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* GoodGunsBadGuns: The player and his allies use the M4 and US SOCOM, while the bad guys typically use the AK-74, Micro Uzi, and [=M1911A1=].
** Averted later in the game when you start fighting Prometheus terrorists, who primarily use the M4.

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* GoodGunsBadGuns: The player and his allies use the M4 rifle and US SOCOM, SOCOM Mk. 23 pistol, while the bad guys typically use the AK-74, Micro Uzi, and [=M1911A1=].
**
[=M1911A1=]. Averted later in the game when you start fighting mostly [[WesternTerrorists Prometheus terrorists, operatives]], who primarily use the M4.

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* HeroicAmbidexterity: In the original game, for some reason, Mullins can swap the [[HandCannon Silver Talon]] and only the Silver Talon into his left hand by strafing left.

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* BareYourMidriff: The second time you face Sabre's white supremacist gang, there will be blonde female enemies with white tank tops that show their stomachs.
** In Double Helix, there will also be a female interrogator in the Hong Kong levels when John is captured that wears a black midriff revealing tank top.

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* FakeDifficulty: The sequel, ''Double Helix'', has very poor and confusing level design and the game gives you zero indication where you're supposed to go.


* GoodGunsBadGuns: The player and his allies use the M4 and US SOCOM, while the bad guys typically use the AK-74, Micro Uzi, and M1911A1.

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* GoodGunsBadGuns: The player and his allies use the M4 and US SOCOM, while the bad guys typically use the AK-74, Micro Uzi, and M1911A1.[=M1911A1=].


* DiscOneFinalBoss: BigBad Alexei Nachrade is killed [[CutsceneBoss in a cutscene]] before the game's climax. [[spoiler:The mole turns out to be Assistant Director Wilson]].

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* DiscOneFinalBoss: BigBad Alexei Nachrade is killed [[CutsceneBoss in a cutscene]] before the game's climax.climax, but there's still TheMole to deal with. [[spoiler:The mole turns out to be Assistant Director Wilson]].



*** In addition, there is an unreachable room near the elevators. If reached using noclip, a paramedic and a patient can be seen.



** The beta contained a SequelHook post-credits scene which has been cut entirely from the retail version. In that scene, a couple of Shop security officers are guarding the Romulus vial crates salvaged from Prometheus. The guards are however gunned down by unknown shooters, who then proceed looting the virus crates. They turn out to be Order soldiers - the baddies of the first episode.

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** The beta contained a SequelHook post-credits scene which has been cut entirely from the retail version. In that scene, a couple of Shop security officers are guarding the Romulus vial crates salvaged from Prometheus. The guards are however gunned down by unknown shooters, who then proceed looting to loot the virus crates. They turn out to be Order soldiers - the baddies of the first episode.game.


* DiscOneFinalBoss: BigBad Alexei Nachrade is killed [[CutsceneBoss in a cutscene]] before the game's climax. [[spoiler:The mole turns out to be Assistant Director Wilson]].



** Originally, the Marine Team was supposed to be present during the entirety of the Colombian jungle missions, instead of linking up with them halfway through the mission at the bridge. Remains of this design are apparent in the retail version as well: both the mission description and the Marine briefing us on the helicopter state that the fireteam will be waiting for us in the camp (while in reality, they depart without us). This was probably changed for pacing reasons, and due to the [[ObviousBeta very restrictive nature]] of these levels to player movement: the maps with the rescue squad are known to be rather drawn out, and players [[CriticalExistenceFailure simply die]] should they get too far away from the fireteam for a longer period of time (explained with the allies killing us for jeopardizing the mission).

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** Originally, the Marine Team was supposed to be present during the entirety of the Colombian jungle missions, instead of linking up with them halfway through the mission at the bridge. Remains of this design are apparent in the retail version as well: both the mission description and the Marine briefing us on the helicopter state that the fireteam will be waiting for us in the camp (while in reality, they depart without us).us), and there are also various unused lines for the Marine Team in the levels prior to meeting them. This was probably changed for pacing reasons, and due to the [[ObviousBeta very restrictive nature]] of these levels to player movement: the maps with the rescue squad are known to be rather drawn out, and players [[CriticalExistenceFailure simply die]] should they get too far away from the fireteam for a longer period of time (explained with the allies killing us for jeopardizing the mission).


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* EvilAlbino: Alexei Nachrade in the second game.


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* GoodGunsBadGuns: The player and his allies use the M4 and US SOCOM, while the bad guys typically use the AK-74, Micro Uzi, and M1911A1.
** Averted later in the game when you start fighting Prometheus terrorists, who primarily use the M4.


* {{Gorn}}: One of the most notorious examples in gaming.

