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Binary Domain

Binary Domain

Binary Domain

Binary Domain is a third-person shooter video game developed and published by Sega. The game is set in Tokyo in the year 2080 and features innovative AI technology. It was designed by Toshihiro Nagoshi, who created the Yakuza video game series.

Binary Domain Plot

In the early years of the 21st century global warming has caused world wide flooding, leaving three quarters of the world's cities uninhabitable. This forced the world governments to build new cities above the waterline, using the ruined cities as foundation, leaving the old cities to rot. With millions dead, robots were used as the main labor force to create the new cities. The American-based Bergen company rose to dominate a very large majority of the world's robotic industries, making America the world superpower. The Amada Corporation in Japan tried to sue Bergen for stealing their technology in a patent dispute, which ended in failure since Bergen was too powerful. This was despite the fact that Amada was the first robotics company that created the first humanoid robot in 2047. This controversial lawsuit resulted in Bergen's control of the robotics market at 95%

In 2040, the world's economic concerns lead to the creation of the "New Geneva Convention" a new set of international laws: clause 21 banned research into robots that could pass for humans, called "Hollow Children". 150 countries have agreed to sign the convention into law. The International Robotics Technology Association, which was founded in 2040, created a global task-force called "Rust Crews" to deal with breaches of the convention, especially clause 21. In 2080, a Hollow Child attacked Bergen's headquarters in Detroit, Michigan, USA, apparently having previously had no idea that he was a robot himself.

Believing that robotics genius and founder of Amada corporation Yoji Amada created the Hollow Child, the IRTA sent a team of Rust Crew headed by Charles Gregory to Japan to find Amada and bring him in for questioning under orders from the UN Security Council.

Binary Domain Gameplay

The game is a third-person shooter. The player can issue commands to their squad mates either by using buttons or voice via headset. Binary Domain also supports the use of the Kinect System for players who play the game via the Xbox 360 console for voice commands. The game's AI is able to recognize six different languages, including English and Japanese.

A major part of the game is the Consequence System. Trust plays a part in the story mode on how the squad views the player. Their opinion of the player is based on how the player performs and treats team members. This affects both the storyline and the gameplay, where the characters behave differently depending on trust levels. Conversations between the player and the squad members can also affect trust levels. Depending on the level of trust the team members have in the player, the ending changes.

Stats of both the player and the squad members can be augmented with nanomachines which need to be fitted in place similar to a jigsaw puzzle. These nanomachines, as well as weapon upgrades, can usually be bought at shops that the player encounters throughout the game. The use of grenades in combat is supported through the use of a visible parabolic arc, which allows players to adjust their aim. The enemy AI in Binary Domain adjust itself on how to fight back against the player's advance, depending on the situation. For example, they can work together in groups to flank the player's position or toss frag grenades if the player is in one spot for too long. There are certain scripted stages where players need to navigate through dangerous obstacles and enemies in order to advance to the next stage.

Reception
Binary Domain received positive reviews from critics. Aggregating review websites GameRankings and Metacritic gave the PlayStation 3 version 74.50% and 72/100, the Xbox 360 version 73.94% and 74/100 and the PC version 63.29% and 68/100.

Famitsu gave the game scores of 10, 9, 9, and 7, adding up to a total score of 35 out of 40. Another Japanese magazine Dengeki PlayStation has given the game scores of 80, 85, 90, and 85, averaging out to 85 out of 100.

GameSpot criticized the lag in multiplayer and that voice commands do not always get recognized by the game. Eurogamer praised the lack of music as it gives gamers to factor in noise and in-game effects to determine their gaming strategy

Despite favorable reviews, the game had only sold 20,000 copies in North America by April 2012. In Japan, it sold 73,683 copies when it was released, being the #2 game sold at the time.


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