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There are only 12 solo levels, so the time to complete won't be very long for the hardcore gamer, but Shrak has enough new monsters, weapons, sounds, and levels to make the $19.95 retail price well worth it. If you're into multiplayer, the lifetime of Shrak will be greatly extended by the deathmatch and capture-the-flag levels.
Shrak enthält meiner Meinung nach alles, was ein gutes Add-on braucht: neue Waffen, Feinde und Level. Klar, so etwas konnte sich bis jetzt jeder in Form einzelner Patches aus dem Internet ziehen. Aber es geht nicht nur darum, das alte Quake mit irgendwelchen noch nie dagewesenen Waffen vollzupropfen. Diese müssen auch ausgewogen sein. Der überall im Netz erhältliche Raketenwerfer, der Homing-Missiles verschießt, ist es beispielsweise nicht. Genauso wenig die sogenannte Snipergun, die sich als lautlos, tödlich und ungefährlich für den Schützen erweist. Hier liegt eben der große Unterschied von Shrak zu selbstgebackenen Quake-Zusätzen: Shrak ist ausgewogen und fair.
While the gameplay is essentially the same, there is a subtle change in emphasis in Shrak. Slightly lower-key and less of a shoot-out than the original, Shrak plays like Quake: The Platform Game, challenging the player in an unending succession of platform jumps (the sticky jumping controls take some getting used to), treacherous lava crossings, and seemingly inextricable situations. Success depends on equal parts patience, quick thinking, and quick shooting; in fact, some levels took me ten minutes just to find the entry portal. While there are still all the explosions and mayhem any fragger could ask for, if there's such thing as the thinking man's Quake, then this is it.
Shrak is a really tough product to rate. Some aspects of this TC are fantastic, when others are a sure let-down. I like some of the weapons, I hate others. I love the grappling hook, but I hate that they decided to make it a VERY limited item, along with all of the utility pack gear. I love the way most of the new monsters look, but I hate their stupidity. It's a love/hate thing. ;-)
SHARK's maps are pretty well-designed, if a little routine, with a stronger emphasis on platform jumping than shooting. The biggest knocks against the level design are that there are too many monsters hidden in well-concealed areas and that the levels are frequently too dark. On the plus side, SHARK does support GL QUAKE, all the better to see those monsters with when they do come out.