WinBack

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WinBack
WinBack.jpg
Developer(s) Omega Force
Publisher(s) Koei
Platform(s) Nintendo 64, PlayStation 2
Release date(s)
Genre(s) Third-person shooter
Mode(s) Single player, multiplayer

Winback (known as Operation: Winback in Australia and Europe) is a third-person shooter video game developed by Koei's Omega Force studio for the Nintendo 64 in 1999 and PlayStation 2 in 2001. A sequel, WinBack 2: Project Poseidon, produced by Cavia for the PlayStation 2 and Xbox game consoles, was released on April 25, 2006.

The story follows one Jean-Luc Cougar, a secret agent infiltrating a laser satellite's command center. Gameplay revolves around its innovative cover system, where the player takes cover behind corners and then ducks out to shoot.[1] The player cannot move while shooting; instead, the control stick is used to aim, a task made easier by the fact that every weapon is equipped with a laser sight.[2]

The game was influenced by Metal Gear Solid and, in turn, WinBack's cover system eventually went on to influence several later shooters, including Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty (2001) and Kill Switch (2003), which in turn influenced games like Gears of War (2006). The cover system has since become a staple of third-person shooters.[1][2] WinBack also featured a laser sight mechanic that was later incorporated in action games such as Metal Gear Solid 2 and Resident Evil 4 (2005), and in turn would also become a staple of third-person shooters.[2]

Story[edit]

In the beginning, an terrorist group called "Crying Lions" takes control of a space based laser weapon. This is used to attack a military installation housing the controls to the weapon, called the GULF system. The leader of the terrorists calls himself Colonel Kenneth Coleman. The Secretary of Defense contacts the Special Covert Action Team (SCAT) with their orders: Enter the GULF complex and reclaim it. Jean-Luc Cougar is part of the team, and the last to escape the helicopter being shot down. The player takes control of Jean-Luc as he leaps a wall and enters a parking lot. The team is scattered throughout the complex and you must find them and destroy the satellite control center before the GULF satellite laser can recharge and fire again. Along the way you will face a number of laser traps, puzzles, machine gun nests, ambushes and mazes. You will face a series of bosses culminating in the final boss fight (against Kenneth Coleman's deputy Cecile).

Endings[edit]

There are two possible Endings, depending on how long it takes the player (as Jean-Luc) to reach the control room.

Good Ending

After killing Jin, one of the Crying Lions bosses, in the generator room, a confrontation emerges between the remaining active S.C.A.T. team members (Jake, Jean-Luc, and Lisa) and the remaining Crying Lions' bosses other than Kenneth Coleman (Cecile and Deathmask). A melee erupts during which Jake is killed and Lisa is knocked unconscious and taken hostage by Cecile, who subsequently departs. Jean-Luc and Deathmask fight in one-on-one combat, with Jean-Luc emerging the victor and killing Deathmask, before Jean-Luc gives chase to Cecile.

Cecile, realizing that the Crying Lions objective is likely to fail with the S.C.A.T. team having penetrated so far into the facility, betrays and kills Kenneth Coleman, so as to take control of the terrorist group and the weaponized satellite to achieve his own ulterior motives: blackmailing the US government into giving him a large sum of money. However, S.C.A.T. team leader Dan arrives at the control room and seemingly kills Cecile. Lisa regains consciousness, and is surprised to discover that Dan is working with the Crying Lions, but is again disabled by Dan after he gives her details of how to destroy the satellite.

Upon reaching the satellite control room, Jean-Luc encounters Dan, who reveals he is a traitor, the killer of both Steve and Thomas, and forces Jean-Luc into a confrontation. After a fierce battle, Dan is mortally wounded and tells Jean-luc his reasons for his betrayal of the team: he is half-Saroczian. The war split his family in two, his mother and sister defected to Russia with him in tow, whilst his brother and father joined the Saroczian Revolution. Several years later after the separation, he joined the Army and was eventually sent on a mission by the US Forces to keep the government in power by quashing the revolution supported by a majority of the people. The mission was carried out but Dan was filled with regrets which he says fate was responsible for. He also met his brother, Kenneth Coleman, leader of the Crying Lions who fought to end the suffering of the Saroczian people and avenge his father's death. Dan subsequently dies of his wounds, and Cecile, who survived being shot by Dan earlier, appears and fights one last battle against Jean-Luc in which he is ultimately killed. Once the confrontation is over, Lisa arrives to discover that both Cecile and Dan are dead. Jean-luc Convinces Lisa to destroy the GULF satellite, believing it is too powerful for any one country to control. The GULF satellite is destroyed as Jean-Luc, Keith, and Lisa escape, with Operation Winback ending in success.

