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Rambo: The Video Game will make you sweat blood

Tuesday, 9 July 2013 08:14 GMT By Dave Cook

Rambo: The Video Game will make you sweat blood and shit bullets probably. VG247′s Dave Cook speaks with developer Teyon to get the skinny on its violent adaptation of Stallone’s hip-shooting trilogy

Rambo: The Video Game

Developed by Polish studio Teyon, Rambo: The Video Game will hit PC, PS3 and Xbox 360 at some point in 2013.

Based on the films First Blood, Rambo: First Blood Part 2 and Rambo 3, the game closely follows the events of each movie.

It’s an on-rails, cover shooter hybrid with stealth sections and QTE battles. It’s a mixed bunch, but read on for the finer details.

The game features full character mo-cap from Teyon and input from Studio Canal to make the experience as authentic to the films as possible.

There’s still no word on Stallone’s involvement, mind. When I asked Teyon they declined to answer.

The Rambo series of movies may have pissed all over David Morrell’s 1972 novel First Blood with increasing pressure by each instalment but there’s no denying it’s had a massive impact on action culture.

Picture the red bandana, the dirty black vest, the mullet, the fact that the sod scarcely aims his guns or reloads them; these elements have been parodied and worked into many cheesy action movies over the years, so it’s little wonder there’s an appetite for Teyon’s game adaptation.

No look, I’m being serious here; every time we so much as whisper about Rambo: The Video Game on this site our reader numbers fly up like mad. Many of you out there want to know more about this largely shrouded project, so we went straight to the source in search of answers.

Is it an on-rails game? Does it follow the movies closely? How does it handle? What tech lies under the hood? I’ve seen many of you asking these very questions on our comment threads before, so I posed them directly to Teyon’s team and general manager at publisher Reef Entertainment Will Curley.

To set the scene quickly; Rambo: The Video Game hurls players into the sweaty fatigue-trousers of John Rambo as he slaughters his way through the plots of First Blood: Rambo: First Blood Part 2 and Rambo 3. Teyon confirmed that the game is a rail-shooter hybrid with an emphasis on score-attack, so it’s obviously not a light gun game, but Rambo is automatically funnelled through each stage.

“We felt that controlling the player’s journey through the levels and maximising the visual and set-piece variety we could offer was the best way for us to go,” Curley explained. “We want players to have the feeling of the game being complete-able but also that when they get to the end they have the sense that they have seen, experienced and achieved a lot of things.

“It’s similar to a classic arcade game feel, even something like Outrun that speeds you through five stages quickly so in a small chunk of time you’ve seen a lot of content. We’re fans of that type of gaming. So we appointed our developer Teyon and our initial plans were to make a straight ‘rail’ shooter that moved the player through the set-pieces and environment of the three films.

“We looked around at rail shooters both classic and current to find what people enjoyed and also think of ways to make them feel fresh again. There were a few issues that came to light once we started project planning. First, a pure rail-shooter tends to be about single shot accuracy and very clinical play. If you go down the other route and do more of a ‘spray’ rail-shooter you lose the every-bullet-counts feel and re-load management somewhat.”

Rambo progresses on rails until the players reach a specific point, which then latches him to cover. From there it’s possible to pop in and out of terrain FPS-style while slotting targets, managing reloads and more. It’s sort of like mixing up the Time Crisis cover system with Call of Duty, but with a badass factor of ten. Cover can be shredded by gunfire in seconds however, so moving between points is the key to survival.

It’s not all shooting though, as Rambo will also put his stealth skills to use when the opportunity arises, or when particularly nails enemies appear. Curley explained that the game’s theme is that feeling of going from hunted to hunter, with Rambo facing impossible odds against scores of enemies initially and to then lay down some immense hurt as the tables turn.

Curley added that test players approaching Rambo as a straight up shooter found they couldn’t get past the first mission. It really is about choosing when to switch cover wisely, and spunking all your bullets up the wall in a matter of seconds is certainly not to be advised. Grenade-chucking foes will also flush players out of cover if they ‘turtle’ behind it for a long period of time, encouraging constant movement.

You already knew this as soon as you read the word ‘Rambo’ in the game’s title, but yes this is a gun-heavy experience and with it, there’s an emphasis on chain-killing and leaderboard dominance.

