This is my very first game review so bear with me. It’s only fitting it will be about my first completed first person shooter. Half Life 2. Keep in mind, if you’re a gamer with years of titles and experience under your belt this may not be for you. This was entirely written from the perspective of the gamer just dipping their toes into shooters.
Time from start to finish: 26 hours (over two weeks)
Ease of Learning:
The game starts slowly enough with enough hints and tips to get you moving. However it doesn’t treat you like a moron either, and throws you fairly quickly into action. You’ll find yourself progressing forward, learning the controls and feeling challenged without feeling like an idiot. That’s important for me, as I am easily frustrated yet can’t stand it when things are too easy. Half Life 2 balances this really well so for that it gets full marks.
The game takes place in a post apocalyptic future. Destruction is everywhere. The visuals in the game reflect this wonderfully. It has a very gritty ambience that really permeates it. The textures are so well done, it almost seems like you could reach out and touch them.
The human models are a bit odd and creepy, but the environment is awesome. Also it’s not alot of blood and guts if you’re the type that doesn’t like those things, however there are some periods of adult language and suggestion.
Now that I’ve covered a couple details I found to stand out, let’s just talk about the game. It’s 14 chapters long, sort of a Sci-Fi story, that includes some zombies and big bug creatures. It also gives you a vehicle here and there to get around on. I never really felt overwhelmed to the point I couldn’t continue. Having never played the original, the story was new to me, but they managed to catch me up with enough details from the other characters in the story. So I didn’t feel like I had really missed anything.
As I mentioned earlier, the level of challenge was just right. Even set on easy, it wasn’t so easy that I’d breeze right through it. There were times I had to consult a walkthrough (I recommend this one highly). There were times I had to save and walk away because I was frustrated. but that for me isn’t a negative. I want a game to challenge me. It also isn’t just run around a shoot things, which I’ve found since trying Left 4 Dead 2 single player, doesn’t appeal to me. Alot of it is layed out as a puzzle you have to solve to keep going. Whether it be using a weapon to move debris out from a hidden pathway, or dodging and maneuvering just the right way using cover to take down a difficult enemy.
No matter how challenged I was, I always wanted to see what happened next. If you are looking to try out a shooter for the first time, this is one i would recommend.