#542 Freedom Fighters

Posted: 19th March 2021 by Jeroen in Games
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939th played so far

Genre: Shoot ‘Em Up
Platform: Various
Year of Release: 2003
Developer: IO Interactive
Publisher: Electronic Arts

Somehow I seem to have left all my IO Interactive games until the end – I played both Hitman 2: Silent Assassin and Hitman: Blood Money pretty recently. I mean, on an 11 year schedule (now confirmed, look forward to the end of this in eight months!) two years is pretty recent. Freedom Fighters is another game of theirs, released between these two, and sets you up in a different way by turning you in a freedom fighter fighting Soviets who invade New York. Oh man, how’s that for an on the nose plot?

Our Thoughts

Plot aside, though, the idea of moving around a city to free your city is done pretty well. You don’t follow a linear map progression (sort of) but get to move between unlocked maps. Even better is that in the first two maps, the two influence each other. On one you need to infiltrate a police station, but you can’t do that until you take out the gas station on the other map to distract them. It feels like there’s a really neat link of progression here to get through the missions.

Supposedly these missions also help you build charisma, which is a point system that as you go along lets you gather a group around you that follows you, growing larger as you get more fame and charisma. There’s a neat idea here, but unfortunately you  start off not having any help and it takes a while to get to the point where the system kicks in.

Unfortunately, I didn’t enjoy getting to that point and was already ready to give up. For a game focused on its shooting, the controls feel inaccurate and floaty, meaning that I was mostly trying to gamble to get it right, rather than feeling that I was in control of what I was doing. It’s quite frustrating and goes against the point of what you’re meant to be doing. It would have been a world to really enjoy and explore if it worked, but as it stands taking down the police station was an exercise in frustration that I mostly just wanted to skip.

Final Thoughts

While the supporting systems of Freedom Fighters works well, the core shooting is so far off that I struggled to get to a point where I felt I could enjoy the bigger game. It feels like a remake would do wonders here, giving you that control and feel you need, but until then I would prefer a way to skip the actual shooting and see the world.