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* {{Gorn}}: One of the most notorious examples in gaming. Shots from heavier weapons and explosions can tear off limbs, split skulls open and blast bellies open, explosions can embed bodies with glass shards if there's a window between the bomb and the target, and enemies react accordingly to where you shot them at for the kill a bullet to the neck makes the baddie convulse while gargling on his own blood, and this is only the ''mildest'' example.
* GunAccessories: Particularly prevalent in ''II''. Some weapons come with attachments by standard, such as the M203 launcher on the [=M4=] carbine, and you also pick accessories for your starting weapons on the mission loadout screen, such as a {{bayonet|Ya}} for the AK-74, and either a HollywoodSilencer, LaserSight or InfiniteFlashlight for the Mk. 23 pistol.



* HandCannon: The Silver Talon.
* HarderThanHard: Unfair difficulty. Noise meter goes up very quickly, leading to tons of Respawning Enemies, which can get you overwhelmed, killing one wave of enemies only to cause more noise and summon more enemies. Not as unfair as it sounds, though.
** ''Soldier of Fortune II'''s "Soldier of Fortune" difficulty setting; ''seriously'' limited saves, enemies do significantly more damage with their weapons, etc. in a game which is already NintendoHard on the ''normal'' difficulty setting.
* HaveANiceDeath: If you jeopardize the mission or accidentally hit one of your allies, they yell "execute him" and you die instantly (they don't even actually shoot you).
* HeroicBystander: Due to how the A.I. works, the civilians in the Hong Kong levels may occasionally pick up fallen weapons and use them to fight the gangsters attacking you. They're not exactly the best combatants, but they can still kill a gangster or two if favored by the Random Numbers God.

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* %%* HandCannon: The Silver Talon.
Talon. (ZCE)
* HarderThanHard: HarderThanHard:
**
Unfair difficulty. Noise meter goes up very quickly, leading to tons of Respawning Enemies, which can get you overwhelmed, killing one wave of enemies only to cause more noise and summon more enemies. Not as unfair as it sounds, though.
** ''Soldier of Fortune II'''s "Soldier of Fortune" difficulty setting; ''seriously'' limited saves, enemies setting. Enemies do significantly more damage with their weapons, etc. a max limit of 5 saves per level, etc., in a game which is already NintendoHard on the ''normal'' ("Gun For Hire") difficulty setting.
* HaveANiceDeath: If you jeopardize the mission or accidentally hit one of your allies, they yell "execute him" "kill him!" and you die instantly (they don't even actually shoot you).
* HeroicBystander: Due to how the A.I. works, the civilians in the Hong Kong levels may occasionally pick up fallen weapons and use them to fight the gangsters attacking you. They're not exactly the best combatants, but they can still kill a gangster or two if favored by the Random Numbers God.with some luck.



** The only variety of Kalash rifles in the game is the AK-74 converted to five-five-six NATO. Which is downright absurd, considering how the original [=5.45mm and 7.62mm=] were (and still are) much easier to lay hands, and terrorists, to put it lightly, aren't known for gun modding.

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** The only variety of Kalash rifles in the game is the AK-74 converted to five-five-six NATO. Which is downright absurd, considering how the original [=5.45mm and 7.62mm=] were (and still are) much easier to lay hands, hands on, and terrorists, to put it lightly, aren't known for gun modding.doing caliber swaps.



* KickTheDog: The mooks in the Subway mission of the 1st game will commit acts like shooting a hostage for "being annoying" and push another in front of an incoming train, probably so you won't feel guilty about blowing them into LudicrousGibs. Later, the BigBad does this to Hawk.

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* KickTheDog: The mooks in the Subway mission of the 1st first game will commit acts like shooting a hostage for "being annoying" and push another in front of an incoming train, probably so you won't feel guilty about blowing them into LudicrousGibs. Later, the BigBad does this to Hawk.



* PunchPackingPistol: Both the Mk. 23 and the 1911 are very accurate and powerful, killing with one or two headshots on the highest difficulty. It's surprising how easy it is to win firefights with them, even late in the game, as long as you [[BoomHeadshot aim for the head]]. In the levels where there's no power like Kamchatka after you mess up the grid and [[spoiler:the Shop]], a SOCOM with a tactical light is your best friend.

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* PunchPackingPistol: Both the Mk. 23 and the 1911 are very accurate and powerful, killing with one or two headshots on the highest difficulty. It's surprising how easy it is to win firefights with them, even late in the game, as long as you [[BoomHeadshot aim for the head]]. In the [[BlackoutBasement levels where there's no power power]] like Kamchatka after you mess up the grid and [[spoiler:the Shop]], a SOCOM with a tactical light is your best friend.

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After spending much of the following decade in licensing limbo, the entire series was released on Website/GOGDotCom as part of the site's 10th Anniversary celebration.


