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YMMV / Red Faction

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  • Alternate Character Interpretation: The EDF as rather brutal Knight Templar who genuinely care about and are fighting for the survival of Earth - and, by extension, the entire species - and see the miners as ungrateful children unwilling to do what is necessary to keep society functioning.
  • Annoying Video-Game Helper: The reinforcements that you get sent in Guerilla often have this effect, as they will usually just get killed and that will decrease your reputation. This has lead many to feel that this feature is a Scrappy Mechanic.
  • Anticlimax Boss: In Guerrilla, General Roth is just a mook in a tank. The final fight is over in seconds. Hell, you can kill him before you even see him if you bring a railgun.
    • Masako, the reportedly badass leader of the Mercs from the first game, is the last person you fight before the finale. She has a boss nanoshield as well as a custom rifle that kills you in 3 hits on Normal difficulty, as well as being the fastest enemy in the game once she loses her nanoshield. Still, she's no Cyberdemon and goes down relatively quickly, especially if you use the railgun.
    • Adam Hale in Armageddon can be finished off in ten seconds. Using the magnet gun, one can send the first generator ball into his walker, which will instantly drop his health down to zero.
  • Catharsis Factor: Guerilla offers this in spades. There's no feeling quite like bringing down an EDF base with only your trusty sledgehammer- and gratuitous amounts of explosives. Armageddon offers up a bit more, though not nearly as much due to it's linear storyline. You can't fault it for trying though, especially when it gives you the option of reassembling what you just blew up with the Nano Forge... so you can destroy it again.
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  • Complacent Gaming Syndrome: The Major League Gaming Playlist in Guerrilla. No Health Packs. No Remote Charges. No Rail Driver. No Handicapping. No Proximity Mines. No Vision Packs....
  • Complete Monster:
    • Red Faction (the first game): Axel Capek is the head of scientific research at the Ultor Corporation. To him, the lives of countless innocents were less important than his scientific curiosity. His experiments created mutants resulting from the animals and humans he tested on, unleashing a plague on Mars mines, killing and crippling innocent people, and awakening an alien race that he let kill his fellow scientists. When confronted by Parker, Capek reveals there is a cure for the plague but refuses to reveal it for no reason other than spite; his last words being "I hope you all die!". A vicious egomaniac, Capek dismisses the deaths of countless innocent people as nothing more than a stepping stone to progress.
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    • Red Faction II: Crate Molov was once a loyal soldier under the Commonwealth dictator Victor Sopot and the first of his Elite Guard, before they were replaced by zombie-like soldiers called "The Processed". Wanting revenge, Crate leads the survivors of his team as mercenaries for the Red Faction resistance movement, repeatedly making it clear he doesn't care about the cause or collateral damage, often arguing with the resistance leader Echo for his unwillingness to sacrifice his people. When later told that they are supposed to be fighting for peace, Molov asks what good peace does, stating a soldier lives for war. After Sopot is killed and overthrown, Molov takes over as a new dictator, betraying and declaring war on his former Red Faction allies, and declares Alias Burke and Tangier public enemies for siding against him. Molov continues and enhanced the "Processed" experiments to create a truly unstoppable army for him to rule, which he intends on setting loose on Sopot's city, and states his intent to conduct these experiments on Tangier with the expressed purpose of frying her brain.
    • Red Faction: Guerrilla: Admiral Lucious Kobel outstrips any of his fellow Earth Defense Force comrades in cruelty, having previously used his warship, the Hydra, to annihilate Central Asian rebels. When EDF loses faith in its current commander, General Bertram Roth, Kobel is sent, as a last resort, to suppress the Red Faction rebellion for good. Despite given orders to avoid any unnecessary damage, civilian casualties were unimportant to Kobel, and he set out with a plan of his own: to start fresh and exterminate all life on Mars. Using the Hydra to start a bombardment on Mars, Kobel cared not for the civilians, declaring them expendable, and indicates he arranged the entire situation to take control from Roth in the first place.
    • Red Faction: Origins has Stroller. See that page for more details.
