Rick takes on the "Heir apparent to GoldenEye". And gets whooped. Find out why inside!
I’m sure this isn’t the first time I’ve said this, but I’ll always be the first to admit it. I’m a lousy gamer. It’s rare when I can finish a game, and I tend to have my ass served to me with garnish whenever I play against other real live human beings. As a result, these will be the shortest impressions I can give what appears to be an outstanding game, simply due to one mitigating factor …
I suck at it.
Seriously, I’m absolutely terrible at this game. In twelve attempts, I have yet to complete the first level. Admittedly, I’m foregoing the “Easy” setting and getting straight into Normal, but it’s more than just me sucking at it. First, there’s the aiming. Your crosshairs will snap back to center, which makes any sort of precision sniping or headshots very difficult. It was suggested that I need to turn off “lookspring”, but I’ll be damned if I can find a lookspring option anywhere.
Despite the fact that I’ve hardly made any progress, TimeSplitters 2 has been pretty fun. Each time I make a little progress through the level, I find something else I hadn’t expected that I need to factor into my strategy. You’ll know what I mean when you run out of ammo just in time to have a hoard of mutants and elite special forces coming after you.
The AI is predictable in it’s pathing, which helps you establish a quick sniping route to the nearest hiding spot, but if anyone catches sight of you, it’ll be a free-for-all. The objectives even in the first level are plentiful, so even if you die as frequently as I do, you’ll feel like you’re making progress. Unfortunately, there is only one “checkpoint” in this first level, and if you’re low on health when you reach it, you’ll be better off starting over, and trying to be more efficient.
The graphics are quite good, and the animations are varied and fluid. It zips right along at 60FPS, with only minor hiccups occurring during major explosions or when there is a ton of action on screen. Texture work is a mixed bag with some looking very crisp and detailed, and others being a blurry mess. I’m not quite sure why there is such a disparity in the texture work, since the ones that look good look VERY good.
The story is much better than the first TimeSplitters game (which really didn’t have any story to speak of), and is delivered in a mix of FMV clips and text mission briefings. However, it’s still a first-person shooter storyline, which pretty much guarantees that it’s going to be weak and forced. The interface is right out of GoldenEye, even the text looks identical to Perfect Dark, but that could be my imagination talking.
Of course, the real highlight of the game is the multiplayer, which I’ve played almost none of. From all appearances, it looks to be every bit as fun as its ancestor. It better be, considering “Heir apparent to GoldenEye” is plastered right on the box.
In short, TimeSplitters 2 is a great deal of fun so far, and it’s still up in the air whether or not the game is truly hard or if I’m just pathetically bad at it. Everyone else should enjoy it a great deal.