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Video Game / Running With Rifles

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Running With Rifles, or, to use the proper title, RUNNING WITH RIFLES is a top down isometric shooter that takes a point of view similar to that of Operation: Flashpoint.

The year is whenever, the place is wherever, and three expy armies are duking it out; the German Greycollars, the Russian Brownpants, and the American Greenbelts. Fighting over a small country, these armies, in their hundreds of thousands, wage a brutal war for no clear reason and for no discernible purpose. And into this steps you, fresh from basic, with a gun, a first aid kit, a grenade, and instructions to carry out all orders.

Unlike some military shooters, you are a nobody, a random soldier with a combat life expectancy of thirty seconds who is simply sent to a war zone with minimal equipment and instructions to head to a rally point and muster for an assault on an enemy strong point.

In October 2017 a new campaign taking place in the Pacific theater during World War II was released, with players able to play as either US Marines or IJA soldiers.


This game contains examples of:

  • Artificial Brilliance: The A.I., though simple, is excellent for the game. Troopers under fire take cover before shooting back, they can tell where gunfire comes from with extreme accuracy, and low ranking solders group together under a superior officer freely. If pushed, the A.I. can even call in Artillery strikes almost as well as a human player.
    • They also have a nice stealth mechanic, based on line of sight, time of day, level of alertness, and stance of the player.
  • Authority Equals Asskicking: Any A.I. troop of First Lieutenant or higher can take six shots before going down and needing to be revived. Contrast to everyone else who can only take one before dying.
    • This may be due to the fact that A.I. soldiers get access to vests, just like the player.
  • Awesome, but Impractical: Any mass infantry charge without some sort of support, even from something as small as a Humvee, is going to result in hundreds of deaths. But damn if it doesn't look cool to have fifty men charging a position.
  • Boring, but Practical: There are multiple rare weapons in the game that allows for players to get one up on the AI or even other players. However, despite that, the default faction weapons are just as useful (and cheaper as well!) and in the right hands, are just as deadly as any of the rare weapons.
    • Stealth strategies are frequently this, you have only 2 silenced weapons to choose from most of the time, you can't use your squad much because they're not quite smart enough to be sneaky, and you spend a great deal of time walking carefully around firefights.
  • Forever War: You never actually find out why any of this fighting is going on, and there's no indication that it'll ever end. Can also occur when fighting on one map without making any progress for long enough.
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  • Isometric Projection: A rare shooter example.
  • Home by Christmas: It's easy to invoke this on yourself by sitting down to play for 15 minutes and not making any meaningful progress after an hour of bloody battle.
  • Last Stand: Can happen if the enemy is inside of your last sector; no more soldiers can spawn in until the area is cleared. Also happens if you overextend yourself or don't notice all of your buddies dying/fleeing from the impending hordes.
  • One-Hit Point Wonder: Most of the soldiers - the best you can get to improve the situation is a bulletproof vest that'll shield you from two or three shots.
  • Optional Stealth: While the game focuses on massive battles, you are perfectly able to don a ghillie suit and sneak past enemy lines.
    • Averted for Final Mission I and Final Mission II. Stealth is mandatory in both but for different reasons.
  • Redshirt Army: Everyone, including you.
  • Take Cover!: Pretty much necessary if you want to survive in any sort of firefight. Bringing along your own sandbags or a shield is often a good idea.
  • Tank Goodness: Each faction gets their own themed tank type. There is also access to a tank with a mounted minigun for a turret.
  • Trapped Behind Enemy Lines: Can happen if you are careless.
  • Urban Warfare: On most maps. And it can be gory.
  • War Has Never Been So Much Fun: Downplayed. The upbeat music and cartoony style may make you think so, but the desaturated colors and the gameplay itself lean far more towards War Is Hell.
  • War Is Hell: A very subtle example; the game utilizes Show, Don't Tell to depict war as pointless slaughter. The best example is when you receive orders with no explanation to assault a wide open street. After forty minutes of battle, no one holds the corpse-strewn, blood-covered street.
    • Final Mission II shows this quite well when the player has no idea how to complete that mission, the snow in front of their holdout will get turned completely red from the sheer number of bodies.
  • Walking Armory: Averted. Carry just two primary weapons and your accuracy and movement speed will suffer greatly.

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