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Painkiller allows players to shoot anything that moves and, once killed, the souls of enemy monsters can be consumed to increase player health. Once shot to pieces, monsters and objects leave gold coins behind, which allow players to upgrade speed and weapons as well as maps and numerous other power-ups between levels.
Painkiller features 20 different enemy monsters, each with their own unique behavioural patterns and attacks. Painkiller's weapon system has been designed specifically to avoid weapon overkill, by providing the ideal number of weapons, with primary and secondary modes, so that each is truly useful. For advanced Painkiller players, primary and secondary weapons can be used in spectacular "combo" attacks.
Finally, Painkiller's adrenaline-numbing effects give an extra punch in multi-player mode. Up to 32 players have been allowed for across five multi-player modes including Deathmatch, where the player takes on the world; Team Deathmatch; People Can Fly, a modification of Deathmatch One on One with rocket launchers; Voosh, where all players have the same weapon and The Light Bearer, which assumes that Quad damage never wears off. The multi-player modes really are hardcore.
Stranded in a place between Heaven and Hell, your time of judgment is at hand. The Underworld is on the verge of unholy war, and you are but a pawn in the infernal battle. As you fight for your purification, the truths behind the deceptions are revealed.
Graphically, Painkiller is unmatched. Played out over more than 20 completely unique and different levels, the proprietary 3-D "PAIN Engine" puts out 100 times the polygons of the latest shooters, while adding increased texture quality and the latest lighting and shadowing techniques.
This is a concept that could have gone badly wrong, but what makes the game so cool is the implementation. Although the game is a straight shooter, it has just the right blend of superb graphics and physics, good level design, frenetic action, puzzles, humour and storyline to keep it interesting.
Only downpoint is that some of the levels dont really connect to each other (there is no interlinking cut scene between many of the levels, so you just 'appear' at the start of the level and work to the end) so I sometimes felt that I was going through a set of seperate levels rather than a single seamless game (but I suppose thats just one side effect of being based on the old skool!)... in any case, thats the reason for 4 insttead of 5 stars. If you dont mind the disjoints (to be honest, they dont affect gameplay, but perhaps weaken storyline a little) them award the game a 5.
All in all a good antidote to some of the other games available at the moment(such as Splinter cell or hidden and dangerous 2). Less of the cerebral, more of the visceral and hilarously over the top violence. It remains to be seen if Painkiller will still stack up with some of the other shooters soon to appear (the HL and Doom sequels). At the momnt though, its in a class of its own.
This game was never created to be one of fantastic AI or mind-numbingly complex missions. It was created in the vein of Serious Sam and the original FPS games, pure mindless violence.
It is a great game for escapism, you dont need to think, you just need to point and click, a lot. If you want a very enjoyable game with fantastic graphics as well as great physics without having to spend hours creeping around before you see your first enemy then this is definitely the game for you.
Im not sure why people are experiencing problems playing the game, but if its any help to you my system spec is: P4 2.6ghz, 1 gig ram, radeon 9800 pro, with fully updated drivers and windows service pack 2 etc. Enjoy... now for the expansion pack.... mwuahahahahaha.
I haven't had so much outright FUN playing an FPS since the original DOOM, a game which Painkiller actually reminds me of in that it's pure 'move and fire' mayhem! It makes a nice change not to have to think too much about where to go and what to do next, just BLAST tons of great monsters.
For pure frenzied gameplay, great atmospherics, and trigger happy shooting this game is tops! And the power-ups are absolutely insane!
The only downside is that it needs a beast of a system for the graphics to really shine - I've been running it with a 128 mb NVidea card, 512mb RAM and 2.4 Ghz processor and can't have the settings higher than the so-called 'Standard' presets without crashing, but hey, with a game this fast-paced after a while you're too busy trying to survive to notice the difference!
So I start with the downside of Painkiller. The original version 1.0 ( which is what is still being sent as 'new' ) is....to put it politely....buggy. Especially on Windows XP. It also tends to crash far too often.
Now for the GOOD news ! If you go to [...] ( the manufacturer's web site ), you can download a patch that takes you to version 1.3.5. Oh blessed relief - almost all of the bugs are then gone ! And you even get an extra level to play !
And then when you finally get down to playing the game......it is just sheer brilliance ! Yes...it's unashamedly a ' blast anything that moves ' gore fest. I'm not sure why some reviewers have found that a problem, as the game reminds me somewhat of the original Doom....which so many look back on with fond reminiscence. If I want smart AI, I've got Far Cry and Half Life 2 for that. If I get home from a bad day at the office, I'd far rather play Painkiller !!
The graphics in Painkiller are superb. Maybe not the utter realism of Half Life 2, but they have that same excellent quality and lighting effect that one finds in, for example, games by Konami ( who make the 'Silent Hill' series of games ). Painkiller also has a range of monsters that I think probably exceeds that of any other FPS.
Some have commented on the 'limited' weapons. Whilst it is the case that you 'only' get 5 weapons......they all have amazing dual functions that are very innovative, so your arsenal is actually pretty impressive.... Read more ›
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