4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Not very polished.,
This review is from: UFO: Aftershock (PC DVD) (Video Game)
UFO Aftershock is a strange game. If you've played any of the UFO games, ranging from UFO: Enemy Uknown (about 10 years old now) to X-COM: Apocalypse, then you'll already be fully versed in the content format of this title. You manage your bases and resources on a global map, and send in squad-sized forces to complete missions using a 3D version of the old isometric maps used in comparable titles.
This is one of the strongest pro's the game has; its tried, tested and approved format does mean that you can quite easily get to grips with the game's interface with very little manual skimming. Everything in the interface has tool-tips, and after only a couple of missions you're up and running. That said, it's a good thing because the tutorial is really quite pathetic.
To move on to the audio visual content, it has to be said that the graphics appear to be quite outdated when you consider the current eye-candy content on offer in most titles at the moment. The best description I could give you would be 'functional'. Although the mission maps can be quite detailed, they're let down by the fact that they just seem to 'float' in black-space - which detracted from the atmosphere for me quite a lot. Speaking of atmosphere, the music for the game is pretty good - but it just isn't the right kind of music for the context. It should be building suspense, which this game should have bags of... you're facing an unknown and technologically superior enemy after all. A chirpy soft-rock track does not build suspense. The sound effects too seem to be off-the-mark. They seem strangely muffled and undetailed, and there's little or no ambient sound. This again detracts from the atmosphere this game should project.
The peripheral content of the game is very poor. By peripheral content, I mean the one-way dialog that takes place sometimes between missions when your 'staff' or allies want to communicate with you. They're basically simple polygon characters against a still background, with only very basic mouth animation and no lip-synch. It's a bit like watching a ventriloquist's dummy. In the days of HL2's G-Man, the UFO effort is plain feeble.
Having said all of the above, this game has just enough of a 'spark' to keep you playing. Maybe just to see what else the tech-tree will allow you to throw at the aliens. It's like a curiosity element you can't quite put your finger on. I'm not sure how much longer this will last for me, and I'm pretty sure that once I've completed this game there'll be no replay value whatsoever. In summary, this game is worth having if you're a fan of the genre, but I warn you that it's unpolished and outdated content may have you logging out before you've had your money's-worth.