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Marathon 2: Durandal

MobyRank MobyScore
Macintosh
86
4.2
Windows
70
3.7
Xbox 360
66
4.0
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Description

Following the events of the original game, the Pfhor aliens have been defeated and the A.I. known as Durandral has been freed from it's containment. 17 years have passed and Durandral has assembled his own army from the colonists of Tau Ceti, including the Security Officer. Traveling across the galaxy, Durandral finds the home world of the S'pht, a Pfhor slave race, who Durandal liberates and who now worship Durandral as their Messiah. Durandal is searching for the location of a legendary lost tribe of S'pht who may hold the key to his mad quest for... well, whatever he's madly questing for. Unfortunately, the Pfhor dislike Durandral's presence and begin attacking his army.

Marathon 2: Durandal is the sequel to the first Marathon. Although the engine is similar to Doom in most respects (2.5D maps, bitmap sprites instead of polygons, etc.), Marathon 2 distinguishes itself with such features such as: a rudimentary inventory system, ambient sound, multiple fire modes for each weapon, allies who aid the player, enemies belonging to different factions which will attack each other, a more developed plot (gradually narrated to the player at various computer terminals scattered throughout the levels (much like System Shock's e-mail transmissions)).

The game's engine has gained a number of improvements over the original Marathon. It now displays in a much larger portion of the screen, supports maps with four times the complexity and adds support for liquids and swimming. All liquids use oxygen when the player is submerged and some also do damage. Many levels have mechanisms allowing areas to be flooded or drained, changing the depth of the liquid.

The other major new feature is a bunch of new multiplayer modes. The entire single-player portion can be played cooperatively with up to eight players and the game adjusts weapon and monster placement accordingly. In addition to "Every Man for Himself" mode (essentially deathmatch), it now includes "Kill of the Hill" where the object is to occupy a designated spot on the map more than anyone else, and "Kill the Guy with the Ball" where the object is to hold a skull the longest, the player holding it being unable to fire weapons.

Screenshots

Marathon 2: Durandal Xbox 360 Using the new widescreen view.
Marathon 2: Durandal Macintosh What collection of Marathon 2 screenshots would be complete without a pic of the dual shotguns?
Marathon 2: Durandal Windows Hunters fall to a fusion pistol on All Roads Lead to Sol
Marathon 2: Durandal Macintosh A Kill The Guy With The Ball net game (the skull is the "ball").

Alternate Titles

  • "Marathon: Durandal" -- Xbox 360 title

Part of the Following Groups

User Reviews

A classic finally comes to a platform people actually own and play games on Xbox 360 Ace of Sevens (4229)
A forgotten FPS classic (that actually works under windows xp today!) Windows Andreas SJ (22)
Atmospheric, terrific, amazing...who needed DOOM when you had Marathon? Windows Michael McKinlay (5)

The Press Says

PC Player (Brazil) Macintosh Jul, 1996 4.5 Stars4.5 Stars4.5 Stars4.5 Stars4.5 Stars 90
PC Games Windows Dec, 1996 B+ 83
Just Games Retro Windows Jan 18, 2009 80 out of 100 80
Game Revolution Windows Nov, 1996 B 75
GameDaily Xbox 360 Aug 03, 2007 7 out of 10 70
Eurogamer.net (UK) Xbox 360 Aug 07, 2007 6 out of 10 60
High Score Windows Nov, 1996 3 out of 5 60
High Score Macintosh Feb, 1996 3 out of 5 60
Power Play Windows Oct, 1996 58 out of 100 58
PC Player (Germany) Windows Apr, 1997 2 Stars2 Stars2 Stars2 Stars2 Stars 40

Forums

Topic # Posts Last Post
Kids these days 2 Zovni (9360)
Aug 06, 2007
Coming to XBLA 5 Ace of Sevens (4229)
Jul 18, 2007

Trivia

Halo can in many ways be seen as a spiritual successor to the Marathon series; a way of bringing their Marathon innovations to a bigger crowd. The following Halo features stem directly from the Marathon series:

- Dual wielded weapons with dual firing modes - Weapon clips - The alien pistol, SPNKR rocket launcher, Needler, magnum megaclass and assault rifle are all direct descendants of Marathon weapons, right down to the names. - Rogue/Rampant AI constructs - Alien technology not even the aliens know what is (The Forerunner in Halo; The Jjaro in Marathon) - "Releasing an ancient terror from the stars upon the universe by activation of ancient alien artifact" (The Wr'knkacnter for Marathon, the Flood for Halo) - The UNSC in Halo is a redux of the UESC of Marathon: United Earth Space Council / United Nations Space Council

Related Web Sites

Contributed to by Alan Chan (3597), אולג 小奥 (169544) and Ace of Sevens (4229)