User Rating: 8.8 | Syndicate MAC
Syndicate is hard to play sometimes. The basic game mechanics are in place and they work well, but occasionally something will go wrong, usually with a car, and you'll find your agents dying because of a game glitch. They're rare enough that they aren't huge setbacks, but they are annoying. However, despite that, Syndicate is a whole lot of fun, especially for the deranged individual. The game boils down to completing a number of missions that you can select on a map. Not all of them are available off the bat, naturally, but you usually have the option of playing one of a few levels at any given time. In each level, your assignment is to kill a specific person or agent or group of agents. The agents are all cynbernetically enhanced. They wear trenchcoats, are armed with any number of physical enhanceents and weapons, and can have their adrenaline adjusted on the fly to provide you with faster moving or better aiming troops. Though you cannot go overboard for fear of causing damage, so boosting their chemical levels is generally reserved for large firefights where you need that extra edge. You control up to four agents at once, and can arm/upgrade them between missions if you wish. Once in the game it's typical real-time strategy fare (perhaps 'typical' doesn't apply to '93, when Syndicate was released, though) as you wander around the levels and order your agents to fire. Speaking of unloading ammunition, you're free to do so whenever you wish, on whoever you wish. The levels are populated with people, often to crazy proportions. So in your quest to destroy other cyborgs, you're more than welcome to take a break and mow down civilians. One level involves a parade and has dozens of people lined up along the streets. A few well placed gauss rockets or some up close and personal flame-throwing and you have total havoc with people screaming and running all over. It may not be the ultimate point of the game, but it sure is fun. So are the missions themselves, though. You can hope your agents into hovercars to travel quicker, hide in wait behind buildings for enemy agents and then pump them full of buckshot as they round the corner. Pick them off from the top of a building. Whatever. The only thing that can get in the way is interacting with the environment, as getting your agents to move up and down ramps is next to impossible if the game decides to make it difficult for you. And occasionally, one or two agents will fail to get into the car before it moves, and they'll get themselves run over.