Bad Ending

Jean-Luc finds both Lisa and Jake dead in the generator room, both presumably killed by Jin, the elusive (bad ending) Crying Lions boss whom Jean-Luc faces and kills in the generator room should he arrive their fast enough (the good ending). Upon reaching the satellite control room, Jean-Luc finds Cecile waiting for him. Cecile tells Jean-Luc that he was too late, the satellite has already fired twice, destroying the Pentagon and White house. Jean-Luc confronts and kills Cecile and goes to the communications room to find Kenneth Coleman, pleased that his "objective" and "cause" was a success. After some talk, Kenneth shoots himself. Jean-Luc and Keith are the only survivors of Operation Winback, which is ultimately a failure.

Multiplayer[edit]

The game featured a standard multiplayer mode and a Bot mode in the PlayStation 2 version of the game and only in the NTSC versions of the game, where players had access to all of the game's abilities and weapons. At the beginning of the game, all the members of Jean-Luc's team are available as selectable characters, all of them comes with a basic hand gun as their initial weapon, except to Dan who comes with a unique gun as his main weapon. As the player finished the game or used the cheat code, they will unlock all the bosses and other characters that they had defeated or appeared in story mode. Each boss has a unique weapon that they used in the story mode with infinite ammo.

Characters[edit]

S.C.A.T. Members[edit]

The Specialized Covert Assault Tactics team, or S.C.A.T. is an Anti-terrorist unit deployed by the U.N. They are an Elite fighting force, and the top of their class. They are deployed to handle delicate situations. Only the best become members of this team. While each member may have a favored specialization, each is capable of holding their own in any field of play.

Jean-Luc Cougar

The protagonist of the game, Jean-Luc is a former member of a city SWAT team, aged 27 years old. His ability to remain levelheaded in even the most harrowing situations gained him a spot as the leader of the Advance Strike Team of S.C.A.T. He is highly respected by the younger teammates (most likely an NCO or basically a go-between officers and non-officers), and finds it easier to express his fighting spirit in actions rather than words. His handgun is the last reminder he has of his older brother Alan, a member of the Army Special Forces who was lost in battle and is presumed dead. His initial orders were to secure the express elevator along with Jake, Keith, Lisa, Mike, and Thomas. He is one of two/three team members to survive/known to survive the ending/s of the game.

Status at end of game: Alive (both endings)

Keith Birdy

No team would be complete without a support member trained in medicine. As the rookie of the team, Keith joined S.C.A.T. with the highest recommendations from the President. The GULF mission is his first with the group. His initial orders were to secure the express elevator along with Jake, Jean-Luc, Lisa, Mike, and Thomas. He is injured by Duke, ending his activity in the game, but ultimately he is one of the two/three team members to survive the ending/s of the game.

Status at end of game: Alive (both endings)

Lisa Roberts

The only female member of the S.C.A.T. team. Her grandmother was Japanese, and Lisa claims to possess a strong fighting spirit. After acing her courses on criminal psychology at the university, she went to join the National Bureau of Investigation. She is also an excellent long-range sharp shooter, and was once offered to test her skills in the Olympics. Dan offered her a position in S.C.A.T. after seeing her in action during a training session at the NBI academy. Her initial orders were to secure the express elevator along with Jake, Jean-Luc Keith, Mike, and Thomas. In the good ending of the game, she survives the mission along with Jean-Luc and Keith, despite being taken hostage by Cecile during the story, and ends up with Jean-Luc. However in the bad ending of the game, she is killed along with Jake by Jin in the generator room, the pair being the sixth and seventh and last team members to die in this version of the story.

