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List of Games Beaten in 2016

2016! I've played some video games in that year. These are them.

This is like the sixth or seventh List of Games Beaten now. Here's hoping I beat 2015's meager record - I'm intending to play a lot of smaller games this year, just as soon as I'm done with all the giant games of last year.

List items

  • 13/01. I've said it elsewhere, but Bethesda packs just enough appreciable new hooks and streamlined mechanics into each successive open-world RPG of theirs that you get suckered into spending literal weeks of your life with them every time. If I could use an inelegant analogy here, and I've never been afraid to do so before now, it's like passing by a delicious apple pie sitting on a suspicious tarp a la that one episode of The Simpsons. You fall into the barely-concealed giant pit trying to grab it, sitting at the bottom for days until you finally claw your way out. A few years later, you walk past another tarp but this one has apple pie with a dollop of ice cream next to it. "This is the same pit trap again, isn't it?" you muse, "It's even in the same place and everything. Like every detail is the same, I'm almost insulted at their lack of effort. That ice cream, though..." WHOMP. Screw you Fallout 4. (The game's fine! It's fine! I enjoyed my time with it immensely.) (4 Stars.)

  • 16/01. For as bloated as it was and for some of its issues with repetitive level design and lengthy loading times (at least for me, and it's almost certainly less of an issue for the 3DS version), Citizens of Earth is an exceptionally made Indie RPG from folk who know the genre back to front. It's not enough that they built their game by duct-taping together Suikoden and EarthBound - two incredible RPG series from which we'll probably never see another sequel - but they threw in so many extra features and conveniences that it felt like it was a dream project made by RPG fanatics who had, more than once in the past, uttered "this RPG would be perfect if it let you do this, or skip that, or speed up this part". I appreciated the heck out of this little game. (And you can read more about it by checking out its three Go! Go! GOTY! entries. Sorry I couldn't beat you in 2015, guy!) (4 Stars.)

  • 28/01. This might be the last Assassin's Creed game I touch for a while. Even with its rave reviews, it suffers the same gameplay issues, glitches and design problems that the series has been struggling with for multiple entries now, focused as they are on open-world content bloat and ignoring an increasingly hoary gameplay engine that won't see any significant improvements if they continue to put out a game every year or so. AC:S is fine - I like the twin protagonists and how they provide two alternative builds to choose from, the well-realized Victorian setting and the myriad historical cameos - but as with Black Flag it's becoming clear that I won't ever be as invested in this series as I once was. (3 Stars.)

  • 20/02. Bloodborne's very impressive, not just in how it leaves the safe environs of a vaguely Berserk-style fantasy medieval kingdom for something that crosses Universal Horror with Lovecraft in a slightly more contemporary setting, but its many ingenious tweaks to the series gameplay that, for better or worse, make it a game where an aggressive all-out approach is generally the best strategy. I'm excited to see where else the Souls formula might be taken in the future. (5 Stars.)

  • 05/03. I wasn't sure what to expect with this "gaiden" entry in the venerable Ys series of action-RPGs, beyond that it used the same engine and mechanics as the PS2's Ys VI: Ark of Napishtim, but I was pleasantly surprised by how succinctly it condenses and epitomizes what makes the Ys series great: thrilling boss battles, a lively mix of brawler/platformer/action-RPG gameplay and a kickass soundtrack. This might actually be the ideal gateway for someone trying to get into Ys, in spite of its lack of Adol Christin and how heavily steeped it is in the lore of Ys games past. (5 Stars.)

  • 14/03. A number of technical and game design issues might have soured my Tearaway experience - I really can't say it's a particularly good 3D platformer - but there's lots still to appreciate about the game's creativity, papercraft aesthetic and willingness to get weird with its meta tale about the player and their influence on the in-game world. I've used a metaphor similar to this before when describing the game, but it's like an artsy coffee place with a fantastic atmosphere but truly abysmal coffee: it might fail to deliver what it was ostensibly created to provide, but you get the sense that maybe the proprietors' priorities were elsewhere. (3 Stars.)

  • 17/03. A cute game with a cute backstory, but not a whole lot of substance. It is kinda neat that someone made a Flash-based Zelda 2 clone though. Usually it's the other Zeldas that get the imitation treatment. (3 Stars.)

