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Freedom Force vs. the 3rd Reich is a real-time tactical role-playing game developed and published by Irrational Games. In this sequel to Freedom Force, the player guides a team of superheroes as they travel back in time and help overthrow Nazi Germany and its allies during World War II. It was released in early March, 2005.
Nuclear Winter steals Time Master's inert body and uses it to steal nuclear missiles from the Cuban missile crisis in an effort to start a nuclear war between the United States and the USSR. Freedom Force foils his plot, but on the return trip, the timeline changes and Freedom Force finds that the Axis powers achieved victory in World War II. Using the disturbance in the timeline to guide them, Mentor projects the heroes back in the timestream to battle the villainous Blitzkrieg, who created the timeline disturbance, where they meet and team up with heroes of that age. In the course of Blitzkrieg's defeat, Alchemiss gains powers from Time Master's body, frees Man-Bot from the Celestial Clock, but goes insane over the sudden expansion of her powers and becomes Entropy, who threatens time and space. Entropy is eventually defeated. Briefly asserting her original personality, Alchemiss prevents herself from ever existing so she cannot become Entropy, but suddenly finds herself face to face with a strange being...Energy X.
Virtually the entire cast of characters returns from Freedom Force, now steady members of the superhero team, their skills and backgrounds intact. The exception is Man-Bot, who is imprisoned in the Celestial Clock.
Virtually the entire cast of characters returns from Freedom Force, now steady members of the superhero team, their skills and backgrounds intact. The exception is Man-bot, who is imprisoned in the Celestial Clock.
- Minuteman - Frank Stiles was a scientist who worked on the Manhattan Project in World War II. During his time there, he learns that a colleague, O'Connor, is selling secrets to the Russians. He reports on O'Connor but with no real proof, he is disgraced and fired. In 1962, as an elderly man sitting in a park, he sees O'Connor by chance. Following him again, he notes O'Connor seems to be still associating with the Russians. His old enemy shoots him in the heart. Stiles slumps against a statue of the Minutemen of the Revolutionary War. The mysterious 'Energy X' imbued in the statue enters Stiles, making him young and granting him superpowers. Stiles vows to protect his country with these abilities and creates the costume and guise of The Minuteman.
- Microwave - Microwave began his life as part of a series of robots hailing from an alternate future timeline, known as the Cyberverse, where robots have taken control of the Earth, hunting down humans to near extinction. It first appeared during a raid on Pinstripe's secret warehouses. A Microwave unit had been sent back in time by Timemaster to destroy Freedom Force. After a battling with Freedom Force, the robot was temporarily subdued. It was taken back to the Freedom Fortress, where it was reprogrammed by Mentor. Unfortunately, during the reprogramming Mentor erased most of its memories of the future it had come from. Microwave chose to join Freedom Force in their battle against evil.
- Liberty Lad - Nick Craft was an avid comic book reader and the founder of the Freedom Force fan club. One day, Nick happened to catch a glimpse of Freedom Force as they were attempting to foil a bank robbery by members of Pinstripe's gang. Ignoring the repeated warnings by Minuteman and El Diablo, Nick followed after the team as they chased down and did battle with Pinstripe's goons. During the final battle between Freedom Force and Pinstripe, Nick Craft was struck by stray gunfire from Pinstripe's tommy gun. The only hope to save the critically injured boys life was a blood transfusion using Minuteman's Energy X infused blood. Nick survived his injuries, but the Energy X in Minuteman's blood granted him superhuman powers, similar to his idol. He donned a costume and declared himself to be Minuteman's new sidekick, battling the forces of evil as Liberty Lad. Against Minuteman's wishes, Liberty Lad struck out on a solo mission in an attempt to prove his worth as a member of Freedom Force. After proving himself to be a courageous and worthy addition, Minuteman reluctantly granted Liberty Lad membership.
