Universal acclaim - based on 29 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 29 out of 29
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 29
  3. Negative: 0 out of 29
  1. 90
    The sequel's as good as the original. Not only does it preserve everything we liked about the first game but it also takes a few steps in some rewarding new directions.
  2. It improves on almost everything that worked well in the first game, and it also fixes that game's problems...a rousing success on every level.
  3. Along with stellar sound effects, voiceovers, and groovy spy movie theme songs, No One Lives Forever 2 provides a feast for your senses.
  4. The game has a great sense of humor and parodies much of the spy genre without losing the focus of the game.
  5. The game's story, humor, and action are well implemented, but I would have liked to see a little less emphasis on stealth. [Dec 2002, p.148]
  6. 90
    Masterfully blending some spectacular action sequences and a unique sense of humor with elements of stealth games, first-person shooters, graphic adventures and even RPGs, the end result is a title that tops the original in every way, and stands out even among 2002's amazing crop of PC action games.
  7. 90
    Nearly flawless visuals and truly immersive sound make sure you’re having fun even when you’re not shooting.
  8. A bloody good game... If you like first person shooters and have a sense of humour, the only other thing to stop you playing this game is the central role of a pink-suited woman. Are you man enough?
  9. Meets my expectations with beautiful animations, well-written enemy AI, and a shorter but still engaging single player mission.
  10. Every environment is created with jaw dropping detail that makes every single one a visual feast. I spent a good amount of time just looking at the surroundings trying to take everything in.
  11. 100
    Great graphics and sound, top-notch AI, wonderfully entertaining dialog, and an impressive variety of gameplay all make this one of the best games of the year.
  12. Every convention of the FPS genre is done to perfection, tweaked, and then turned on its ear. Only the multi-player options of the game disappoint. Still, if the game featured no multiplayer options at all, it does so many things right that it would still be in the running for Game of the Year.
  13. Its presentation is top-notch, its levels are varied and interesting, its AI is convincing, and the whole game drips with love and attention to detail.
  14. Polishing off the brilliance that is NOLF 2 are the game's stunning graphics, powered by the LithTech Jupiter engine. [Holiday 2002, p.78]
  15. Smart and sexy, just like its heroine. It is a thoroughly enjoyable, tongue in cheek romp through the world of 1960s espionage.
  16. An excellent FPS, and easily one of the year’s best. It’s varied, funny, imaginative, challenging (on anything other than Easy mode, which you could complete blindfolded) and has a lot to offer. However, despite all this, it lacks its predecessor’s spark of genius and genuine originality. If we sound a little on the negative side, it’s only through mild disappointment that it’s merely a very good game rather than a repeat performance of a genuine classic.
  17. The game's true crowning achievement: This game has excellent AI. Hands down.
  18. Most importantly, NOLF 2 never takes itself too seriously. You'll be battling ninja's in an Ohio trailer park while a tornado approaches, avoiding neon super-soldier death rays, slaughtering mimes, and experiencing other outlandish predicaments.
  19. The wonderful artificial intelligence and level design combine to keep you glued to your screen...A true tour de force.
  20. What really sets NOLF2 apart is the game's sheer polish and professionalism. [Jan 2003, p.100]
  21. Game of the year material. It’s rare these days to play a game that excels in every area-but this one does so.
  22. Truly a wonderful game, complete with enough humor and action to appease anyone in the market for a good shooter and a hearty laugh.
  23. 100
    The writing is sharp enough to make sense of the fact that, at one point, you find yourself fighting ninjas in the middle of a tornado in Akron, Ohio. [Jan 2003, p.67]
  24. While not visually stunning does feature good graphical detail that complements the gameplay well and overall combines to make an enjoyable game.
  25. The stealth element, which was the source of much frustration, has undergone a total overhaul: Virtually every one of the game's 40 missions can be accomplished using guile (instead of brute force). [11 Oct 2002, p.85]
  26. Game of the Year...Like "Deus Ex" two years ago, there is simply nothing on the same level.
  27. If it sounds like NOLF2 is a lot like NOLF, and you're wondering why I'm complaining so bitterly, you have my sympathy. When I say they "gutted" NOLF2, I mean it, and I can back it up.
