Retro Let's Play Late Feb 2017: "Syndicate" (1993)

Discussion in 'Retro & Arcade' started by elvis, Feb 14, 2017.

  1. elvis

    elvis Old school old fool

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    Retro Let's Play Late Feb 2017: "Syndicate" (1993)

    Developed by Bullfrog. Published by EA.

    The year is 2096. Multinational corporations control the governments of the world. Industrial espionage is now done through the use of android agents. Use your resources to upgrade your androids, gain new weapons and persuasion technology, and grow your empire to take control of it all!

    Produced by renowned British game dev/designer/producer Peter Molyneux, Syndicate was first released on Amiga and PC/DOS in 1993, and later ported to numerous other platforms. Play whichever version you like (tell us which you've played), and let us know what you think.

    More info here:
    http://www.hardcoregaming101.net/syndicate/syndicate.htm
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Syndicate_(video_game)
    http://www.mobygames.com/game/syndicate
    http://www.syndicatewiki.com/wiki/Syndicate_(1993)

    Ported to (tell us which you're playing):
    MS-DOS, Amiga, Amiga CD32, Mac, Sega Megadrive/Genesis, SNES, 3DO, Atari Jaguar, Acorn Archimedes, FM Towns, NEC PC-9801, Sega-CD, PSP

    Buy it here:
    GoG AU$7.99 - https://www.gog.com/game/syndicate

    Play it in your browser for free (zip file download also available from the same link, which will work in DOSBox):
    https://archive.org/details/msdos_Syndicate_Plus_1994

    Basic PC/DOS and Amiga controls in game:
    * Left click - select agents via their panels on the left, select weapon, use medikit when clicked on. Will also pick up items that enemies drop
    * Left click anywhere on the game field or mini-map down the bottom right, and both agents and "persuaded" people will walk there
    * Right click - fire weapon on target (target will go red when in range), drop selected weapon/medikit
    * You don't need to fire the persuadertron. Just have it equipped by an agent, and walk near a person.
    * You can select all four agents at once by clicking on the space between the 4 agent health panels
    * Left-click on a vehicle to get in it. Left click it again to get out. Click on the map to drive to that location, keeping in mind which side of the road the cars drive on, as that will influence how the AI gets you to the exact spot you clicked.

    Box art:
    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    PC/DOS Long play video:


    SNES port video:
     
    Last edited: Feb 25, 2017
  2. OP
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    elvis

    elvis Old school old fool

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    I'm currently playing the GoG version (bought it ages back on special) via DOSBox.

    One thing to note: saving doesn't work without specific config.

    1) You MUST mount up your game on DOSBox's internal C: drive. So something along the lines of:

    Windows:
    mount c c:\path\to\dos\games

    Linux/Mac:
    mount c ~/path/to/dos/games

    2) Under that path, the Syndicate game MUST live under a "SYND" folder, and the binary you run is SYND.EXE under that.

    So the final path in DOS looks like:

    C:\SYND\SYND.EXE

    Only then will loading and saving games work. Test this out before you get too deep into a game!
     
    Last edited: Feb 14, 2017
  3. okclock123

    okclock123 Member

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    Beat this game in April 2016. Always wanted to do this.

    I used to own a 386 SX PC when I was 13 and there came the time when this machine had to be sold. So we found a buyer and the 386 was set to go in the morning.

    I spent the whole night playing Syndicate. I captured everything except one country and I didn't have any more time, because I had to go to school. When I came back the computer was already gone, so I never finished Syndicate until last year.

    Quite fond of the 16 colour graphics and sound.
     
  4. [MadHatteR]

    [MadHatteR] Member

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    Good post, brings back the memories. Especially using the persuadatron to recruit dozens of civilians, cramming them all into one car, and then blowing up the car, resulting in a ring of fiery civilians fanning out. A true work of art.
     
  5. OP
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    elvis

    elvis Old school old fool

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    Managed to get through the first few easy levels the other night. Finally opened up the part where I could choose from a few different locations on the map. Picked one, and got my arse handed to me by 20 dudes with miniguns. :lol:

    Figured that was a good point to quit for the night. Hopefully will try some more on the weekend.

    Previously, I'd only played the demo of this (one level, over quickly). Very much loving the full game on PC/DOS so far. I had fired up the SNES version a long time ago, so I want to re-test it to compare.
     
  6. okclock123

    okclock123 Member

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    Those are the worst. I worked my way around them: I usually choose a building which they HAVE to come around to reach me and stand some distance from the corner of that building waiting for waves of guys to come at me and shoot them in the face the second they reach the corner (auto fire also helps). The bigger the building the better for low levels, because enemies have to travel longer to reach you and you have more time to cool down your "power strips". More often than not enemies are never able to pass the corner.

    PS: I still don't understand how driving in this game works!
     
  7. OP
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    elvis

    elvis Old school old fool

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    * Click a car while not in it to get in it.
    * Click a car while in it to get out
    * You always drive on the right-hand side of the road
    * Click anywhere on the road, and the AI will drive the car there.
    * If you click on the left hand side of the road, the AI will drive around in a big circle until that is the right hand side of the road coming from the opposite direction
    * If you click on something that is not road, the AI will probably drive around forever. So don't do that, unless you're bored and want lolz.
    * If your car blows up with you in it, more lolz.
     