- The Ant - John Miller was a nerdy high school student who was bullied and picked on often. One day, while carefully observing a colony of ants, a group of bullies shoved him onto the ant hill he was observing. As the ants began to swarm over him, he was struck by a bolt of Energy X, which imbued him with ant-like powers. As he moved through the city, experimenting with his new found powers, he noticed the same group of thugs entering a local candy store with the intent of robbing and vandalizing the store. Tying a scarf around his face to conceal his identity, Miller leaped through the entrance of the store and quickly dispatched the hooligans. From that day forward John Miller donned a superhero identity and vowed to use his new powers to defeat those who would prey on the weak as: The Ant.
- El Diablo - A hot-headed Latino and former gang member, granted powers of fire by Energy X, El Diablo joins the ranks of Freedom Force after saving Minuteman and Mentor from the clutches of Nuclear Winter. Wielding the power of fire, El Diablo starts out able to fly and shoot gouts of flame at foes. Later in the game, he is given more powerful ranged attacks, including the ability to make objects explode. He considers himself a ladies' man but his main target, Alchemiss, constantly rebuffs him. As a fire-based character, he is vulnerable to cold attacks. Reflecting his fiery temper, El Diablo has difficulty focusing his powers, often resulting in poor accuracy or misjudged power use. He is also apparently mildly claustrophobic.
- Man-Bot - Ted Taylor was the stereotypical playboy; handsome, athletic, popular, and incredibly shallow. He loved fast cars, fast women, and fast living. That all changed when he was struck by a bolt of energy while driving. This accident caused him to be imbued with a large and unstable concentration of Energy X. The power coursing through his body was so immense and so unstable that it would frequently discharge in a massive energy explosion. He rushed to see his "egghead" brother Tom, a Nobel prize winning scientist, who offered Ted a solution. Tom had been working on developing a powered exo-suit that would provide mobility to the disabled. Tom modified the suit to feed on the Energy X stored in Ted's body, siphoning excess energy from his body to power the suit. The one catch was that Ted would have to wear the suit constantly until Tom was able to find a cure for his condition. Ted resisted the idea of being bound up in such an ugly contraption. While Ted protested his brother's temporary solution, a powerful surge of energy exploded out of his body, killing his brother in the blast. Wracked by guilt, Ted donned the suit and vowed to redeem his superficial life and his brother's death by protecting the innocent as The Man-Bot.
- Alchemiss - Catherine Larchmont-Price was the most popular, and beautiful girl at Patriot City University. She believed in little besides her ability to make men drool, and wandered through life disdainful of the beliefs of others, especially those of her strange, and somewhat square, roommate, Emily. Then one night, Catherine had a strange dream. In it, the statue of Emily's "Goddess" came to life, and told her that she was to be the Goddess' emissary, battling against evil and corruption in her name. She awoke to find herself clutching the statue, which radiated an eerie purple glow. Just then, there was a knock at the door. It seemed that one of the many boys she flirted with had made his way to her dormroom ins a drunken stupor and decided to win her affections by any means possible. After he tried to force himself upon her, Catherine's powers manifested, and she hurled him out a window with a mystic force bolt. Seeing the effects of this magic first hand, she decided to heed the words the Goddess had told her previously, and become a force for good, thus adopting the name The Alchemiss.
- Mentor - Not much is know about the being known as Mentor before his arrival on Earth. What is known is that he crash landed in Patriot City while escaping the forces of The Domain. After learning of Lord Dominion's plot to destroy Earth by giving the power of Energy X to is cruelest and most vile inhabitants, Mentor stole a freighter full of Energy X canisters and fled to Earth, intent of finding worthy men and women to endow with its power so that they may fight against Lord Dominion's forces. While making his daring escape, Mentor's ship was pursued and shot down by a fleet of Domain warships, releasing its cargo of Energy X into the atmosphere, particularly above Patriot City. After recovering from his crash landing, Mentor devoted himself to scouring the Earth in search of courageous men and women who had been empowered by Energy X to help aid him in his battle to protect Earth from the forces of Lord Dominion.
