Review

Serious Sam 2 Review (PC)

Serious Sam II is the sequel to Serious Sam and has greatly improved graphics and top rate game-play.  Like its parent game, Serious Sam, and expansion, Second Encounter, Serious Sam II is fast-paced action from start to finish.  Basically, you shoot, shoot, shoot.  Just shoot the hell out of everything you see.  Serious Sam features numerous levels and puzzles. 

It features fire packed guns...
...and huge oponnents

There is a background to Serious Sam II, but it isn’t very detailed.  Mental is back and there are five pieces of a medallion, “The Medallion of Power,” you must find.  While you may think this sounds like a relatively easy task, you thought wrong.   The game is more about staying alive and surviving than the hunt for these objects.  When the hundreds of beasts are after you for blood, you definitely won’t be thinking about a medallion, and you probably won’t even care about why they’re chasing you.  As long as you kill are able to kill that comes your way and stay alive, the pieces you need, will eventually fall into your lap.

The Netricsa system is back, and the highly informative and helpful Nettie explains things to you in a spoken dialogue.  She makes hilarious comments throughout the game that will keep you in good humor as you go on your killing spree.  Aside from her good humor, Nettis is very useful in orienting Sam towards his objectives, and basically telling Sam what he needs to do and where he needs to go.

The arsenal in Serious Sam II is much more inventive this time around.  Sam will still be using the traditional pieces like a double-barreled shotgun, rocket gun, and chain gun, but there are also more specialized weapons available.  These weapons, like the enemy seeking parrot bomb, are fun to use but the situation to use them does not come along very often.  You will find yourself using the regular arsenal much more than you will use these unique weapons, but don’t worry, they’ll get the job done.  Vehicles have been added and are an exciting edition to Sam’s arsenal.  Most of the vehicles provided, the hover cars and spinning spike pods, serve mainly as an extra layer of armor for Sam, but the rolling ball of death you get at the start of the game is beyond exciting.

*boom* Usualy on my sniper aim I expect to see a German helmet, but here you'll get all sorts of beasts

The graphics in this game are outstanding.  While the various creatures are nothing to brag about, the immense number on screen at one time sure is.  Aside from the enemies, the looks of the rest of the game is superb as well.  There are tons of trees, flowers, grass, dirt, hills, and shrubs all over the place and the lighting provided is good too.  The arenas you play in are quite varied; you will find yourself playing in snow, fairy tale cities, Asian carnivals, enormous back-yards, and many other crazy areas.  The graphics can be scaled to fit your machine, making it possible for more advanced systems to achieve even better graphics with little to no drop in performance. 

The sound effects in Serious Sam II are very fitting to the game and, while not the best in the business, are above average.  You will hear all of the normal weapon sounds and explosions.  Couple this with Nettie’s commentary and you have a nice package.  While sound is always important, it is not really the main theme of this game; the graphic visuals and game-play is the key here.

The enemies alone in this game will overwhelm you.  There are three different monster sizes, and what the producers refer to as medium even looks larger than life.  These are enemies you wouldn’t even want to fight single-handedly, but you will.  You will be encountered with three mechanical spiders, all huge, of course, and all coming at you at once.  Various enemies will be dropped out of nowhere.  Humongous groups of enemies will be right there to attack you at every turn.  It’s just plain crazy.

Once again, the pace of this game must be stressed.  The extreme pace barely gives you time to appreciate the graphics or even listen to what Nettie has to say.  Basically, you are too busy killing and trying to stay alive yourself to worry about anything.  Your finger will pretty much start out on the fire button and will not move throughout the entire game.  In many cases this could get monotonous, but the enemies are so varied you don’t have to worry about that.  Not only are the enemies all different, but their attack modes and styles are varied as well.  Some individual enemies are deadly, but mostly the enemies are dangerous because of their outrageous numbers.

Serious Sam II has an easy to use cooperative mode available.  Instead of having to face the enemy alone you can fight them with a group of friends, making it much easier to beat the games infinitely hard levels.  In fact, it may be your only chance.  Some of the difficulty of the levels is ultra-hard, harder than you ever thought possible.  This mode is very flexible and you are able to change the settings on difficulty levels to match your ability.

The world of Serious Sam
Street fights

Top Game Moment:  The best thing about this game is undoubtedly the fast paced action and enormous enemies that swarm about like flies.  The best thing is killing off an entire screen full of enemies and riding away while Nettie makes a hilarious comment about the massacre.

Like the games that came before it, Serious Sam II will be a favorite for action game fans.  If you like the “shoot’em up” type games, Serious Sam II definitely fits the bill.  You will be faced with a wide variety of enemies that you can fight with a unique arsenal.  Throw in great commentary from Nettie and outstanding graphics, and this action packed, fast-paced game with keep you on your toes from start to finish.  The game is even able to change the enemy’s power as players come and go.
 

by Paul
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