Average User Score: 8.3Apr 17, 2012This game is in the interesting position of being a remake of a remake. It started life in (I think) 1995 as 'Exile: Escape From the Pit. ItThis game is in the interesting position of being a remake of a remake. It started life in (I think) 1995 as 'Exile: Escape From the Pit. It was later remade as simply 'Avernum'. I played the original incarnation and I loved it. Alright, so there were a lot of things wrong with it, but I loved it. I also played the remake and, whilst I enjoyed it for a while, it just wasn't as fun as Exile and I never finished it. This was a shame, as the new engine 'Avernum' was built on ironed out most of the small problems present in the original.
Avernum: Escape From the Pit, surpasses the original in every way. I'll now break this review into the different aspects of the game.
Graphics: 8/10. Despite the nostalgic appeal of Exile's old sprites, I can't deny that these new graphics are far superior, An isometric view of the world of Avernum is so much more pleasant and flexible than the old 2d sort-of-top-down view (in fairness to the original Avernum, it introduced this) and far, far nicer than the old Avernum's graphics. My only complaint is that the caves of Avernum seem a bit too brightly lit, but it's nothing jarring.
Gameplay: 10/10. The most important aspect of any game, and where this one truly excels. In Avernum: Escape From the Pit, you control a party of four people (less if you want). As with any RPG worth it's salt, you can customise the skills and abilities of all of your characters, and there is much scope for creating several diversely different characters.
Combat is a simple turn-based affair and is also very enjoyable. There is a wide variety of enemies for you to fight and the fight against regular enemies is interspersed with challenging and engaging pseudo-boss-battles. My only complaint with combat is that it isn't uncommon for you to accidentally target the wrong enemy, though this rarely has catastrophic consequences (it might on the higher difficulties, though).
The movement system is much more pleasant and fluid than in the older games, allowing you to click on a location not too far away from you and have your characters walk there, rather than having to literally guide them every step of the way.
Storyline: 9/10. The storyline is the same as the previous two incarnations of the game, though tweaked and expanded in some areas. This is, simply put, a good thing. In this game, you take the role of some of those banished to live in the underground cave system of Avernum as punishment for a political crime of some sort. I won't say anything else specific, but I will say that the storyline is both engaging and rewarding, ensuring that you play the game to its conclusion. There are also many sidequests and dungeons to explore.
Sounds: 7.5/10. The game's weakest area, but that isn't to say that the sounds are bad. They're just a little lacking. For example, there are some perfectly good pieces of music that play at the title screen and during loading screens, but there's no music at any other time. The sound effects are good, though they can become repetitive.
Replay Value: 9/10. Whilst you're unlikely to play the whole game more than once (except perhaps on the highest difficulty (if you didn't do so first time), with a single character (again, if you didn't do so first time) or simply having not played it for a while), the large number of sidequests and dungeons to explore will see you investing many hours of your time into this game. There are also several medals (which double as achievements if you buy from Steam) for to earn, providing further reason to stick with the game.
Overall, a truly excellent game, worthy of anyone's time. 9.5/10, rounded up to 10 for this review.… Expand
Average User Score: tbdMar 19, 2012I'll start by admitting that nostalgia probably makes me think more highly of this game than I probably should, but I've tried to allow forI'll start by admitting that nostalgia probably makes me think more highly of this game than I probably should, but I've tried to allow for that in the score.
This is a good example of a game which keeps you playing simply by the virtue of being fun. The gameplay itself is simple but there's a surprising level of enjoyment to be gained from running around and knocking out various Bionicle Rahi with a pleasingly diverse range of weapons (this is not a violent game, however).
There are also basic puzzles present in the game, integrated into the gameplay rather than presented as stand-alone occurrences, which is nice. The graphics, though hardly mind-blowing, are perfectly pleasing enough and fit the game very well. Similarly, the plot doesn't exactly compel you to keep playing, but the opportunity to explore new and diverse areas does. The six minigames are also enjoyable and can also be played with a friend. Sadly, the game has very little replay value, but you'll have enough fun playing it through once to justify buying it.… Expand
Average User Score: 4.0Nov 16, 2011It's hard to place, but there's something about Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 which makes it great. The campaign mode: the story is confusingIt's hard to place, but there's something about Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 which makes it great. The campaign mode: the story is confusing at first and when you actually think about it, it's a bit flawed as well. However, the missions are suitably action packed and put you in a wide enough variety of locations to be really quite enjoyable.
Special Ops: Basically just random missions in locations (mostly) from the campaign, Special Ops are, in my opinion, just as enjoyable as multiplayer. You can play them alone or with a friend (which I recommend if possible, not only does it add to the fun but some Ops are excessively difficult when by yourself) and gain stars upon completion which unlock more Ops. The diversity of the objectives and locations makes Special Ops a fantastic game mode.
Multiplayer: PC players in general seem to be really quite upset at the IWNet system, which removes dedicated servers. Whilst this is an odd and undeniably poor decision, the people who are complaining about it seem to be deliberately forcing themselves not to have fun nonetheless, which is quite an achievement considering just how fun it is. Again, the diversity of the maps is great, but the customization options available are what makes Modern Warfare 2's multiplayer mode absolutely fantastic.… Expand
Average User Score: 8.1Nov 16, 2011Whilst Operation Arrowhead may technically be an expansion for Arma 2, it can run as a standalone game and has enough contents to make doingWhilst Operation Arrowhead may technically be an expansion for Arma 2, it can run as a standalone game and has enough contents to make doing so worthwhile, if you were to wish to do so. It does take quite a bit of getting used to, even if you don't play CoD or similar games, because there is quite a steep learning curve, but persistence is worthwhile as this game really is one of the most immersive on the market. This is a game which keeps you on your toes at all times, makes you actually feel afraid as gives you a sense of accomplishment even if all you do is survive. If you can run it on maximum graphic settings, this game looks great, and it still looks pretty good on lower settings. However, playing it does give the impression that the engine isn't particularly well optimized. The campaign mode won't ever win any awards for originality in terms of plot, but it's a lot of fun and lets you try out several different types of combat, as do the equally enjoyable scenarios which loosely link in with the campaign. The mission editors (both instant-action-style and more advanced) will provide you with almost limitless fun and I would say that it is this sandbox aspect that really shines. If you can find a dedicated team for online play, the experience is simply incredible, though doing so can be difficult.
My advice to anybody who is willing to invest quite a bit of time for a truly rewarding experience would be to buy this right away.… Expand