- Blackbird - During her time in and out of jail for burglary, Cassandra Calloway realized that crime really did not pay and relegated herself to a life of misery. One night when down on her luck, Cassandra was walking the streets when she was unexpectedly bombarded with Energy X. Cassandra chose to use her powers for good than to continue her evil deeds. Cassandra had her powers during the events of The Mr. Mechanical Disaster, and even during the Invasion of Nuclear Winter. It is said that Cassandra had her powers before Minuteman but that is unconfirmed. Blackbird was an official member of the Freedom Force during the events of The Third Reich.
- Iron Ox - Iron Ox is a washed up English boxer who was imbued with Energy X and given super powers. In many respects, Iron Ox is a typical strongman character but he is not especially vulnerable to mental attack as most "brutes" are. However, he is extremely vulnerable to electricity. Iron Ox speaks in a stereotypical posh English accent.
- Bullet - Dwight Arrow was an Air Force pilot known for being the "fastest man in the sky." During the Vietnam war, his plane was hit by Energy X, which granted him super speed. After his plane crashed, he not only outran the bullets of his pursuers, but ran all the way across the Pacific to America. He decided to become a crime fighter, adopting the identity of Bullet. Bullet is the fastest hero in the game and can also sprint short distances near-instantaneously. Additionally, he is relatively strong, which makes him a valuable melee character. Bullet can also stun enemies by running into them at high speeds and can generate small whirlwinds that hurl people and objects upwards.
- Eve - The beautiful Eve appeared unexplained in Patriot City Park, wearing a bikini-like outfit of foliage. Her origin is never fully revealed, but she plays a major role in defeating Pan, which may indicate that she is the embodiment of a mythological nature-force as well. Mysterious and quiet, Eve rarely speaks unless directly questioned. She wields a bow and variety of arrows with great accuracy, and can also call upon plants to blind or bind enemies. Her appearance is very similar to the early appearances of Poison Ivy in Batman comics.
- Supercollider - Supercollider's origin is unknown. Like all of the pre-order characters, he doesn't have an origin clip and his description states him as being either an alien or a genetic experiment. The sequel indicates via in-mission dialogue that Supercollider has had numerous run-ins with the law. He has a roughneck attitude and looks like a bulky orange skinned humanoid wearing a red armor. He has very powerful melee attacks and an active defense force field.
- Law and Order - Just before mob boss Franky "Scrambled Eggs" Carbone was to stand trial, Pinstripe's goons rigged Judge Wilson's car to explode. Wilson was killed instantly, but there was a witness. Judge Wilson's assistant Sarah had seen Pinstripe at the scene, even though the explosion blinded her. Sarah was placed in the protective custody of an Officer Samson, an inexperienced but honest policeman who refused to abandon her to the mobsters trying to silence her. Facing down the corrupt police officers about to kill them, Sarah and Samson were simultaneously struck by Energy X, fusing them together into a composite being. Sarah became Law, wielding a mighty sword, and Officer Samson became Order, who attacks with an enormous gavel. Only one aspect of the duo can exist at once, but either can transform into the other at will. Law is a powerful healer and a quick but relatively weak fighter, and Order is a slow but powerful warrior.
- Man O' War - Hank Waters was a grizzled fisherman, but he'd had a run of bad luck. He was taking his beloved ship, the Man O' War, to Boston to turn it over to the bank when he discovered a young female stowaway on board (see Sea Urchin below). A vicious storm struck, during which Hank Waters was thrown overboard. As the stowaway struggled to rescue him, both were struck by Energy X. Hank found himself possessing power over the sea and electricity, which he used to calm the raging storm. Naming himself Man O' War after his treasured ship, he becomes a crime-fighter along with his new sidekick, Sea Urchin. He is one of the more physically powerful characters in the game, has good ranged attacks and can gain the ability to fly. Man O' War's voice is very reminiscent of that of actor Sean Connery.
