Yager

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For the video game developer, see Yager Development.
Yager
Yager Coverart.png
Developer(s) Yager Development
Publisher(s) EU THQ

NA Kemco

Platform(s) Xbox, Microsoft Windows
Release date(s) Xbox
  • EU 23 May 2003
  • NA 5 October 2004
Microsoft Windows
  • EU 3 October 2003
Genre(s) Combat flight simulator
Distribution DVD

Yager is a combat flight simulator video game developed by Yager Development and was first released as an Xbox exclusive before later being ported to Microsoft Windows. In this game, gamers take on the role of Magnus Tide, a freelance pilot adventurer. Yager is set over 20 levels in which the player takes possession of various weapons and ships in an effort to accomplish each mission.

Although the game was fairly well received by critics, it ultimately never reached the living rooms of most American gamers. The main reason behind this was that the game was "old" by the time it reached North American store shelves, as it had been released in Europe two years prior and it suffered from a lack of advertising.

Gameplay[edit]

Yager is set in a futuristic world where countries borders no longer exist and the earth is controlled by a number of mega corporations, most notably DST, as well as Proteus and Lobos Robotics. Although the old countries officially do not exist there are tell tale signs identifying each environment.

The Proteus Islands are a tropical paradise and the headquarters of the Proteus Corporation. The Free Trade Zone, a landscape dotted with turbines and palm trees, is the only zone not controlled by any corporation. The DST zone and surrounding fjords are connected to the Free Trade Zone by a system of caves, rivers, and deltas that run deep into DST territory. Bitterfeld is a desolate area littered with disused industrial buildings, crashed ships, abandoned machinery and other debris left behind by the old Progress Company.

Ships[edit]

The Saggitarius is a powerful and deadly ship. Its standard armament is dual recharging laser cannons but it can also be armed with missiles, machine guns, a railgun, and napalm blasters, although these require the collection of the appropriate ammunition. The enemies are pirates and the DST, the pirates have a rocket bomber, fighters, a flying AA ship, and in one level, an armored freighter. The DST have a heavily armed fighter, a bomber, and Gunter von Berg's personal frigate, the Greifenhorst and the other hull ship Ubermacht. In Bitterfeld, there are 2 types of flamethrower drones, a huge battle machine, a drone with seeker missiles, and a drone with a machine gun. Proteus has carriers and fighters.

Antagonists[edit]

DST[edit]

The DST is the main enemy in the game, although it does not appear from the beginning of the game. The DST have a strong German accents and have German names. They are the most militarised corporation in the game, having the largest and most powerful weaponry and ships. The DST in the game are led by Gunther van Berg, who controls it with an iron fist. The standard DST fighter are the toughest and most advanced in the game equipped with heavy armor, duel laser guns and homing missiles. Gunther van Berg's flagship, the Greifenhorst is the first DST ship seen in the game. It has several Ion Laser turrets and carries four DST HESSER fighters, from the infamous Black Widow Squadron, where all of its members passed the DST Flight Training with Honours. The most powerful ship in the DST's arsenal is the Ubermacht. This ship has large Ion Laser Cannons. The Ubermacht and Greifenhorst can be combined to create an even more powerful, but hard to manouvere ship. In the game the DST are presented as fairly stereotypical "baddies", being cruel and ruthless. In some levels, where you enter DST territory you can observe that summary executions are regular practice, and even something of a spectator sport. Van Berg also often threatens people with deportation to labour camps.

Protagonists[edit]

Proteus[edit]

Proteus corporation is the mega-corporation which employs Magnus as a freelancer (mercenary). Proteus appears to be modelled as an enlightened and democratic institution with "western" values. The Proteus islands themselves have several Greek ruins and statues as well as Proteus ships having a Greek theme to them, further adding to their civilised aesthetic. Proteus is always reluctant to use force unless absolutely necessary, seemingly giving the DST the upper hand for much of the game, and greatly frustrating Magnus who is distinctly gung-ho.

Characters[edit]

The characters in Yager range from Russian survivalists to German military pilots.

