy on the eyes. There's also a lot to do outside of the main storyline and the problems can be over looked. If you're done with Assassin's Creed 2 and want to take a break from Modern Warfare 2, then The Saboteur is something you'll certainly want to check out.