“In terms of weapons we have a good variety of guns and equipment from the movies, Curley continued. “Players can take a load-out of two guns, bow and various arrows, as well as grenades into the battle. The player can also equip various skills as well as upgrading core attributes. In testing we have seen a variety of different approaches to play.

“You can make a build with fast health-regen and super-bar charging which allows you to survive for longer periods out of cover and chain kill, or you can make a very fast build where you speed up movement, reloads, clip-size and put score multipliers into hits on dead bodies for examples, so a more skilful player would be able to yield the highest scores.

“In terms of scoring, we see leader-boards as a really important part of the game as we want to make it something that players will enjoy completing multiple times. Obviously harder difficulties will yield better multipliers, but we also have plans for stackable clip-combos, timer based multipliers, chain combos and more. You will also be rewarded for Rambo-like play whether that be aggressively or taking a non-lethal route through the First Blood portions of the game.”

All of this wanton destruction and fragging may send the heads of action fans out there spinning, but I’m sure we’re all aware that the first Rambo film didn’t have a massive death toll unlike Rambo 3′s 132-strong body count, so just how can a game largely about shooting claim to be authentic to the source material? I wanted to know, so I asked and was told that the team follows the films almost “religiously”.

“Where we could we went for authenticity first and foremost,” Curley added. “For example we initially had Rambo shooting his way out of the police-station as we had well developed shoot-out mechanics and it was fun to destroy the police-station from inside. However we replaced it with a 3rd person QTE fight sequence that is more true to the films.

“The sequence is shorter but it definitely adds to the experience of the game. One thing fans wanted was more third-person scenes which is obviously difficult today without building a whole new animation and control system for the game, so QTE and mo-cap works great as a substitute, and as you can imagine mo-cap also gives us the best opportunity for accuracy to the films.”

He added, “For First Blood we give player’s the choice; play like Rambo, who minimised fatalities or if you want you can go all guns blazing and shoot or knife to kill. In the First Blood section stealth hunts with correct timing would give stun take-downs for example, or players can shoot weapons from cops hands to disarm them or other non-lethal areas such as arms and legs to incapacitate them.

“There’s still a lot to be said for the fun of destroying the lights in the town and shooting up the police station as Rambo does himself in the film, or blowing up the police cars as well. It doesn’t always have to be bloody kills that are satisfying, though playing that way is also possible and in testing most people play that way. If you want to go for high-scores though it’s obviously better to play these levels like Rambo did in the films.”

Curley explained that the QTE fights are comparable to Shenmue’s scripted battles in that they aren’t over-used, and he added that some actions – such as Rambo knocking over a table in one cinematic – can see it used as cover once gameplay resumes. The prompts are also used during the game’s mo-capped boss battles, and during gunplay to create twitch tactical options.

I also asked Curley just how violent the game gets when the action reaches its peak and he replied that the level of bloodshed rests somewhere between the third and fourth films, so it’s dripping in blood, basically and it sounds like it could just serve as a fitting tribute to the films that have inspired a generation of action movie fanatics.

Now all we need is for someone to give Arnold Scharzenegger’s ‘Commando’ the same treatment and I can die a happy man.

Rambo: The Video Game launches on PC, PS3 and Xbox 360 at some point this year.

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21 Comments

  1. actuallyisnotafox

    umm.. i dont wanna sweat blood kind sir’s D:

    #1 2 years ago
  2. For Blood

    No on-rails shooter compares to Area 51.

    #2 2 years ago
  3. Edo

    Thanks for the read Dave,hopefully we ‘ll get to see some gameplay soon.

    #3 2 years ago
  4. Kyle Jackson

    As long as I’m not shitting blood, sweating it is okay with me.

    #4 2 years ago
  5. kingy

    Hmmm interested ,just hope they can pull it off ,I would hate this to be a poor game it looks and sounds good so far , fingers crossed

    #5 2 years ago
  6. JimFear-666

    im not sure i want to have this kind of side effect if i play a game…

    #6 2 years ago
  7. oreogod

    Super hero version of rambo in an on rails shooter peppered with QTE events all over the place. Lame.

