Review by gleaso5

"StarCraft FPS? ... Nah. But there are similarities."

Half-Life has come a long way. It's one of the most easily moddable PC shooters out there. Hundreds of mods exist for it, but this one is one of the best. Combining shooting, RTS, and graphics that are some of the best in Half-Life's many mods, this game brings on the fun. I've played this for months (on and off) since around last year, and it still remains one of the best mods I've ever played.

Graphics: 6.5/10
Great for Half-Life, but that's not saying much as there are a lot more prettier games available. All the levels look relatively the same, inners of outer space vessels. The backgrounds are very metallic as the ships are steel, but the places near the alien spawns have a more natural look with some green around their start. The aliens look quite alien-y with tan bodies. In fact, this is the first similarity to StarCraft. The basic aliens look much like zerglings and there are tributes to mutalisks, ultralisks, and hydralisks. The marines look the same for every person, with military suits and some sort of gun.

Sound/Music: 8/10
The ambience is really good in this game. Drips of water can be heard around the ship. Weapons sound like guns, and there are enough beeps and boops in the game from the various electronic devices. Elevators sound like their moving, but the real highlight of the sound is the Zer- I mean, Khaara noises. The skulks sound great as the run, making foot sounds like wet claws hitting metal. The skulk bite sound good also, but gets annoying if the button is held down. The flying alien has generic flying sounds, which isn't bad. All of the little grunts of the aliens sound cool and ''realistic''. There is background music, but, I can't remember when it plays, and that is really generic and forgettable.

Gameplay: 10/10
Hoo boy, this is one fun game. When you first join a server, you will be able to walk around in ''Ready Room'' mode. From here, you can choose which team you wish to join by moving into the section with the team name in front of it. You can also ''Observe'' the game or join a random team.

On the Marine Team, your goal is to build up your base, and stop the attacking aliens. To defeat the aliens, your team has to kill all of the opposing hives. When these are all down, aliens will start to lose health until they are all dead. The central point of the Marine team is the commander. He is the only person in the whole game who can see the game from a third person RTS view. He can order the construction of buildings. He can also order you to go to a specific place, just like what you do to your Marines in Star Craft. When being a normal Marine, follow your commanders orders, as he probably has an idea of what he's doing. The Commander can order the building of new structures and research. Be nice to him, and he can upgrade your weapons and armor. Beginners might prefer to be a Marine, as all you need to focus on are following orders. Be careful though, killing the basic alien type is really hard because those guys are fast. And if you die, there is a respawn portals build buy the commander that will take you right back into the game. Just hope you have some left.

On the Alien team, your job is to kill. Kill the Marines, kill their base, but don't let your hives be killed, they keep the climate right for you. In every map, there are 3 designated places to build your hive. Each new hive will allow you to upgrade yourself and get new attacks. When you first spawn in (or after being killed), you will become a Skulk. The guys are fast. They can also climb and hang onto walls. But, a Skulk has very low health. After respawning, you can evolve yourself into other alien types (5 in all). The Skulk is basic combat. The Gorge builds buildings and is very effective at taking them down. The Lerk is a flying support alien who can set up poisonous clouds near the enemy base. The Fade is a melee and long range fighter that has sharp claws and poisonous spit. And the Onos (OH NOES!) will beat the living crap out of you. It has a tusk for basic attacks, and it can eat Marines. Yep, a marine that is being digested sees a still picture of the inside of an Onos which looks much like a certain LUE mascot.

Overall
Great game, download it if you like StarCraft. My only complaints are some of the sounds and the fact that the aliens have a better chance of winning.


Reviewer's Score: 8/10 | Originally Posted: 01/31/04


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