  • 21/03. Case in point. Oceanhorn is nakedly a Wind Waker tribute (like that's a bad idea) with some slightly more old-school approaches to dungeon and world design - though I did like that XP rewards were heavily influenced on the in-game achievement system. It makes a lot of sense, to an extent where I wonder why more games haven't done something similar. (4 Stars.)

  • 27/03. A game that really doesn't wear out its welcome, exploring the limits of its fractured world design before bowing out gracefully. I didn't appreciate its "beat the world without dying" approach to 100% completion, but it's the sort of novel little puzzle-platformer the Indie market does so well, if all too frequently. (4 Stars.)

  • 28/03. I've been on-off playing this F2P Picross game for months, finally reaching the ending though not entirely done with acquiring new Pokemon. Actually, it's the Alternate World with its much harsher victory conditions that will keep me going for a bit longer. At least I don't have to worry about waiting six real-time hours for my energy to regenerate. Damn F2P mechanics. (4 Stars.)

  • 11/04. Though it came out five years ago now, I wasn't sure what to expect with this puzzle-platformer that imagines its streetwise hero as an animated piece of graffiti art. Weird this came out before Link Between the Worlds, because it pre-empted a number of its ingenious mechanics for a 2D hero stuck to a 2D plane in a 3D world. Shame that hinted-at Sideway: Tokyo sequel hasn't transpired yet. (4 Stars.)

  • 18/04. A steampunk SpaceWhipper with a heavy emphasis on magnets and physics, which makes it both clever and annoyingly imprecise in equal measure. While it looks cute, it sure isn't easy, with some of the toughest boss fights outside a FromSoftware or Platinum game. It nails the traversal flow and ease of backtracking, though, which are aspects I always hope to see handled well in a genre like this. (4 Stars.)

  • 20/04. A truly immense open-world game that took me near a month to complete, The Witcher 3 not only brings the CRPG exploration goodness but also the decent strategic combat and mature, morally gray storytelling that the series is known for. It beats the pants off of any open-world Bethesda game, that's for sure (though that doesn't mean I didn't wish I could furnish or invest in Kaer Morhen in some way). (5 Stars.)

  • 21/04. This Shadow Warrior-themed bonus is more of a trial run for the full game, but Viscera Cleanup Detail appears to do the impossible by making janitorial duty both engrossing and satisfying. I hear the secret of the game's appeal is in the manic multiplayer, however. (4 Stars.)

  • 26/04. Sucker Punch created a pintsize version of their open-world series to give early PS4 owners an exclusive that, while probably not worth buying the system for, gave them an early edge over the Xbox One. Even so, it feels like were trying a little too hard with their protagonist and his Banksy "smash the state" aspirations. (3 Stars.)

  • 27/04. In many ways a bigger and more confident retread of the earlier Risky's Revenge, Pirate's Curse is packed with great pixel visuals as well as fantastic chiptune music from Jake Kaufman. An Indie SpaceWhipper (or hairwhipper in this case, I suppose) that knows its audience, for better and occasionally for worse. (4 Stars.)

  • 03/05. The subject of Days 01, 02 and 03 of May Mastery '16. A fantastic and thoughtful first-person puzzle game that has a lot of self-contained puzzle chambers and narrative mysteries to solve. (5 Stars.)

  • 08/05. The subject of Days 04, 05 and 06 of May Mastery '16. Supergiant creates another game about which I had some mechanical reservations, but a sense of style, soulful music and a wry script that are all top-notch. I know Supergiant has a bona fide classic in them somewhere, and I cannot wait for the day when they can coax it out. (4 Stars.)

  • 12/05. The subject of Days 11 and 12 of May Mastery '16. Neither filling in plot details prior to the first game, nor the emphasis on Nate and the Critters, felt particularly necessary to me. Even so, this is The Book of Unwritten Tales we're talking about, and I'm on the same page as Vinny when he says that this might be the best modern adventure game series, and easily one of the greatest ever. Just... maybe less Critter in the future. Adventure games are made or broken on their writing, and a character that can't speak an identifiable language hurts that. I mean, unless you really think you can sell toys based on this series... (4 Stars.)

  • 14/05. The subject of Days 13 and 14 of May Mastery '16. A neat strategic take on an action stealth game, Ronin just felt a little too off in too many areas to be considered a classic of the genre. That just means there's room for improvement, though, if a sequel were to ever transpire. While I don't care for its occasional imprecision and the way it ends, its badass heart is definitely in the right place. (3 Stars.)

