| The Final Say!|
- reviewed by Tory Favro
Review Date: 10 February 2003
Take 2 Interactive
This game freakin' rules!'
Now that we've got that out of the way
I am amazed that you have not already dashed out and bought this fabulous
game! Not since old school days of the twitch shooter (Wolfenstein/Doom etc),
has such a game arrived that is an absolute treat to play.
- Players 1-4
- In-game Dolby Digital
System Link 1-X
- Genre: First Person
Wanna Really Get Serious? Now
Available: Serious Sam Official Strategy Guide
You play the part of
'Serious' Sam Stone who has travelled through time and space to see if he
can't undo the evil machinations of Mental, a pseudo god type figure who
has been stuffing around with the galaxy and various creatures from
different parts of the universe.
For all the purists
out there who are already gagging at the score I gave this game, I
challenge any true fan of the first person shooter to tell me where this
title fails. I will get the only two bugbears out of the way and then get
on with the praise.
No rumble in the controller, why? Unless
I just didn't figure it out, I could not get any rumble out of the
controller which would have been great for letting me know when I was
getting shot from behind. I could understand if it wasn't included for a
health and safety related issue, as this game is so addictive there's no
way you'll put it down and the action and shooting so continuous that the
rumble would be going off almost all the time.
Now to the next problem. Very
occasionally the frame rate drops a little bit, however it is hardly
noticeable. This causes the graphics on the sides of the screen to judder
slightly. I did find that although this occurred that it never detracted
from my enjoyment of the game and did not seem to happen when a fracas had
started. Considering there are battles with hundreds of enemies onscreen
all at once firing at you, this is an accomplishment that others should
stand up and take notice of.
For those not in the know, Serious Sam
and Serious Sam 2 have been on the PC platform for a number of years now
and it was on the PC that I first fell in love with the title. The focus of
the game is fun and this it delivers in spades. Not only that but the
developers Croteam managed to get a gorgeous looking game that would run on
lower end systems (at that time) as well as the latest and greatest. On
XBox we are all on a level playing field however console gamers come out
trumps as both Serious Sam and Serious Sam: The Second Encounter are on
this disc as the one complete adventure.
It's possible to detect
where the game shifts from number one to part two as the the second instalment
featured a few puzzle elements to keep punters guessing on how to progress.
Don't worry, it's not enough to really test the grey matter and at the same time
not enough to slow the progress of this fast paced game.
The title is set in Egypt
and the various textures will be enough to drive you crazy with how good this
game looks to play and the level of detail used throughout the game. Another
amazing thing about this game is that a fair amount of it actually takes place
in outdoor locations and I am not talking about small pent up areas either.
There are huge expanses of land that must be traversed and the game handles it
all with ease all the time creating more fodder for your canon.
The AI is not clever, nor
is it intended to be. These guys won't duck and dodge or try to get out of the
way. They will charge straight at you with both guns blazing in the hopes that
the sheer number of them along will be enough to bring you down. And quite
often that will be enough to put you down for the count. However unlike the PC
versions, you can get new lives and there are predetermined save points that
arrive in the form of telephone boxes that you activate by hitting the use
The audio in the game is
also sensational with Dolby Digital support throughout the game. Everything has
been given a nice scrub for the arrival on XBox and it certainly shows. The
amount of thought that has been put into everything, even the menu screens are
lively and animated. For those who would be upset by the amount of blood that is
going to be shed, there is a 'hippie' option that allows flowers to fly through
the air as opposed to gushing claret. It's a really nice effect and quite
psychodelic. Give it a try even once to see what I mean.
Multiplayer is a strong
point in the game offering the chance to smack down your mates or to team up for
some serious coop goodness. Even during the coop and deathmatch split screen
modes, no one complained about the quality of their visuals or slowdown which
further credits how much fun this game is for everyone. The game itself has 30
odd levels that by themselves take some time to complete, however add to that a
genuinely fun multiplayer and Serious Sam should be in your machines for quite
By now it should be an
easy enough affair to see that I fully recommend this game to all fans of first
person shooters and all fans of fun itself! Go get Serious Sam today, it's a
game purchase that won't be regretted. For those wishing to experience the game
in it's entirety, grab the strategy guide pictured in the game's features box.
It makes a brilliant game complete!
- Tory Favro
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