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Cries of "It's just Rainbow Six Vegas 1.5" were heard across the gaming community when Ubisoft announced its follow-up to Rainbow Six Vegas, and in many ways the community was right. Vegas 2 is incredibly similar to the previous game, but with a completely new storyline, new locations and a few additions to the gameplay, anyone who enjoyed fragging and clearing in the original game will have a brilliant time doing the same this time around.
Vegas just can't get a break. Not content with being the centre of a huge terrorist attack in 2006's Rainbow Six Vegas, the location returns in the sequel. It's not quite as coincidental as it seems though, as the story of Vegas 2 covers a time before, during and after the events of the first game. Still, for many, returning to Vegas will feel a little too samey, even though there are far more daylight and outdoor missions this time around.
Being one of the new-wave of shooters to use a cover system, Vegas 2 is somewhat more strategic and slower-paced than your standard FPS. The gameplay pretty much relies on you moving from cover to cover, hugging it tightly as you peek out to take down enemies with headshots. Using a press and hold cover system, Vegas feels a little different to the other cover-based shooters on the market and being able to freely aim all around you while snug to a wall gives you the ability to handle distant and near enemies.
As in the original, you are lead in a three-man squad, able to issue numerous commands to your two team-mates while in battle. A simple point and click movement command means you can tell your guys to go to any visible location, and this becomes context sensitive when you're aiming at a useable item, such as a door that can be entered, a wall that can be climbed or a bomb that can be disarmed.
This is just the beginning of the squad control options at your disposal though. A key command is the toggle for how your team-mates engage with enemies. When cleared to fire at will they'll shoot at and take down any enemies they spot, but if told to hold-fire they'll wait until shot at or until you give them the order to storm a room and take down the enemies. A neat tool to help in these room storming situations is enemy tagging, essentially picking out up to two enemies that your team-mates should target first. By sending them to another entry point you can set up an attack from two angles and clear a room in seconds.