  • 17/05. The subject of Days 16 and 17 of May Mastery '16. Puzzle-platformer perfection. If you've ever wondered why that genre is so prolific in the Indie market, it's because you occasionally get great games like this that can nail the balance between clever puzzles, a thematically-fitting presentation and concise control. (5 Stars.)

  • 23/05. The subject of Day 23 of May Mastery '16. Beyond the infant protagonist and the vulnerability and lack of mobility that comes with being a toddler, Among the Sleep is fairly rote. You solve basic puzzles and get spooked a few times from large terrors you can only run and hide from. The nightmarish visuals and story make it worth seeing through to the end though. (3 Stars.)

  • 25/05. The subject of Days 24 and 25 of May Mastery '16. I was pleasantly surprised by what turned out to be a modern take on Gauntlet, and more twin-stick shooter than RPG roguelike in practice. I liked the emphasis on finding secrets and strategically whittling down enormous crowds of monsters too. Worth seeking out next time there's a Steam sale on. (4 Stars.)

  • 26/05. The subject of Day 26 of May Mastery '16. Pendulo's penultimate adventure game got a few chuckles out of me, and I enjoyed its surreal premise and quickfire repartee. It has a few adventure game puzzles that hew too closely to when point and clicks were illogical nonsense, but it has definitely inspired me to try out some of Pendulo's other games. (4 Stars.)

  • 28/05. The subject of Days 27 and 28 of May Mastery '16. Specifically the Enchanted Edition, built on Trine 2's engine. I figured it was due time to introduce myself to the Trine series; a set of puzzle-plaforming games with mild RPG mechanics that rely heavily on physics and object stacking puzzles along with combat and traversal. It's as good as everyone says. (4 Stars.)

  • 02/06. The subject of Day 31 of May Mastery '16. The Ys series might be the most consistently brilliant RPG series out there, barring the likes of something like Dark Cloud that could only manage two excellent entries. The Oath in Felghana offers the same mix of lightning fast speed (you won't see another JRPG move as quickly as this one), tough boss encounters (without exception, I died to every boss at least twice before I could beat them) and an incredible rock/synth soundtrack. The story and graphics are often just so-so, but neither are the focus here. Just amazing fun. (5 Stars.)

  • 04/06. The subject of Days 21 and 22 of May Mastery '16. Like its burly protagonist, Cargo Commander is a little rough around the edges but it has a lot of heart. The game offers players to create an endless number of scenarios, hiking across space-faring cargo containers with their trusty drill and firearms, purloining as much valuable salvage as they can before the wormhole opens up to eat everything that isn't the player's home base. It's a repetitive loot grind, but a damn enjoyable one. (5 Stars.)

  • 05/06. The subject of Day 10 of May Mastery '16. While the atmosphere and enigmatic narrative elements are there, much of the mechanical core is missing from this Amnesia sequel, making it feel a lot more ordinary than its trailblazing predecessor. Just know going in that you'll be spending most of your time walking through a linear series of corridors. (3 Stars.)

  • 10/06. Was happy to finally check out Giant Bomb's GOTY of 2014, and while a lot of its DNA is derived from games that have come before, the Nemesis system is one of those wonderful new innovations that isn't so much a godsend for its application here, but in how there's so much more room for growth for others that might implement it. The idea that a game can generate a rogue's gallery on the fly, creating odd personality quirks and weaknesses for the player to exploit as well as emboldening them whenever they manage to defeat the player, is a potentially exciting one. Imagine if the next Crackdown has a system like that for its criminal gangs, or a superhero game where a regular bankrobber manages to get the drop on you and siphon a bit of your power to re-emerge as a supervillain? At any rate, most of what Shadow of Mordor offers is solid, and the way your hero eventually becomes absurdly powerful makes the late-game especially fun. (5 Stars.)

  • 23/06. The subject of Days 18, 19 and 20 of May Mastery '16. Due to some fortunate timing, the last Book of Dreamfall Chapters released shortly after May and I was able to complete the set relatively close together. The characterization and storytelling that The Longest Journey/Dreamfall series is known for didn't miss a step but some of the puzzle design, especially in the early Books, was less effective. It course-corrected towards the end, though, delivering a satisfying conclusion to a journey almost 20 years in the making. (4 Stars.)