Status at end of game: Alive (good ending) / Deceased (bad ending)

Daniel Stewart

S.C.A.T.'s commander and an antagonist. His experience and leadership help hold together the various personalities that make up S.C.A.T. He is also a former member of the Army Special Forces and a trusted friend of Jean-Luc's brother Alan. The player initially does not know Dan's fate as he was not seen to jump from the helicopter before it went down in the opening cut scene. Later on however, in the good ending of the game, he is discovered to be a traitor and the younger brother of Crying Lions' leader Kenneth Coleman, as well as the killer of Steve and Thomas, and is ultimately killed by Jean-Luc, making him the seventh and last team member to die in this version of the story, as well as the tenth boss in the game (wields a revolver and grenades). In the bad ending of the game Dan is not found by any of the other team members during the operation, and presumably died off screen during the course of the mission, although Steve's and Thomas' deaths in this version indicate he survived the helicopter crash in this version of the story as well.

Status at end of game: Deceased (good ending) / Unknown (presumably deceased) (bad ending)

Jake Hudson

A former Special Forces grunt, Jake joined the team at the same time as Jean-Luc. He is somewhat of a prankster and loves to pick on Lisa whenever he gets a chance. He is as brave as they come, and his shooting ability is questioned by none. His initial orders were to secure the express elevator along with Jean-Luc, Keith, Lisa, Mike, and Thomas. In the good ending of the game he was killed in the GULF complex by Cecile during the confrontation between the remaining active team members (Jean-Luc, Lisa, and himself) and the last surviving Crying Lions bosses other than Kenneth Coleman (Cecile and Deathmask), making him the sixth team member to die in this version of the story. However, in the bad ending of the game, he is killed along with Lisa by Jin in the generator room, making them the sixth and seventh and last team members to be killed in this version of the game.

Status at end of game: Deceased (both endings)

Mike Hawkins

A demolitions expert and former member of the National Drug Enforcement Agency's bomb squad. His skills in defusing bombs and destroying obstructions make him a key player in the fight against terrorism. His initial orders were to secure the express elevator along with Jake, Jean-Luc, Keith, Lisa, and Thomas. He was killed by Banderas inside the GULF complex, the fifth team member to be killed.

Status at end of game: Deceased (both endings)

Law Bruford

6'6" 250 lbs of pure fighting machine. He was transferred to S.C.A.T. from the Marine Corps Recon Battalions on the recommendation of his commanding officer. He is unmatched in hand to hand combat, and was Jean-Luc's toughest competition for Leader of the Advance Strike Team. His initial orders were to secure the fright elevator along with Matt and Steven. He was killed by Cecile whilst protecting the freight elevator after helping Jean-Luc ride it down to join the rest of the active team members. He was the fourth team member to be killed.

Status at end of game: Deceased (both endings)

Steven Legal

As Second-in-Command of S.C.A.T. he received most of his training in the British Special Air Service and MI6. He trains Jean-Luc in the optional training mission in the game, prior to the operation. His information gathering and keen analytical skills make him the top choice for any scouting mission. He was also the instructor and drill sergeant for incoming S.C.A.T. Members, and trained Jean-Luc Cougar. His initial orders were to secure the freight elevator along with Law and Matt. He was shot in the back by Dan in the factory area, the third team member to be killed.

Status at end of game: Deceased (both endings)

Thomas Smith

He is in charge of all communications for the backup support team. A former member of the computer crime division in the National Bureau of Investigation, he is well versed in all facets of computers and other high tech electronics. His initial orders were to secure the express elevator along with Jake, Jean-Luc, Keith, Lisa, and Mike. He is shot in the back by Dan in the Office building, surviving his injuries long enough to write the express elevator code on the floor in his own blood. He was the second team member to be killed.

Status at end of game: Deceased (both endings)

Matthew Brown

Very little is known about him other than the African-American who planned to get back in church after the mission. Clips shown of him in the team section as being a great expert in hand to hand combat, possibly being the second best on the team. His initial orders were to secure the freight elevator along with Law and Steven. He was killed by Cecile from a rooftop, and was the first team member to be killed.

