Platform: DOS; Windows; Mac
With his sophomore attempt, Gates succeeds at creating an effective simulation that takes one facet of police work and mimics it very well.
You play a member of the LAPD SWAT, and you will have your chance at three different scenarios, each with their own variations. You must coax a deranged woman out of her barricaded home, save a kidnapped man in an abandoned warehouse, and save the president of a local company who is being held hostage by terrorists. If you do well enough with each mission, you can eventually become an element leader, directing traffic, or a sniper, crosshairs on the enemy.
Leave it to the founder of the first SWAT to create a perfectly accurate simulation. The only time where the simulation hits a bump is via the LASH system in where you whisper to your teammates. Often you will know the right thing to relay, but may not use the exact wording the game expects you to; thus, many frustrating accidents will occur. Furthermore, when you die (which will happen many, many times) you are forced to hear the bagpipes at your funeral. Talk about a deterrant to screwing up!
One other minor quibble is that oftentimes the bad guy will appear and kill you if you follow procedures incorrectly, but will not appear in the same spot if you do things properly. In other words, the game never allows you to get lucky, which would happen at times in reality.
What makes this game even better than a simulation is the real-life elements included. The live acting is quite good with characters exchanging realistic conversations. Also, when you go berserk and start shooting innocent people, everyone reacts appropriately.
The music and graphics are superb, helping to make SWAT one of the most intense, suspenseful games I have ever played. Unfortunately, it is incredibly short with only six possible missions, and the nature of the game leads to a lot of repetition, saving, and restoring. Though it is not my favorite style of game, it is presented very well and I recommend it to anyone with a passing interest in the subject.