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Red Cell
Developer(s) Karmatic Studios
Publisher(s) Steam
Engine Red Cell engine (In-House)
Genre(s) Strategic First-Person Shooter
Mode(s) Campaign: Singleplayer and Co-operative

Campaign versus (Insurgency Pack)

Ratings PEGI: 18
Series Red Cell
Platform(s) Microsoft Windows

Mac OSX
Linux

Red Cell is a Strategic Open World First-Person shooter developed by Karmatic Studios. It also has some Puzzle solving elements. The game resolves around a Special Operation Forces existing of Seal Team Six members participating the global war on terror somewhere around 2002. The game is only available for PC and Mac, due to the many controls necessary and the strenght PCs can offer to let the game run solidly.

GameplayEdit

Red Cell has similar mechanics like other First-Person shooters, but has a focus on realistic effects, like bullet drop, lense flares, low endurance and recovery, moving objects in the area and squad focused gameplay.

There are two modes: Singleplayer and Co-operative Singleplayer. Multiplayer isn't in the game, because it wouldn't fit the scenery. However, players get access to free DLC months after release that introduces playable enemies in Singleplayer, which allows players to sabotage missions.

The game is set in a huge desert area in Afghanistan, with a few small cities, some bunkers and set-up camps filling the wide desert area. The various hills and open spaces allow long range spotting of enemies and an option to discuss a tactic with friends. Therefor, the game is suggested to be played co-op.

To travel across the map, vehicles can be used. Mainly technicals and other jeeps are available, but there are some rare vehicles like helicopters and quads available. Gasoline for the vehicles needs to be collected throughout the map, otherwise the vehicles would run dry. The player could walk across the map, but it is a dreadful long way from city to city.

The weapons available are the real weapons used by the military and the terrorists at that time. Damage profiles are brutal, meaning that only two bullets in the chest are lethal. However, shots in the limbs are weak and never lethal by a direct hit, only when bleeding out.

Health in the game is not regenerating. Rather, the player needs medicine and medkits to heal up. If shot, the player starts bleeding and needs medical attention to not bleed to death. Another way why co-op is superior to offline singleplayer. Human players react faster than friendly AI.

The player has many moves to perform in the field. From different firing positions and taking cover to rolling over and sliding. The player can select what button on his keyboard performs which action. If the player manages to master the keys, he can be very mobile in combat which can give a good advantage over enemies.

The missions are non-linear and all missions can be done at all times. However sometimes in singleplayer mode, a teammate gets captured and that unlocks an optional side mission to rescue him. This means that players have to do singleplayer a few times to complete all missions, rather than playing co-op all the time.

Singleplayer and co-op statistics are shared, so that means that all weapons and items you have carry over to each mode. Versus mode however has a unique leveling system, where you gain XP for sabotaging missions and killing players.

To perform a close combat attack with a knife, the player has to aim at the body area where he wants to stab his opponent. This is because in some missions, you need to disarm and/or wound a guy and there is no simple button to do that. You can also swing your knife for a wider attack range, but less damage. Pulling out a knife takes more time than regular shooters and the player doesn't swing it directy when drawn.

Swap time of weapons is slower than in other shooters. While drawing out a pistol is immediatly, he holds in one hand for a few seconds, while putting away his rifle. During that, recoil is somewhat higher. After it, he holds it with two hands again. When swapping back to primary weapon, the player puts away the pistol with one hand and unclips the rifle with the other, with his right hand lifting the weapon after putting away the pistol.

The player is only able to carry 3 weapons at a time, with one being a pistol at all times. The player can store weapons in American outposts or can just drop it to change to an enemy rifle. The player can restock SEAL weapons at outposts, which are most of the time dropzones where helicopters drop packages. At these outposts, no guards are present and the terrorists could raid the places, so being mobile is necessary.

CampaignEdit

The story resolves in the first month after the 9/11 attacks. You take control of a Navy SEAL part of DEVGRU, commonly known as Seal Team Six. You and your squad are part of a Red Cell operation, orchestrated by the government to find the country's weak points and the SEALs need to collect as much intel of Al-Qaeda operations and create a possible outcome of these attacks, so the United States can prepare for it.

The location they were send to resembles the Zarghun Shahr district, only with a few adaptions of locations, near the Pakistani border. The area has a high Taliban activity and is very dangerous due to the many guerilla fighters in and outside the cities. The enemy is possible to plan an attack on the player's squad, so watch your back at all times. Enemies have access to all weapon classes, so also sniper rifles and light machine guns. This means that enemies can shoot the player from afar, only that happens rarely.

StoryEdit

Main article: Red Cell/Missions

The main storyline can be gathered in pieces, depending on the player actions. You can finish the game by completing all missions and solving all puzzles. There are 3 possible endings: Solved all puzzles correctly, solved all puzzles with some mistakes and didn't solve all puzzles. 

