Emergency 2014 is a realistic Emergency simulation game and a continuation of the Emergency Simulator series where you take-on a series of terrible disasters and occasional crimes. The disasters and crimes range from a Meteor Apocalypse and a passenger plane crashing into a nuclear warhead to an elderly man collapsed in the street.
Rescue 911 on steroids intro The presentation of Emergency 2014 is superb. It opens like an episode of Rescue 911 with an explosive montage of shocking disasters starting with a raging fire in the Amazon rainforest, moving onto an injured mountain climber being administered with an electric defibrillator by frantic paramedics, an anarchist riot that's spiraled dangerously out of control with protestors lobbing petrol bombs at police and ends in a crescendo with a raging inferno that blasts a firefighter off of his ladder like a scene from the film Backdraft. \nTwo main modes of play
Emergency 2014 is split into two modes - Campaign and Freeplay. Freeplay is just for fun, Campaign Mode is more serious and involves Budgets and levels with increasing difficulty. Freeplay is the way to go to begin with - it includes a tutorial which is essential because without it, you won't understand anything and the Apocalypse will have wiped out Earth before you're paramedic has even put down his cup of tea in the depot.
I'm new to the Emergency simulator series and was disappointed that you don't actually get to drive any of the vehicles. I had visions of tearing through 30mph zones at over 100mph in a Fire Engine but the reality is Emergency 2014 is more like a Civilization style game where you strategically instruct vehicles and crews to attend emergencies.
There's also a multiplayer feature where you can team-up with other players to tackle emergencies although at the time of testing, there were no other servers or players available which is a bit disappointing.
From the Main Menu, you can also choose to play Emergency 2012, 2013 and 2014. The main difference is missions - they all have different scenarios although only Emergency 2014 features the aforementioned meteor apocalypse and a passenger plane crashing into a nuclear warhead.
Frustrating to get to grips with
Even though the tutorials in Emergency 2014 are fairly clear, I found it frustrating when getting my crew to actually attend the scene of an emergency. You have the select the type of emergency team to send out, how many to send, and then you're supposed to be able to follow the vehicle in real time as it arrives at the scene. However, it's not clear for beginners exactly how to make the vehicles leave the depot.
In one mission I played, an old man that had collapsed on the street died simply because my paramedic and ambulance refused to leave the depot. There was no sign of strike action and the game simply doesn't make it clear how to make vehicles actually leave. You can speed-up real-time to three times the normal speed in case you get bored waiting around but in my case this didn't help. All I can say is thank God it wasn't the Meteor Apocalypse in progress.
The other problem you'll find is that the missions are incredibly hard from the beginning. In the Campaign mode, your taken back to The River Rhine in Germany in the 1800s where fire is devastating a small town. With about 5 men and three canon hoses, it's almost impossible to stop the fire raging out of control within about 5 minutes. You should at least be allowed to pick which mission you'd like to tackle first starting with something easy (like a bin on fire or something) and then move onto raging forest fires.
Excellent graphics and animations
The actual graphics and animation in Emergency 2014 are excellent. Towns, villages and forests are beautifully animated and are equal to anything you'll find in SimCity. Emergency 2014 is incredibly well presented with explosive montages of emergencies and disasters at the beginning and lots of in-game animations of injured people, crashes and HQ giving-out instructions. It's just a shame that some of the gameplay doesn't involve actually driving the vehicles or having a first-person-view of a disaster site.
A great simulator for those that like Rescue 911
If you're a fan of shows such as Rescue 911 and want a SimCity style game but with more action and drama, Emergency 2014 is worth checking out. Or if you've ever wondered how Emergency services would deal with a Meteor Apocalypse, Emergency 2014 is the place to start.