Syndicate Preview, Plus Ten Minutes of Raw Gameplay Footage


Fans of the original Syndicate series may have some reservations about the newly announced Syndicate. Being an FPS rather than an isometric tactical game, Syndicate veers off the path walked by the original to join the ranks of the many first person shooters to be released within the next year.

That said, Chronicles of Riddick dev Starbreeze Studios is bringing their talents to the game, which promises to be anything but generic.

EA has released ten minutes of gameplay footage with narration from Jeff Gaiman, EA's executive producer for Syndicate. The footage shows off part of a mission called Executive Search, which takes place in the early portion of the game.

Playing the role of Agent Miles Kilo, you infiltrate a rival corporation with a fellow agent to retrieve stolen chip technology. Players can hack the digital world, or "breach" it. You can do everything from hacking doors, to breaking into the minds of others and forcing them to violently commit suicide. Additionally, systems in the environment can be breached to add or remove cover. You can even breach turret systems to annihilate security forces.

With Syndicate being set in the future and all, the player's perception is augmented with ambient information throughout the environment from what the game refers to as the "dataverse"—what other science fiction settings might refer to as a Noosphere. Just as well, you can collect data you find.


Syndicate is not a straight up shooter, and contains elements of puzzle solving and exploration. What that means is that you'll be making your way through all the sorts of crawlspaces home to the likes of J.C. Denton, Gordon Freeman and Adam Jensen.

Thanks to Miles Kilo's DART 6 system, you'll be able to harness the chips of senior executives to upgrade and augment your capabilities as you progress through the game. The DART 6 system also allows you to use an overlay that dilates time and allows you to perceive the world the way the chip does, allowing you to see through walls. Doing this floods your system with adrenalin, so you can take and deal more damage.

Breaches are fueled by adrenalin. To recharge it faster, you'll have to maintain your pace and stay in the thick of the action. The more people you kill, the faster your breaches recharge. This feature is in direct contrast to having DXHR's Adam Jensen consume a power bar every time he wants to do something.

In addition to breaches, the Persuadatron makes a return, allowing you to coax enemies to your side.

Every weapon in the game has an alternate firing mode. For example, pistols may have a burst mode, while assault rifles may be scoped, fired full-auto, or carry an underslung grenade launcher. Furthermore, the game uses a context-based cover system allowing you to fire behind walls without actually having to deal with some trite third-person view.

Judging from the footage, I'd give the game a chance. Who knows? It might even be good.