    • Red Faction: Armageddon: Adam Hale, who also appears in the film, was originally the second-in-command to Stroller of the White Faction and a lover to Lyra Mason, before becoming a cult leader placing himself as a messiah figure. An initial supporter of the White Faction's plot to start a war between the Red Faction and Marauders, overseeing the massacre of civilians. When Lyra realizes the truth of her past and leaves for her family, Hale's immediate reaction is to take control of the White Faction and order the destruction of the Teraformer, knowing it would render Mars virtually uninhabitable and not caring that Lyra could be a casualty; holding one of his men at gunpoint for hesitating the attack; and only stopped when Alec Mason sacrifices himself to destroy the dreadnought. By the time of Armageddon, Hale reemerges twenty years later with a cult to his name, and succeeds in destroying the Terraformer causing widespread destruction, such as tornadoes and violent storms across the surface, forcing the people of Mars to colonize underground to survive. Learning of a ravenous alien race called the plague further beneath the surface, Hale has his cultists trick Alec's grandson Darius Mason into releasing the plague on the people of Mars, overrunning the colonists and killing multiple people. He later announces to his cult his plans to enslave these creatures as an army in his conquest. Originally raised to be a loyal soldier, Hale is ultimately a man motivated to claim his envisioned destiny of ruling Mars, with or without Lyra, and partially motivated by his hate for the Mason family, not caring who or how many have to die in the process.
  • Demonic Spiders: The railgun-wielding Merc Commanders in Red Faction, who could kill you with 1 shot. From behind a wall. Those darned Elite Guards, too, who are Made of Iron and dodge your shots like it's The Matrix.
  • Ending Fatigue: Armageddon can feel this way with multiple bosses and cutscenes that feel like finales, yet the game keeps going.
  • Fan Nickname: In Guerilla, Mason is capable of using a sledge hammer to tear gaping holes in solid concrete, dislodge steel girders, and send people hurtling through the air. They are jokingly referred to as Thor and Mjölnir respectively.
  • Game-Breaker: In online multiplayer, the eponymous sledgehammer of Guerrilla. There's a known bug in the game where the hammer's reach extends far beyond what it should ever be. Also Heal Packs: designed to keep you alive in the heat of combat by speeding up the rate you regenerate health, or as lot of players like to do, exploit its ability to make you invincible for its 30 second duration. There are also mods that include an assault rifle that shoots the explosions from singularity bombs.
  • Goddamned Bats: The Creepers in Armageddon, fast, weak vermin that leap around the caverns to try and slash at you up close.
  • Good Bad Bugs: In the PlayStation 2 version of the original, using fine aim mode with the Shotgun caused all pellets to hit the same exact spot, turning the balanced shotgun into an overpowered sluggun.
  • Idiot Plot: Armageddon. After Hale's terrorists sabotage the terraformer, thus apparently ruining the surface environment of Mars for human inhabitation, nobody attempts to fix it. It's implied that the governing body of Mars is making too much of a profit from the citizenry's suffering in the underground to allow the repair to take place, but that seems to be a fairly weak attempt to plaster over the plot hole. This is especially infuriating when you remember that the protagonist, Darius, is capable of repairing almost anything man-made by pointing his hand at it, and this is exactly what he did at the end of the story. If it was that simple he could have turned around on the day of sabotage and solved the problem right there. The surface seems to have breathable air anyway given that all the missions on the Mars Surface are done without any character using any kind of respirator. The ease of this solution also makes the act of killing the Queen Alien largely unnecessary.
    • For that matter, why did Hale think he could tame the aliens, given that the only contact with them prior was an Ultor survey team that got completely obliterated? How did he tame that one alien, given that up to this point they'd done nothing but slaughter everything they came across? Why, as soon as that seal came off, did the aliens pour out and start murdering everything, when up to that point they'd apparently been perfectly fine underground? If Earth-like air is their one weakness, why did they not start massacring colonists when Ultor first colonized the planet?
  • Memetic Mutation: Mr. Toots.