** Mullins doesn't quite look like one, but his description in the first game list him as being 51 years old, which allegedly places his birth date somewhere between the end of 1948 and the start of 1950 (as SoF1 is set between September 2000 and January 2001). Considering the sheer amount of gun-fighting he gets into over the course of both the first and second games, he's certainly aged extraordinarily well to be able to accomplish what he does.

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** Mullins doesn't quite look like one, but his description in the first game list him as being 51 years old, which allegedly places his birth date somewhere between the end of 1948 and the start of 1950 (as SoF1 is set between September 2000 and January 2001). Considering the sheer amount of gun-fighting he gets into over the course of both the first and second games, he's certainly aged extraordinarily well to be able to accomplish what he does.does with no signs of tiring out.

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* BadassGrandpa:
** Mullins doesn't quite look like one, but his description in the first game list him as being 51 years old, which allegedly places his birth date somewhere between the end of 1948 and the start of 1950 (as SoF1 is set between September 2000 and January 2001). Considering the sheer amount of gun-fighting he gets into over the course of both the first and second games, he's certainly aged extraordinarily well to be able to accomplish what he does.


* HaveANiceDeath - If you jeopardize the mission or accidentally hit one of your allies, they yell "execute him" and you die instantly (they don't even actually shoot you).

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* HaveANiceDeath - HaveANiceDeath: If you jeopardize the mission or accidentally hit one of your allies, they yell "execute him" and you die instantly (they don't even actually shoot you).



* MadeOfIron - Whereas the first two ''Soldier of Fortune'' games featured semi-realistic enemies that could only survive a couple assault rifle bullets (with the exception of the first game's armor-plated final boss), ''Payback'' features several boss fights against enemy mercs who can take a few clips of assault rifle fire before dying. Most of these bosses aren't even wearing body armor.

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* MadeOfIron - MadeOfIron: Whereas the first two ''Soldier of Fortune'' games featured semi-realistic enemies that could only survive a couple assault rifle bullets (with the exception of the first game's armor-plated final boss), ''Payback'' features several boss fights against enemy mercs who can take a few clips of assault rifle fire before dying. Most of these bosses aren't even wearing body armor.



** EliteMooks - The Order soldiers in the first game who appeared in the last few levels and were equipped with body armor and automatic slugthrowers. The second game has elite Prometheus soldiers wearing a blue suit of full body armor (making them look exactly like [[VideoGame/RainbowSix Team Rainbow]] operatives), which allowed them to withstand multiple assault rifle shots (in a game where 1 or 2 shots is usually sufficient to kill) and even allowed them to survival a few headshots from lower-caliber firearms.
** GasMaskMooks - Various enemies in the first game, although somewhat justified in that they work in a WMD plant. The Prometheus soldiers in the second game also wear gas masks.
*** {{NINJA}}: Japan in the first game (see RuleOfCool again).
* TheMole - In ''Soldier of Fortune 2'', Taylor is suspected to be one. Turns out it's [[spoiler:Assistant Director Wilson, who established Prometheus with Nachrade as means to get rich by blackmailing the world governments to pay them for Romulus' antidote.]]
* MurderSimulators - Oddly averted, considering its nature. While the games have gotten a bit of notoriety, they'll haven't been able to muster the same level of controversy as other violent games.
* NeutronBomb - [[spoiler:Jessica Six. Dekker plans to destroy the UN and therefore The Shop by firing it on New York.]]
* NGOSuperpower - Arguably, The Order and Prometheus. The Shop, not so much.
* NintendoHard - ''Soldier of Fortune 2''. Full stop. Especially on the hardest difficulty.

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** EliteMooks - EliteMooks: The Order soldiers in the first game who appeared in the last few levels and were equipped with body armor and automatic slugthrowers. The second game has elite Prometheus soldiers wearing a blue suit of full body armor (making them look exactly like [[VideoGame/RainbowSix Team Rainbow]] operatives), which allowed them to withstand multiple assault rifle shots (in a game where 1 or 2 shots is usually sufficient to kill) and even allowed them to survival survive a few headshots from lower-caliber firearms.
** GasMaskMooks - GasMaskMooks: Various enemies in the first game, although somewhat justified in that they work in a WMD plant. The Prometheus soldiers in the second game also wear gas masks.
*** {{NINJA}}: {{Ninja}}: Japan in the first game (see RuleOfCool again).
* TheMole - TheMole: In ''Soldier of Fortune 2'', Taylor is suspected to be one. Turns out it's [[spoiler:Assistant Director Wilson, who established Prometheus with Nachrade as means to get rich by blackmailing the world governments to pay them for Romulus' antidote.]]
* MurderSimulators - MurderSimulators: Oddly averted, considering its nature. While the games have gotten a bit of notoriety, they'll haven't been they weren't able to muster the same level of controversy as other violent games.
* NeutronBomb - NeutronBomb: [[spoiler:Jessica Six. Dekker plans to destroy the UN and therefore The Shop by firing it on New York.]]
* NGOSuperpower - NGOSuperpower: Arguably, The Order and Prometheus. The Shop, not so much.
* NintendoHard - NintendoHard: ''Soldier of Fortune 2''. Full stop. Especially on the hardest difficulty.



