Since I’m not very quick on the draw, that whole wave of fast-paced shooters that washed over us in the late nineties and early aughts was something I was able to surf over. Unreal Tournament? Quake III? Counter-Strike? Yeah, didn’t play any of those. You may find yourself in love at the sight of Tactical Intervention though, Counter-Strike creator Minh Le’s ten-years-in-the-making follow-up. Because the game’s totally not in my alley, I decided to give it a try, anyway.
The free-to-play Tactical Intervention, above everything else, is a scenario-based team shooter in which you work together to accomplish your goals in specific situations, something that many mods sought to do in those early Half-Life and Quake days. Installed, I played a number of rounds of the game’s “Infamous Highway Chase” mode, which I suppose is some kind of flagship for the game, in which terrorists must whack a VIP and steal his briefcase. The problem with scenarios like these versus simply throwing players into a map and having them kill each other, ironically, is that these gameplay loops get old quick. I wasn’t tuckered out by the situation, but I can’t imagine wanting to play it that much longer.
Like its predecessors, spiritual or otherwise, the game is fast. The game’s no looker, in fact, it has a very crude aesthetic throughout, but you’re busting through these levels so fast that you probably won’t notice. All in all, this game feels like a title that could have been released alongside Counter-Strike. The controls are loose and there’s very little inertia in either the car’s movement or your own. Cars and players wobble violently at random the whole affair feels like an advanced college project. This is odd considering Minh Le’s last job was at the god damn Valve, where he struggled to create a follow-up to his famous mod.
Still, if you’re into this sort of thing, you’ll be interested in many of the game’s new features and wrinkles that have been added to the formula, it just won’t feel like anything modern.