- Sea Urchin - The same incident that turned Hank Waters into Man O' War gave super powers to Merry Mason, his young stowaway. Like Man O' War, Sea Urchin has electrical and sea-related powers, but much less powerful. Most of her attacks are bubble-based, using her bubble-gun. Like Liberty Lad, she is young and much less durable than other members of Freedom Force.
- Tombstone - Nathan Graves was framed for the murder of his own wife by his neighbor. Shocked and devastated, he never spoke in his own defense during his trial and was sentenced to execution in the electric chair. At the moment of Graves' execution, Energy X hit the power line and traveled into his body. Not quite living and not quite dead, he gained electrical and spirit-based powers. As Tombstone, he still wears the execution hood placed over his head in the electric chair and has adopted a sinister gunslinger-like appearance, complete with six-guns and belt buckle adorned with skulls. Tombstone has a hollow, echoing voice and is grim and humorless. He has cold-based melee attacks and a ranged attack where his dual pistols shoot electricity from his execution. However, his most distinctive ability is possession: temporarily taking complete control of a victim while his own body fades into an intangible state.
- The Bard - Harry Holmes loved the works of William Shakespeare so much, it consumed his life. When his obsession caused his true love to leave him, Harry threw his lute in frustration, accidentally striking a canister of Energy X. He was granted powers echoing his passion for Shakespeare: singing hypnotic odes and throwing exploding "Yorick" skulls. The Bard was the winning character concept created by Richard Iacono in the "Calling All Heroes" contest.
- Green Genie - Jani Al-Hajani was cruelly held prisoner by her own father, a powerful sheik, and forced into an arranged marriage with a man she'd never met. Her elderly servant and friend Mustaffa attempted to help her escape, but her father's goons began torturing the old man for information on Jani's whereabouts. The young woman shielded Mustaffa with her own body when she was struck by Energy X. The bolt transformed her into a green-skinned, flying-carpet riding genie of legend, who is sometimes more concerned with having fun than fighting evil.
- Quetzalcoatl - Johnny Azotl's grandfather took him to the Patriot City Museum every year to look back at the past. As the tale of the staff of Quetzalcoatl, an ancient Aztec god, is told, Johnny becomes bored and impatient. Leaving his grandfather alone, he heads for the roof to let off some steam, but a burglar passes him by unnoticed. Suddenly, Johnny overhears a gunshot being fired inside the museum and upon re-entering finds his grandfather fatally wounded. The burglar pushes aside Johnny with the staff of Quetzalcoatl in his possession and without a second thought, Johnny gives pursuit and catches up with the burglar. As Johnny and the burglar struggle for the staff, a beam of Energy X hits the staff and the burglar, surprised by the beam, releases the staff. As the staff glowed, so did Johnny, feeling the power of Energy X and another ancient force. Johnny is surrounded in a golden aura and transformed into Quetzalcoatl, who then summons a giant snake and apprehends the burglar. Quetzalcoatl may be present, but Johnny still exists within him in spirit form. As Quetzalcoatl approaches Johnny's grandfather, he felt sad, an emotion with which he is not familiar. For the first time ever, the god cries, and a teardrop fell upon the elder, somehow reviving him. From then on, Quetzalcoatl vows to fight crime as if his presence in Patriot City is fate's decision.
- Black Jack - Jack St. John Spade was a British inventor working in Her Majesty's Institute for Wartime Research during World War II. He wanted to fight on the front lines as a soldier, but Professor O'Toole, his mentor, insisted that England couldn't afford to lose his abilities in combat. Working late one night, Spade discovered that O'Toole was being tricked by Blitzkrieg into creating a weapon capable of destroying the entire RAF. When Spade tried to intervene, Blitzkrieg paralyzed his legs to keep him out of the way. Desperate to keep the final secrets of the weapon from the enemy, Spade coated a playing card with his newest creation, a combination of acid and poison, and flung it into O'Toole's throat. Shunning the desk job that had kept him from combat, Spade equipped himself with guns and gadgets of his own invention and fought the Nazi menace as Black Jack. Like the other World War II-era heroes, his abilities are not Energy X-based. In addition to his pistol and punching attacks, he throws acid-dipped cards and blinding grenades and uses "decoys" to fool enemies. Black Jack speaks with a marked British accent and colourful phrases ("Let's get these Jerry blighters!"). At the end of the second game, he returns to the 1940s, which he sees as a more peaceful time.