  • Polished Port:
    • How the PC version of Red Faction: Guerrilla is now. When the Red Faction IP switched over to Nordic Games, Nordic began releasing a series of patches for the PC release to finally fix what Volition never did. The hated Games for Windows Live DRM was removed and replaced by Steamworks (along with all multiplayer servers being switched to Steam), a new DirectX 11 graphics option was added which allowed players to use all the graphical improvements of the DirectX 10 mode (such as sun rays and ambient occlusion) without the major performance loss, many bug fixes to make the game much less crash prone (though it's not quite crash proof yet on certain computers), and to top it all off they released a series of new multiplayer and Wrecking Crew maps for free.
    • And then come Re-Mars-tered, where not only the graphics are improved, but technical issues are pretty much fixed. Those who already owned the Steam version of Red Faction Guerilla will got the Re-Mars-tered edition, and those who buy Re-Mars-tered will have the original version too. Its only issue is how the Re-Mars-tered edition need more drive space (upwards to 30gb).
  • Porting Disaster:
    • Though actually a pretty polished port for the most part (it supports widescreen resolutions out of the gate, a rarity for a game of its age, and runs really well on most all modern computers), the PC version of Red Faction II is missing one major aspect: multiplayer. For some reason the multiplayer is only present in the console versions of the game, while PC players are left out. A very strange omission too given the first game had online multiplayer on PC.
    • This was originally the case with the PC port of ''Red Faction: Guerrilla" (see Polished Port for how it is now). The PC port was very buggy and prone to random crashes, the Direct X 10 graphics mode would really slow the game down and make crashing more frequent, used the dreaded Games for Windows Live DRM, and the PC version was barely patched during its years under THQ and Volition.
  • Rooting for the Empire: The Earth Defense Force occasionally gets this. Partly because their brutality is so insanely overplayed that it just becomes implausibly hilarious, and partly because they get cool uniforms.
  • Sequelitis: Red Faction II is considered to be the black sheep of the franchise, and is overall a mediocre game, since it suffered from lackluster gunplay and not enough destructive enviroments the first game had.
  • "Stop Having Fun" Guys: The online mode once the Major League Gaming Playlist was added.
  • Surprisingly Improved Sequel: Although the first Red Faction was considered a small hit in 2001, the 2002 sequel sold poorly, and fans found the game disappointing, which caused the series to go dormant for years. Then Guerilla came out of left field and made everyone aware of just how much fun the series' environmental destruction gimmick could be when properly utilized, not to mention abandoning the run-of-the-mill first-person-shooter formula in favor of an open-world third-person format that essentially amounted to Grand Theft Auto on Mars, with lots of explosions.
  • That One Sidequest: Ever wonder why Oasis is the most-requested sector for Demolition Master walkthroughs? Getting the pro time on one Demolition Master there involves demolishing a watchtower by hitting it with a batted exploding barrel. You have, at most, two shots before the pro time elapses and both of them need to have the precision of guided missiles to actually knock the tower down. With no consistent way to control the variables, especially the flight path and direction of the barrels, this is a nigh impossible Luck-Based Mission. Combined with the fact it takes more than twice as long to reset it as it does to fail it and you have an ideal recipe for frustration.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Plot: In Armageddon, the concept of the Nanoforge is wonderfully realized in gameplay, but the plot almost entirely neglects it. The focus is entirely on the painfully unoriginal Bug War concept instead. The Nanoforge is the most scientifically advanced and ridiculously useful devise in the whole of creation, yet the Faction lets Darius run around with it. A power struggle between the new government, Darius and the cultists all over the Nanoforge and it's seemingly limitless power would have made for a much more compelling plot. It would also have been more in keeping with the primary theme of the series: government oppression and civil war.
  • Tough Act to Follow: You could argue that the popular Guerilla would be setting up any sequel for a disappointment, but frankly, considering Armageddon was the polar opposite of its predecessor in terms of game design this was probably not the way to endear fans.
  • What Do You Mean, It's Not Political?: The first game is a bit guilty of this. A group called Red Faction, fighting for the rights of workers, against a megacorporation more concerned with making profit than with the well-being of their employees, and which sports a particularly communist-looking symbol? The implications are baffling.


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