Status at end of game: Deceased (both endings)

The Crying Lions[edit]

Made up of remnants of the former Saroczian Special Forces, the unit adopted this moniker when they invaded the GULF complex in 2001. They were highly trained and well equipped, but had limited combat experience, with the exception of their leading officers. According to the official report, all the members were killed during the GULF incident, though many mercenaries throughout the world dispute by claiming to have once been a member of the Crying Lions. All of the leading members of the Crying Lions, with the exception of leader Kenneth Coleman (as well as Jin and Deathmask in the bad ending) die at the hands of Jean-Luc.

Kenneth Coleman

The leader of the Crying Lions, Dan's brother, and an antagonist. Born in fictional country Saroczia, he became a mercenary after serving in the Selous Scouts and the C Squadron 22 (Rhodesian) SAS. Fighting in many conflicts across the globe, Coleman was contracted to form the Saroczian Special Forces just before the US invasion. In the good ending of the game he is betrayed and killed by Cecile, whilst in the bad ending of the game he commits suicide after being confronted by Jean-Luc; making him the only Crying Lion boss that Jean-Luc doesn't kill in combat in either version of the game.

Status at end of game: Deceased (both endings)

Cecile Carlyle

The primary antagonist of the game and second-in-command of the Crying Lions. Cecile is an international terrorist, and he is wanted for war crimes. He kills two/three of the S.C.A.T. members during the course of the game (Matt, Law, and in the good ending, Jake). He is the final boss in the game (eighth or eleventh depending on ending) and wields a revolver and grenades. In both versions of the story, Cecile's death marks the collapse of the Crying Lions and the end of the game, as in the good ending he was the last surviving Crying Lions boss, and in the bad ending his death leads Kenneth Coleman to commit suicide.

Status at end of game: Deceased (both endings)

Deathmask

Coleman's personal bodyguard and a mysterious man, his face is covered by a mask and full body armor, and he doesn't speak during the game. In the good ending of the game he is the ninth boss, and appears in the confrontation which emerges between the remaining Crying Lions bosses with the exception of Kenneth Coleman (Cecile and himself), and the remaining active S.C.A.T. members (Jean-Luc, Lisa, and Jake), which results in Cecile killing Jake and abducting an unconscious Lisa. Deathmask is killed by Jean-Luc in the following one-on-one battle. In this version of the story he is the ninth boss in the game and wields two hand guns. Deathmask does not confront Jean-Luc at all in the bad ending and presumably dies off screen in this version of the story.

Status at end of game: Deceased (good ending) / Unknown (presumably deceased) (bad ending)

Jin

A ninja assassin, he was sent to the generator room to eliminate the remaining active members of the S.C.A.T. team following Mike's death (Jean-Luc, Lisa, and Jake). He is completely insane. In the good ending of the game he is the eighth boss and wields a hand gun and explosive throwing stars, and is killed by Jean-Luc before coming across Lisa and Jake. In the bad ending of the game Jean-Luc arrives too late, only to find that Lisa and Jake have both been killed by Jin, who is nowhere to be found. Jin does not confront Jean-Luc at all in the bad ending and presumably dies off screen in this version of the story.

Status at end of game: Deceased (good ending) / Unknown (presumably deceased) (bad ending)

Banderas

A demolitions expert of the Crying Lions. He is responsible for the death of Mike and kill numerous engineers from the base in the intro of the game, he is the seventh boss in the game and wields dual Uzi machine pistols.

Status at end of game: Deceased (both endings)

Gunt

An obese, inpulsive and dangerous big man, he is a vicious criminal and will stop at nothing to kill his victims. He is in charge of transferring supplies through the Freight Elevator. He is the sixth boss in the game and wields a homemade rocket launcher.

Status at end of game: Deceased (both endings)

Duke

A French mercenary and another trigger happy member of the Crying Lions. He wounds Keith whilst he was passing through the warehouse with Jake, Lisa, and Mike, ultimately ruling Keith out from the rest of the mission and potentially saving his life. He is the fifth boss in the game and wields a mini gun.

Status at end of game: Deceased (both endings)

Sergeant Thunder

An anti-patriotic hot-headed maniac. He joined the Crying Lions due to his hatred and disgust to his Country, which is implied to be America. He is the fourth boss in the game and wields a flame-thrower.

