Written by  :  Drew Dorton (73)
Written on  :  May 31, 2001
Platform  :  Windows
Rating  :  4.43 Stars4.43 Stars4.43 Stars4.43 Stars4.43 Stars

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One of the deepest, most surprising, and longest FPS/RPGs you're likely to play.

The Good

Oh, where to begin? Let's start with the graphics, which are excellent, despite the (slowly) aging Unreal Engine. A bit sluggish at times, but the for the most part they are smooth and sleek. A note, though: If you have a non-3dfx card then you should definitely consider getting the Direct 3D patches before you play the game. They will enhance the performance of the game a great deal.

The graphics create a immersive, believable environment. The developers went very far to make it realistic, as well as to create a dark, cold atmosphere. From the gritty streets of Hell's Kitchen to the cold, bueraucratic UNATCO headquarters, every location feels exactly like it would if the game were real. Furthermore, the game features an unprecedented level of interactivity, allowing the player to make a real impact on the world, and affect things around him/her.

Of course, whatever else is good about the game is dwarfed by its storyline. The game's writers have managed to take something as cliche and predictable as conspiracy theory and created a wonderfully crafted storyline supported by good dialogue (although with less-than-perfect voice acting) and excellent story mechanics. As the plot progresses, the player is able to make many choices, which affect the overall outcome of the game. There are several different endings, and dozens of ways to get there.

Another unique aspect of the game is that it allows for many different playing styles. The developers have provided the player a variety of tools, such as taser stunners, gas grenades, sniper rifles, rocket launchers, explosives of all kind, and many different stealth weapons. This variety allows a player to play the game according to his or her own style. A player can be a demolitions expert, a Duke Nukem kill 'em all type, an expert hacker, a cunning stealth assassin... the list goes on.

If you're a fan of RPGs, FPSs, both or neither... in other words regardless of what type of games you're into, you really need to try this game. In short, it is a piece of gaming art, and should be a part of any gamer's collection.

The Bad

The AI is a bit funky at times, but not too bad. Just crank up the difficulty and you'll be too preoccupied with the computer guards trying to take off your head.

Also, the voice acting leaves a bit to be desired, especially in Hong Kong and Paris. It's mostly just the phony accents that can get irritating. It doesn't detract majorly from the game, however.

The Bottom Line

A huge FPS/RPG conspiracy theory epic that will grab you by the balls and not let go...