#296 Return Fire

Posted: 25th April 2020 by Jeroen in Games
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863rd played so far

Genre: Shoot ‘Em Up
Platform: 3DO/Playstation/PC
Year of Release: 1995
Developer: Silent Software
Publisher: Prolific Publishing

I’m not sure how Return Fire ended up near the bottom of my list of games that I wanted to play, but it did, and so it goes in as a game that I just want to get done. So here we go: Return Fire looks like a military twin stick shooter from the early days not unlike Desert Strike, but with ground vehicles.

Our Thoughts

Playing this, the best description of what you do is capture the flag shooting. You need to fight past loads of enemies to find and destroy the building containing a flag, then retrieve it and bring it back to your base. While other games may have dressed this up before, this game makes it explicit long before it’s the FPS default mode. It’s not the most complex idea, but it works well here and there’s a nice bit of hide and seek to playing the levels, at least the first time you play them.

This is further enhanced by the different vehicles you can use. You can start off with your helicopter for recon, the easiest way to figure out what’s going on. Tanks storm through the area after that, clearing the way for your jeep to come in – one of the few vehicles, possibly the only one, that can take a flag. It’s a nice bit of variation that’s easy to figure out and use, but adds some strategy as you only have limited numbers of each vehicle.

There is a huge amount of levels too, with a lot of variety in the looks and area. However, the formula stays the same – so while it’s interesting to see all the different versions of the land they can come up with, you’re still finding the flag and capturing it each time.

Final Thoughts

I don’t think repetitiveness is necessarily a bad quality, especially seeing how it works on other platforms, and it doesn’t need to be too deep here either. It’s not the most complex or deep shooter, but there’s some nice tactics involved and there seems to be enough content to keep you going a long time.