In the game, you play as Nick Mason, a member of the newly-formed "T-Zero" riot response squad, in an unnamed modern American city that's been overtaken by the notorious Burners gang. The gang members are attacking civilians, paramedics, firefighters and police officers, and it is up to you to stop them. You must defeat them by whatever means necessary in order to win your city back, capturing gang leaders and rescuing injured civilians along the way.
The game was known by three different names in development.
Sgt. Adam Wolf Commander of the T-Zero unit, Wolf is a veteran who served in the United States Marine Corps for 12 years before joining the Police Department. He is under constant pressure by the media and civil activists just like the mayor.
Chief Trudy A policewoman who sends all information to Mason during missions. Except for her voice nothing is known about her.
Mayor John Wyatt Current mayor of the city. He is being severely criticised for his inefficiency in stopping crime in the city. Although he did his best in creating "T-Zero," the only thing that can save the city, he was nevertheless criticised again for spending enormous funds (several million dollars) to the creation of the unit.
Lani York Anchorwoman of the Channel 7 News. You will see her before every mission.
Sally Taylor Reporter working for Channel 7 News.
Karl Estavez A prisoner who tried to escape the police station he was held in. An attack was made on the place to free him, but Karl died when Nick Mason shot him into gas tanks during a hostage situation, blowing him up.
Crocker Leader of the Burners. He is first seen in the final level, leading an assault on Nick's home. He is killed during a hostage situation in a meat factory, where Nick shoots him over a rail into a meat grinder.
Various other sub characters that help Mason throughout the game are named, being a part of emergency units IE Medics or Firefighters.
Cleaver Grunts They are the most basic and easiest Burners to take down. They may throw their cleavers if you are too far away or he may charge at you instead. They wear white masks.
Molotov Bombers They are also a basic gang member. They are able to throw molotov cocktails and are also able to use their molotov cocktails to breathe fire. They wear flame painted masks.
Shotgunners They wield sawn-off shotguns. They become the first firearm wielding unit in the first few missions. They are able to fire one shot alone or use their "double shot". They wear white masks and jumpsuits.
Machine Pistol Wielders They replace the Shotgunners after in the later missions. They can unleash a barrage of bullets at you. If you get too close they will attack your shield to prevent you from blocking his attack. They wear white masks with black smoke swirls painted on.
Chainsaw Men They usually attack you by surprise. Come too close, and they bash your shield to avoid blocking their blades. They are look insane and dress in blood stained clothes and a paint splashed mask.
Nail Bombers They throw a more powerful explosive then those of the Molotov Bombers. Sometimes they perform a suicide attack, lighting up two Nail Bombs and charges at you. They wear a black mask with yellow markings.
Assault Rifle Men They replace the Machine Pistol Men in the skyscraper mission. Coming too close to him will make him kick your shield off to stop you blocking their attacks. They wear white masks with a red strip.
Shield Men They can block your bullets and fire at you without warning. They wield magnums. They can perform a shield bash if you get too close to them. They wear white masks with yellow markings.
Grenadier They use Grenade Launchers and wear a bright yellow mask.
Hostage Taker They take hostages and are at the end of every level. They always wear either yellow masks or skull masks.
Gang Boss They can use any weapon against you. They are bald, shirtless and cover their mouths with a bandanna. Sometimes they have a backpack.