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PC Reviews: Die Hard Nakatomi Plaza


Die Hard Nakatomi Plaza Screenshots

actual in-game screen shots

The Final Say!




Die Hard Nakatomi Plaza
reviewed by Andrew B
Review Date: 17 July 2002
Review Score: 8.8/10 
Distributor: Vivendi Universal Interactive

"Yippee kay yay #!@$% #$%!! ...

... Die Hard Nakatomi Plaza is almost as good as the blockbuster movie Die Hard!"

The Die Hard movie series have always been popular with movie goers, and the original movie is probably the best out of the trilogy. Imitation is the highest form of flattery, so what better way to pay homage to the original movie than by "porting" it across to a first person shooter on the PC. 

New York Cop John McClane thought he was just going to have a quiet holiday with his estranged wife but he was dead wrong. It's Christmas Eve and the Nakatomi Corporation are holding their end of year office celebrations. A weary John McClane has travelled from New York to California to spend some time with his wife Holly, unfortunately for them, the Nakatomi Plaza has been laid siege by German terrorists, intent on stealing millions of dollars worth of negotiable bearer bonds. 

You play officer John McClane who has found his world turned upside down. After briefly meeting your wife, you go to her office to freshen up when you hear the sounds of automatic gunfire and the screams of Nakatomi Plaza office workers. These slick terrorists have everything planned except for one thing, they were not counting that a New York police officer would throw a spanner into their plan. Your job is never simple, you must try to get help while saving the innocent lives of Nakatomi Plaza and if need be, terminate the terrorists with extreme prejudice, for your wife is one of the hostages.

If you haven't seen the movie Die Hard than I highly recommend that you rent or buy the DVD, it's probably one of the best action movies of all time and this gem of a game is based on that movie. This game has been given some unkind reviews by some gaming reviewers but they are gravely mistaken, this game is very very cool.

Although this game is almost identical to the movie it does have some new plot twists. There are basically over 30 single player levels that have you fighting your way through Nakatomi Plaza. Everything has been painstakingly recreated on this game to be an almost a carbon copy of the movie. The game starts with the an almost identical scene from the movie when John McClane's plane lands from New York and it's late afternoon. The head of the Nakatomi Corporation, Mr. Tokagi makes the identical speech from the movie and you even see the terrorists carefully take over the entire building.

The gameplay of Nakatomi Plaza revolves around a series of small puzzles and the elimination of terrorists. You must use a variety of weaponry, especially from the terrorists to shoot your way to victory. As with all first person shooters, you must use your mouse and keyboard in conjunction to navigate and shoot your way through levels. 

The graphics of Die Hard Nakatomi Plaza may not be the best in today's day and age but they are still extremely well done. The game uses a modified version of the Lithtech engine which unfortunately puts a "squarish" look on everything. Fortunately it suits the game very well because as we all know Office Buildings are usually square. The character models are extremely well done and animated and have a high polygon count which help add to the realism of the game. As a bonus, the developers have gone to extraordinary lengths to make the gaming environment interact with the player, whether its using an Axe to knock down a door or using furniture for cover, its one hell of a ride.

The sound effects of this game are all top class and feature authentic gun sounds from the movie, whether you're firing your trusty police issued handgun or blasting your way through a squad of terrorists with your M-16, its perfect. The only down side to the game is the voice of John McClane and Hans Gruber because they are done by new actors. Although Hans Gruber does sound like the original actor from the movie, John McClane doesn't sound like Bruce Willis at all which is unfortunate because his dry wit and sarcasm are sorely missed, nevertheless still a great job. Fortunately, the developers have managed to get actor Reginald Vel Johnson to return to his original role as Officer Powel. The music from Die Hard Nakatomi Plaza has been taken straight from the movie, so soundtrack fans will be happy to hear the familiar themes from the movie. This really helps add to the atmosphere of the game and you actually feel like you are John McClane from the movie Die Hard.

Die Hard Nakatomi Plaza is an awesome game and I would thoroughly recommend that you check this game out if you loved the movie. Even if you were not a fan of the movie or have never seen it (god forbid), then this game is still worthy because it's probably one of the best darned first person shooters around. And I think we all agree that we've had enough World War II first person shooter themes to last us a long time. 

The game has an awesome storyline that is not to missed. The only down side to the game is that it uses the Lithtech engine which is a little dated into today's PC gaming world. The graphics are still very nice though and it does pay a tribute to the movie. I challenge you to try and not say the famous John McClane quote "Yippee kay yay @!#%@@#" when playing this game. Highly Recommended! 

- Andrew B

Copyright 2002 www.impulsegamer.com