Review by MakMan333
Counter Spy is a unique experience, and a short one at that. I beat the game in about 2 hours, and that might be a problem for some, if you're only planning on playing through it once.
There's minimal story here. It's a spoof on the Cold War, where both the United States and the USSR are attempting to blow up the moon, for whatever reason. You, as a member of C.O.U.N.T.E.R, are tasked with tracking down their plans, from either side, and stopping them.
The aesthetics of the game are excellent. From the 1960's themed background music, to the black enigma that is the main character, everything looks and sounds great.
The main draw of Counter Spy lies in it's gameplay mechanics. As you progress down a map, you're tasked with killing everyone in your sight. If they spot you, and you decide to proceed anyway, you're hitting with an increased DEFCON. DEFCON is important because if you let it rise too high, game over.
So you should look to be killing anyone who stands in between you and the computer at the end. There's a variety of weapons at your disposal, most of which you must unlock on your own. Most your killing is going to be done behind corners and pillars, where the normally 2D game enters a 3D mode to help you aim. In this mode, instead of a singular line as a reticule, you can move it around for more precise targeting. There's also hand to hand combat, but all that's required is a single press of the square button to kill your opponent.
The levels are procedurally generated, so you get a new experience every time and there's new guns and formulas, which give you bonuses in a level, to unlock. Furthermore, there's 3 difficulty levels for those who like to challenge themselves.
Finally, as you rack up score (and if you're connected to the internet) you'll see yourself passing other online players, deemed "rivals". After passing their score, the next time you enter a level their body can be found there. Finding it gives you a bonus to your cash, which is used to purchase everything from formulas to refilling your ammo in between missions.
I did noticed some bugs in my sole playthrough of the game. The most annoying one came at the very end of my run, where I had altered an enemy but was unable to find them. I was still able to finish the game, but I came very close to blowing my no continue run. They detract from the experience, but do not manage to ruin it.
Overall, I'd recommend the game. There's some replay value to be had, and the core experience is pretty solid.
Product Release: CounterSpy (US, 08/19/14)
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