Status at end of game: Deceased (both endings)

Ryan

A high ranking Lieutenant of the Crying Lyons, Ryan was tasked with guarding the express elevator. It is possible that he is third in command of the entire Organization. He is the third boss in the game wielding a Sub-machine gun and grenades; he destroys the express elevator and himself with a hand grenade after being mortally wounded in combat by Jean-Luc.

Status at end of game: Deceased (both endings)

Leon

Obsessed with hunting and kill his prey, Leon is a hunter, He was tasked to protect the last bomb that Jean-Luc must defuse, Leon stands in the way of defusing the final bomb. He is the second boss in the game and wields a 12-gauge shotgun.

Status at end of game: Deceased (both endings)

"Hard Luck" Lila

A cold-blooded killer and the only apparent Female member of the Crying Lyons, Lila is a trigger happy, sadistic, short tempered, woman. She seems to have a short attention span. She appears to be infatuated with Cecile Carlyle (screaming his name when she dies). Lila is the first boss in the game and wields an M-60 machine gun.

Status at end of game: Deceased (both endings)

Engineer

An engineer that survived the takeover of the military base by the Crying Lions during the opening cut scene, due to working with them to secure the base. He is later shot in the back by an unspecified member of the Crying Lions and subsequently foumd, mortally wounded, by Jean-Luc in the sewers of the factory area. He succumbs to his wounds shortly after being found.

Status at end of game: Deceased (both endings)

Reception[edit]

Both versions received generally favorable reviews. PS2 version did slightly better than the N64, with improved controls and graphics but the voice-acting was criticized.

Reception
Aggregate scores
Aggregator Score
GameRankings 75.3%[3]
Review scores
Publication Score
Famitsu 30 / 40 (N64)[4]
30 / 40 (PS2)[5]
GamePro 4/5 stars (N64)[6]
4/5 stars (PS2)
GameSpot 6.1 / 10 (N64)[7]
7.2 / 10 (PS2)[8]
IGN 8 / 10 (N64)[9]
7.3 / 10 (PS2)[9]
GameCritics 9.5 / 10[10]
GameFan 92 / 100[11]
Gaming Target 8.1 / 10 (N64)[12]
8.5 / 10 (PS2)[13]


References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Gaming's most important evolutions". GamesRadar. 2010-10-08. Retrieved 2010-10-09. 
  2. ^ a b c Gordon, Shawn (October 11, 2009). "Greatest "Retro" Console Games of All Time". Game Informer. Retrieved 15 September 2011. 
  3. ^ "WinBack: Covert Operations for Nintendo 64". GameRankings. 1999-09-30. Retrieved 2013-07-29. 
  4. ^ ニンテンドウ64 - WIN BACK. Weekly Famitsu. No.915 Pt.2. Pg.33. 30 June 2006.
  5. ^ プレイステーション2 - WIN BACK. Weekly Famitsu. No.915 Pt.2. Pg.87. 30 June 2006.
  6. ^ http://www.webcitation.org/query?url=http://www.gamepro.com/article/reviews/2968/winback/&date=2011-11-30+22:33:23[dead link]
  7. ^ Stahl, Ben (October 21, 1999). "WinBack Review". GameSpot.com. Retrieved 2013-07-29. 
  8. ^ Satterfield, Shane (April 4, 2001). "WinBack: Covert Operations Review". GameSpot.com. Retrieved 2013-07-29. 
  9. ^ a b Boulding, Aaron (19 October 1999). "WinBack: Covert Operations". Ign64.ign.com. Retrieved 2013-07-29. 
  10. ^ http://www.gamecritics.com/review_grandia.html[dead link]
  11. ^ "WinBack: Covert Operations Reviews and Articles for Nintendo 64". GameRankings. Retrieved 2013-07-29. 
  12. ^ Goff, Steve (22 June 2000). "Winback: Covert Operations Review". Gamingtarget.com. Retrieved 2013-07-29. 
  13. ^ LaSaracina, AJ (25 May 2001). "PlayStation 2: Winback - Review". Gaming Target. Retrieved 2013-07-29. 

External links[edit]