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Comments to date: 2. Page 1 of 1. Average Rating:
johndonaldson 9:54pm on Tuesday, July 6th, 2010 
Unsure... I bought this game a couple weeks ago after seeing a feature on TV about it.
spudley 12:33am on Saturday, June 19th, 2010 
Original? Well, certainly... revolutionary even! Many years ago I fell in love with a game called Shadow President.

Comments posted on are solely the views and opinions of the people posting them and do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of us.



Inside Mac Games IMG Pro Search IMG Pro: Home News Sneak Previews Reviews Hardware Features Gameplay Sound Publisher: Feral Interactive Graphics Value Genre: Strategy & War Graphics: 32 MB VRAM Hot Downloads Watch List Blog Preferences Account

June 22, 2005

Reader Reviews 6 reviews. Average Rating: 2.33 Read the reviews Write a review
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Mac OS X: 10.2 Mac OS Classic: Not Supported CPU: G4 @ 1000 MHz RAM: 512 MB Hard Disk: 1350 MB

Republic: The Revolution

October 5, 2004 | Eric Ford With the mighty Soviet Union fallen, your state has been left in near anarchy. The time has come for someone to take down the selfobtained dictators and set up a state for the people. Such is the stage for Republic: The Rebellion, a political simulation game from Elixir Studios, Zonic Studios and Feral Interactive. Taking the role of a novice political activist looking to gain influence in your hometown, you're charged with recruiting others for your cause and doing any and all you can to gain power. The path will be rough, the opposition fierce, and intense strategy will be required to succeed in this wonderfully done strategy game.


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Republic is a strange game in that while it is very easy to give a broad overview of the game's goals, the methods to achieve such goals are so diverse that anyone who plays it could have an entirely different outlook on the title. In terms of the supreme objective, you are charged with the task of guiding your avatar through the bowels of novice politics until he can reach a point of power that will allow him to take over his hometown. From there, the sky is the limit as you slowly gain power to the point of overthrowing the corrupt government of your state and setting up your own form of government for the people. Helping you achieve this goal are a multitude of options ranging from peppering the town with paper fliers to spreading lies about your organization to opposing political parties. Also, Republic features several in-depth status screens that allow you to organize your entire political scheme in a relatively painless fashion. For hardcore strategy buffs that prefer politics to the usual bloody war titles, it doesn't get much better than this. Republic's graphics are nothing to go crazy about, but in this type of title, they don't need to dazzle. Players can elect to watch the game's processes through two distinct viewpoints. One is a three dimensional representation of the area, with every detail laid out on the screen to the quality that one chooses in the options menu. This is the primary view to use if you want to get a general lay of the land in regards to where buildings are in relation to each other, what your opposition is doing, etc. Personally, I found that I tried to stay away from it as much as possible, mostly due to the fact that my Dual 2 GHz G5 machine couldn't quite handle the graphics capacity at high detail levels. Fortunately, Republic also features a 'Risk'-like board game view that divides the entire area into sectors and shows where every character in the town (yours or otherwise) is moving and where they are doing the majority of their political work. This is the view that also provides the meat of your information for each area, such as how much influence you have in certain districts, how much knowledge you have, and who controls the major power points. It definitely adds a lot more to the game than the heavy visual representation of the town, but both are useful in their own ways. Like most intense strategy games, Republic doesn't offer much in terms of sound and music. And, like most intense strategy games, it doesn't detract from the gameplay experience too much. There are some decent voiceovers in the game (even though they aren't in English, they still sound good), and there are a few majestic tunes that play out from time to time, emphasizing the overall dramatic mood that dominates the game. Other than that, this aspect of the game mainly exists because games have to possess some form of it.


October 5, 2004 | Eric Ford
The actual meat of Republic is relatively simple. Once you fill out a questionnaire that determines the stats of your avatar, you're sent out into the world with the suggestion of recruiting an old friend to help you start out. This is where you take control of the game through the mouse-driven menus. Who will you choose? Will you choose an ally that possesses many persuasive tactics to influence the public or will you go the opposite route and find someone that prefers the strong-arm tactics to convince people to your side. Every character you recruit has a few actions they can perform (such as conducting surveys or spying on opposition), and the more they do Click to enlarge them, the more experience they gain until they level up. From there, you distribute new ability points to their overall attributes and can improve an existing action or obtain a brand new one. Character customization is an important aspect for Republic, as how you choose to evolve your avatar and allies can be the difference between supreme power and lowly second-rate politics. Characters can only perform a set number of actions per day, and each action costs a certain amount of resources (there are three types of resources: force, influence, and wealth). Resources can only be obtained every three days and the amount you receive is directly associated with how much political power you've gained in districts, so use your actions wisely. Meanwhile, there are many political groups trying to gain the upper hand in taking control of areas, so Republic becomes a game of time and effective resource management. While Republic is an excellent strategy title, there are still some things that could have been tweaked and polished. One small flaw is the steep learning curve for novices that haven't been exposed to such a political strategy game before. I found myself baffled with all the available options at the start of the game. In addition, it's a little hard to figure out what each action does even after you've done it a few times. Thankfully, Republic does have a tutorial and I highly suggest that everyone use it when they are just starting out. Also, some of their menus are cluttered, making it hard to figure out exactly what's going on some times. Finally, the graphic system, while unique to this kind of strategy game, is highly taxing and most likely won't run particularly well on low-end system requirements. Overall, Republic is an excellent strategy game that has a unique offering in the whole political scheme of things. If you aren't a fan of strategy titles such as Risk or even Civilization, then you most likely won't enjoy the comprehensive strategy that this title offers. Add in a lot of customization, a decent set of menus, and a good (though taxing) graphics system, and Republic becomes a game worth checking out for any strategy enthusiast. Pros: Unique Political Strategy Title Decent Character Customization Multiple Paths To Succeed Cons: Difficulty May Turn Off Novices High System Requirements Cluttered Interface At Times

