Armchair Empire Home


Platform: PC

Genre: Shooter

Publisher: Empire Interactive

Developer: Stranglite

ETA: November 2005

Related Links:

Review: Half-Life 2 (PC)

Review: Doom 3: Resurrection of Evil (PC)

Review: Painkiller (PC)





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Starship Troopers


starship troopers preview          starship troopers preview


I’ll admit right off the top that Starship Troopers is one of my favorite sci-fi action films.  For outright, in-your-face violence and gore there’s not much more you could ask for.  Hell, it even has Denise Richards in it, even if she does keep her shirt on the entire movie, and a raging Michael Ironside (also heard as Splinter Cell’s Sam Fisher).  I also like the fact that a bunch of space bugs can pretty much wipe out anything Humanity throws at it. (And in case you’re too young to realize this, the bugs in Starship Troopers existed well before the ant lions and such found in Half-Life 2.  I only mention this because I listened to some uniformed gamer rant about how Spielberg’s War of the Worlds ripped off the striders found in Half-Life 2.  No!)


By far the best parts of the film were the battlefield encounters that put the viewer at ground level to the action.  On a big TV, it’s almost like the bugs are coming for you!  The material was made into a game in 2000 – a real-time strategy game that was only fair by almost anyone’s standard.  Now, developer Stranglite drops gamers into the thick mist of exploding bugs and disembowelled mobile infantry in the genre that fits the source material like a glove.


Here are the quick and dirty details from the publisher, Empire Interactive:


Epic battles featuring 300+ bugs with individual AI on screen


19 different types of non-humanoid enemy bugs to encounter.


License that expands the entire Starship Troopers universe, including the books, graphic novels, films and TV series


Voice-over commentary by Casper van Dien, aka Johnny Rico (the general who introduces each mission for you).


Nine weapons, each with dual function attacks, including the Morita rifle, the plasma rifle, shotgun and rocket launcher


Variety of new and exciting items such as, intelligent grenades and the infamous nuke launcher.




12 single player levels, including a mix of huge real-time battles and solo missions.


Varied combat environments with indoor and outdoor levels, including wide-open battlefields, a secret laboratory, bug nests, abandoned mines and lonely outposts.


LAN and online modes.


starship troopers preview          starship troopers preview


Taking a quick look at the screens… oh, momma.  While the backgrounds look kind of bland, the bugs – maybe the most important aspect when it comes to the presentation – look very good.  The lighting also looks good.


While good looks do help any first person shooter, the gameplay is key.  But if Stranglite can deliver even half of the 300 bugs on-screen in any one battle I’ll be happy.  At least, I’ll be happy if the framerate stays steady because as a sci-fi nut and a fan of first-person shooters Starship Troopers is right up my alley and any stuttering will only dilute the fantasy.


The bug killing starts this November.


- Omni

(October 9, 2005)