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Cold Zero: No Mercy (Windows)

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Developed by
Released
Platform
69
MobyRank
100 point score based on reviews from various critics.
3.5
MobyScore
5 point score based on user ratings.
Written by  :  kbmb (399)
Written on  :  Nov 05, 2003
Rating  :  1 Stars1 Stars1 Stars1 Stars1 Stars

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Summary

Too frustrating to even bother.

The Good

JoWooD is a strange publisher. These guys have brought me some of the most underrated games I've played. Gothic II, Chaser, Arx Fatalis, and several others. These games usually don't get the highest ratings, and yet, I've had more fun with these than most Sierra or Electronic Arts games.

So I eagerly picked up Cold Zero, expecting more of the greatness JoWooD has given me.

There are things I like about Cold Zero. The story itself, if you just lay it down and look at it, looks like a pretty fun romp. You play an ex sniper who starts a sort of detective business, gets involved with the mafia, and all that. The RPG elements are nice, with rewards for being stealthy. Lots of guns and other goodies to pick up...

The Bad

Unfortunately, the game sucks. Oh boy, it absolutely sucks. First of all, there is no way to be "sneaky". The enemies will sometimes hear you from across the map even if you're sneaking, but other times they won't hear you run right up next to them and start wailing on someone nearby. They also have been blessed with x-ray vision and super shoot-you-right-through-the-wall weaponry. You, unfortunately, do not have these abilities.

The game could be tolerable in its buggy way if loading times weren't so atrocious. It takes thirty seconds to a full minute to load on my system, and that's simply unacceptable. In fact, I only played to the second level. Were I to play any farther, I simply would slit my wrists and be done with it.

The graphics also suck. The game's gamma default is set way too high, and even on its lowest setting it's still near-blinding at times. Controlling your character is sometimes okay, but usually it's laughably bad. Mostly because he'll pick the most horrendous route to get to wherever you told him to go, and thanks to the bad guys' keen sight and insane-precision shotgun pellets, that always means certain death.

Other problems litter this game. Such as, he doesn't automatically reload. Okay, that alone is a small problem. I don't really mind having to manually reload the gun -- heck, that adds a strategic element if anything. But, if you're sitting there right-clicking the hell out of an enemy and run out of ammo, your dumbfuck character will STILL be trying to shoot the enemy, long after you stopped clicking. It seems every one of those clicks stacks up, and until your character realizes that the last forty times he's pulled the trigger have done jack shit, you're vulnerable to whatever shotgun-sniper there may be anywhere in the damn level.

Bam, you're dead.

Quick load.

Wait thirty seconds.

Nah. I give up.

The Bottom Line

If the bugs could be worked out, and loading times were improved, this game could actually be pretty fun. But as it is right now, it's way too fricken hard, the enemy AI goes from bad to psycho-accurate, it's hard to find cover when anything can hit you anywhere...

It's just not worth it.

JoWooD, you've let me down.