- Tricolour- Sabrine Tricolette was a French fencing champion. After she won a gold medal in the 1936 Olympic games in Berlin, Blitzkrieg brainwashed her. Sabrine became a Nazi henchman, arresting resistance fighters in Vichy France. While Sabrine was supervising the execution of a group of rebels she had apprehended, one of them began to sing the French national anthem. When she tried to silence him, she saw the tricolored French flag on his scarf. This reminder of her beloved country shattered the hold that Blitzkrieg held over her. She became Tricolour, dedicated to freeing her homeland from the Nazis who had invaded it. She and Bullet seem to be very attracted to each other. Like Black Jack, Tricolour has no Energy X-related powers. Her abilities are based on her fencing skills, including fairly powerful melee attacks and a blinding light from her rapier.
- Sky King- Ace Gunner was an actor known for playing Sky King, a Nazi-bashing movie hero. Meek and shy, he saw that his co-star Charmaine was interested in the "real heroes" (soldiers) rather than his pretend hero. Eager to prove his courage and win Charmaine's love, Ace began trying to modify his movie-prop jetpack to enable him to actually fly. He had no luck, but got his chance at heroics when a Nazi spy stumbled onto the set and held Charmaine at gunpoint. Although he couldn't fly, Ace managed to save the actress by hurling himself at the Nazi with the help of his jetpack. Hailed as a hero, Ace decided to leave Hollywood and become the Sky King for real. A huge fan of Sky King while growing up, Bullet helps his hero alter his jetpack to fly. (Interestingly, Bullet knows how to do this from an old issue of a comic book featuring Sky King. See predestination paradox and ontological paradox.) His abilities all come from his armored costume, which unfortunately also makes him very slow on foot. His attacks include arm-mounted chain guns and a "blast-off" area damage ability. His manner of speaking is similar to that of Jimmy Stewart, Hollywood actor and Air Force pilot. His creation was probably influenced by the Commander Cody serials of the 1940s. The Sky King/Bullet connections appears to have been inspired by that of the Jay Garrick and Barry Allen, DC Comics' Golden and Silver Age Flashes. (Barry Allen read WWII-era Flash Comics before becoming the Silver Age Flash.)
- Nuclear Winter - He returns in the sequel where he uses a comatose Time Master's powers to retrieve missiles from the Cuban missile crisis and launch them in an effort to start a nuclear war between the United States and the USSR. After his plan was foiled, he further mutated into a Glacial Giant before being stopped by Freedom Force.
- Time Master - After Time Master's first defeat, he was given to US authorities in a dormant state. After Nuclear Winter's second defeat, he is returned to American authorities, but his body is used by Charles Wilson to change the outcome of World War II. He is awakened once more and is used to fight Entropy. After Entropy's defeat, he is defeated once more by Freedom Force; however, having the ultimate power over all time, he seems certain to resurface.
- Blitzkrieg - This Nazi mentalist has powerful mind-control abilities. Disguised as "Charles Wilson", deputy director of the CIA, he tricked Freedom Force into turning over Time Master to his custody after they defeated Nuclear Winter. Blitzkrieg used Time Master's powers to bring Energy X to the Nazis in the 1940s and thereby win World War II for the Axis. His exact origin is never explained. Blitzkrieg has a vague superficial resemblance to Adolf Hitler, but with a monocle, pencil-style mustache and grotesquely elongated head adorned with throbbing veins. Visually similar to Marvel Comics' The Leader, although super-Nazi Red Skull is an obvious analogue as well.