    #7 2 years ago
  8. ps3fanboy

    On rails shooter and QTE events, i had big hopes for this. But now it just become a two dollar hooker disappointment. What the hell where they thinking?… the 90′s is over and the mounted on gun arcade machines is gone. This game could be awesome if it had been an open world game. Sadly it is just another good opportunity lost, the curse of the ‘crap’ Rambo game continue.

    #8 2 years ago
  9. CPC_RedDawn

    All they need to do is make a mod for Far Cry 3 and its done!

    Using the FC3 engine they could make some epic games, a Jurassic Park game anyone? A Predator game anyone????

    #9 2 years ago
  10. Transgenique

    Playable @GamesCom 2012. One of the shittiest game ever. KTHXBYE

    #10 2 years ago
  11. absolutezero

    Nothing is over! Nothing! You just don’t turn it off! It wasn’t my war! You asked me, I didn’t ask you! And I did what I had to do to win! But somebody wouldn’t let us win! And I come back to the world and I see all those maggots at the airport, protesting me, spitting. Calling me baby killer and all kinds of vile crap! Who are they to protest me? Who are they? Unless they’ve been me and been there and know what the hell they’re yelling about!

    #11 2 years ago
  12. Clupula

    It’s over, Johnny! It’s over!

    #12 2 years ago
  13. Dave Cook

    @11 & @12 Do we get to win this time?

    #13 2 years ago
  14. Clupula

    In all seriousness, if they’re recreating the movies, does that mean we get to fight Soviets alongside the Taliban?

    #14 2 years ago
  15. Lengendaryboss

    I remember owning the Rambo games on PS2 but i can’t remember playing much of it, in fact i don’t where it came from. But i do remember watching one of the movies. Pretty slick.

    This game sounds bloody interesting though.

    #15 2 years ago
  16. Dave Cook

    @14 good point.

    #16 2 years ago
  17. majicship

    Great read Dave. Love the zero puffery approach. I’m all up for this new Rambo game and an on rails type affair is just what the doctor ordered. Not everything has to be open world or multiplayer. Games are getting too clever for the sake of it IMO. Put the fun into the heart of the gameplay like this and just let players have a laugh with it.

    #17 2 years ago
  18. Dave Cook

    @17 thank you :)

    #18 2 years ago
  19. MrWaffles

    Count me in.

    If this had any kind of success that might open the door to get more 90′s movies in rail-shooter form.

    (I’m looking at you, dual-gun terminator cabinet)

    #19 2 years ago
  20. Vice

    From these small screenshots it looks surprisingly good.

    #20 2 years ago
  21. manamana

    Sounds like good, old fun to me.

    #21 2 years ago

Comments are now closed on this article.

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    Destiny’s House of Wolves DLC will add four new maps to the Crucible, the game’s competitive multiplayer mode. Let’s take a look at all of them. Alex brings you new footage showing all of the four maps that will drop with House of Wolves. He goes over the layout, landmarks, gameplay styles, and other important […]

  • Custom Xbox One Star Wars controllers look very tempting

    Microsoft is celebrating May 4 by showing off concept designs for Star Wars-themed Xbox One controllers. May 4 is of course Star Wars Day and the controller concepts you’re about to see are just that, concepts. Or at least that’s what they said they are. There are four designs and they don’t look very practical. […]

  • Project Cars launch trailer is an anthology of race cars, set to the beats of Deadmau5

    Project Cars comes out this week and there’s just enough time for one last trailer. Project Cars, Slightly Mad Studios’ ambitious racer that has been in development for ages, is finally coming out this week. The racer received plenty of changes throughout its development based on community feedback and the final product will be in […]

  • Star Wars Battlefront dev reveals planet Sullust

    Sullust, a planet that has not been previously shown, will be featured in one of Star Wars Battlefront’s maps. Star Wars Battlefront developer DICE revealed today that planet Sullust will be one of the game’s locations. The planet was mentioned in the films and other Star Wars works, but was only shown today. DICE posted […]

  • Destiny House of Wolves: Tower vendor changes

    House of Wolves will change the inventory of some of Destiny’s vendors and add new roles to others. Here’s everything that has been announced so far. You know that House of Wolves will bring a new social space to the game in the form of The Reef. But did you also know that the good […]

