Review by Exeter
"A Lot of Hype = Good Game? Hmmmm............."
Half-Life: Opposing Force, the official expansion pack for Half-Life, hit the stores just in time for Thanksgiving. Man, was I excited (being the Half-Life-head that I am). I only bought it yesterday (12/27/99) and finished it the same day...so here are my thoughts on OpFor (I'm going to refer to Opposing Force as OpFor for length reasons).
You are Alan Shephard...a grunt of the US army (or something...). You are sent on a mission to the Black Mesa Research Facility (sound familiar?), but you don't know for what purpose. Suddenly, your helicopter crashes and you wake up to find yourself without any weapons inside the facility. This starts a chain of events that results in you trying to kill Freeman and escape the aliens that lurk around every corner. Along the way, you encounter other soldiers (regular grunt, medic, and engineer) that you can order around and do stuff with. There are also security guards that actually look different (thank god...no more look-alike barney's :). Also, there is a slew of new weapons for you to wreak havoc with, along with a modified multiplayer death match. I have divided the sections of this review into 5 parts.
Remember the original Half-Life single player? Add 9 new weapons, several new characters and sounds, and irritating ropes...and you have OpFor. If you are a stickler and like things the old-fashioned way, then OpFor will be perfect for you. But, if you were expecting anything totally new and innovative.....I guarantee that you will be disappointed. Personally, I thoroughly enjoyed the first HL single player, and I liked OpFor as well. But, come on!! I payed 50 bucks for this expansion pack and it didn't have anything extraordinary or ground breaking gameplay-wise. Ah well....maybe Half-Life 2 *crosses fingers* :). A thing about the single player that I was REALLY disappointed about was the fact that it was way shorter than the original single player. I completed this in 1 day...HL took me like 4 or 5 days. Another issue was that OpFor single player may be a little bit too hard for the regular player...I had a pretty hard time with some things, and I've been playing HL since day 1. But please please please don't use cheats....it takes away from the fun :) Multiplayer contains no surprises as well. Just regular old deathmatch with the new weapons and characters and a few new maps......that';s it. Too bad....Gearbox could have really created an awesome multiplayer with the system they had set up in simgle player. To sum up the gameplay, Gearbox (the creaters of OpFor) did an excellent job emulating the original HL single and multi player, but, surprisingly, there was nothing new worth mentioning. But, nonetheless, it was mind-bogglingly super-de-duperly fun! (sorry about that...)
I personally liked the story in OpFor. Although it didn't contain near as much depth and emotion as the original one, it was still a fun experience. I already explained the story a bit in the intro, so I won't repeat it. At time, though, it was a bit hard to understand what was going on. One cool thing about the story was that it flawlessly intertwined with the original single player story. And, at some times, you actually get to see Gordon Freeman playing the game as you would have! Tell me....is that not cool? :) All in all, the story was good, but not as good as the original one.
GRAPHICS: 7/10 SOUND: 7/10
The limitations of the HL engine disabled the adding of better graphics (but the graphics were already awesome....so what am I talking about? :) That is a downside still. Sounds, on the other hand, weren't too shabby. The new weapon sounds were great. The music, though, was disappointingly worse than the original HL's music. I mean, it wasn't bad or anything...just not as noticable and ambient - acceptable would be the ideal word. Anyways, the graphics and sound were so-so....nothing to jump and scream about.
Ack....one time with single player is enough for me :). Multiplayer is what brings OpFor up in this category. It has unlimited replay value....and it's so-so at best.
The most you would probably want to pay for OpFor is 35-40 bucks. I paid 50 :(. Oh well. To sum things up, OpFor was a great recap of the original HL, with just enough new content to hold interest for many players. There is nothing big to brag and rant about, but OpFor holds its ground by sticking to tradition.
Reviewer's Score: 7/10 | Originally Posted: 12/28/99, Updated 12/28/99
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