16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
Half life, remembered,
This review is from: Half-Life 2 (Xbox) (Video Game)
I have just finished this game (as it is actually out now!) And I can confirm that I have had one of the best gaming weekends of my life. Yes that sounds a little sad, but if you love your Xbox and a quality FPS, then you must own Half life 2.
From start to finish the experience is second to none, it’s a game world you feel fully immersed in from the moment you calmly step off the train in the first level through the unrelenting action that follows right up to some frantic battles in the later levels. Valve really have surpassed themselves in cramming this game onto the Xbox. Forget about what PC owners say, sure it does look noticeable that its inferior at times and you can actually hear your console whirr away attempting to load some screens, but that is missing the point because it more than stands up against other Xbox shooters such as Halo, albeit in the sense that it feels more ‘real’. It certainly beats everything else hands down for sheer size and looks – the corridor sections for example easily surpass Doom and the vast outside driving sections quite frankly embarrass the likes of Far cry and that is no easy feat.
So the aesthetics of HL2 are near perfect, what of the game play? You will not be disappointed. Fans of the first game will recognise many weapons from the trusty crowbar to the all powerful magnum, add to this some great new editions namely the gravity gun, which really shows off the games physics engine perfectly, and you have a varied arsenal at hand which is mostly great fun to use. Some old enemies return too – the head-crab zombies are a favourite (although its mainly the new humanoid Combine that die at your hands throughout) and there is the shady man in the black suit that you will catch the odd glimpse of from time to time. It all helps to keep the story flowing while you blaze or drive your way through set pieces aplenty and levels that really beggar belief at times due to the class of their layout. So what are the problems then? Well there really aren’t any. The occasional long loading screen may slightly annoy you and there is no multiplayer, but so what! Enjoy this game for what it is, an excellent one player experience, a classic first person shooter which at times has A.I. good enough to make you believe your fellow comrades are real people fighting with you. The variety of firepower, the differing human and alien enemies you face (with nods to Aliens, The matrix and War of the Worlds all thrown in the mixer), and the imaginative levels all add to the experience.
I think this may be the last and probably best game of its type to grace this generation of consoles. It really is worth the five stars and more for an outstanding achievement that proves games can live up to and exceed your expectations – you owe it to yourself to play this, go on…They’re waiting for you Gordon.