Home Games Boss Rush – Psi-Ops: The Mindgate Conspiracy

Boss Rush – Psi-Ops: The Mindgate Conspiracy



Lets start with a pitch. Picture this; six super powered terrorists are standing in front of you. Each of them wielding an aspect of “psychic” energy unique to themselves. Their strange mind altering powers are used to corrupt the innocent and reign down tyranny on the common folk for personal gain. The only one standing before them is you. Fortunately, You have a power that is equal in strength to these foes. The energy inside of you shows a potential to fill the void that currently constricts the full extent of what your mind and body can do. Take down those terrorists. Strip them of their power. Use it for good. No object is bound to its surroundings due to the power of telekinesis at your disposal. You are Psi-operative, Nick Scryer. Elite weapons specialist. Mind Altered Mercenary. Dead ringer for Jason Statham.
psi-ops-screenshot-1Some ideas just work. They leap from a creators mind and make sense when they are put into action. Psi-Ops: The Mindgate Conspiracy for the Sony PlayStation 2 is a fine example of a developer running with a simple concept and nailing it in execution. Upon the initial release of the game, it was heralded with positive reviews from the public, the majority of top game magazines and critics alike. It was on the first iteration of what is known as the “Havoc 2” engine, enabling it to be one of the pioneering games to utilize rag doll psychics. A quick search on YouTube will yield a plethora of examples of rag doll psychics that are unintentionally hilarious and may make you question why having them is a positive aspect. In regards to this game, it blends well due to the action film nature of the story unfolding before you.
In a world where the farcical idea of “psychic terrorists” are on the loose, You can forgive a jerky character model that has odd joints, because they are effectively only there so you can toss them gh-psi-ops-2around in the most entertaining fashion. If there is any time to be “over the top” in a game then it is assuredly right in the midst of a battle of super-powered psychics.
Psi Ops is an often overlooked game despite the satisfying and surprisingly smooth style combat. Midway found a balance between each of the powers that made them all feel very useful and creative in different regards to the gameplay. It was widely touted as excellent, purely on the merit of its core integration of these unique abilities you would acquire. It was similar to the Mega-Man format, albeit with a grittier edge to it. While it soared high with its combat, It sank low in parts of the story. A plot that doesn’t leave you much to grasp onto is not the end of the world in terms of a video game. Part and parcel of the reason Psi-Op didn’t do well in terms of sales is down to the saturation of the third person genre at the time. A sequel had been announced to be in the works, but folded due to the closure of its developer, Midway Studios. The sequel shall never be, but we still have the memory and perhaps one of the most entertaining boss battles of all time.

Edgar_BarrettEdgar Barrett

A classic duel of mentor versus student. Edgar Barrett is a former agent of the company you work for and trained you in the art of telekinesis. Unlike the other characters you face in the game, Edgar has the same power that you do. Interestingly this makes him the best encounter that you will find. Whilst variety is the perfect spice for any game, meeting a boss who can mimic your movement is a new level of challenge. A pyrokinetic is only as lethal as the range of his fire dictates. A fellow telekinetic can push beyond the boundaries of range. The fight with Barrett is in two stages. There isn’t much to note of the first stage as you are in a tight space with both of you limited to the convenient explosive barrels that lay near you.
Toss enough barrels and Barrett takes the fight up a notch. Both of you leave the building setting the stage for a war of telekinetics. A train yard is the arena.
More explosive barrels. Empty train carriages. Lots of ammunition. Metal crates. Its a tactical boss battle with evasion and precision timing being the key. Too slow? You are going to be crushed by a train hurtling towards you. Too eager and no time for being stealthy? Time to force choke you to death.
You are inundated with a grand feeling of being eclipsed by a man bigger in terms of size and power and all of this with smattering  of comments eluding to the past friendship you used to have with him. Metal Gear Solid uses this type trope often. Its easy to see how effective it can be. When you have a true monster of an enemy berating you physically and mentally; The intensity of a fight can be all the more rewarding! A wonderful touch that adds a layer to this fight is the added bonus that you can replay it after the game is finished. Any of the bosses in Psi-Ops are up for a second round once the credits roll. The catch is that the new powers you will have attained since fighting them will be countered in diverse ways not previously seen. Fighting Barrett in particular feels really fresh once  you have the pyrokinesis ability. The buff behemoth of  man is well capable of handling you at any skill level that you may be. Its that kind of innovation that makes a boss fight truly memorable.
Did I forget to mention that upon completion of the game you can also fight this boss — as himself?