Single-player action RPG with 3rd person view, in the sci-fi setting. Very story-driven, that means NO for open world experience. But there are none good tale as well. Just a decent action part in narrow tunnel of somewhat "noir" agenda.
In truth, game isn't all bad, it's just mediocre. But I'm freaked out by how it is presenting itself there on Steam: "An Intense Cyberpunk Rpg On the Red Planet!" While it is really telling about humans on the fourth planet, it is as far from cyberpunk, as me from being a wealthy man. And "Intense" means it is very short and linear. Not a good point to present for decent "story rich" RPG, you agree?
I'm going to tell you about my experience with the Mars: War Logs, so there will be some minor spoilers. Sorry for that, if you don't want any spoilers - don't read any reviews on that game before playing! But I suggest you to look the other way, there are plenty of games of much greater value.
There are many comparisons for this game to others. Somehow, Mars: War Logs are truly looks sometimes like Mass Effect or Star Wars KOTOR 2... But these moments are rare and second-handed at best. In other words, all what is that game going to show you - already been somewhere.
Take a first act, for example: you are in the prison, and you're going to make escape from there. By stealing a train, for what you need some guy at generator, and some guy from the guard. And weapons. Funny, but ALL of these were in russian game Planet Alcatraz (2009), where you also starting at the prison, and gotta run out on the train. Only difference is what in Planet Alcatraz you can trust only in yourself in that prison, so you need to choose: either make yourself an electrician, or try to evolve in a guard - to get your hands on weapons and make ways to the train...
Okay, I'm feeling I'm skidded away. Let's forget for a moment all other games, movies or books, in some way similar to our Mars: War Logs. Let's just look at it. For what gaming experience should we pay our money?
Story? Well, it's sketchy. Bleak. At the end of the 2nd act you need to decide whoever party you'll side with. But truly, none of those parties are good choice for you. And, which is more - even that most affecting choice doesn't really changing anything for the player. Maybe except for the game achievement. But we know what genuine achievement hunter want all achievements, so he's gonna play for both parties. I suggest start with the Rebellion, and then for the General, it seems scheduled in that order by the game plot.
World? Well, we don't really see Mars. Or participating in war, like in shows in the title. There are decent background, but it is absolutely static. In the worst way. Side-quests are about running from A to B, beating some guys, returning back. After that in point C appears some other quest person, and it's going further, to running to the D point - to beat or scare another bunch of losers. And the most annoying part is what sometimes some scripts aren't working properly, and you unwillingly skipping from A to D point, without even knowing what it was. Example? There are many, but side quests with romance line(s) are coming in mind first.
As for visual part of showing the life on Mars... well, it's nothing pretty. No John Carter stuff there. Dirty suburbs where we hanging back and forth, that's all you'll gonna see in the whole game.
Sounds are nothing spectacular too. Music is boring and forgettable. And voice acting... it's not That Bad, as some other reviews are pointing, but since all characters in the game are pretty obscure, their voices aren't really helping to bring them some personality. Pity on that.
Finally, action part! Can you fight in this game? Yeah, there are decent battle system. You mashing people with your mace in the right hand and shooting with some nail gun from the left hand. Also you can cast some spells, like electric bolt, or stunning wave. Or you can throw grenades and mines. It helps in the fight, but, since the resources are scarce, you're still need to bash people with the stick. No power-chokes there.
But then, combat part is decent, but not really good. It is imperceptible at normal fights, but bosses are turning everything down. They are too easy to beat. And even easier to be shot. There are only one out of the line boss fight in the 3rd sequence, where you meet some challenge for the boss. But alas! It's only because of it's health bar, other than that - same boring stuff.
1) game is not original. Not in the scenario, neither in the action part. And over the most of all, it is treating you not as an associate, a hero of adventure, but strictly as a player clicking the buttons behind the screen. There are no place to dive, it's knee-deep at best.
2) I can suggest you many games of much higher value. Even for the action part, which is the most satysfying in the Mars: War Logs. And I'm not talking about AAA titles, like Mass Effect or Deus Ex. If you are looking for well-written story where your actions are really changing something, try Alpha Protocol. And if you are up to the good trip, try Risen 2&3. And if you are really want a sci-fi story, there are a fine gem of forgotten games, Septerra Core.
As for marks for Mars: War Logs, it would be 6.5/10, for the effort, and almost working scripts. It is almost a good game. Not worth buying though.