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Alpha Protocol GamesCom 2009 Preview

GameOn got invited to take a look at Sega and Obsidian's latest spy based RPG while out here in sunny Cologne for Gamescom 2009. The story seemed solid enough, with you taking the reins of a government agent looking for some stolen missiles with some deeper, more sinister plot line lurking in the shadows to twist your world. Lets take a look at what the press release has to say.

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Set in modern day, Alpha Protocol gives players complete control not only of Thorton's actions but his personality and attitude as well, all of which will determine the future of the world as we know it. Blending fast-paced modern combat, significant character advancement and innovative RPG features, Alpha Protocol brings a fresh new perspective to the genre.

With a story rivalling the best spy-thriller novels and an immersive, ultra-realistic espionage world, Alpha Protocol will redefine the RPG genre for the next-gen gamer. The title is being developed by Obsidian Entertainment and published by Sega.

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Key Features:-

Redefined RPG - Classless system gives players the ability to mould Thorton into the secret agent they want him to become with lethal close combat techniques, marksman skills proficiency with gadgets and much more.

The International Spy - Players will travel around the world to international safe house locations to obtain information and mission objectives and conduct meetings with a growing list of contacts.

Dialogue Stance System - With an innovative real-time dialogue system, characters will remember conversations and the relationships with allies; enemies will be determined by their attitude and the dialogue response chosen by the player.

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With the official blurb out the way, you'll be wondering what the actual game is like, well luckily enough I was able to grab a viewing. So as stated earlier you take control of Michael Thorton and in RPG style you are able to customise how he will appear in the game world by changing hair types, hair colour, facial hair, glasses etc. However you cannot fully change his appearance with you controlling a named and vital character to the game's story line.

Now with traditional RPG games you define your character's core abilities at the beginning, for example if you wish to have a strong warrior, you load up on strength and health increasing talents, but doing so limits your abilities in other areas such as agility or technical aptitude. In Alpha Protocol you can tailor Thorton to your own gaming style.

While on the topic of game style, how you play through the game will influence how Thorton's own personality will develop, if you tend to play aggressively then that aggression will project as a no-nonsense intimidating demeanour, whereas if you prefer a stealthier route then Thorton will develop into a more easy going, diplomatic character. The choices you make during conversations with key characters will also be remembered by that NPC, so if you act like a complete arse they are less likely to co-operate with you or offer assistance when needed.

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Your choice of armaments for each mission fall under 4 categories: Handguns, Shotguns, Sub-Machine Guns and Assault Rifles. Under each category will be a vast selection of fine instruments of death, each with their own set of attributes in classic RPG style detailing reload speeds, power and rate of fire etc. Additionally you may purchase replacement components for certain parts of your preferred implement of death to improve the statistics of the gun. For example if you purchase a silencer for your pistol you will notice that your accuracy will go up in a trade-off for stopping power.

You will also have access to various types of armour to utilise, ranging from light weight sets that allow maximum movement but provide minimal protection to the opposite end of the scale providing maximum protection but reducing mobility. All of your equipment, arms and gadgetry is available via a form of digital black market store front that is accessed through a terminal in your safe house. Each faction you ally yourself with will also offer their surplus stocks through this system.

All of this is played via a 3rd person perspective in a gritty modern day realistic backdrop taking you to locations all around the globe. Combat is frantic and action packed with the entertainment value set for approximately 30+ hours of gameplay. Keep an eye out during October for this spy thriller, arriving on Xbox 360, Playstation 3 and PC.

 

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Wedgeh | 22nd August, 2009

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