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Armaments include a handgun, shotgun, bolt gun, personal defense gun, plasma shooter, particle laser accelerator, “kalist” rifle and a micro-missile launcher. One strange feature of TECNO is that, after the demo levels, you lose all of your old weapons and have to find completely new ones, so if you really like the demo weapons, you may not like the arsenal you get later. However, you are generally supplied at all points with a formidable and nicely varied selection of firearms. One of my personal favorites is a gun that fires a constant beam that can lift boxes and fry enemies, even while reloading. The laser accelerator is ultra-precise and is useful for obliterating distant security sensors, and the missile launcher destroys everything within a certain radius.
The enemies in TECNO include robots of every shape and size. There are large robots that jump between every possible surface, often dropping on top of you while raining down machine-gun fire; flying enemies that get close enough to spear you with an electric beam; and androids that come at you with chainsaws and glowing eyes. Throughout the game you encounter one new enemy after another, each with its own style of attack and defense. What makes the enemies so unique, however, is how they respond when you fire at them. Whichever part you hit flies off in a burst of sparks, and yet the robot continues fighting you without it. If both arms are shot off, the robot turns its deadly laser eyes upon you; if both legs are shot off; the robot might take to the sky and shoot you from a distance. And even if the head is gone, and all that is left is a pair of legs, the limbs race at you and self-destruct in an attempt to finish you off with the explosion, or they might convulse and fire wildly around the room, hoping to score a hit. The boss battles in this game are truly epic. Though it takes quite a lot of effort to make it even to the first boss, it is well worth the wait. Each boss is incredibly powerful and special, and it takes fast reflexes and a quick mind to make it through any of them alive. They all have specific weaknesses that are well protected, and they are invulnerable to normal attacks. The designer clearly spent a lot of time designing the boss battles.
There are two vehicles in TECNO: the Neoexplorer tank and the Cylzu T-40 mech. Both are really fun to use, and offer a different style of gameplay than those used by vehicles in most first-person shooters. The tank has an extremely detailed exterior and interior. It allows you to traverse difficult areas and offers massive firepower, though you have to hunt for the dual rockets that can be fired from its back. The mech is a versatile machine of raw power when fully equipped, but you might have some trouble finding the rare energy source it needs to power its weapons system. You have access to each vehicle only for a limited time, but they add considerably to the play challenge.
The physics in TECNO are high quality, though usually limited to certain situations. Unlike the Penumbra series, you can’t interact with many of the interesting items located within the virtual environment, but when you are allowed to use the physics, what you experience can be quite stunning. In one sequence, you have to roll a barrel up some stairs, and the weight and movement as you push it has to be just right. If you push it a little too high, it begins to roll, or if you push it a little too far to the side it begins to turn. The ragdoll physics on enemies’ bodies are also very well done. TECNO is at its best when it allows you to play with the physics to solve puzzles.
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