Hot on the heels of the Red Faction: Battlegrounds launch on PlayStation Network and Xbox Live comes a fresh look at the main player in the Red Faction universe: Red Faction: Armageddon. THQ has issued a new video for the upcoming destructive shooter, and while it focuses on introducing a new character — the lovely Kara — it also gives a closer look at some other members of Armageddon’s cast.

Regular readers and fans of the franchise will remember that Red Faction: Armageddon is being developed as a much more linear and focused experience than 2009’s Red Faction: Guerrilla. Though some may bemoan the loss of the sand-box elements that were the best part of Guerrilla, delivering a more directed game allows developer Volition to tell a much deeper and more nuanced story.

Of course, for those gamers just looking to blow stuff up real good there is always Red Faction: Armageddon’s Ruin Mode to look forward to. But don’t count out the game’s story mode just yet. For a fresh look at what to expect from Armageddon’s campaign, take a look at the new trailer below.

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Volition appears to have worked hard on creating a strong cast of characters for Red Faction: Armageddon. In addition to the new video, a fresh batch of screenshots of those characters has been released, along with a series of character bios. Take a look.

Kara: Born a Marauder, Kara is a hard-nosed smuggler who knows both the streets and the world of science.  Kara ran away from the regimented hierarchy of the Marauders at an early age. Smuggling goods around Mars and from Earth just seemed a natural course of action, both as an act of defiance and as an easy way to make cash. It was while operating in the underground of Mars that she met Darius. Aside from their place of birth, Kara and Darius couldn’t be more different. Darius was a hard worker who took people at face value; Kara was a sly, sarcastic rebel who trusted few. Darius wanted to live his life and avoid authority; Kara was always looking to pick a fight. They do have one thing in common: they wanted to stay hidden, and through that, a natural friendship was born.

Darius: For better or worse, the Masons are the “first family of Mars”–Washington, Jefferson, and Adams all rolled into one, along with the fighting spirit of the Minutemen. Darius is the scion of this legacy, though he never asked for the responsibility or wanted it. He just wanted to be left alone to live his own life, not the one Mars had seemingly demanded of him. He might have succeeded in avoiding the “Mason destiny” if not for Adam Hale and his apocalyptic cult. While doing his tour of duty for the colony, Darius was unable to stop Hale from destroying the Terraformer. The Martian atmosphere quickly deteriorated to the point where only the caverns and deep places of Mars were habitable. While the Colonists didn’t necessarily blame Darius for the disaster, his guilt ate at him, and he was never as comfortable with them as he once was. Darius’s guilt prompted him to spend longer amounts of time alone, seeking out missions that would take him away from settlement life. He learned how to survive by eking out a living from Salvage, how to blend into a crowd, and how to fight. The one thing he couldn’t do was forget or forgive what had been done to him.

Adam Hale: Adam Hale’s father was an EDF captain killed by Alec Mason during the Revolution of 2125. Hale was raised by EDF survivors abandoned on Mars.  In 2150, Hale’s White Faction launched a new war against the Colonists. Red Faction forces led by Alec Mason and his son Jake defeated Hale. Hale vanished after the Battle of Bakhuysen Trench. Years later, he returned as the messiah to a band of violent Marauder separatists.  Hale’s Cultists claim he joins the mystical Martian past to a glorious future. Others see a madman who would destroy the planet to rule it.

Frank Winters: A sergeant in the Red Faction military, Winters got where he is by being the toughest son of a bitch on the planet.  Winters prefers to be in the field with his men, not sitting back in a bunker.  He has earned an almost mystical quality among his soldiers… stories of Winters charging headfirst into battle and emerging unscathed are common. Winters is physically imposing and carries himself with a “no-nonsense” attitude.  Winters is all business, and if you jeopardize his mission in any fashion there will be hell to pay.

Just about two months remain until Red Faction: Armageddon releases into a surprisingly packed Summer gaming season that also includes LA Noire, inFamous 2, and Dungeon Siege 3, to name but a few. Until then, eager fans can busy themselves with Red Faction: Battlegrounds, but will Armageddon have what it takes to compete in such a crowded landscape?

Red Faction: Armageddon releases May 31, 2011, for the PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, and PC.

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