Red Faction Guerrilla Review

In 2001 THQ brought the first Red Faction game to SONYs PS2 console, upon release it was considered ground breaking and in more ways than one. Each reason revolved around the geomod engine that Volition had created. Red Faction was one of the first games to allow players to blast their way through walls if doors were inaccessible or make a quick exit from sticky situations. Fans of the series enjoyed the games setting with the story being played out on Mars fighting against the evil corporation of Ultor. Such is the importance of Red Faction to Volition and THQ, the Ultor Corporation was later featured as the antagonist of Saints Row 2, another game by the developer and publisher team.

While Red Faction Guerrilla takes place in the same universe as other parts in the series, it is in no way a sequel or prequel, more of a reboot for the series. Guerrilla also moves the series from a first person perspective to third person and allows you traverse Mars in an “open world” environment. With the new iteration of Red Faction appearing on the Hi-Def console generation, things have moved on since the original series broke ground, pardon the pun. With the GeoMod 2 engine now in play it’s time to fight against the EDF, pick up your hammer and blasting charges and Join the fight to liberate Mars.


Upon arriving on Mars you take control of Alec Mason who has travelled to the red planet to seek out mining work. Upon arrival and after meeting up with your brother Dan, you witness the murder of your sibling and take up arms to fight within the Red Faction. After what feels like a relatively cliché start to the game you’re tasked with attempting to drive the EDF from the surface of Mars and liberate the planet for the people. This is done by committing acts of what can only be described as terrorism, Blowing up buildings and taking hundreds of lives over the course of the game to boost morale of the citizens. For what is seemingly an interesting story and could touch on many of life’s hardships, you never truly feel pulled in. The characters feel rather one dimensional and the plot seems to be covered up by dramatic explosions. Had the story have been more involving and the characters more appealing, fighting for their freedom would feel all the more glorious.

After being accepted into the Red Faction, it’s time to explore and deal with the EDF. Taking your first steps on Mars is slightly daunting at first but after pulling up your map and following the brief tutorial, you’ll soon find plenty to do. Along with the missions to push the storyline forward you will find side missions otherwise known as guerrilla actions. These come in varying shapes and sizes, from collecting cars and shipping them and driving them against the clock to your base to blowing up a building under a time limit with limited equipment. It’s in these side missions that the game shines, although repetitive after time they vary enough to keep you amused and tax your brain. Completing the side missions opens up new equipment for you to use as you play and it allows you to take on harder missions later on.

As well as opening weapons and equipment, completing each mission awards you with salvage, the currency of the game and boosts the morale of the surrounding area. With each boost of morale you’ll open more missions for the main story and begin to liberate each of the five areas from EDF control.
It’s in each of these areas you will also find more salvage, through blowing up EDF structures which are graded in importance, mining for ore and destroying the EDF storage boxes. All of this lovely salvage is used to upgrade your weapons and buy the equipment that you’ve unlocked. With a variety of weapons to be used, there’s plenty of ways to play and you will need to experiment. The difficultly curve here jumps up and down sporadically so it’s always worth planning your moves in advance, even if the plan is to storm in with explosives charged.


It’s quite easy to say that one of the best features in Red Faction Guerrilla is the explosions and destructibility of the world that surrounds you. Whether you use small blasting charges or the rocket launcher later in the game each shot rewards you with a satisfying fireball and accompanying wreckage. It’s quite obvious from the promotion of the GeoMod engine that Volition are pushing you to blow everything up and it’s just as well really as it brings some energy to an otherwise dull world. Although you’re well aware that the game is set on a terra formed planet many areas feel lifeless and have a distinct lack of atmosphere. This makes your journeys from each area quite a chore despite the fun “bumper car” handling of the vehicles.

The look and style of the game feels very similar to Mass Effect and in places looks gorgeous. Character models are well detailed and the environments, while bland, have great textures and lighting.
From start to end Red Faction Guerrilla entices you to explore, find buildings and then blow up said buildings. Although this may seem like a linear prospect its amazing fun that will genuinely have you smiling from ear to ear. With a game that offers so much to do you’ll be kept busy, with a few side missions left over the game can be finished in around thirteen hours but is left open at the end for you to continue exploring and work towards your 100% completion.

Red Faction Guerrilla has a few minor issues that can mar some of the experience; it’s an enjoyable romp that will entertain you from start to finish.

Hi-Score – Entertaining gameplay, great longevity and gorgeous to look at.

Lo-Score – Can get repetitive, linear environments and uneven difficulty curve.

Final Score – 7 out of 10.

Note: An online multi player review will follow very soon.

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