Wednesday 7 October 2015

Rescue: The Embassy Mission (NES review)

Developer: Kemco
Publisher: Kemco
Released: 1990

Rescue: The Embassy Mission is a stealth-action game that was also released as Hostages on a number of home computers.

You control a team of commandos and your objective is to rescue the embassy ambassador and his staff who have been kidnapped. There's three difficulty settings as well as five missions; each consists of four mini-games and you need to complete them all within a time limit otherwise you'll fail the mission. To start you must advance three members of your team by sneaking around the outside of the building. Searchlights can be avoided by either crouching or hiding in doors but if you're spotted enemies will start firing on your location. The action is intense and works well although the controls aren't always responsive when trying to hide. Once your team has reached their position you then enter a first-person sniper mode where you move a cursor to eliminate bad guys behind windows. It's reminiscent of some stages in Golgo 13 (1988, NES) but it's not very challenging and doesn't last long. Next you rappel from the roof and break into the building; when you're positioned over a window the A button allows you to crash through. It's decent but there's little depth and it's over quickly. The final part is a first-person shooter where you need to kill a certain number of enemies on each floor. The great controls make it a blast and the threat of a decreasing time limit adds to the tension. The variety in the game is fantastic and each activity is generally fun to play. However, all five missions are basically the same apart from faster searchlights / enemies and no other gameplay mechanics or environments come into effect; as a result the game can be beaten extremely quickly and replayability is low.

Rescue: The Embassy Mission is an enjoyable game with some nice variety but the experience is far too short and once you've completed one mission there's not really much more to do. It's definitely a unique title though so it's worth a look if you fancy playing something a bit different on the NES.

Random trivia: In 1992, a sequel was released on the Amiga, Atari ST and DOS called Alcatraz.

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