Review by Gbness
"The ideal raging war of a great shooter."
It's a long world with many timelines and dates. The first end being way back in the old Texas blues, as gunpowder and revolvers incredibly common. And further into the dateline is a world filled with machinery and radars to track those who dare to pass by. Cameras that see all who try to intrude upon the area, and then as it goes to the end, a large futuristic world - guns like revolvers and pistols are a thing of the past - the world now uses lasers, autorifles, and advanced technology. There are new planets discovered, and the space is the limit.
And thus the world is thrown into darkness. Those who wish to split time lurk around this wide universe, with a desire to destroy and kill whatever they come across. The evil aliens - the TimeSplitters, roam it. They have a desire to kill all, and destroy time. You bring your trusty gun, and kill one. Then, three more sneak up behind you. You then turn around, and then...
It's too late for you... you are already dead, on the floor and gone.
The power of the evil TimeSplitters is great. In a space station, at a dateline of 2401, Corp. Hart and Sgt. Cortez have nine Time Crystals. Which these crystals, they intend to banish the TimeSplitters and drive them away. Into sheer darkness, doom, and despair... but as the plan is going along, several TimeSplitters burst in. Corp. Hart and Sgt. Cortez then fight with all their strength to try and kill the blasted creatures. As they make their way to the opposite end of the space station and destroy them there, the final group of them steals all the Time Crystals, and then escapes through the portal.
And when Hart and Cortez return to the portal, they realize that all the Time Crystals are gone. The TimeSplitters have stolen them and made their way to a total of nine periods in time where Sgt. Cortez will have to follow them and get them back, ranging from a factory run by robots, where the Dark Machinist Child is intent on bringing back a large robot army after the Machine Wars, and the wild west of Texas, where the innocent in Little Prospect are in danger of oblivion - a maniac from the Confederate Army lives only to kill.
So it begins...
Your time being split by playing the game is divided into activity in four categories: Story mode, Arcade tournaments, Challenges, and the MapMaker. The main heart of TimeSplitters 2 lies within the Story mode. This is what I was talking about. The story mode is made up of ten long missions. Even though the length of the missions is considerable, the overall length of the game isn't. TimeSplitters 2, if you don't get discouraged by the tougher modes of difficulty, can take only a few hours to complete, on Easy mode. Normal mode and Hard mode make the game much longer. But if the Story mode doesn't keep you occupied, Arcade tournaments and Challenges will.
There is a long variety of Arcade tournament types. There are bang-bang shoot 'em ups, games where you kill to get health and try to stay alive, and types where you try to avoid/set people on fire. But whichever kind it is, the tournaments are always a cold, dark war for survival. A large quantity of characters gather around in these tournaments, and you try to stay alive for as long as you can. Now this is an extremely addictive feature inside TimeSplitters 2, and when that can really keep you occupied for a long time.
Challenges are not quite as fun as Arcade tournaments, since there is less variety and you don't get to kill quite as much, but they still provide a reasonable amount of challenge and entertainment. In Challenges, you are forced to kill, destroy, and collect. There are challenges where you must smash glass, destroy cardboard pieces that have taken over towns, collect your spare batteries from another part of a large place, and then make your way back and escape, and rage burning hell against zombies by chopping their heads off. TimeSplitters 2 never goes short of stuff that you can do.
However, from what you have read, you may be thinking that TimeSplitters 2 is just your average battle and large shooter where you just go back in time and destroy aliens, unoriginally. No, it's much more than that. TimeSplitters 2 is sure to addict you as soon as you get started, since the magic just does not wear off. It has a large amount of replay value, and some of the things in the game, such as the MapMaker, which allows you to create your own levels, and the deepest action of Arcade modes, will just stone your hands on the controller, not allowing you to put it down. TimeSplitters 2 also has a good variety of weapons, ranging from your average pistol which fires slow, but usually powerful bullets, and miniguns that spit out bullets faster than you can say, ''I'm a dead man.'' But because of this, you may think that TimeSplitters 2 is easy. Right?
Wrong. Dead wrong.
TimeSplitters 2 becomes down-to-earth challenging at times. When you get to Hard mode, you will really feel the pain that the difficulty inflicts, nearly as much as that which is given when you shoot a zombie's head off. Some enemies can kill you in just a few bullets, since the AI is programmed for them to show no mercy. When an enemy sees you, he is ready yo make his kill, and they never hesitate. So many are around, that you cannot just go around and use a sniper rifle to ensure an automatic victory. If you screw up by letting one of them see you, it's an automatic fall to your death. Arcade tournaments can sometimes have so many of them shooting, that you die before you even get started. This is what you should prepare for.
The game does have quite a good selection of weapons, however. When you get to the later areas (past the year of 2000), you are gifted with extremely fast guns (the Plasma Autorifle, SBP90 Machinegun, and Minigun), and just plain awesome weapons. In the earlier parts of the dateline though (the 1800s to the 1900s), it mainly consists of shotguns, revolvers, and occasionally a sniper rifle. The sniper rifles are quite useful, because occasionally you have to use stealth to win in TimeSplitters 2. There are about 20-30 guns however, and since there is a large variety of them, the overall weaponry is fantastic.
Graphically though, TimeSplitters 2 is very nice. In fact, when you play you'll feel just like you're in the areas you play through - with echos of death going through them though, mind you. All of the characters are animated nicely, especially some of the weirder ones. A hybrid mutant with two faces squished together into one - that of a drowsy zombie and that of a human, several weird aliens, and other such menaces are just some of the creatures that TimeSplitters 2 has in it. Still, all of them are good looking, even though most can get to be rather strange at times. Also, walls, grass, and the like are quite detailed.
When it comes to sound, TimeSplitters 2 is a definite treat towards the ears. The music in the area fits it perfectly at all times. For example, in the Aztec Ruins you enter a mysterious temple of the ancients, full of stone golems that desire your blood and your very life, and living faces that can even shoot plasma bullets through their eyes. A grand theme plays there that you will just have to hear for yourself to realize how good it sounds. In Notre Dame, where most is either dead or suffering, a dark, gloomy theme comes into effect. That is the kind of music that you want to hear in such a place.
TimeSplitters 2 overall gets my thorough recommendation. Almost everything in the game will keep you entertained for a long time, and the Arcade tournaments keep the innovation level high. The game may cause you sleep you be lost, since first person shooting has never been quite so fun. It's a game you'll definitely want to come back to over time, but I advise you to prepare yourself. The difficulty may have you lost in an oblivious scream of fury.
Are you ready?
Reviewer's Rating: 4.5 - Outstanding
Originally Posted: 11/14/03, Updated 02/01/04
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