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Unreal II: The Awakening (Windows)

79
MobyRank
100 point score based on reviews from various critics.
3.5
MobyScore
5 point score based on user ratings.
Written by  :  Dave Billing (24)
Written on  :  Mar 27, 2011
Platform  :  Windows
Rating  :  3.43 Stars3.43 Stars3.43 Stars3.43 Stars3.43 Stars

5 out of 7 people found this review helpful

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Summary

Great to look at, nice guns to shoot with, but sadly not much to explore

The Good

First and foremost, the graphics. The quality of the artwork is superb, lovingly crafted and easily surpasses that of the original Unreal, which was more of a mixed bag bar the skyboxes and the lens flares. The static mesh detailing ranged from OK to excellent, and the architecture was one of the best for its day. A great deal of variety of different environments and worlds also means you'll never get bored of looking at this baby.

And the variety of weapons on offer is certainly worth writing home about. After all, you get a grenade launcher with several varieties of grenade to use as the situation requires, and the sniper rifle is one of the best you'll ever find in a first person shooter. The rocket launcher packs a punch, and the spider gun is worth checking out for curiosity's sake, but otherwise I wouldn't bother using it as a primary weapon.

The Bad

The extremely linear gameplay and the ever so short maps. Most of the map is dedicated to environmental detail, which is a waste, and means that multiple maps are required for the one 'level', requiring frequent map loading, which is a pain in the bum itself, as even on modern machines things take forever to load. As a result of these seemingly short maps, the player moves at a snail's pace. Grrrr!!! ADHD is not compatible with this game, sadly.

Also, the game is somewhat unreliable, even with the latest patch, and has crashed several times on me, much to my frustration. The programmers who worked at the now defunct Legend should be summoned and shot for their blatant negligence, because this is one of the least reliable games out there.

And don't get me started on those flippin' cut scenes. It's not so bad when you're playing the game for the first time, but if you want to play it again you have no choice but to sit through them. Very annoying. The people who made this game didn't think this one through. If they ever made a patch fixing this (fat chance now, I might add) as well as the bugs, I may just forgive them.

The Bottom Line

It is worth playing, but only just. Had they made the game more stable and included an option to skip those darned cut scenes, I could quite easily overlook the linear, multi-mapped levels and the loading times that seem to take decades.