  • 06/07. JRPGs are video game comfort food for me, but as with any kind of comfort food there's always the risk of overdoing it. Xillia's built to be a bit more open and exploratory than most of the games in its franchise, seemingly inspired by the expansive settings of Final Fantasy XII and Xenoblade Chronicles, but its feature-rich action-RPG gameplay is still as excellent as ever, as is its emphasis on small character moments and elaborate world-building. (5 Stars.)

  • 30/07. The first of several games this year that I had to cut off at an arbitrary point so I wouldn't keep playing it forever as my backlog grew and grew. Like Dan, I was immediately smitten with Stardew's modest charms and surprisingly dense catalog of stuff to do and to discover. What starts as a routine of watering the crops you planted balloons to include mining, monster fighting, exploring forests, befriending the locals, cooking, fishing and just poking around every new area as they become available for whatever they can offer. I've still not hit 100% in this game, and I've left the door open for an eventual revisit in a few months' time. (5 Stars.)

  • 31/07. A very slight, narratively-focused game about finding love in an MMO. If you aren't completely sold on games as a purely storytelling medium (as in, visual novels or the oft-derided walking simulator), I wouldn't say this was for you. It's cute and a bit sad, though, and should resonate for those who made some important connections while playing WoW or EverQuest. (4 Stars.)

  • 14/08. I normally wait on new Indie game releases until a sale or a bundle, but Lumo seemed custom-built for someone with my background in gaming - that is, a lot of European home computer games in my formative years - that I badly wanted to see what the game was about. I think I was sold as soon as I saw the opening screen in Cadaver during the GB Quick Look. The game's an overt love letter to that same period, but is worth playing for those unfamiliar with its genre just because it offers something new in the Indie puzzle-platformer sphere, or at least something that hasn't been seen for a very long time. (5 Stars.)

  • 31/08. It's a casual solitaire game, but its particular brand of the Windows mainstay solo card game can be oddly engrossing, especially if you're trying to earn the increasingly difficult bonus conditions. If you saw the Quick Look and perhaps bought the game yourself in the same Humble Bundle I did, don't neglect the "retry" button if you mess up. It won't restart the whole stage, just the last hand. (4 Stars.)

  • 31/08. As with Stardew Valley, I simply determined a worthy enough end point so I could move on, leaving enough on the table for an eventual revisit when I have the time and fewer games to play. MGSV is truly phenomenal as an open-world stealth game, though Kojima fans who are used to the steady drip of bonkers narrative moments and heavy exposition every five minutes will find it rather sparse. Like the desert plains of its 1980s Afghanistan, you'll be wandering a while between oases of ridiculous cinematic cutscenes and over the top boss fights (of which this game has... three? Five if you count group battles). (5 Stars.)

  • 16/09. Divinity has the kind of combat system that hits the Goldilocks point of complexity. It is streamlined compared to D&D adaptations in terms of character abilities and spells, helped and harmed in part by the game's strict limit of four member parties, but expanded with the amount of environmental trickery the player can exploit using objects in the vicinity or their own elemental magic. Beyond that, it's a decently-sized CRPG with plenty to do and a cool base to hang around in between quests to work on crafting and other micromanagement, and that's really all I ask from the genre these days. (5 Stars.)

  • 20/09. Gravity Rush, for all its free-flying freedom, feels like a few big ideas trapped in a small box. The game's central conceit - heroine Kat can slip the surly bonds of Earth and touch the face of a big ugly monster thing with cancerous glowing polyps to dive kick - is a strong one for an open-world game to exploit, as is the bizarre setting of a city hovering on a horizontal shelf of a truly enormous vertical tree-like structure, which the game briefly hints at with a late-game sojourn downwards into the structure's roots. Ultimately, though, the game is limited by its repetitive combat and open-world side-activities, and it feels like the developers couldn't think of more than a handful of ways to make use of Kat's distinct abilities. While I'm left indifferent by this game, I have high hopes that the incoming sequel can figure out its huge potential. (3 Stars.)

  • 27/09. It's been a long time since a Musou game enthralled me, but Dragon Quest Heroes has enough hooks as a hybrid JRPG and hack-n-slash brawler (is that what you'd categorize Musou as?) to keep me invested. Its rogue gallery of Dragon Quest ringers, familiar music and clever boss fights kept me going even when the abundance of "protect a thing" missions threatened to turn me away. (4 Stars.)