  28. An incredibly appealing spectacle that is ahead of the majority of other titles in the genre...The detail and flexibility of the engine allow for some captivating set pieces and cinematic cut scenes, which move the story along excellently.
  29. Not only a worthy sequel but also advances the genre forward with a higher standard of AI, stealth and level design.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 132 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 21 out of 28
  2. Negative: 2 out of 28
  1. Feb 14, 2011
    I still recall this as one of the best FPS I've ever played. I would love to see this IP revisited with a new game. Great storyline, stealth modes and spy gadgets. It was as close as you can get to being in a 60's spy movie. Full Review »
  2. Nov 20, 2012
    Why don't they make first person shooters with this much personality anymore? It's ten years after it's release and I enjoy this more than any shooter from the last few years. I tend to ignore most FPS games now, expecting them to be shallow, repetitive and lacking any real character, but not NOLF2. It's got more personality and more of an enjoyment factor than all of the CoD (or whatever other FPS games are popular nowadays) wrapped into one. Full Review »
  3. Feb 5, 2014
    From a sequel standpoint? It has done no wrongeth. The trouble with Cate Archer's character here, is lack of consistent substance that actually made her back-chatter reasonably charming and subsequently funny. Their seems to be a whole lot more tongue in cheek here, but to a degree that I found less endearing. It starts off with the campy flavor of Japan, accompanied by stealthily fighting all-female ninjas, and general espionage. When the plot starts rolling though, you might be winded by the tedious (and I might add somewhat linear and small) level design. Or the enemy A.I. being much less fun to actually engage in a shoot-out with, or most of the weapons being identical in nature and less usage of gadgets throughout and you may as well add that it doesn't bring anything new to the table when compared to its predecessor. The visuals have received a minor face-lift, but not much else has changed. The writing is certainly far less funny than the original and due to the pacing in-game, you may not have the patience to sit and listen to half the guards or enemies bang on and on until they hit punchline territory. What really bothered me though was the fact that after the first two chapters of the game, I began to dread shoot-outs. Color me stupid if this was the intent, but then in sections later on in the game, they practically force you into slow, cumbersome shootouts that are surprisingly not fun. Believe me, compared to shooting an unsuspecting guard with a silenced pistol, carrying his body to a shady area, and knowing that no one saw that is far more gratifying than seventy percent of the "scripted" shoot outs. Though I understand it to be "parody" its just not as funny or as satisfying as our original adventure with Cate Archer and U.N.I.T.Y. However, the truly miserable thing here, is the general laziness that carries you through till about chapter seven or eight. Its just not fun to play near the beginning, which is what the original didn't have any issue with. Its far too much "don't get spotted," Or "don't get caught," and all the while you just start thinking. "Wow I'm a patient person, but this is kind of boring." Their is delight fully charming Cate Archer from No One Lives Forever, and then theirs silent, boring, less charming, less funny Cate Archer from this sequel. Of course their are memorable moments of the game, but even Monoliths early work concentrated on making it enjoyable to curb stomp enemies with your bullet shoes. Something is just off about most of the action in the game, a lot of it also has some pretty tricky situations in levels that really just cannot be defended by anybody. Such as in some missions it asks of you to fulfill "optional" objectives. Are these spelled out in terms of how to fulfill them? No. It is kind of an issue though when a developer throws in a slight curve ball like a role playing game mechanic. Cate can "upgrade" certain traits, such as marksmanship or stealth, based on intelligence she founds through out missions, or by fulfilling all objectives, including optional ones and this is a problem. Some are just not worth doing, are hard to find, require a deeper analysis of a tiny linear level, or are just frustrating. You need some of these upgrades, should you play on any harder difficulties, but also to get past a certain troubling section that consists of a "chase sequence" on tricycle. Enemy A.I. goes from way to alert to absolutely stupid as well, having issues with ladders, not detecting Cate at all, being alarmingly good at detecting Cate from vastly ridiculous distances and so on. I'll stick with the first game, as it balances the camp, the parody, and the action a lot better than this one. Full Review »