Review by AzNGaMeR

"Hail to the new king of first person shooter."

Id Software, the largest developer of first-person shooters out there presents to you it's newest title, Quake II, the sequel to the hit Quake. Compared to the original Quake, it's lush textures and creepy atmosphere almost put it in a whole new category. Large multiplayer capabilities and a huge, complex single player mode make it one of the top competitors in the first person shooter category.

Quake II's graphics are amazing. The details incorporated into the objects and background makes you just want to look around and enjoy the view. From sparks shooting out of broken light fixtures to the entrails of your ''late'' enemies scattered on the walls. You really get the feeling that you're there. Despite the completely 3D environment, which may seem to require a powerful computer to run, this game has plenty of video modes and supports to most of the video cards out on the market, and enhancement with hardware or software (OpenGL). Of course, anything less than hardware acceleration is uncivilized. If you do not have a good 3D hardware, then I would recommend you to get one just for this game. Since the hardware acceleration will give you all the precise lighting effects, anti-aliasing, and faster framerate. But this new engine really put Quake engine to shame. Forget Quake, long live Quake II.

Single player incorporates some hard core kicking butt with some nerve racking puzzle solving and missions which all end up tying into the main plot. From blowing up ''The Big Gun'' which defends the Stroggos planet and civilization, to restoring power to a whole warehouse so you can take an elevator, to pumping the leader, Makron with a few hundred depleted Uranium slugs, its got it all. Not to mention one of the smartest AI I have seen in a while. The story goes a little something like this; The Strogg decide that they're going to go raise some hell on Earth. Then the good US Marine Corps steps in and defends Earth. They want to ransack? We'll teach 'em how to ransack. You get to Stroggos, and your mother ship sends down you and all the rest of the army down in single unit pod. Some cowboy clip your pod by accident and you lost control of your pod. As you flew around the whole city, you crashed in the middle of nowhere, alone. Before your radio dies out you hear the rest of the team screaming...”It was an ambush!” Some more screaming… then silence... Uh oh. This is not good at all.

The multiplayer is the best of all. Although there were still some bugs after much tests from id Software. With up to 32 players able to play over LAN or TCP/IP Internet connection, it offers good times and almost endless replay value. The deathmatch only maps are well done designed. You can barely find a place to camp without another spot assassinate the camper easily. Since most of the weapons in Quake II were made for multiplayer, you barely use the rocket launcher only to kill your enemy. Of course, Quad damage is now some sort of blue shield around your body, telling people that get away from you.

The audio in this game is what got my attention. The sound is superb, clear and distinctive. You can even hear some of the foes speaking, yelling before you see them. By listening to them, you can tell how far they are or are they around the corner or not. The music is awesome. The Quake II theme song was done by Rob Zombie from White Zombie and the level music was done by Sonic Mayhem. It fits the setting quite well. Some stages have heavy metal music that just makes you want to shoot anything that moves, while others have slow, eerie music.

As a big time first-person shooter lover, I thought this game was amazing. It carries the ESRB Mature rating, you can probably guess why. It has three difficulty setting, all very challenging. However, I think the multiplayer is much better than the original Quake. I think that any shooter lover needs this game in their CD library, and so does anyone else. Score one for id Software.


Reviewer's Score: 9/10 | Originally Posted: 05/29/00, Updated 08/07/01


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