Review by idiotman7
I love first person shooters. Anyone who has seen my collection of video games, or has talked to me about video games, will know that I am absolutely enthralled by first person shooters. I have played A LOT of them in my gaming life time, and they still continue to impress, or disappoint me. Quake 4 is one of the few FPS, that I am border line with. It doesn't happen often, but when it does it gives me a strange feeling about myself. I never played the first 3 Quake games, and I don't plan to unless they are placed in front of me, but Quake 4 is defiantly one of the better games right now.
The game starts in strong, but a little generic. You are the new guy in the group, or Rhino Squad as you will later call it. You are Matthew Kane, for those of you who have played Quake 2; you may remember him as the main protagonist who crashed into the Strogg planet and had to fight behind enemy lines to survive. The Strogg, are a technological advanced race, who seem set on wiping out all humans, cliqued anyone? But that does not stop it from being interesting. Through out the game, you will pretty much be in first person. It's almost identical to Doom 3 in a lot of ways. Some cut scenes will be in third person while others will be in first. The game pretty much unfolds a lot like Half Life 2, in which you will have to talk to people in first person to learn stuff. Some times you will be taking an hour out of the game, just to talk to everyone.
But, besides the much cliqued story and action in it, it does have its good parts. For one, the game is surprisingly long. I beat Call of Duty 2 and Kameo before even getting three fourths through this game. Second, the action hardly ever stops short in this game. The very first of the game will play out through roughly a three minute long cut scene, most of it you will be passing out But while your not running around from place to place trying to get to your next objective, or trying to survive, you will be plowing through hordes of frightening monsters, all which seem to leap out of the dark, to land in front of you. Third, there is a plot twist to the game, which reminded me a lot of Darkwatch.
It is a very interesting story line to say the least. It is a little over done, and it seems like you have been doing a lot of this before for all of you Doom 3 players, but its still pretty fun to play through. Plus this game comes with Quake 2, so that's even better for those who have not played it.
As we turn our heads away from the story and on to another important factor of them game, I would like to remind people of how much this game takes from Doom 3. In Quake 4, almost everyone wears a battle armor suit that looks surprisingly like the ones found in Doom 3. Also, you will be going to many lengths to opening doors, just to go in and find a stock of monsters on the other side.
Anyway, Quake 4 does something, which original Doom 3 players had only dreamed of. A GUN WITH A FLASHLIGHT ATTACHED TO IT! Not only that, but every gun has one built onto it. Sure, I will be the first one to say, it reduces the creepiness of the game, from only carrying a flashlight, to having a flashlight and 80 bullets in your hands, but this game is still one of the scarier FPS's I have played.
This brings me to my next point. Guns. Quake 4 has a lot of guns. It has taken a direct feed from Half Life 2, and lets players with the press of a directional key, use a variety of weapons. You will start off with a simple lightening nail gun pistol type gun, but in a matter of time, you will soon be packing the heavy artillery such as grenade launchers or assault rifle nail guns. But unlike Half Life 2, your character is going to be able to hold as many as twelve different weapons. Where he puts them all, I have no idea. Maybe he has secret compartments in his Doom suit or something, I don't know. I thought it was a very cool idea, and very helpful throughout the game. But I mean, come on, twelve? Where do you put them all? It is incredibly unrealistic, but so are a lot of things in this game. But, the new shoulder buttons are used to cycle through your weapons very fast, if you don't feel like looking all through your inventory, which was helpful.
The controller layout is pretty simple for such a fast paced and scary game. Shoulder buttons, are used to shoot or zoom in, like Call of Duty 2, the new shoulder buttons are used to quickly choose weapons. The Y button is your on gun flashlight, A button is to jump, B is to interact with your environment or other characters, and X is to reload of course. It all simple and easy to remember, but getting to the flashlight, while shooting and moving, does get a little annoying during a frightening part in a level.
One of the biggest, if not the biggest complaint I have heard for Quake 4, is the frame rate. I personally, rarely found any problems with it. I think the only times it did slow down, was when you have been walking for over five ten minutes not doing anything, and all of a sudden you have to shoot. Most of the time it does not happen, but occasionally a few seconds of slow down will happen.
Let's jump back real quickly, to more ways Quake 4 rips off Doom 3. The fact that monsters, always feel the need, to take out the one stupid person in the group. The one idiot who volunteers to go into the room first, and then gets his head eaten off, or a large barrel thrown at him. Another thing is the fact that, all of the characters have either three lines to say to you, or nothing at all. During the first of the game, while walking around Doom 3's space station, some people would talk, and some people wouldn't. The two games have a lot of the same sound issues going for them.
Voice acting, is not one of the issues though. Quake 4 has a very diverse and extremely unique voice acting role for every character. Every character you meet will have a name; their own facial expressions, their own personality, and hell even their own unique voice. I was so realistic, it was scary. It felt like I was really getting to know every single person there.
Music wise, Quake 4 was actually pretty silent. Some of the intense action parts, called for some very dramatic gothic sounding music, but during just walking around, nothing to really listen to. I would suggest burning your favorite CD onto your 360 to listen to during the game, because it does get a little quite from time to time. But, guns sound very much real, or as real as they would probably sound like in real life, and all of the big explosions and attacks from enemy's sound spectacular. One of the most creepiest parts in the game comes from the small little scratches on the roofs, or the fast whishes of enemy's.
One last time, let's check in at ways Doom 3 did it first. The fact that almost every enemy fells the need to charge you up close. They creatures were pretty predictable really; you just had to have a quick trigger finger. AND ALL THE BLOOD STAINS! The huge dried blood stains on the ground, streaking across floors, where did it all come from? If all that blood came from a 200 pound Marine, then I don't know what to say. Another way Quake 4 is generic, is that all of the character, had that same kind of glossy, shiny wet look, found in Doom 3. Like everyone was glistening in liquid or something. It was a little weird.
Not to say the graphics aren't great though, because they are. In fact, they truly did make the transaction between PC and 360 spectacularly. I was amazed by the environments, and the sheer creped out scenarios of the game. The developers knew exactly when to freak you out, and how to do it. Just when you think everything might go smoothly, the lights go out, or a monster comes flying out of a window, and now you are left stranded again. In the dark, crying that you don't won't to take the elevator down to where you know there is a ten foot walking tank Strogg.
Characters, like I said before, just have that weird look that I found in games like Doom 3 and Chronicles or Riddick. It's and interesting way of looking at people, and kind of cool, but I would still rather have a dry soldier than a wet one. Enemies are full of detail and look amazing, if you can get close enough to one without getting killed. And all of the Gnus are very closely touched on, and even though the do look kind of fake, they are awesome. I just don't know why they have lightening nail gun bullets though, it's so weird
Quake 4, is defiantly a Doom 3 clone, but unlike past failures of other games, this one actually does do it pretty well. I was amazed by how much detail every little thing received, and how finely graphic the game was, because from the first ten seconds, there will be blood. If you're looking for just something to pop in and start shooting, you might want to look somewhere else. This is a very long game, and requires a quick finger, and an even quick pair of legs, because you will be running away screaming and crying. This game is jammed pack full of detail, awesome character details and voices, and a pretty compelling story. It's defiantly not the best shooter out there, but it's still a good one to check out.
Reviewer's Rating: 3.5 - Good
Originally Posted: 01/30/06
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