Review by OrochiJin
"A good FPS console shooter. Not quite a must have title, but still great."
Timesplitters was labeled as a must have launch game by most publications and websites. Created by a group of people from Rare (makers of the totally awesome Goldeneye and Perfect Dark), it has a good heritage. So does it live up to the hype of a must have title?
Graphics - 8/10
Very silky smooth. 60fps, beautiful levels, and some weird looking characters. Yes, the characters are very interesting looking, but they fit the game failry well. Sine the game ranges through time, you have mob guys, doctors, detectives, mummies, cyborgs and the like. Beautiful effects on the guns and such. Death animations are like Goldeneye, where people fall multiple ways and allow you to shoot them while falling etc. No blood, but this game doesn't necessarily need it. Also, damage is left on screen, such as bullet holes and burn marks. Each level is different, ranging from tombs to spaceports to mansions and such, and they all have good detail.
Sound - 9/10
Good music, but it's all about the sound effects. Guns such as the tommy gun and M-16 rock, as you tear up the level. Grunts and noises of people dying are standard, but the sounds are very good. Characters on the select screen even have sayings when you pick them.
Control - 8/10
OK, this is the big one. People either love or hate the control of this game. You MUST use the analog sticks for movement, strafing, looking etc. The controls allow for very little customization. But you need to practice with them. When I first started playing, I couldn't do much, but now I can run and gun very well in the levels. While it isn't a control scheme I like, it does the job. You will need to try it out for yourself however.
Gameplay/Modes - Story 6/10 Arcade 10/10 Challenge 9/10
Well the gameplay is on par with a FPS - kill everything! If i have one complaint about the gameplay, it's that you seem to die very quickly. But then again, the idea is to kill, so it's not too bad On to the three main modes :
Story - 1 or 2 players.
Arcade - 1-4 player plus bots in all types of matches
Challenge - Complete tasks in given time limits
Statistics - The game keeps stats on you such as total time played, kills, bullets fired, losses, favorite character, weapon etc.
Mapmaker - Exactly what it says. Create your own levels!
While fun, it is fairly weak. Either 1 or 2 players can work on it. You start in an area looking for an item hidden in the level, dispatching anyone in your way to get there. Once you get it the Timesplitters will appear trying to stop you from leaving. You have to make it to a transport site, which usually is the beginning of the level or somewhere else sometimes. You must beat this mode to open Challenge and other bots/levels. Weak story and no real objectives gets this a 6/10
Arcade - Here's where you'll spend most of your time. You have multiple modes -
Deathmatch (Solo or Team, by points or time)
Bag Tag (grab the bag and live for as long as you can.Person who holds onto it the most time wins. You can also set it so that the person with the bag can shoot or can only run for their life.)
Capture the Bag (Capture the flag)
Knockout (X amount of lives)
Escort (Guard an item/person to a target locale)
Last Stand (Defend for as long as you can)
You can add bots to fill in for human players or just add bots for the fun. You can set their difficulty, balance or unbalance teams, select which bots will be in, and even select 5 weapons to be in the level.
All this gets a 10/10.
Challenge - Complete a task within a given time limit. Some examples are :
Shoot 50 zombie heads off in 2 minutes.
Kill 100 ducks in 5 minutes (Note: They shoot at you! This made me laugh first time I saw it)
Play Bag Tag and hold on to the bag for a total of a minute out of a 5 minute limit.
This gets 10/10. I've played some over and over just cause they are so much fun.
Mapmaker - This will take a few minutes to get used to. Basically, pick a piece from a list, and place it on the map. Add weapons, armor, etc to the rooms.You can make up to a 7 story level. Also, with four different graphics set, your level will be 4 different levels. The room layout will stay the same, but obstacles, tables/etc will all be different in each of the 4 tile sets. Each room will be a completely new setup. Again, this may take a few minutes to get used to, but it adds more replay to the game.
Fairly good feature : 8/10
Overall - 8/10
While Timesplitters has a very weak story mode, the multiplayer, challenge and mapmaker feature makes this game a good title. It isn't the must have game, but it is certainly a good title. Given a choice between this and Unreal Tournament, I selected this because UT runs much better on PC since it is online playable there. This is a good console shooter with some control issues. Just get a little practice and you'll be running and gunning in no time.
Reviewer's Score: 8/10 | Originally Posted: 11/02/00, Updated 04/25/01
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