  8. okclock123

    okclock123 Member

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    Nice. I had lots of lolz while playing this game because I didn't follow these two simple rules! :)
     
  9. adz

    adz Member

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    Marks Team FTW!

    Just kidding :lol: This has got to be one of my favourite games ever, IIRC, to beat Atlantic Accelerator I loaded up all four agents with 6 lasers, a gauss rifle and a flamer, as soon as you enter the level, engage panic mode and let the lasers do the rest, clean up the guys on the towers with the gauss rifle and flame the rest through the walls.
     
  10. gdjacobs

    gdjacobs Member

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    For those with a twisted sense of humor, *persuade* a bunch of people, load yourself up into a car, then blow the car up.

    A few tips for Syndicate:
    You only need one Persuadertron, give it to one of your team.
    Equipping one of your team with a Scanner increases your map vision significantly. Again, you only need one.
    Except for later missions, range is better than firepower. Collect the Uzi in the first level, research it. Get the long range as soon as possible, then begin researching mods.
     
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2017
  11. OP
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    elvis

    elvis Old school old fool

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    Setting innocents on fire is always a favourite video game passtime of mine. I'm concerned that says something deeper about my character...

    Question: what happens with the people you can't persuade? For example, I'll occasionally persuade a low-level police character, but walk around the corner and be unable to persuade the next few. Do I need to research/mod/something else?

    Yeah, I learned that the hard way. Being out-sniped by some low level mook is frustrating.

    I also need to play with my stats in-game more. The long-play video shows this off well. There are levels that guy does with one agent that I struggle to do with 4, so I need to get better at tweaking them in-mission when it counts (foot speed, accuracy, etc).

    Also, I've totally forgotten how to make my agent auto-fire. I remember that from the demo I played years back, but can't seem to make it happen now.

    [edit] Also, Thundercats... HOOOOOO!

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2017
  12. dirkmirk

    dirkmirk Member

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    Syndicate is one of my all time favourite games, awesome gameplay and the sound effects were a highlight, well ahead of its time.

    With the persuadatron, im pretty sure theirs a graph where you need to persuade so may civillians in order to persaude a police officer and so on, I do think theirs some tech that requires less people of different levels but yeah im rambling a bit, if you read the manual it explains it(included in the gog release).

    I always made a priority to upgrade legs as that gives you speed, in the early missions the shotguns & uzis are great with the pistols becoming useless pretty quick.

    My memory is a bit hazy but I'll update my thoughts once I get into it again.
     
  13. OP
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    elvis

    elvis Old school old fool

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    Ah awesome, thanks. I actually totally forgot that the GoG version comes with all sorts of extra goodies. Off to check them out now!

    [edit] lol, they're actually called "goodies" on the website too. Two pages in particular from the manual:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2017
  14. bYrd

    bYrd Member

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    Two words: COOPER TEAM

    I'm amazed I still remember that. I think I almost spent as much time watching the Syndicate intro movie as I did playing the game - I thought it was stupendous in the day.

    Is the PC version VGA resolution? If you can get the chance, the Mac port was particularly good.

    JB
     
  15. OP
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    elvis

    elvis Old school old fool

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    Had to Google what the heck you two were on about. Aaaaand now I have to resist the temptation to cheat...

    Wikipedia says DOS mode 13h (320x200 256 colours).

    Obviously that's stretched out to a 640x480 framebuffer for VGA video cards, which means non-square pixels and chunky aliasing fun.
     
  16. dirkmirk

    dirkmirk Member

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    I just the game a go on my old school pentium 2 Overdrive @350mhz, had some success but ultimately I think this is the wrong system to be playing syndicate, Ive been using moslo at 35% and played a few missions perfectly but getting random crashes during gameplay etc, I'll try again tomorrow on something more appropriate like a Cyrix 5x86-120.

    I think the first mod to buy is the chest upgrade, in the first few missions your health goes down dramatically when getting hit but after the chest upgrade you can absorb uzi or shotgun damage alot better, this means no major purchases for the 3 or 4 missions.
     
  17. OP
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    elvis

    elvis Old school old fool

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    Cool to hear folks busting out the DOS machines for this.

    Anyone fired it up on an Amiga yet?
     
  18. Wizard2k

    Wizard2k Member

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    dirkmirk
    if your having to much issue on real hardware give it a shot via PCEM emulation. I use it when im lazy most stuff runs pretty well.
     
  19. badmofo

    badmofo Member

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    I've found that anything faster than a DX2 66 will cause Syndicate to crash if using a sound card - was OK with PC speaker from memory. There was a 'SB16 edition' too from memory, and I think that was OK on a faster machine.

    Great game choice again guys!
     
  20. Smoke87

    Smoke87 Member

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    Be happy you remember what game it was.

    I remember back in the 90s i played some kind of first person 3d-ish dungeon crawler. It was a shareware title that had some limitations placed on it, like I couldn't rob a store as the store owner would tell me it was shareware only and to go buy the full version. I remember there were giant eye monsters but that's about it.
     

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