Release Date: April 1988
Genre: Light Gun Shooter
We’ve got another Light Gun Shooter on tap with Freedom Force! The first thing we see is that the opening cinematic is super awesome! Like, the coolest thing I’ve seen so far on the NES. Then you get to choose a one or two player game and it’s to the action. The question, is the action any good?
The short answer is… eeeehhh, kinda? I like light gun shooters, but this one is hit or miss. I can only comment on the first three levels, because that’s as far as I could get. You are Rad Rex and it’s up to you to drive the Unknown Guerrillas from the local airport. The first level has you on a tarmac, shooting bad guys that open up doors on the side of an airplane and start shooting. Don’t get me started on the fact this plane has seven doors. Sometimes hostages tied up in rope somehow open the door, but you don’t want to shoot them. You want to spill the blood of your enemies and hear the lamentations of their women.
On the bottom right corner of the screen, different powerups sometimes flash. You can upgrade your .38 special to a .44 Magnum for extra stopping power or a grenade launcher to destroy all the enemies on the screen in one shot. You can also regain ammo and health or if you’re a sadist, make the game harder.
The second level takes place on the skyway and introduces what seemed to be an instant death enemy who throws grenades. The third level is as far as I got. Now, you’re inside the airport firing at people who appear from behind columns. You have to avoid shooting bikini ladies and skateboarding children, but if you get shot once here, it’s game over. I tried a couple times and decided it would be game over for good.
The graphics receive this grade solely because of the awesome opening cinematic.
The music is uninspired, but not terrible.
I can see this game getting repetitive very quickly. That’s not to say it’s bad, but there’s just not much too it.
I had trouble not dying almost immediately on level 3. I’m sure you learn patterns as you go on and using an actual Zapper would be easier, too.
Fun Factor: 1.5
I didn’t enjoy an emulator play through very much, but I think real hardware would be better.
Overall Grade: 1.6
Freedom Force earns a C-. It’s certainly got some ideas, but nothing I’m too terribly interested in recommending.