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The gameplay itself takes the form of a first-person action-adventure, and a thumping good one at that. There's nothing particularly original about mixing in action, puzzle solving, exploration and stealth, but rarely has it all hung together as well as it does here. Put simply, XIII is a delight to play, with well-thought-through levels, generally fine enemy AI and, when the tempo is racked up, plenty of guns a-blazing and a healthy dose of tension to boot.
On the visual side, we've seen cel-shading as graphical style in games before, more often than that leading to some bland visuals once the novelty has worn off. Not so here. The level of thought and care that has gone into the look and feel of XIII is there for all to see, and for it to be married up to such a compulsively addictive game is just the icing on a really rather delicious cake.
Should you buy it? Most certainly, you should. If you don't, then the next time you lament the lack of care and adventure in your collection of games, then you really will have brought it all upon yourself. --Simon Brew
XIII is a first-person shooter with a difference. You wake up on a desolate strip of New England beach. The near-fatal impact of a bullet has left your head pounding and your memory erased. What's more, the number "XIII" has been mysteriously tattooed on your chest, while your pocket holds a key to a New York City bank box. Head swimming in amnesia, you struggle to your feet only to encounter more assailants intent on finishing the job. To your shock, you handle the hitmen with the killing skills of a professional--before heading to the bank in search of any shred of information about your lost identity and your involvement in the President's assassination. What lies ahead is a deadly quest not only into your shadowy past, but America's darkest corridors of power.
Graphic novel presentation, flashback graphics and pop-up windows create a groundbreaking entry into the genre. XIII marshals the power of Unreal II technology and unique comic book visual styles.
Experience a wide variety of gameplay--cunning use of human shields, silent weapons and XIII's internal "sixth sense" that detects approaching enemies. To survive, you'll master techniques ranging from covert infiltration to heavy combat as you battle sinister conspiratorial forces. You can also square off against other players in innovative multi-player modes such as the cooperative Cover Me, along with classic modes such as Capture the Flag and Deathmatch.
Unfortunately, the PC version comes in a flashy cardboard box, the same dimensions as a DVD case but twice as thick and with special see-through windows on the front. Not a bad thing in itself - in fact, it's an excellently distinctive touch. However, the tight way in which Amazon boxes its packages meant that it arrived entirely squashed down to the width of about a piece of paper. Saddening; if you can stomach that, though, this is well worth picking up, especially at this price.
Delicious 3D graphics (which need a suitably powerful video card to run them) and glorious comic book colours almost take your attention off the action as you take a soldier through level by level in search of his lost identity. The game is linear and does require patience given these type of games and their wavering levels of difficulty with some levels taking one try and others taking endless repeat plays.
That is THE only drawback as far as I’m concerned as you soon become compelled to play level after level totally enticed into the slick “24” style plotlines. The weapons and the sound effects are superbly realistic and the shooting aspect of this game is faultless.
The keyboard and mouse controls are incredibly to pick and become second nature especially if you’re familiar with “Medal of Honour”. The game is spaced over four disks and there seems to be enough in there to keep you occupied for a while although I assume the better gamers will get through it quickly. Added to al this there are multiplayer internet facilities and different modes of play.
A great innovative take on the not-yet tired shooter genre. Buy it and enjoy!
I got this game after Christmas, after seeing reviews saying how good it was, but how hard it... Read more
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