Retro Review: Alpha Protocol (PS3)

Title: Alpha Protocol
System: Playstation 3

Alpha Protocol - Wikipedia
What appears to be a generic shooter secretly offers much more

Alpha Protocol from Obsidian Entertainment released in 2010 to offer a unique RPG experience blending third-person shooter gameplay, dialogue options, stealth, and mini game challenges that combine to create an equally unique espionage experience.

Although the character creator is somewhat limited in options, players create their own version of protagonist Michael Thorton to play through the story of a highly classified black ops agent burned and on the run trying to prevent World War III. RPG elements are at work as players can customize their agent’s skills with various fire arms, martial arts, computer skills, toughness, and more.

Combat is made up of stealth elements and hand to hand combat options while an arsenal of firearms offers somewhat unpolished but still competent third person shooting. As agent Thorton infiltrates enemy bases, sneaks through CIA safe houses, and unravels a war-for-profit plot, he’ll have to hack computers and pick locks. Both of these minigame-like activities take a little getting used to, but once accustomed to them, they offer a satisfying challenge that rarely leans towards frustrating.

Fans of television series Burn Notice or the Jason Bourne series will definitely enjoy stepping into a similar role for an adventure from the Middle East to Russia, Greece, and Hong Kong, often making allies with unsavory groups in pursuit of the greater good. Those who like a little moral gray in their story will likewise find a compelling story where patriotism doesn’t necessary equate to typical lines of loyalty.

A lot of gamers likely missed this one at release, but it’s worth picking up and still fairly cheap to find on either PS3 or XBox 360.

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