Enemy Territory: Quake Wars
Made By: Splash Damage for ID Software
Release Date: June 2006
Rated: T for mild violence, language
Pros: Fun multiplayer action
Cons: Experience is only tracked on ranked servers
Single and Multiplayer but mostly Multiplayer

Quake Wars is a multiplayer first person shooter that takes place before Quake 2. The Strogg are trying to conquer the earth and the GDF forces are trying to repel them. Pick a side and join the battle! There are plenty of vehicles and aircraft at your disposal and five different classes that have unique skills, missions and weapons. As you play you will gain experience and power ups accordingly. If you play on ranked servers, you can earn various medals and see your statistics compared against all the other online players. The best 10,000 player stats are on the main website for all to see.

Each side has five similar classes. The main attack unit is skilled with heavy weapons and explosives; for the GDF this is the soldier, and the aggressor is for the Strogg. If you\'re wounded in battle you can be revived by a medic, or the Strogg term is a technician. Medics can call in supply crates in any outdoor spot. The technicians can turn dead bodies into spawn points which is a very handy skill. Every mission will need an engineer to construct and deploy defenses or repair vehicles. This unit is called a constructor for the Strogg. A GDF Field Ops unit can dispense ammunition and call in air strikes. A Strogg Oppressor can call in Orbital strikes in return. Covert ops can use sniper rifles and disguise themselves as fallen Strogg and hack into their technology. The Strogg Infiltrator has the same abilities.

This game can be played single player by playing against bots, which are pretty darn intelligent by the way. The most fun however is playing on packed servers which are pretty easy to find, even after a couple of years since this game was released. Teamwork is essential and if everyone works together it\'s a real blast.

When you join a game you will see how the teams are balanced by number of players and what classes there are on the field and what the most critical class is to complete the mission. Each map has several objectives or missions with several mini objectives. Depending on which side you join you will either have to start off attacking or defending a certain area to prevent the next objective. If the attacker completes all the objectives then they win or if the people defending stop them after the time runs out, then they are victorious.

Like many war games there are lots of vehicles and weapons to play with. There are four wheelers, tanks, boats, helicopters, mechs, and gravity packs to get you around. Unfortunately these are often big targets for turrets and rocket launchers. So keep your eject key handy!

The weapons and damage system are unique in this game. You have your grenades, sniper rifles, pistols, shotguns, rifles, and last but not least, turrets. The Strogg have lightning, rail, and nail guns. There are damage multipliers depending on where you hit the enemy. The most damage is done by aiming for the head, then neck, then torso and arms and the least amount of damage is when the legs are hit. Surprisingly, there is no blood when a person is shot or killed.

From an appropriateness standpoint you have violence but little gore. When a player is struck down, they can be revived by a medic/technician most of the time. When a unit is converted into a spawn host you\'ll see weird looking corpse remains. Like many online games you never know how the players will act or talk so choose your servers wisely.

Graphically this game still looks pretty good given it\'s age. The Strogg are pretty ugly and the interior and exterior maps have a lot of detail. The HUD is very useful and the objectives are pretty easy to locate. The interface is pretty easy to navigate with the exception of the punkbuster check box on the upper left hand side. Make sure it\'s checked, as many servers won\'t let you play with punkbuster disabled. It took me a little while to figure that one out.

The sound effects are great, the weapons vehicles and background noises all add to the chaotic war atmosphere. There are some prebuilt phrases and taunts that you can access via keyboard command. They\'re helpful but sometimes people abuse them.

Hosting an ETQW server is quite a hassle. According to the readme, port forwarding alone does not work and the server has to be DMZ\'d (wide open, unsecured) if you\'re using a firewall. In order to have an official ranked server that can store stats, you have to use specific hosts. They implement this requirement to make sure that the ranked servers are not hacked in any way. If you are still interested in hosting a server there are linux and windows versions of the server available. I was not able to get the server working in Ubuntu linux but my Windows 7 server worked after I enabled the compatibility mode. If you want to host your own server and store stats there\'s a mod called ETQW Pro that stores its own stats on public servers. There is some activity on that mod\'s site but it seems pretty fizzled out in my opinion.

Enemy Territory: Quake Wars took a little adjusting to but I enjoyed playing it. My favorite class is the medic/technician. Even though this game is a couple of years old, it\'s still holding strong and it\'s easy to find hopping servers. You can get this game for $8 on newegg and I highly recommend it for that price. If you plan on hosting an ETQW server, do it in windows. :)

Game Play: 16/20
Graphics: 8/10
Sound: 7/10
Controls/Interface: 4/5
Stability: 5/5

Game Score: 40/50
Appropriateness Score: 42.5/50

War violence -4
Bodies do not disappear -1
Gruesome details -2.5

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Cheryl Gress

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Christ Centered Gamer looks at video games from two view points. We analyze games on a secular level which will break down a game based on its graphics, sound, stability and overall gaming experience. If you’re concerned about the family friendliness of a game, we have a separate moral score which looks at violence, language, sexual content, occult references and other ethical issues.

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