There’s a bit of internal discussion going down in the Infendo HQ today regarding Disaster: Day of Crisis. Blake, from on high up in the Infendo throne room, threw down this video morsel to the likes of David and me in the Infendo dungeon, where we pump out posts for the site without the benefit of light or electricity (we snail mail the posts to Jake, who, being web-savvy, uploads them for us).
Long story short, Blake poo poo’d on Disaster’s ho-hum on-rails arcade graphics, while David defended the title’s look and feel. I’m still on the fence, leaning slightly towards Blake, which is a bit of a flip-flop for me on this title from earlier this year. Simply put, I’m asking what the “hook” of this game is today, because to me it seems like this title is nothing more than Time Crisis… in the rain.
But hold up. I’m not just going to bash a title and not offer any new ideas. Here’s what I think would make a great Disaster: Day of Crisis (and I say all this knowing full well it’s way too late to implement any of it).
What Nintendo and its second party developers need to do is recreate the look and feel of an old NES classic, Rescue: The Embassy Mission, and combine it with the visuals (but not the voice acting) found in Disaster.
Rescue, for those who don’t know, was an “tactical shooter” NES game published by Infogrames back in January 1990. The game involved a whole team of SWAT-style units that you deployed to various points around a compromised embassy building. One team was a sniper team, and took out shadowy figures in the building windows. Another team would repel down the side of the building, and bust through those same windows (which your sniper had hopefully cleared out). A third team would sneak up the street, hiding from spot lights in alleyways and behind walls, somersaulting all the way to the front door. The final stage involved a FPS-esque level where you searched the building for hostages. Except for that last stage, you could do things in any order you liked.
Simple enough, right? Well, since Disaster is shaping up to be some kind of rudderless cross between an FPS, an on-rails shooter (Time Crisis), and some kind of mini-game survival compilation, it needs a better hook. It needs the team management focus of Embassy Mission, or something. So far, what I’ve seen doesn’t answer the simple “what makes this game different?” question. On a system not yet know for these types of games, this sub-par effort risks being lost before it even launches.
Again, it’s too late to do any of this, and Disaster may very well surprise me with an unseen “hook” that somehow differentiates it from the slew of copycat FPS’s and third person “survival” games that already clog other systems’ disc drives. So take this post as a kind of inspirational wish list that can be applied to a mythical Disaster remake, or an entirely new game with similar themes, alike.
I await the moment I am pleasantly surprised by this game, should Nintendo give it a US launch date.