Jason Bourne comes to the screen again with high production values and outstanding graphics in the latest action game, Robert Ludlum’s The Bourne Conspiracy. This title boasts an engaging storyline centering on a fully controllable character (not modeled after Matt Damon). Action director Jeff Imada and his team creates amazing action sequences comparable to the Bourne film series. The use of motion capture techniques, full graphic capabilities and similar camera styles recreate the films’ excitement very well.
Players can sprint and interact with the environments, but the two most impact-filled activities are the takedowns (circle button when prompted) and instinct (triangle) actions. More combinations could have been used (players can relish in the fun sprinting takedowns), but the amount of action and A.I. baddies are usually enough for any player even on the easiest difficulty level (three total). Blocking is always good, especially in the boss battles, and light attacks also work very well immediately after takedown attacks. Characters show the damage they take very well.
The best feature is the sudden button sequence(s) you must complete to advance through missions. Miss the timing and the consequences include severe damage or death, though Bourne hangs in there pretty good when the chips are really down. These rapid button sequences can be predictable at times, but create a nice sense of tension and constant expectancy rare in video games.
Bourne eventually unholsters his gun and picks up several other weapons to dispense of baddies more quickly. Use cover to recover health, jump out at shoot from a safe position or and even take a break from the non-stop action. The game play then graduates to vehicles with helicopters, cars (careful, stationary cars blow up from the back) and others. The camera (right stick) adjusts pretty well while the driving and aiming controls have a few rough patches even with a considerable learning curve. The environments paint a gritty, dark picture most of the time, but never to the point where players must drastically adjust the screen brightness. On-screen displays give directional guidance and communication cut scenes give more background behind Bourne’s superiors and the overall story.
As in the film, this experience mirrors real life situations through high quality production recreations, thundering sound and exciting editing among game play and cut scenes. The game transitions to some decent shooting action, but the hand-to-hand combat system still reigns supreme in this quality title. Hand-to-hand combat options all the way through the game would be fantastic. Decent replay value (experienced players could complete the game before they hit double digit hours) and non-stop attacking make this title a must have for action fans. Could a Bourne game trilogy series be in the future? Multiplayer and online modes would be great additions to any possible sequels.
The Bourne Conspiracy is rated T (Teen) by the ESRB for Blood, Mild Language, Use of Alcohol and Tobacco, Violence. This game can also be found on Xbox 360.