  • 06/10. I have a few problems with Arkham Knight that I've never been able to satisfactorily express. The game's built to be the third part of a trilogy, with all the lore and difficulty tweaks that you might expect if you were playing this soon after the first two, and as a result it's a hard game to jump into if it's been a few years (Arkham City, the last one from Rocksteady themselves, came out in 2011). It's also unrelentingly grim, focusing on Batman's least happy moments like letting (a) Robin die and Barbara become paralyzed, and there's a constant threat of losing his sanity completely between Scarecrow's toxin and Joker's parting gift of his own noxious blood. Mechanically it's solid, building from the previous games and adding the Batmobile (which isn't really all that bad), but I think we're all ready to move on from these Arkham games. At least, I know Rocksteady is. (4 Stars.)

  • 23/10. Not sure what I was expecting with Type-0, but it proved to be a fascinating game with a structure geared specifically towards short sessions and multiple new game pluses. There's no dearth of Final Fantasy ingenuity here, even if everything else - the weird plot, the archetypal characters, the copious amount of asset/level design recycling - appeared to see less attention. (4 Stars.)

  • 25/10. Yeah, I played this again. The result of a combination of VinnyVania taking on IGA's Symphony of the Night, general Halloween buzz and an eShop sale. It's still as excellent as I recalled; probably the next best of the IGAvanias after Symphony. (5 Stars.)

  • 09/11. A birthday present, and the first legit major 2016 game I got my hands on this year. While it did feel like a "best of" in most respects, I can't fault its many refinements too much. The well's getting dry but it's still nothing to write off between the welcome return of some the series' more bizarre boss encounters and lore-rich fan service. (4 Stars.)

  • 15/11. I'd been following this one with its reputation as a solid Indie SpaceWhipper, and the game was definitely that. Opting to take a few leafs from FromSoftware's playbook, the game proved quite challenging and unwilling to hold your hand, even at the start. While its combat wasn't the most sophisticated, it used its simplicity instead to its benefit, giving you two types of basic attack that were useful in different circumstances. Animated well, scored beautifully and just a pleasant surprise. (4 Stars.)

  • 19/11. Sigh. I just have to come to terms with the fact that Retro doesn't feel the same about about the DKC games that I do. Or rather, they recognize the same strengths that I see in the old SNES series, but feel compelled to carry over what were at the time inescapable limitations. There's no particular reason why the new DKC games are as difficult as they are, except that the SNES ones were difficult. Except they were never deliberately so. They came from Rare, the creators of Battletoads, and to their testers and designers DKC probably felt like a Nintendo-ready all-ages cakewalk by comparison. DKC:TF does so much right with the music and style that it bums me out when they distance checkpoints or force the player to carry a power-up with them all the way to the end of a level for a specific collectible. Just low-key hostility in the design throughout. Play it if you're into the masocore scene, but just remember that masochism always follows sadism. (3 Stars.)

  • 21/11. In truth, this is only the Paris map and the two prologue tutorial missions, but even though it's scarcely a fifth of the entire package, there's enough here to make one's mind up about IO's new episodic Hitman. I think the game is incredibly impressive, just on a design basis alone. When you consider the complexity going down - not just in the terms of how objects interact with each other, but the various rules that must be followed at all times and how understanding them is pivotal to understanding the game - means that it is a game that is easy enough to pick up, but you'll spend entire days learning how to be a master at it. That it mines all this playtime out a single imperative - "kill this person" - and still make you want to complete it over and over is a testament to its versatility and depth. I can't speak too highly about what this particular iteration accomplishes, as I'd never played the prior games in the series, but it's quite spectacular. I hope to slowly invest in future episodes later in 2017, whenever I find the time. (5 Stars.)

  • 26/11. It's becoming incredibly worn ground for the Indie market, but I can't stop playing SpaceWhippers. Axiom Verge attempts to reinterpret the claustrophobic alien loneliness of the original Metroid and Super Metroid while adding a new layer of sci-fi weirdness with the idea of code-based lifeforms. As a scientist pulled through the void to a world that sits between our physical plane and an inscrutable one made of machine code, the game gets a lot of mileage out of being able to manipulate the landscape through data hacking. I appreciated its novel take on a setting and its weapon variance, but it did feel much every other SpaceWhipper out there in most respects. Still, it has everything I want, so I ain't buggin'. (4 Stars.)

