Not to be confused with New Neo City, nor with the film of the same title.NEOTOKYO°
is a Half-Life 2
mod inspired by Ghost in the Shell
. If that alone doesn't convince you to try it, just keep reading.
NEOTOKYO takes place about 30-40 years from now
in a Japan that has drifted into social/political strife due to the inevitable stresses that come from changing times. The Japanese government is grappling with intensified external (Asia geopolitics) and internal (economic/social) problems, and there is mounting pressure from within Japan to return to the days when it exerted influence through military power and strength. A failed legislative push to alter the Japanese Constitution (allowing the Japanese Self-Defense Forces to engage in offensive actions outside of the country) leads to an attempted military coup by members of the JSDF. The coup fails, but was very close to succeeding. In an effort to suppress further coup attempts, Japan's Prime Minister forms a branch inside the Interior Ministry's National Security Forces (NSF)
called Group Six
. They answer directly to the Prime Minister and are sworn to protect the Japanese Constitution at all costs. They immediately begin to hear rumors of a rogue element of the JGSDF special forces unit called Jinrai
, maneuvering for a second coup attempt. These Jinrai are part of the Special Operations Group 43
(SOG43), fierce nationalist loyal to their love of country, and a desire to put Japan back into a position of strength and power.
This begins the war in the shadows between the NSF and Jinrai.
Gameplay is divided into rounds, similar to Counter-Strike
. At the beginning of each round, all players choose a class. There are only three classes, but each class represents a huge variety of gameplay styles and tropes. They are:
- Recon. The game's resident Fragile Speedster, they have unlimited sprint and a long-jump that allows them to take shortcuts other classes can't. Recons are good for completing objectives, infiltration (thanks to thermoptic camo and nightvision), and sneaking around, but they go down fast. They also have a remote detpack that can be used for laying traps.
- Assault. Roughly speaking, The Mario. Assaults are reasonably strong at any range, their explosive grenades are deadly if used correctly, they can sprint for a limited distance, and they can even use thermoptic camo for a short time. They are also the only class that can see through thermoptic camo with their motion vision. (But it cannot see through smoke.) Assaults can be good at completing objectives, but are geared toward killing enemies, and are the only class with strong sniping abilities.
- Support. The Brute mixed with elements of Mighty Glacier. Supports can't sprint and have a slower movement speed than any of the other classes. However, they have access to the best weapons in the game (especially at mid-range) and tough armor to boot. As their name suggests, they're usually there to help their allies with covering fire or a smoke grenade, but they can zone out on their own to pick off stragglers if needed. Their thermal vision makes it easier to see enemies at long range and can see through smoke.
This is a team-based game, so it's essential that all three classes work together. To aid this, players can divide into squads; you can always see where everybody else on your squad is, and how much health they have, at all times, making it easier to coordinate your efforts.
There are two gameplay modes:
- Team deathmatch, or TDM. The round is won by eliminating the enemy team.
- Capture the Ghost, or CTG. The objective is to pick up the "ghost" and bring it to your "capture point," located behind your enemy's front line. Complicating this is the fact that whoever has the ghost has to drop their primary weapon, leaving them with only a pistol; additionally, the enemy can see where the ghost is at all times. However, the ghost is also a powerful ally, as the person holding the ghost can see all enemies in a 40 meter radius, allowing them to communicate with their team to set up an ambush. The round is won either by capturing the ghost or eliminating the enemy team.
Another distinguishing feature of NEOTOKYO is how damage indicator was omitted. Hits taken will make your whole screen flashes red without telling you where those shots come from. Inattentive players and disorganized teams will be going down FAST.
Seriously, seriously Needs More Love
. The mod itself is a big thing back in it's day. But the fact that developers rarely
shows up mostly because they're busy with their real-life work may have something to do with it.
Recently got approved by Steam
This game provides examples of:
- Air-Vent Passageway: Recon's main method of traveling and ambushing. And there is a lot of them hidden in the maps!
- AKA47: Done with some weapons to indicate that Science Marches On; for example, instead of the AA-12, you have the AA-13. Most of the weapons are just plain made up, though.
- Bilingual Bonus: All of the posters and signs in the environment are in Japanese.
- Boring, but Practical: Many players have a favorite weapon on the low tier that they stick with even when better weapons are available. This is especially true of the Recon, whose higher-tier weapons usually don't have a suppressed version. Common choices are the Jitte and ZR 68.
- Computer Voice: The ghost.
- Difficult but Awesome: The recon. They have fewest hitpoints but when you learn to use powered jumps properly they're hard to stop.
- Friend or Foe: In retrospect, blue (NSF) and green (Jinrai) are probably bad choices for the color schemes of opposing teams.
- Grenade Spam: Averted as each player are given only one grenade for each classes to prevent this. Support gets 2 smoke grenades however
- Invisibility Flicker: When camouflaged, you become more visible when firing unsuppressed weapons. Fortunately for stealth-loving players, there are plenty of suppressed weapons to choose from.
- Loading Screen: Before every round, the game gives players ample time to choose their class and loadout, which is Hand Waved as their cybernetic implants loading.
- More Dakka: The Lieutenant-only weapons, especially for the Support.
- One Bullet Clips: Averted to hell. As this official images suggest.◊
- Puzzle Reset: So why do you have to capture that damned ghost twenty times before it sticks, anyway?
- Word of God says that the Ghost contains killcode that can be used to disable newer generation military equipment. Jinrai have been amassing older decommissioned ones. With the Ghost they could stop NSF dead in it's tracks and launch coup d'etat unhindered.
- Reverse Grip: Recons hold their swords this way.
- Scenery Porn: The outdoor maps.
- What? No love for indoors?
- Short Range Shotgun: Good at what they do, but you'd better know what that is, or you're going down fast.
- Standard FPS Guns
- Tactical Rock-Paper-Scissors: Sort of. Recon's long-duration thermoptic camo are useless against Assault's motion vision which in turn gets blocked by Support's smoke grenades. But Support's slow movement speed and the fact that thermoptic camo don't show up on infrared vision means they're Recon's chew toy. Good players however can avert this.
- You Bastard: Worked into gameplay: if your score is negative (due to self- or team-killing), you get the "Rankless Dog" rank, which only allows you to use the machine pistol.