Expansion Packs

Between doing homework on my countdown to Spring break (2 assignments, 1 lab, 2 exams, 1 paper, 4 journal pages to go!), I played a some games, most of which were expansion content. Last weekend I finished F.E.A.R. Extraction Point, so this weekend I finished F.E.A.R. Perseus Mandate.

That was… not great. It’s biggest offense is an enemy that can just soak up an unholy amount of damage and it’s just a dude. He can deftly sidestep out of the way, except it’s not that effective when I’m in slow-mo. He’s more of a nuisance than anything. There was, however, a great level in which I was pursued by a large robot through an office building. That was awesome. But the rest? Skip it. It just made me wish I were playing F.E.A.R. 2, which is so mind-blowingly awesome.

I also played a little bit of Dead Space 2: Severed. It gives you the pulse rifle, flamethrower, and seeker rifle from the start, which is great because I didn’t use the flamethrower or seeker rifle at all in the main campaign and I wanted to give them a shot. I really haven’t played much of it but it’s certainly more Dead Space 2!

Finally, all that Doom 2 I’ve been playing made me want to play a little Doom 3 so I loaded up the Resurrection of Evil expansion because it’s what I’ve played the least of. I think I’ve only gone through it three times. That is one slow moving game. For realz. Especially when compared to Doom 2. Even when compared to F.E.A.R.

Game Reviews

Doom 3

Unlike a lot of people, I really enjoyed Doom 3. It’s a big departure from the first two in terms of atmosphere and gameplay, but it holds its own and looks good. I’m doing what feels like my yearly replay of it, except on Veteran (hard) difficulty and I feel like the increased difficulty is really exposing some of the less obvious flaws in the game. I may not even finish this playthrough.

Half of the enemies jump out of closets. It’s one of those obvious flaws that you learn about in the first 15 minutes of the game. On medium, it’s no big deal because you take a hit, turn around, pop them, and they die. On hard, you still take that first hit, and it’s always at least 15% of your health. So you can take two paths with it; you can keep rolling and slowly bleed out from repeated monster closets, or you can quick save after every fight and reload when you find a monster closet so you can better deal with it. It sucks.

Lost souls are the fucking worst. They were an annoyance in Doom 1/2 but never a real threat. In Doom 3, they’re tiny, they hit for at least 15%, they bounce out of the way if you hit them without killing them, and when they hit, your view moves. I died in the first encounter with lost souls. LOST SOULS. Flying, screaming skulls pecked me to death.

The shotgun, which sucks at any range beyond 1 meter in front of you, is the best weapon to kill them with because it’ll almost always kill them in one hit, except you have to wait until it’s charging at you and it’s right in front of your goddamned face before you can think about pulling the trigger. The shotgun only holds 8 rounds, and it takes forever to reload so you better not miss!

And let’s talk about how much the shotgun blows. The shotgun in Doom 1/2 is one of my favorite weapons. It is versatile and possesses a good amount of stopping power. The shotgun in Doom 3 is worthless beyond 1 meter ahead of you. If you are not jamming that shotgun into the bad guy’s face before you pull the trigger, you’re going to have to shoot them twice. That said, it will kill ims, soldiers, zombies, maggots, and those dumb teleporting things  in one shot, so what I’ve found myself doing is dancing around while they shoot at me, and then charging at them before I blast them in the face, then running backwards in case that first shot didn’t do the trick. It’s a huge letdown. It’s horrible. Thankfully the plasma rifle is even more awesome than it was in Doom 1/2.

Even playing on hard, Doom 3 is no more difficult. It is just more annoying. Playing it feels like work. I will probably abort this playthrough, and remind myself next time to play it on medium again, when the game is more fun.