* ReedRichardsIsUseless: In the first game, Mullins confronts Saddam Hussein face-to-face but is unable to simply shoot him because this was back in the 1990s when the real life Saddam was the guy considred to be in charge of Iraq, for better or worse. May also be considered a FunnyAneurysmMoment.

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* ReedRichardsIsUseless: In the first game, Mullins confronts Saddam Hussein face-to-face but is unable to simply shoot him because this was back in the 1990s when the real life Saddam was the guy considred considered to be in charge of Iraq, for better or worse. May also be considered a FunnyAneurysmMoment.


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* UniversalAmmunition: ''Double Helix'' was an early game to identify ammo types by caliber and try to make an effort to have them only be shared by weapons that make sense - the 9mm [=SMGs=] all share ammo, the .45 ACP Grease Gun pulls from the M1911 and Mk 23's ammo pool instead, and the AK-74 is even noted to have been converted to 5.56mm to justify it sharing ammo with the M4 and OICW. Even ignoring the OneBulletClips issues, however, this still has some oddities, such as the Desert Eagle sharing ammo with the other handguns despite not coming in .45 in real life, or the grenade launchers all using separate ammo pools when the M203 and Hawk do, in fact, take the same grenades.


** Villainous example: the nameless scientists working in the Prometheus complex in Kamchatka will pick up fallen weapons and attack Mullins with them, proving they're terrorists just like the armed grunts. {{Reluctant Mad Scientist}}s, they are not. The scientists will sometimes attack the terrorists.

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** Villainous example: the nameless scientists working in the Prometheus complex in Kamchatka will pick up fallen weapons and attack Mullins with them, proving they're terrorists just like the armed grunts. {{Reluctant Mad Scientist}}s, they are not. The [[note]]The single exception to that is the scientists in red NBC suits, who will sometimes attack the terrorists. Prometheus mercs if they can get to a gun.[[/note]]


** Villainous example: the nameless scientists working on the Prometheus complex in Kamchatka will pick up fallen weapons and attack Mullins with them, proving they're terrorists just like the armed grunts. {{Reluctant Mad Scientist}}s, they are not.

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** Villainous example: the nameless scientists working on in the Prometheus complex in Kamchatka will pick up fallen weapons and attack Mullins with them, proving they're terrorists just like the armed grunts. {{Reluctant Mad Scientist}}s, they are not. The scientists will sometimes attack the terrorists.



** In the beta, when going to the windows at the beginning of the last mission, allied Marines could be seen fighting Prometheus soldiers outside the Shop HQ building. They are not present in the retail version, probably because of being out-of-place there.

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** In the beta, when going to the windows at the beginning of the last mission, allied Marines could be seen fighting Prometheus soldiers outside the Shop HQ building. They are not present in the retail version, probably because of being out-of-place there. However, there is at least ONE Marine who can be seen fighting alongside a Shop security guard.


** The OICW is an experimental futuristic assault rifle with a computerized scope that allows you to zoom in at long range, see in nightvision, and even highlights enemies with red targeting boxes. It also comes with a semi-automatic grenade cannon with a laser-targeting system and computer-assisted range-finder that can be used to set grenades to airburst at whatever range you like. It's also [[SomeDexterityRequired incredibly clunky, with an awkward menu-driven interface that requires]] ''[[SomeDexterityRequired five separate buttons]]'' [[SomeDexterityRequired to use. The grenade launcher is impossible to fire without using this system]]. In an interview Mullins discussed the door stop of a manual that comes with the thing, and summed it up as a lot of useless bells and whistles the developers would love the government to spend millions on.

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** The OICW is an experimental futuristic assault rifle with a computerized scope that allows you to zoom in at long range, see in nightvision, and even highlights enemies with red targeting boxes. It also comes with a semi-automatic grenade cannon with a laser-targeting system and computer-assisted range-finder that can be used to set grenades to airburst at whatever range you like. It's also [[SomeDexterityRequired incredibly clunky, with an awkward menu-driven interface that requires]] ''[[SomeDexterityRequired five separate buttons]]'' [[SomeDexterityRequired to use. The grenade launcher is impossible to fire without using this system]]. In an interview Mullins discussed the door stop of a manual that comes with the thing, and summed it up as a lot of useless bells and whistles the developers would love the government to spend millions on.[[note]]Ultimately the U.S. military decided to later take a pass on the thing in real life for precisely those reasons.[[/note]]

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