Operation: Tango by Clever Plays
If you ask me, asynchronous multiplayer is where games get to truly shine. Sure, the standard co-operative and competitive modes found in most games are tried and true, no question. However, when multiple people get to use separate tools to navigate the same play space? That’s something special, and it’s something we could always use more of.
Well, if Operation: Tango delivers on its promises, it might soon join them.
An IndieCade selection also featured at places like Gamescom, Operation: Tango bills itself as “an espionage-themed cooperative adventure.” Designed for play with specifically two people, players take on the role of spies attempting to take down a global corporate threat.
There are two roles to be played, both of which play completely differently but rely on each other. The Agent is the one on the ground, navigating through traps and accessing the corp itself, while the Hacker accesses the facility’s security systems remotely.
The core of the gameplay comes from constant communication between the two (the game even mentions that voice chat between both players is mandatory). The Agent will need to avoid security measures while feeding information back to the Hacker, while the Hacker has to make sure the security measures stay out of the Agent’s way as much as possible.
It’s an instantly recognizable scenario for fans of franchises like Mission: Impossible or even Metal Gear, and it’s a phenomenal concept for a co-op game. Both characters come with entirely different kinds of gameplay as well. As the Agent, you’re playing something akin to Mirror’s Edge, while the Hacker is more about solving puzzles and minigames.
Alone, but Together
One of the hallmarks of a good asynchronous multiplayer game is making the different roles all look appealing to play. It’s when players find themselves going “How did you DO that?!” that the idea of having separate distinct roles really comes into its own. Operation: Tango looks to deliver that in spades with its two roles, as I could immediately see the appeal of both characters.
At the same time, maybe someone you know likes puzzles better than action, or vice versa? This game could be a fun solution, as not only can someone pick what kind of experience they want to have, but them having fun has some tangible results on the other person as well.
Another thing that immediately sticks out about Operation: Tango is its art design. The game is, simply put, gorgeous. It takes the ’60s and ’70s spy aesthetic recently re-popularized by shows like Archer and adds a futuristic veneer to it. The augmented reality effects given to the world make otherwise empty corporate spaces look and feel alive, and the stark color heighten the mood of each level in a big way.
The developers at Montreal, Quebec-based Clever Plays are clearly proud of their product, too. The game’s Steam page boasts that “Each mission features unique challenges, keeping you and your partner on your toes while delivering some of the most satisfying ‘eureka!’ moments in modern gaming.”
That’s a big claim, and we’ll have to wait to confirm for ourselves when the game launches in 2021. However, if its early previews (and demo available on Steam) are anything to go by, they might have something to back up their Bond-like swagger with.
Operation: Tango is due in 2021 on Sony PS4, Microsoft Xbox One and Steam.
Watch the trailer for Operation: Tango below: