Sneak past, shoot through, or throw rats at your foes in Fallen Aces, a bloody and creative FPS that is coming out next week

There really aren't enough games where I get to chew on cheap cigarettes and mutter to myself about dames and crime lords. For as much as developers often draw on noir as an inspiration, there just aren't that many that let me go the full Philip Marlowe with it.

Well, thank god for Fallen Aces, then, a comic book-y crime noir that teased its first episode during the PC Gaming Show. It's a bloody, pulpy, dare I say immersive sim-style thing that looks set to satiate a lot of your '90s FPS cravings: Think guns, knives, broken bottles, and more environmental kills than I can count.

Oh, and a frying pan you can use to block bullets. The spirit of PO'ed is alive and well.

Back in 2020, our own Andy Chalk said the game looked like a combo of Condemned: Criminal Origins and Dick Tracy comics. He was 100% right, but to my addled brain it also brings back memories of XIII, Ubisoft's underappreciated 2003 FPS that had a similar comic book stylisation. Of course, Fallen Aces looks a lot bloodier than the sedate, Belgian pace of XIII.

(Image credit: New Blood)

Or at least, what we've seen so far does. Fallen Aces says its levels are non-linear, meaning you can "use stealth, go loud, or try a mixture of both," to solve your many, many problems. We don't see much stealth in the trailer, but that's probably down to the fact that sneaking past a goon isn't quite as dramatic as decapitating him with a shotgun blast.

The trailer that dropped during the show features our hero getting sprung from some sort of gangland interrogation by a shadowy figure, and then everything just escalates from there. Combat looks frantic and creative, with the player character making use of all sorts of improvised weapons to batter his way through armies of thugs, making use of things like sparking fuse boxes and other hazards to take out multiple at once. Also, a finger gets bitten off at one point.

All good fun, then, and you can find the game's first episode on June 14 on Steam. That's just one part, mind you. Devs Trey Powell and Jason Bond promise a total of three full episodes and dozens of levels to wham, batter and splat your way through.  

Joshua Wolens
News Writer

One of Josh's first memories is of playing Quake 2 on the family computer when he was much too young to be doing that, and he's been irreparably game-brained ever since. His writing has been featured in Vice, Fanbyte, and the Financial Times. He'll play pretty much anything, and has written far too much on everything from visual novels to Assassin's Creed. His most profound loves are for CRPGs, immersive sims, and any game whose ambition outstrips its budget. He thinks you're all far too mean about Deus Ex: Invisible War.