  • Nintendo apologises for Amiibo shortages, will reissue some out-of-stock figures

    Nintendo released a statement today to apologise for fan’s frustrations in finding some Amiibo figures and promised to handle distribution better going forward. Nintendo has been criticised recently for its lack of communication when it comes to new Amiibo figures. Something which has lead fans to not know if certain figures are limited to some […]

  • Halo: MCC “a black eye for us,” Halo 5 won’t suffer the same fate, says franchise director

    The development of Halo: The Master Chief Collection was of an “outrageous complexity,” which was one of the reasons it suffered a horrible launch. None of that will happen with Halo 5: Guardians, according to Frank O’Connor. Frank O’Connor, Halo franchise development director opened up to Xbox Achievements about the difficult task of developing The […]

  • Destiny House of Wolves: weapon Reforging explained

    When House of Wolves drops in a couple of weeks, you’ll be able to change the stats of some in-game weapons. This process is called ‘Reforging’. Alex goes over all the details Bungie revealed about the new Reforging system. This covers the materials you need, the weapons that can be reforged and much more. Make […]

  • GTA 5 PC: control the in-game phone with your iPhone using this mod

    GTA 5′s latest mod lets you control the in-game phone with your real-life iPhone. Reddit user Planetleak wanted to see if he would succeed in getting his iPhone to control the phone in GTA 5. He did it and has a video to prove it. It’s not a mod per-se, but it emulates mouse and […]

  • SoulCalibur dev wants to know fans’ favourite characters for “something huge”

    SoulCalibur developers are probably working on a new game, because they’re asking fans to vote on their favourite characters. Project Soul, the longtime developer of the SoulCalibur series is soliciting feedback on fans’ favourite characters. The developer said as much in a post on its Facebook page. “Calling all SoulCalibur Fans! Project Soul would like […]

  • Jason Voorhees doesn’t look out of place in new Mortal Kombat X trailer

    Jason Voorhees comes to Mortal Kombat X starting tomorrow and it’s time to celebrate his arrival. Jason Voorhees, the first DLC character for Mortal Kombat X has been given the trailer treatment. Jason is part of the game’s Kombat Pack, owners of which can start using him tomorrow, May 5. Being an iconic horror character, […]

  • Dragon Age: Inquisition – Dragonslayer DLC announced, free to all this week

    Dragon Age: Inquisition is getting a multiplayer expansion this week. BioWare has announced that all owners of Dragon Age: Inquisition will receive a new multiplayer expansion, for free. The expansion is called Dragonslayer and it’s centred around fighting dragons, hence the name. Three new playable characters will join the roster as you explore an all-new […]

  • Sonder is still happening, and this is the best news of the week

    Sonder is a really interesting-looking new indie adventure, which I am quite excited to remember exists. We first heard about Sonder in late 2013, when its debut trailer introduced us to a Kamai Media’s ambitious vision. In the intervening months Kamai has been hard at work on its space station management sim slash non-linear narrative […]

  • Twitter axes playable Internet Archive embeds

    The dream has died: Twitter has disabled Internet Archive game embeds. Remember how for a few days you could tweet a link to an a game on the Internet Archive and it was playable direct from that tweet? Well, Twitter has cancelled that. All those tweets now just show links. GamesIndustry suspects it has something […]

  • Lords of the Fallen, Divinity: Original Sin developers will reveal new games at E3 2015

    Lords of the Fallen developer Deck13 and Divinity: Original Sin developer Larian Studios have new projects in the works which will be revealed at E3 2015. Publisher Focus Home Interactive is behind both new games. In a French press release [PDF] spotted by RPG Codex, Focus said it will show off the two unrevealed titles […]

  • Rare game announce expected at E3 2015

    Rare’s new game will be shown off at E3 2015, apparently. Rare hasn’t announced a reveal, and neither has Microsoft, but it looks like the news has slipped out anyway. IGN cites a tweet from Rare creative director Simon Woodroffe in which he says that a new project from Rare designer Gregg Mayles will be […]

