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PC Reviews: Soldier of Fortune II: Double Helix


Soldier of Fortune II: Double Helix Screenshots

The Final Say!

Soldier of Fortune II: Double Helix - reviewed by Tory Favro
Review Date: 10 July 2002
Review Score: 9.2/10 
Distributor: Activision

One of the most controversial games on the PC, Soldier of Fortune is back with Soldier of Fortune II: Double Helix.

You are John Mullins, former US serviceman and now gun for hire for The Shop, a black ops units for the UN. Terrorism has reared it's head again with the game world and The Shop needs Mullins to do some wet work (killing) for them that they can deny if things go wrong.

Using a modified Quake III engine, SoF2 features some of the most explicit gore and carnage I have yet to see in a game, made all the more disturbing by the sheer realism of the title.

Created by Raven, this game will see you (and Mullins) spending time in South America and other real world places taking on the cartels and others who would threaten our peace loving democratic society.

The game combines two modes of gameplay: straight out combat and stealth. The AI of your enemy is a little flawed but for the most part, they are cunning adversaries. There are some parts of the game where the computer will try to shoot straight through walls as opposed to around them.

Graphically, the game looks beautiful with the sheer level of detail. Raven have gone all out making this title look exceptional with all the little details thought of and incorporated into it. In the jungle, bushes and fronds move realistically and trees will take damage from stray bullets. One frustration was that the foliage in the jungle is thick and should be able to be used for cover - it can't. The troops can see right through it.

The game runs at a great frame rate with not much in the way of lag or chugging except for a few areas that are not actually essential to the title and won't take too much away from the game. Everything is animated incredibly well with character reactions to gunfire and bullets hitting them being exceptional.

The difficulty level during the stealth parts of the is insane and with instant failure your reward for messing up, it does test your patience a little. The train yard level will see you having to be extremely stealthy and make sure that enemies are dispatched of carefully. A recommendation is using the Alt Fire to pistol whip guards and once they are knocked out, take them somewhere quiet where you can use the knife on them.

And speaking of the knife.... As crude as it is you will find yourself using the knife on corpses just to discover the sheer level of gore available to you. Arms, legs, hands and heads can be severed off and cast aside at will. Bodies will quiver and move with each stroke of the blade.

Now for the most part, the fair majority of gamers will test this out of morbid curiosity and move on. However after a gunfight, you can move on past your fallen foe and see the damage you have inflicted.

There have been a few reports of crashes occurring within  the game requiring restarts and files copied from the cd, but I did not experience them running it under Windows XP Professional.

Soldier of Fortune 2 is an intense shooter, offering a very different gamestyle than Medal of Honour or Return to Castle Wolfenstein. It is slick and polished and well worth the price of entry.

The title does have a gore lock for all you worried parents. Highly Recommended!

- Tory Favro

Copyright 2002 www.impulsegamer.com