6 Reader Reviews submitted. Average Rating: 2.33 View Reader Reviews Submit your review



Its a massive business, but audio for games is still often in-house, under budgeted, and undervalued. Is this changing? AUDIO MEDIA talks to games audio guru James Hannigan about now, and next.
he big picture in the realm of video games is big indeed: global revenue from computer game titles is projected to approach $40 billion by 2006, making it larger than the film industry in terms of receipts. (A good thing, too the cost of producing a top-tier game title can approach $30 million or more, as much as many feature films.) However, while whats on the screen often takes perceptual centre stage amongst players and pundits alike, what rivals the visuals in bombast and creativity might ultimately make or break a title or even an entire platform: big sound is catching up to big picture in the video game business, and its impacting the industrys bottom line.

I n On The Ac t

One indication of this trend is how major record labels, increasingly anxious to find new revenue streams for their music content to offset piracy losses and to promote new artists in a densely crowded entertainment landscape, have embraced video games. In 2004, Vivendi Universal, the label with the largest global market share, used their fashion-forward Interscope marque to release and heavily promote an eight-CD boxed set featuring music from a make-believe radio station that plays in the background of Take Twos wildly successful Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas. In technical terms, its referred to as diegetic or source music audio emanating from the game world, as opposed to a conventional score existing as if for an audience outside the game. The music, though, is quite real, including tracks from Willie Nelson, Soundgarden, and Public Enemy. Electronics Arts recently established a joint venture with long-established song publisher Cherry Lane Music through which EA will sign and develop its own original artists to create new music for its games rather than license existing songs by known artists. The new music will, in turn, be repurposed for applications such as ringtones, ringbacks, film music, and commercials. Those who create and work with game audio are quickly becoming a legitimate rubric within the entertainment media industry, just as sound designers have for films over the last two decades. The AES now dedicates complex technical papers to establish and encourage uniform standards for game sound, just as the industry did for
surround sound in cinemas two decades ago. According to the International Game Developers Association (IDGA), top audio engineers, sound designers and composers are earning six-figure salaries in some instances, with an average annual income of $57,500. Two of the leading entertainment awards institutions, UKs BAFTA and NARAS, which sponsors the GRAMMY Awards, have both recently created awards categories for game audio. As the IGDAs website enthusiastically puts it, Its been a truism for years that game audio is neglected, overlooked, under budgeted, and otherwise given a short shrift. With the most recent wave of gaming platforms, audio capabilities are more closely matching visual power, allowing for improved sonic standards that weve long enjoyed in other media.

Hannigans Angle

James Hannigan, four-time music nominee and joint winner of a BAFTA Award in 2000 and composer on over 40 games, including Sim Theme Park, Freelancer, Republic: The Revolution, and Evil Genius, has wrestled with the ideology of game audio, arriving at some interesting conclusions. Games occupy their own part of the entertainment technology universe, Hannigan asserts, and sound is a key strategy for establishing and delineating that perception apart from the contexts of cinema and television. Its not unlike how early movies were filmed from the same perspective as a theatre stage the analogy that most pioneering filmmakers and their audiences defaulted to. With games, we need to consider the two-way traffic of information between the player/viewer and the gameworld the games diegetic space, Hannigan explains. It becomes more difficult to identify the boundaries of the gameworld than we can a films story world it is as if the screen itself ceases to become a barrier, and the viewer has become a participant in the story world in a way that combines the worlds of the viewers and the characters they control or influence. Players are neither sealed in a game nor solely watching it. To Hannigan, how sound is used in a game largely determines how the game is experienced on an emotional level. Some games challenge the boundaries of where sound effects begin and music ends, where it becomes unclear as to whether music and sound emanates from the gameworld or is added on top for some commentary


MAY 2005
A still from Republic: The Revolution (Feral Interactive).
reason, he says. Music, for example, still often exists in games for narrative support, but this enforces the idea we belong outside the story world as we play, rather than being a part of one. When we recognise that the player is both audience and participant in games we can start thinking of the gameworld as a kind of fusion reactor for sound and music content, free of the tyranny of older forms of classification and rendering it inappropriate to think of each as functioning independently.