  • Batgirl expansion included in $40 Batman: Arkham Knight season pass

    Here’s what you get in the $40 Batman: Arkham Knight season pass. Batman: Arkham Knight’s season pass was announced last week, but apart from the news that it would cost a whopping $40/£33, we didn’t get many details of what it would include. Thankfully, Warner Bros. has since acknowledged the clamour this caused, as players […]

  • Star Wars Day Xbox sale discounts Force Unleashed, Lego games

    Star Wars Day is upon us, and here’s an Xbox sale to mark it. Microsoft is offering discounts on Xbox 360 games to celebrate May 4. From my desk here in Australia the sale is a bit light on content – two Lego games, plus The Force Unleashed and its DLC packs. Your mileage may […]

  • Here’s hoping this tease means we see Mass Effect at E3 2015

    Mass Effect boss Mike Gamble has shared a teaser image, which we’re more than happy to draw speculative conclusions from. The new Mass Effect game in the works at BioWare Edmonton is a mysterious beast. Judging by how long it’s been in development, it feels like we’re about due for a proper reveal, to clear […]

  • Watch almost a whole hour of Wolfenstein: The Old Blood

    Wolfenstein: The Old Blood is almost here. Are you ready for old-school shooter action? Wolfenstein: The Old Blood publisher Bethesda livestreamed almost an hour of the Machine Games shooter recently, and has now uploaded the archive to YouTube. Check it out below: Wolfenstein: The Old Blood launches digitally on PC, PS4 and Xbox One on […]

  • Splatoon lacks voice chat to promote a positive online experience

    Nintendo’s multiplayer game Splatoon will not contain a voice chat option in order to “focus on the positive aspects” of online gaming. Speaking in the latest issue of Edge magazine (thanks, GamesRadar), Splatoon co-director Yusuke Amano said personal experience with negativity in online voice chat was one of the main reasons for excluding the feature. […]

  • D4 on PC: differences from Xbox One version, system specs announced

    D4: Dark Dreams Don’t Die – Season 1 is coming to PC, and Access Games has provided a list of features different from the Xbox One version. We’ve pulled most of the changes off the game’s website and posted them below, along with the PC specs. D4 on PC Kinect gesture input controls replaced with […]

  • The Megalodon returns to Battlefield 4 with the latest CTE patch

    The Megalodon Easter Egg in Battlefield 4 may have been removed earlier this year from Naval Strike, but it has since resurfaced on the CTE with the latest patch. I’d make a Jaws reference, but it’s been done to death. The shark is shown in the video on the Paracel Storm map which was where […]

  • Survival horror game Kodoku has a new work-in-progress trailer

    Kodoku, the survival horror title from Carnivore Studio, has a new work-in-progress video available, showing you how the game is coming along. Announced for PlayStation 4 and Vita back in 2013, the game is slated for release sometime this year, and tasks the player with avoiding mythical Japanese ghosts using only magic and stealth. Thanks, […]

  • Current HoloLens prototype has noticeably “tighter” FoV compared to January build

    Microsoft’s augmented reality headset HoloLens is still very much in the prototype stage, according to various reports out of the Build Conference. Microsoft hasn’t discussed technical specs with the press yet as nothing is set in stone, but during a hands-on at Build, Ars Technica noticed the prototypes had a “x86 processor, 2GB RAM, 802.11ac […]

  • Silent Hills petition asking Konami to continue development has over 50,000 signatures

    A petition to save the Silent Hills game has been formed by fans in the hopes Konami will change its mind and bring the collaboration with Guillermo del Toro back from the dead. Konami confirmed on Monday the Silent Hill remake from film director Del Toro and Metal Gear’s Hideo Kojima had been cancelled, but […]

  • Attack on Titan has a US release date, title changed in EU over copyright claim

    Attack on Titan: Humanity in Chains will be released under a different title in Europe, according to the publisher, and while a release date has been set for North America, the same cannot be said for fans across the pond. According to Atlus, a copyright claim in Europe has forced the company to publish the […]

  • Yooka-Laylee meets final Kickstarter Stretch Goal in less than 24 hours

    The Kickstarter for Playtonic’s Yooka-Laylee sailed beyond its final £1 million ($1.5 million) Stretch Goal overnight, which will allow for a simultaneous release on all announced platforms. Once funded, Yooka-Laylee was slated for release on Linux, Mac, PC, PlayStation 4, Wii U, and Xbox One; however, a simultaneous release on all platforms wasn’t guaranteed unless […]

