2001, a portentous time: We’d just made it through the first of many promised apocalypses and the future lay before us like a shining jewel - a jewel we’d decorate with chunky graphics and slightly better voice acting. The PS1 was midway into its 12-year lifespan and games were pushing the limits of what the hardware could do. Enter C-12: Final Resistance.
I never finished this game. I don’t think I even got past stage one. Well, lets see what I was missing AND THERE’S DRUM AND BASS! Nice intro music… it makes you want to smack someone around with a rhythmic passion. Alrighty, I’m pumped! Let’[censored] start and… and… words… words… and more words… Who the hell ordered this much exposition? I mean you couldn’t hire a voice artist to read it to us? Who made this… SCE Studio Cambridge? You people made MediEvil 1 and 2. What happened?
Be nice. It was eighteen years ago and its not like its Fallout 76. Right… Still reading. It's the future and the aliens have attacked and they want all our carbon (hence C12). Wait, they want carbon? These aliens want to clean up the earth, why are we shooting at them? We’re British, not French. Okay, lets frag the bunny huggers. You play Lieutenant Riley Vaughn, a stout-hearted soldier and the best fighter in the resistance. He’s got two problems: the resistance has given him a terminator eye to defeat the aliens, and I’m controlling him. By my actions I shall rename him Captain Bullet Sponge! A promotion in rank but a drop in dexterity. It’s just like Call of Cthulhu.
But back to the game. Vaughn.. Sorry, Captain Bullet Sponge’s first mission involves locating and rescuing a missing patrol, killing a mess of cyborgs and one very large alien tank - it's alien because it's cool! All of this gets done with consummate ease which leads me to believe that the aliens aren’t that ingenious, it’s just that the humans are relatively thick.
Bullet Sponge is a great soldier in the traditional British way: he’s unflappable, has little support and considering how dull his voice acting is, he sounds like he’s been well-sedated. Methinks that the anaesthetic they gave him for the eye operation was a little strong. I do like the weapons he’s carrying. They’ve given him an energy blade that looks like a Klingon battlet and a police baton had a love child with a glowstick. It slices! It dices! It disrupts alien energy shields! There’s also an assault rifle come grenade launcher, alien plasma, laser cannon, ion cannon, rocker launcher and a PARTRIDGE IN A PEAR TREE! Oh yes… there will be blood.
You’re helping with the evacuation of your base, because clearly SOMEONE had to tweet and give everyone’s position away! So off you go, looking for your boss’ cortical implant. Guys, you’re sending your best soldier to get your glasses? This is a waste of military resources. Oh… it's to activate the base auto destruct, my mistake.
Along the way, BS listens in on some aliens providing exposition, and I’m not kidding, the one with the big mouth is called Henchman. I’m guessing his two silent friends are called Expendable 1 and 2. The devils! They’re going to use our satellites to track us! Who knew the aliens worked for the NSA? An odd thing though… your commander tells you that an outside source is using your own systems against you. But how? The only people that still had access were captured and killed by the aliens… Foreshadowing darkens the horizon… Dun, dun, duuuuun!
Side note: the camera loves Bullet Sponge’s butt. It stays right on it, at a distance that would have today’s internet fuming and foaming and, for a few, fapping. Back to the game where we see Bullet Sponge shoving around some cryo tubes to get his next Macguffin. This is exactly how the problems on the Nostromo started. At this point I realise that the rebel base is literally being held together with hope, dreams, paper mache and gaffer tape. Run here, do this, fix this. And then once you’ve done all that, you get to have a jaunty jog back to the garage THAT WAS TEN FEET AWAY FROM YOU because you’ve set off the auto destruct. Run! Run! And…! Another wall of text… Oy.
You’re scampering through the shattered landscape (because there’s never a dropship for the errand boy) looking for Doctor Carter - the widowed female scientist. Widowed because BS' rescue mission failed to save her husband. Yup, that’s not going to come bite me in the ass. Off you trudge, helping some evacuating stragglers along the way. Again, I realise why the aliens are winning. The surviving chavs couldn’t be arsed to do anything. “Oh no, we’re out of fuel and the car broke down. There’s a repair bay but the aliens are mean and won’t share.” Really? Have you considered using A GUN?! Then you kill the TWO ALIEN SENTRIES and they whine about the lack of fuel and that the bridge is broken. It’s at this point that I nearly changed sides. You push their transport into the repair bay because their welfare cheques haven’t cleared and an alien dropship arrives just in time to shoot at me. Humanity, you can suck my Bullet Sponge.
After building a bridge and refuelling their transport, the undeserving Essex-spawn wave you goodbye and you head through the deadliest ex-rebel base on earth. BS does some spore harvesting here, because fungus, yum yum. You learn that combining different spores do different things like make a light or a harmless explosion (who the hell is that for?). Some air duct crawling again and again with the butt cam… Guys, there are places on the net you can go.
I stumble into a lobby with the leftover turrets from Half-Life and after perforating my posterior, I find a survivor. Meet Frank the Mall Security Guard. He sends you to do some tech support, because Frank couldn’t be arsed either. Sigh… More butt cam and a few gun battles later and the network goes flllrrrp, and you finally make it to the Doctor. Doctor Carter… Oh, you pixelated minx, I can’t wait for your inevitable betrayal!
Will BS get to play doctor? Will they have an awkward chat about how he failed to save her husband? Tune in to NostalgiaView next week to see who gets the final resistance!
Comedian, Writer, Actor, Voice-artist. Host of the Urbane Myths podcast, Co-host of GeekXP's 'Release The Geek'. Opinionist Purveyor of Wanton Meanderings. And above all, Geek.
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