An Expensive G ame

But as the stakes edge towards the tripledigit billions of dollars, the realm of the game developer is going to bump heads with marketing departments and mega-corporations that will
seek to use one content form as one more strategy to sell other content games to sell music, music to sell games, both to sell movies and clothing. Hannigan views this pragmatically. I tend to think of licensed music as only one angle in games, he says. I see markets converging, but still see a role for [original] music in games in the same way it has a place in films giving games a unique and consistent musical identity. Games like GTA and EA Sports titles are still fairly exceptional in this way and rely on having some kind of device in the game justifying its use, such as an in-car radio in GTA or through a kind of TV magazine approach in sports games. Overall, I dont think that approach to music represents anything new in entertainment, but it can obviously mean big business and will continue.
The industry is fragmenting and I think games dont just mean one thing to one group of people anymore just as music has also fragmented and defines the groups and cohorts people want to be associated with. Some want to make deeper games; others think of games as just fun distractions for people returning from the pub. But by paying attention to the music, in making it good and in understanding the dynamic between music, sound, and the game, the industry weaves the game more deeply into the lifestyle of the consumer. Its a challenge in both the musical and technological domains and where they intersect. In fact, as games become one more cog in vast multinational enter tainment conglomerates, Hannigan sees that as a way to break the process of game development from that of a kind of professional elite to one with more connection to their users, to make the notion of the game as seamless part of everyday life as music already is. The industry still has a lot of people seeking only to please their peers, says Hannigan. But the more successful developers increasingly take a more holistic view of games, want technology to be transparent and, ironically, have probably learnt through film the importance of sound and music. So I think its fair to say that in being just as competent at using sound as the film industry is can be seen as a good starting point. Whether it moves forward to being something unique, making sense only in games, I feel is


James Hannigan and his company Post Linear Creations are based at Pinewood Film Studios near London.
PEOPLE POWER James Hanngian makes the case for fillm-like recogntion for the people behind games production, and the evolution of a unique production culture for the game design industry.
dependent on whether its good business to or not, which is why I think outsiders may ultimately re-shape games when they get their hands on the technology required to make them as these would be people free of any notions of gaming tradition. The same process took place during the collapse of the Hollywood Studio system, when ordinary folks could obtain movie cameras. Likewise, in music, with the advent of accessible recording technology.

The Human Element

Eventually, Hannigan argues, games will attain the same perceptual status among consumers as films have, in that the public will begin to perceive them as having been made by people instead of just companies. This trend is already underway with games that derive from Tom Clancy novels. Anything that connects people with the art helps the art move forward, he stresses. Michael Giacchino, the composer for the game Medal of Honor, crossed over into film and scored The Incredibles, which is a fairly unprecedented leap into film at such a high level for a first-time blockbuster composer. I myself am represented by Air Edel in London, traditionally an agent for film and TV composers, so its pleasing to think that one point of such cross-pollenisation is in the music of games.
Q: Is the game world beginning to see star composers emerge from within its ranks? JH: Star composers are emerging, but theyre rare. Theyre still the exception to rule because games adopt the in house model of development, akin to the old Hollywood Studio system. Which I suppose means there is some scope for composers to be marketed as individuals, but the down side is that most of the industry wants an internal solution for everything. Name value counts for little in an industry without much of a human face and that affects everybody, really. Some are getting a name by doing something resembling film music very well, which is to be expected with so many filmic games around. I dont think there are too many composers around who are really doing much for games that couldnt be lifted from them and operate the same way in films or television, but hopefully that will change as the role becomes more specialised. Q: Will the traditional role of the producer in music have any relevance in game music? JH: Maybe so, although I think composers are increasingly

taking on package deals and composing/producing in a holistic way, mixing and engineering their own work (which many film composers also now do). The production side is integral to the composition in many cases, as music becomes more sound-based and less [melodic]. Also, I think composers and sound designers will increasingly produce music as one from the beginning in many games of the future. I see more convergence of roles in games than we now see in films. Q: Will game creators music, direction and so on ever attain the status that film directors like Ridley Scott, or composers like John Williams have? JH: I dont think they will while the industry presents only a corporate face. Id like to see it happen, because I think it is people, and not just companies, who excite the public most as evidenced by the public response to films, music, TV and so on. I think the industry is worried about having to pay famous people, but is missing the value such people could add in a broader sense in making games mainstream.



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