  • Not a Hero will miss its May 7 release date, but not by much

    Not a Hero will miss its May 7 release date, according to an announcement from Roll7. Not to worry though, it’s only by a week. According to the developer, the delay is due to “having undergone super-secret upgrades to crank shit up to 60fps.” The extra week will provide the additional time needed for tweaking […]

  • Assassin’s Creed, The Crew, Far Cry 4, other Ubisoft titles on sale through the Humble Store

    Ubisoft has put a number of its games on sale through the Humble Store. Franchises Assassin’s Creed and Far Cry are on discount as are single release titles. The list of games on sale are below. For pricing in your region, head over to the Humble Store. Anno 2070 Complete Edition Assassin’s Creed 3 Assassin’s […]

  • Payday 2: Repeater rifle, Peacemaker pistol introduced with The Butcher’s Western Pack

    Overkill Software released the 21st DLC pack for Payday 2 yesterday, titled The Butcher’s Western Pack. The pack will run you $4.99/€4.99 and other digital distribution channels. “For our 21st DLC we go back in time to visit the Wild West and the arsenal it was known for,” said the developers. “With it we’re introducing […]

  • The Yooka-Laylee Kickstarter just launched and has already met its funding goal

    Playtonic Games launched the Kickstarter campaign for Yooka-Laylee at 5pm UK, and in just over 30 minutes it already hit its $270,000 funding goal. You can watch the funding counter continue to roll over through the link. Yooka-Laylee is a 3D platformer where the characters use special moves such as Yooka’s tongue grapple and Laylee’s […]

  • Batch of hi-res Persona 5 screenshots released by PlayStation Japan

    A set of screenshots have been released for Persona 5, and while you’ve seen these before in magazines and on the official website, these are high-res versions. Some will even look familiar to those who watched the first gameplay trailer back in February. The shots were posted over on the PlayStation Japan Persona 5 game […]

  • Is Alien: Isolation getting HTC Vive support?

    Placeholder images for SteamVR icons have been found and it looks like there may be support for Alien: Isolation, so if you enjoy soiling yourself, get psyched! NeoGAF members found a thread on Reddit, where a little rooting around in a Steam directory unearthed the images. The list includes both games and apps, and as […]

  • Xbox Live multiplayer is free this weekend on Xbox 360

    Xbox 360 players in all Xbox Live regions can play multiplayer online for free this weekend. If you are a Silver member, this means you are Golden from May 1-3 and can play multiple games online with your buddies. All you have to do is log-in to Xbox Live.

  • Assassin’s Creed actor Michael Fassbender confirms film production starts September

    The Assassin’s Creed movie will start production this fall, actor Michael Fassbender (Prometheus, 300, X-Men:First Class) as confirmed. Speaking with ComingSoon.net, Fassbender said filming will start in September, which is inline with Ubisoft’s announcement in February. The actor will star in the film alongside Oscar-winning actress Marion Cotillard, both reuniting with their MacBeth director Justin […]

  • Eve Online boss states VR won’t be as big as we think next year

    I don’t think I’m the only one who wants VR to hurry up and manifest into a Sword Art Online-esque reality. Unfortunately, the chief executive officer at the studio behind Eve Online doesn’t think that will be happening any time soon. Talking to Venture Beat, Hilmar Veigar Pétursson touched on his excitement at the prospects […]

  • The Last of Us: Left Behind goes standalone in May on PS3, PS4

    Naughty Dog has announced that The Last of US DLC Left Behind will be released as a standalone experience next month. It can be purchased for both PlayStation 3 and PS4 through the PS Store and a two-hour demo of the Factions multiplayer will also be made available. “The Left Behind standalone game will have […]

  • EA’s annual E3 press conference takes place on June 15

    Electronic Arts has announced its annual E3 2015 press conference will take place the day before the show kicks off on June 15. EA, Microsoft, Sony and Ubisoft always hold press events the day before E3 officially starts, so this isn’t any surprise, really. The presser, dubbed “Live to Play”, will last one hour and […]