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the great rebellion

Run and Gun Against Globalism: The Great Rebellion Review

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The gaming industry has been lately been completely swarmed with woke bullshit. It seems like it’s impossible to play a game without being forced to play as some sort of intersectional goblin or other. Even if the game allows you to play a white male, you’ll still be railroaded into interacting with strahng, independant whamen of colour and treating them as equals in your struggle against anything. For many gamers, this has increasingly become a deal-breaker, especially now that alternatives are rising to the woke gruel the gaming industry churns out. One of those alternatives is Kvltgames’ The Great Rebellion

Conceived as a “politically non-conformist platform shooter”, the game places you in the shoes of Human 10.28, in the future where the entirety of Europe has been completely absorbed by a single gigacorp-government, whose ideology looks suspiciously like that of the current ruling regime in the West. Our protagonist is rescued by Evropa, who seems to be the embodiment of the European spirit and is spirited away to the Waldgang, or The Forest Passage, a mythical realm inspired by Ernst Jünger’s book of the same name. The protagonist must then liberate the whole of Europe from the villainous gigacorp, assisted by resistance figures and the spirits of European worthies from the past. 

The Story

We’re treated to a very classic dystopian setting. As mentioned before, our protagonist is a human being with no name, only a number, living in the cyberpunk future of Europe where surveillance is ubiquitous, meat is prohibited, vaccines are mandatory and crimethink is punished very severely. Being a white man, he is given every possible disadvantage by the social credit system (yes, there is one, and it’s a gameplay mechanic). However, he’s rescued by Evropa after displaying capacity for independent thought and joins The Great Rebellion against the globalists. 

He is helped along the way by the aforementioned Europa, the German leader of The Great Rebellion, Ernst Laserstorm, the French hacker Nova and the English cyborg Robo-Hood. Also of note is the character of Gus Fawkes, the cockney black marketeer who’ll variably sell weapons and perks, in exchange for coins or negative social credit and is probably my favourite character of the game. I certainly enjoyed doing his voice

With regard to the plot, it’s simple and straightforward. Human 10.28 shoots at enemies and destroys them. This decreases the power of the gigacorporation. He takes down key nodes of its power and therefore gives a fighting chance to the embattled people of Europe. The settings themselves are morbidly fascinating: the entire nation of Belgium has been turned into a shopping mall and all of Britain is a gigantic submerged cybernetics factory. Finally, the list of bosses is a who’s who of globalist and WEF figures, and of course, the final level takes place in Davos. 

The game’s writing and story style is, for lack of a better word, a little chuddy. By this, I mean it sometimes reads like it was written by edgelords on 4chan’s /pol/, especially Evropa and 10.28’s dialogue. In terms of ideological orientation, I found the decision to frame the struggle as modernity vs. Tradition misguided. The right has certainly suffered from its aversion to modern technology and for its Ted Kaczinsky style cult of nature. Likewise, the cult of (capital T) Tradition has detracted from essential questions by leading dissidents down self-defeating ideological cul-de-sacs such as authoritarianism at all costs or geopolitical isolationism. The game’s politics are ultimately very light on white identity politics, although white identity is explicitly acknowledged and supported.

The Gameplay 

It’s exactly what it says on the tin: a platform shooter, nothing more, nothing less. However, it’s very good at what it is. You jump from platform to platform, you dash to avoid bullets, you shoot enemies to destroy them. The levels are procedurally generated, so no two playthroughs are the same, although the differences aren’t exactly ground-breaking. The gameplay is exciting from beginning to end, and does not become less interesting once you learn to control the situation. The game seems designed with a lot of bullet-dodging and dashing in mind, but playing it as I did, by firing at enemies from long range while taking cover behind platforms is also a viable way to go about it. 

One aspect which deserves mention are the companions. These are heroes and notables from European who take part in The Great Rebellion as spirits who grant Human 10.28 perks and abilities based on their own skills and history. There are many of them and you can discover a lot throughout the game, but my personal favourites have to be Otto von Bismarck, whose talent for diplomacy grants invulnerability and Ragnar Lothbrok, who grants double damage. 

Another interesting aspect are the rescued friends who are taken to the Waldgang and give bonuses between missions. Some of them are based on internet memes, such as the Norf FC guy who provides armour, while others are based on real people, such as The Golden Man, a hulking Swedish bodybuilder who restores health and encourages 10.28 to do burpees. 

The game also features a permadeath if played on the White Male difficulty, which brings you back to level 1 if you’re killed. However, it allows you to keep the perks purchased with negative social credit and the rescued friends. Weapons, items and game progress are lost and have to be regained through gameplay. 

The only drawback I could find to the gameplay is related not to the game itself, but rather to the oversaturation of the market with platformers and platform shooters. After a while, they all sort of blend into one another and even though it’s superbly done, The Great Rebellion fails to stand out. 

The Soundtrack

A special mention has to go to the game’s soundtrack. It’s an unbelievably good collection of electronic tracks which go absolutely perfectly with the gameplay. You’ll find yourself tapping along and swinging your head to and fro as you blaze through the levels for sure. The combat tunes in particular is precisely the kind of manly music that invigorates the spirit and strengthens resolve during battle. The end-of-level music is full of exuberance and joy, as well as triumphalism as the robotic singer repeats what the developers say is “Europa Jugend Reconquista”, although I swear I hear Krieg für Christe. The game’s music is what I imagine Kraftwerk would have sounded if they were based. On the strength of its soundtrack alone, this game would be worth your $14. But then again, it has other strengths as well. 

The Great Rebellion is overall a great game. It tries to sell itself on the basis of its story and I’m sure it succeeds. However, I found its gameplay and soundtrack a lot more engaging. So, I’m giving it 3/5 on story, 4/5 on gameplay and 5/5 on soundtrack. Certainly worth your time and money. If you’d like to see my real-time reactions to the game, I recommend watching my playthrough on YouTube. I heartily recommend this game and wish Kvltgames a lot more successes in the future. 

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