  • 01/12. (Covered in more detail in Go! Go! GOTY! 2016 Day One.) Games tend to get knocked for trying to be too cinematic, especially when gameplay takes a simplicity downgrade in the process, but Inside knows what it's doing with such a confidence that it's hard to judge it as anything less than a resounding success. Taking a cue from their earlier Limbo, which in turn takes after French designer Eric Chahi's work with Another World and Heart of Darkness, Playdead's main focus with Inside is to keep the player guessing: whether that's in the macro with its narrative-free plot of the continued survival of a young boy in a dimly-lit nightmare world where survival is very often out of the question, or in the micro with the puzzles that make up each instance of the boy's journey. It's short, but worth seeing in full when you have the time to spare for it. (5 Stars.)

  • 04/12. (Covered in more detail in Go! Go! GOTY! 2016 Day Two and Three.) Another SpaceWhipper, another game that ensorcelled me with its presentation. Headlander hearkens back to an era of sci-fi that, while inherently humorous due to era-specific visions of the future, tended to have a lot of thoughtful commentary on mankind and our place in the universe, like good sci-fi ought to. Headlander's not particularly thoughtful, as Double Fine's more in the comedy game in general, but it does raise some questions about humanity in a future where humans no longer exist. As a SpaceWhipper, however, it's remarkably straightforward - maps are clearly delineated with the locations of secret doors and power-ups, and the game's combat and puzzles tend to be on the simple side. This one's more for luxuriating in its style. (4 Stars.)

  • 05/12. (Covered in more detail in Go! Go! GOTY! 2016 Day Four and Five.) Well, Grow Up is really just more Grow Home. It's a reductive way to look at any sequel, but Grow Up took a reductive approach by only waiting a year for a near-identical retread. I guess that's more Ubisoft's MO than anything. It's still the relaxed sortie through a cuboid world of plant-growing, crystal-grabbing and hover-jetting, and if you beat Grow Home too quickly and was looking for another just like it then Grow Up has you covered. For as much as I love the series, I couldn't feel like I could give this one a free pass. (3 Stars.)

  • 07/12. (Covered in more detail in Go! Go! GOTY! 2016 Day Seven.) SPIFFING has potential as a comedic fourth-wall breaking parody of sci-fi and British stereotypes, but is simply too short for its own good. I'd perhaps fault its application of funding - too much spent on some fairly decent character model and backdrop work, not enough on story and puzzle design - but that would do a disservice to its developers who probably felt they had to make the best game that was in them and just ran out of cash before it could fully transpire. I think this series has the potential to be another Book of Unwritten Tales, with a few more quality of life tweaks perhaps, so I'm hoping they scrape together enough revenue to keep it going. (3 Stars.)

  • 10/12. I had no idea this game would be so ambitious. The first was a protracted joke about the conventions of JRPGs, with a bit of a cute history lesson attached, but the sequel went for a SNES-era sized RPG and stuffed with a dozen different game genres, each of which I imagine took months to code and test. Even in spite of this random genre-switching and moving between different graphical eras, there's a consistency to the game and its story that keeps it all grounded. Naturally, with so much packed in there are cracks aplenty, but it's one of the most impressive Indie projects in terms of scope I've seen since Dust: An Elysian Tail. (4 Stars.)

  • 12/12. I spent a whole Sunday Summaries trying to unpack this game's story and themes about human identity, in terms of both the soul and the body, and probably not enough on how it structures its scary encounters - it's real smart how each monster has a different "weakness" to exploit, but only to escape from it as head-on combat is out of the question - but SOMA is pretty much what I wanted from an Amnesia follow-up. I kind of expected to agree with its detractors in that the monster stealth stuff serves to distract from a cleverly written adventure game, but the game's perfectly balanced between investigations and spooks. It's a remarkable game, and I can't wait to see where Frictional goes next. (5 Stars.)

  • 22/12. I think Doom's incredible. id Software had a near impossible task to make this Doom feel like the original, and yet they pulled every trick and invented several besides to make it happen within the framework of the more deliberately-paced and scripted modern FPS. That it still feels like you're running around in a blind panic, shooting at a hundred crazy-looking demons while heavy metal plays while taking every quiet break to scrounge together as much ammo and health before the storm comes again is not only welcome for long-time fans but remarkable in that the game didn't have to regress technologically at all to make it happen. Like building a million dollar machine to make Coca Cola taste just like it used to when you were a kid. (5 Stars.)