- Red Sun - Blitzkrieg exposed a Japanese officer to Energy X, creating this duplicating villain. Seemingly a single individual in his first encounter with Black Jack, Red Sun is actually an army of identical Warriors who seem to share a consciousness. Their abilities include a sword attack, hurling fiery shurikens, and the ability to summon explosive fire elementals. When one instance of Red Sun is killed, the rest gain his strength. Red Sun expresses a strict code of honor in battle, announcing themselves before attacking and thanking Freedom Force for the honor of dying in battle with them. Unlike Deja Vu, there does not seem to be one "original" or primary person controlling all the others.
- Fortissimmo - An Italian opera singer of questionable ability given Energy X powers by Blitzkrieg, Fortissimo can fly and emit powerful sonic attacks. He employs men costumed as Roman centurions as his henchmen. When first encountered, he is trying to destroy significant cultural artifacts such as the original Gutenberg Bible, the Summa Theologiae [disambiguation needed], and Shakespeare's first folio. Freedom Force also encounters Fortissimo when traveling further back in time in an attempt to disable Blitzkrieg's force-field generator, and in the "present", when Fortissimo is brought forward by Entropy to destroy culturally relevant buildings in Patriot City. In this final encounter, he is eaten by a dinosaur statue animated by Entropy. Perhaps influenced by the Fiddler and other musical Golden Age supervillains.
- Entropy - Entropy is the fusion of Alchemiss and chaotic forces. In order to help the time-lost heroes, Mentor encourages Alchemiss to draw upon more of her powers than ever before, and even tap into the vast reserves of the near-comatose Time Master. The combination gives her near-infinite abilities and corrupts her mind. She decides to free Man-Bot, whom she has always been drawn to, from the Celestial Clock where he was imprisoned at the end of the first game. He warns her that his presence is all that keeps the Chaos Wraiths at bay, but she refuses to listen and transports him back to Earth. Shortly thereafter, she is touched by one of the chaos wraiths and becomes Entropy. Entropy begins to tamper with the fabric of reality and tells Man-Bot that if he doesn't join her, she won't be able to hold things together; she claims that every known reality will be destroyed. Time Master and Freedom Force team up temporarily to defeat her, but of course Time Master attempts to betray the heroes as soon as Entropy seems to be helpless. Freedom Force seemingly best Time Master; however, as the master of all time, he is constantly at his strongest. As he prepares to destroy Man-Bot completely, Alchemiss briefly regains control over Entropy and attacks Time Master with Chaos Wraiths. Knowing that she cannot suppress Entropy for long, Alchemiss realizes the only course of action is to erase herself from ever existing. Accepting and expecting oblivion, she is surprised to find a mysterious figure before her, glowing with power. The stranger tells her in an alien voice that of all the gifted ones, she is the only one to ever surprise him. When Alchemiss asks who he is, he replies that he is Energy X. The game ends on this cryptic note. There are several noteworthy similarities between the Alchemiss/Entropy plot and Marvel Comics' Phoenix/Dark Phoenix/Jean Grey storyline.
- Red Oktober - Using the power of Energy X to make monsters of Russian folklore come to life, Red Oktober is a new ally of Nuclear Winter, until she learns that he plans to bring nuclear war—and destruction—to both the West and her homeland. She temporarily joined Freedom Force to defeat him, leaving their combined henchmen with questions as to which of the two was betraying the USSR. Before she parted with Freedom Force, she swore that she would return and defeat them. Ironcially, she is as much an homage to Marvel Comics Scarlet Witch as Alchemiss/Entropy, even going so far as to wear a red witch's costume and ride a broom.
- ↑ Yam, Marcus (2003-10-17). For Great Justice!. FiringSquad. Retrieved on 2007-11-26.
- ↑ Adams, David (2005-02-22). Freedom Force at Full Alert. IGN. Retrieved on 2007-11-26.
- ↑ Black Jack's origin story and in-game comments both refer to a queen ruling the United Kingdom even though King George VI reigned until 1952.
- Official website
- Freedom Force vs. The 3rd Reich at MobyGames
- Freedom Reborn: Freedom Force and Freedom Force vs The 3rd Reich fan site