Review by Fatality4u

"Feel the Quake..."

Quake 4 is a first person shooter that is above and beyond so many others that are around it. The action that ensues is intense and very fast. Creating possibly the best first person shooter of the year is a hard task to accomplish and Activision may have done it. Quake 4 takes all the criticisms from Quake 3 and the area style multiplayer game that it was and throws them out the window. Instead of building another primary multiplayer style game Activision decides to go back to the basics and continues the storyline of Quake 2.

You will start off the game as Matthew Kane, a member of the Uber Rhino Squad going down onto the Strogg home world, just as the storyline of Quake 2 has finished up, where a lone marine has turned off the orbital defense and has killed the Makron making your life so much easier. You are the quiet and silent type and new guy of the group, but all of your fellow squad members decided to talk it up for you. You make a hard landing after your ship is hit and you have to meet up with the rest of your squad to clear the vicinity allowing your capital ship to touchdown and provide support. Once your capital ship touches down you are provided a new mission, that requires you to delve deeper into enemy lines and eventually come to the twist in the story that most likely has been heard by everyone, but I won't repeat it and possibly ruin the little, although be it not very essential, twist.

The multiplayer in the game is not something that you look at and go, wow I am so glad this has multiplayer. If you look at the multiplayer as a whole, you pretty much have Quake 3, just in Quake 4. So if you are looking for a whole new multiplayer experience, don't buy Quake 4 for just the multiplayer.

The AI in the game is surprisingly response. For the most part your fellow squad members will be some what helpful. Even if they do not hit the enemy with fire, they will at least distract the enemy enough to be able to get bullets flying towards them. The AI enemies are not very smart in the beginning, but as you get further into the game and start to go against tougher enemies, you will come across the Stroggified marines, who will work together and take cover, pop out and shoot you, and then retreat to cover. The introduction of the Stroggified marines makes you play a little bit differently and makes you use your weapons more wisely instead of just making yourself open to fire, because if you do they will cut you down. The only part about the AI that is fairly disappointing is the enemies in the game. They are easy to beat as long as you use your cover.

The weapons in the game albeit unique are somewhat of a disappointment. You will eventually get ten weapons in total that are all unique. Even though there are ten weapons in total, you will find yourself only using the machine gun, shotgun, and grenade launcher. The only reason to use lightning gun and BFG is during boss fights, and so long as you don't use them otherwise, you will have plenty of ammo to take out the boss with ease.

The gameplay of the game is the biggest strong point of any first person shooter and Quake 4 does not disappoint. The action is fast and intense, and you will find yourself taking a break to reload any chance that you get because you know that you are going to need as much as ammo as you can because you never know what you are going to need to hit the enemy on the other side. The only part of the gameplay that gets repetitive is the enemies. You will soon find that there are certain weapons that take down the enemy with ease and will most likely find yourself having the shotgun at ready when walking into any area, because the shotgun will more than likely be the best weapon to take down the enemy. Ammo is never in short supply, which is nice for a first person shooter, not always having to hunt around for every last bit of ammo needed. The armor that is found is dispersed enough that you will always find it as a welcome site.

The graphics in the game are most certainly the best part of the game. Each one of the Strogg are unique and you will find yourself in awe looking at them as they are trying to kill you. The environment is also nice to see very unique areas that you would expect to see on an alien home world. The nice touch that is probably the most overlooked is the effect of the Strogg seemingly disintegration after being killed. This is a bonus that is shown the player in two different ways. First it is cool to see your enemy disintegrate before you eyes and wonder where they have gone. The other bonus is that the game frees up memory that would have been caught up in the holding of the enemy corpses on the ground.

The sound of the game is what you would expect from a game like this, unique. Each of the weapons sounds as you might expect it for an alien weapon that you will never hold yourself. It is fun to listen to all of the funny remarks that your squad members will fire off, especially about the bets that have you unknowingly involved in. The music that plays does seem to fit in with the rest of the atmosphere and build upon it. The only downside of it is that sometimes you will get transmissions in the middle of an intense firefight and you will not really get to hear what they said. It is not like the transmissions are really that important, but it would be nice to be able to hear it if they are going to bother say it.

The value of the game is pretty good in general, especially if you are a Quake multiplayer addict. Since the multiplayer is loosely that of Quake 3 any fan of the Quake 3 multiplayer will find this a nice change and fun new aspect with different weapons. If you are going to play this game only for the single player it may be worth trying to get in with another friend and but it together, because the single player will only really last you about 15 hours max. If you are a Quake fan in general this will be a nice addition to any collection. Bottom line is, if you have the money Quake 4 is certainly something that is worth taking a look at.

Reviewer's Rating:   4.5 - Outstanding

Originally Posted: 12/14/05

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