World mapEdit

As mentioned before, the map the players are located in is in the middle of the desert of Eastern Afghanistan near the Pakistani border. The map has various small cities, ruins, nomad camps and hidden terorist hideouts in the whole area.

To prevent players from discovering the whole map in one run, players can find intel on new and hidden locations, mostly in ruins and terrorist's hideouts. For exemple, the player can find a map where a location is crossed on. When the player travels to that location and puts an explosive on the crossed area on the map, he can unlock a new hidden area to explore. All these locations are available from the start, so the player can consult a player guide to know all locations.

GamemodesEdit

In the first release of the game, there were two gamemodes: Singleplayer and Co-operative. They are both part of the campaign, meaning that there is no competitive multiplayer. Rather, everything the player does is in an active stream is the same map at all times. To play co-operatively, all players must join one stream. It is suggested that the people join the player with the best connection, because the Red Cell engine prevents frame rate dropping from all players if the streamer has good connection. There are up to 16 spots in one stream.

In singleplayer, you are put in a squad with AI characters. They have a mind of their own, but can respond to commands given. The player can insert command keywords in the option menu. For exemple, if the player wants the squad open fire, he can select the option "open fire" and connect the keyword "OF" to it. Then the player puts "OF" in the command screen, which is like a chat option in most PC games. The AI will react to it and perform the action. You can also record voice commands, but they are more difficult to be recognized by the AI. 

With the free Insurgency DLC, players got a Versus gamemode added to the game. The player can join a friend or stranger's lobby and play as a terrorist, sabotaging the other players' game and missions. The player levels up differently as a terrorist. To prevent lobbies getting too full and a possible engine crash, lobbies are only allowed to have 16 friends at one time, which means that you can't join the lobby as a terrorist. You can wait in a queue for someone to leave, but that also means that if a player leaves by accident, your position is immediatly compromised as you have taken his position in the lobby.

WeaponsEdit

Seal Team SixEdit

Assault Rifles:

  • M16A3
  • M16A4
  • M4A1
  • G3 (Regiment DLC)

Submachine Guns:

  • MP5
  • MP7
  • P90 (Regiment DLC)

Light Machine Guns:

  • M249 SAW
  • M240B
  • M60E4 (Regiment DLC)

Sniper Rifles:

  • M107
  • SR-25
  • Mk12 SPR (Regiment DLC)

Shotguns:

  • M1014
  • R870 (Regiment DLC)

Sidearms:

  • M9
  • Glock 17
  • MEU-SOC (Regiment DLC)

Projectile Weapons:

  • AT4

TerroristsEdit

Assault Rifles: 

  • Ak-47
  • Ak-74u
  • Galil
  • Type 56 (Resolution DLC)

Submachine Guns:

  • Uzi
  • Skorpion vz65
  • PM63 (Resolution DLC)

Light Machine Guns:

  • PKM
  • RPK
  • RPD (Resolution DLC)

Sniper Rifles:

  • Dragunov
  • SKS
  • Tabuk (Resolution DLC)

Shotguns: 

  • TOZ-194

Sidearms:

  • Tokarev TT
  • Makarov PM
  • Tariq pistol (Resolution DLC)

Projectile Weapons:

  • RPG-7

Ammunition and magazines are specific per weapon. If rounds match between different guns, the player can use it for different weapons, as long as the rounds match the weapon. There are multiple types of ammunition: 

  • 5.56x45mm NATO - M16A3, M16A4, M4A1, M249, Galil and Mk12 SPR
  • 9x19 Parabellum - MP5, Uzi, Glock 17, Tariq and M9
  • 7.62x51mm NATO - G3, SR-25, M240B, and M60E4
  • 9x18mm Makarov - PM63 and Skorpion vz65
  • 7.62x39mm Soviet - Ak-47, Type 56, SKS, RPK, RPD and Tabuk
  • 5.45x39mm Soviet - Ak-74u
  • 7.62x54mm Soviet - Dragunov and PKM
  • 5.7x28mm - P90
  • 4.6x30mm - MP7
  • .50 BMG - M107
  • .45 ACP - MEU-SOC
  • 7.62x25mm - Tokarev TT
  • 9x18mm Makarov - Makarov PM
  • 12 Gauge shells - TOZ-194, M1014 and R870

The player also needs to collect magazines for each weapon. If the player doesn't have the magazines of the weapon available, but does have the rounds, the rounds still can't be used.

ExpansionsEdit

Red Cell received multiple expansions, including new singleplayer areas, weapons and new co-op features.

  • Insurgency Pack: Free DLC that grants players to play as terrorists in co-operative.
  • Resolution Pack: $10,- DLC that gives access to the map: "Urban districts" in Iraq. The plot resolves around the hunt for Saddam Hussein.
  • Regiment Pack: $10,- DLC that unlocks the SAS as playable faction. The player also gets access to new weapons for Seal Team Six.

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