Cross Fire Review: Alert the Armory!
By Jerrico Tan (JetSet), OnRPG Journalist
Cross Fire is a free-to-play MMOFPS developed by South Korean based companies – SmileGate and NeoWiz. Players assume the role of either one of the two mercenary groups (Black List and Global Risk) and together with their squad, they must work together to complete objective based scenarios. It might similarly look like Counter-Strike but the game still has unique features that will keep you glued to the game for hours.
In every game room, players must choose a side from one of the two mercenary factions- Black List and Global Risk (I’ll be calling them BL and GR from this point). These two groups are quite similar to CStrike’s Terrorists and CTerrorists team. But nevertheless, the developers still did a good job of making their camo loadouts (Thumbs up for tattooed terrorists!).
Starting players are given a choice from three starting outfits. Your chosen outfit will be your very first camo in the game. Don’t worry too much about choosing which is best though, they are all just for looks and don’t offer any special perks or bonuses.
Also, players who purchase Cash have an opportunity to buy female player models, which is quite an amazing feat as it gives more variety in terms ofvisual flavor in the battlefield. Honestly, female models always confuse me when it comes to confirming targets at a distance, thanks to their fleshy revealing camo outfits (and mostly the reason why I get killed).
What makes this game special – GAME MODES
Cross Fire offers a wide range of game modes and the current update now offers 7 different types:
Search and Destroy/Destruction Mode (D.M.) – The usual Bomb-Defuse mode,BL must successfully bomb one of the map’s bomb sites while GR must defend and wipeout the opposing team. GR must defuse the bomb if it is already planted.
Ghost Mode (G.M.) – G.M.’s rules are the same as D.M. but they added a fun twist to it. BL players are barely visible faded ghosts and cannot be seen when standing still. However, they can only carry knives/melee weapons.On the other hand, GR must defend the bomb sites or must eliminate all ghosts.
Free-For-All (F.F.A.) – This is the classic deathmatch mode where players race to reach the most number of kills before the time runs out.
Team FFA (T.D.M.) – The rules of the game are the same as FFA but players are split into two teams.
Elimination/Wipeout (W.O.) – BL and GR must eliminate all players of their opposing team. Eliminated players will just wait for a new round.
Zombie Mode (Z.M.) – This is actually one special soldier tag game. All players are given a short countdown and they need to prep up before the infection. A random soldier will become the initial zombie when the infection starts and the zombies must infect (tag) all soldiers in the game. Soldiers win the round when at least one soldier survived the whole round.
Escape (ESCAPE) – BL must rally and reach the escape point while GR must prevent BL from reaching it. BL wins the round when the required number of escapees is met.
My personal favorite is D.M. (Search and Destroy/Destruction Mode) because tactical planning and stealth skills are primarily essential especially when the round has only a few players left (Don’t you just love it when you get to ambush people because of their footsteps?). Also, Ghost Mode is the game mode that surely makes Cross Fire stand out. The others are also pretty good but they can be found in most FPS games out there. But despite some modes a bit lacking in originality, all modes offered in Cross Fire give a diverse FPS gameplay experience that could give you tons of mayhem with other players (Who doesn’t love pwning players anyway?).
Maps are very important in every FPS game. Most of the maps in Cross Fire are fairly balanced and well planned (especially Destruction Mode maps). Not all maps though are suitable for the same play style. Some maps have lots of stretches, which are convenient for snipers while others have narrow intersecting hallways that require a lot of breaching/assaulting. The map options in the game also offer weapon restrictions (like players can only carry pistols, knives or snipers). This gives additional spice to the game mode and would definitely not get a Cross Fire player bored.
Missions and Ranking System
Players are given three different missions every day. These are goals (like win 5 D.M. matches) that must be completed in exchange of rewards (they are mostly experience and cash rewards). I think this is mandatory since these daily missions are the only way to earn money (GP earned from matches is only enough to repair your main weapon). Also, the ranking feature of the game drives you to play even longer because you could have the chance to buy better stock guns in the item shop (bigger and better weapon options are unlocked every time you rank up). These two features would truly get players to log in to the game on a daily basis.
Guns and Item shop
The guns in Cross Fire vary from different snipers, SMGs, assault rifles, pistols and knives (they are also made by real gun manufacturers). Your starter guns of course are not that powerful as of yet and can’t kill a full health player in one shot whilebetter guns obviously have more accuracy and firepower (some can even penetrate wooden crates and walls). Players can also drop their current gun in the battlefield so it could pick up better guns on the ground (which is great for newbies who only carry m16s). Additionally, players can also set multiple main weapons to different bags and you can switch between those weapon sets for a few seconds during respawn.
Most stock guns can be bought in the item shop and won’t expire (although they require a certain rank and GP Cash before players can buy it) but they need constant repair for their firepower will gradually decrease after a few matches. On the other hand, players can buy Cash (Z8 points) so they could rent and buy exclusive weapons for a few days (the katana looks pretty sweet!). Most of them have superior firepower, ammo capacity and looks (gold plated SCARlite is badass). They also offer set items, which is great for players who want to have a good set of weapons for a sweet deal. I guess coughing up $9 worth of points is worth it for a full set of gears and would last for 90days.
The best things in life are free, including Cross Fire
The graphics in the game are not that revolutionary (it looks pretty old and looks a lot like CS 1.6), so you shouldn’t worry about its system requirements. With the game running on its Lithtech engine, any gaming computer made in the past 5 years could run this game smoothly on 1024x768 resolution with maximum effects.
The sound in the game is also commendable. Gunfire sounds are very close to the real counterpart and the voice commands would emphasize that you are really inside a battlefield. I also give this game a “thumbs up” for its footstep sounds (knowing where and when somebody is approaching is awesome for setting up ambushes).
Despite the fact that this game is highly noted as an exact clone of Counter Strike, Cross Fire is actually a pretty great and worthy game packaged with loads of fun factors. The entire gameplay and variety of modes would definitely keep this MMOFPS running for more years to come. Most importantly, rich or poor, with cash or no cash, all players can equally enjoy contending against each other without feeling inferior or superior. And that’s what we call fair business – a factor that makes Cross Fire an MMOFPS worthwhile.
Overall verdict 8.5/10
*Real guns and realistic modern warfare
*Wide selection of balanced maps
*Vast choice of game modes
*Lots of players to pwn (and its community is also nice)
*Pretty old graphics (But who needs it when gameplay is at its best)
*Hard to earn GP
*Weapons not customizable
*Stock weapons need constant repair