Primary Characters[edit]

Magnus Tide[edit]

The main character of the game and who you play as, Magnus is a daredevil freelance pilot who landed himself the Sagittarius (or LR4004 Archer, for its formal name) by scraping every dime together after crashing his old ship. Together with a Proteus contract, he finds himself on mission after mission as the plot thickens and the stakes get higher.

Sarah McDavid[edit]

Proteus SOEB Comms Officer, she used to be involved with Magnus Tide. Until he crashed and burned, that is, taking the career down with him. Once the fuss died down, she was reinstated, but at a lower rank. Now, she has a burning hatred of Magnus "Trust me, I know what I'm doing" Tide.

Commander Xavier Moondrake[edit]

While never actually seen in game, he is apparently the commanding officer of most of Proteus' military power and in command of Magus Tide. Tide often calls him names based on his last name, such as Moonloony or Moondog.

Gunther van Burg[edit]

A commander in the DST military, he is the primary antagonist in the game. Possessing no humor to speak of, he is arrogant to a fault. Not that some of that arrogance isn't deserved, as he is likely the best commander in the DST forces. His personnel frigate, the Grifenhorst, is a powerful DST Carrier, carrying four of the infamous Black Widow Squadron HESSER fighters and having seven Ion Lasers, as well as heavy missile tubes for smacking down larger ships.

Secondary Characters[edit]

Swoop[edit]

Not much is told about this fellow freelancer friend of Tide's, but the game's manual says this much. Swoop first met Tide when he was a trainee Proteus Marine and then ran into him later as a freelancer.

Jane[edit]

The proprietor and bartender of Jane's Bar, he is a typical denizen of the Free Trade Zone. He likes his guns, prefers to keep the DST and pirates out of his business and likes to enjoy a nice cold Dweezle.

Doctor Austin Valarie[edit]

The chief scientist for Proteus, Tide runs into him from time to time, whether he's clearing the way from angry drones, rescuing him from cocky pirates or trying to pry information out of him.

Cheek Lu[edit]

The pirate queen, there is more to this pirate master than one might first expect.

Hank and Frank Spanner[edit]

The manic mechanic of the Free Tee Zee and his brother Frank are cocky, adventurous types. At one point, with only their two ships and Tide as backup, they take on an entire pirate's nest.

Captain Brenna[edit]

The commander of the Troja, the science ship designed by its primary user, Austin Valarie, he is a calm collected type and becomes a friend of Tide's as they work together.

Captain Mullet[edit]

Commanding the Carthago, Proteus' sea-bound battleship, Mullet is a careful man, but not afraid to take risks - especially if he can take the risk without risking his ship...

Commodore Springall[edit]

The commander of the Agamemnon, Proteus' air-bound battleship, he is also the commander of the Proteus fleet in general.

Karpov and Boris[edit]

This pair of Russian survivors in the middle of Bitterfeld assist Magnus on his mission and they become good friends, fighting off the drones of Bitterfeld.

Reception[edit]

Reception
Review scores
Publication Score
1UP.com B+[1]
Eurogamer 7/10[2]
Game Informer 7/10[3]
Game Revolution C+[4]
GameSpot 6.7/10[5]

Yager has received positive reviews from critics. EuroGamer gave it a 7 out of 10, praising the controls for being "simple", the visuals of the game and voice acting, but criticizing the learning curve for being "ridiculously undulating", and not having a split-screen mode. Game Informer also gave the game a 7, praising the ship's design, but cited that the controls "were frustrating". Game Revolution awarded Yager with a C+, citing the gameplay and sound effects, but criticizing it for being linear, and not having a multiplayer mode. GameSpot awarded the game a 6.7, citing the price, but criticizing it for not being "as free-form as it seems".

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Yager (Xbox)". 1UP. Retrieved 2009-03-11. 
  2. ^ Bramwell, Tom (2003-07-05). "Yager". 1UP. Retrieved 2009-03-11. 
  3. ^ Jeda, Joe. "Yager". Game Informer. Archived from the original on April 20, 2008. Retrieved 2009-03-11. 
  4. ^ Gee, Brian. "Yager". Game Revolution. Retrieved 2009-03-11. 
  5. ^ Palley, Steve (2004-10-04). "Yager Review". GameSpot. Retrieved 2009-03-11. 

External links[edit]