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Serious Sam Review 1
Serious Sam Review 2
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Serious Sam Review 1

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Serious Sam is an ultra intense first person shooter game from CroTeam, a Craotioan games company. Value priced from the ge go, Serious Sam costs $19.99 and is worth every penny. The basic premise : Mankind has been layed to waste by an intergalactic horde of demonic monsters. One earth warrior is strong enough to lay mankinds hopes on : Serious Sam. Sam is transported back in time to stop the destruction of man before it happens. Serious Sam is a Duke Nukem kind of hero, complete with gnarly voice and quick one liners. Sporting a tough wife-beater, Sam is ready to kick some major alien ass...that is if you can keep up with this game.

The obvious inspiraton for Serious Sam is Doom. It borrows all the satanic references, hordes of monsters and scary sounds from Doom, yet forgoes the trudging around searching for colored keys in favor of a more linear aproach to the levels. In Serious Sam you just charge forward, always in fear of the neverending hordes of monsters that will be attacking you.

The sound plays a major role in bringing the fear, as each monster has a very recognizable sound. As you're moving along, you'll hear the approaching sound of 100's of your favorite monsters, but don't see them yet, creating a palpable suspense. For example, regard the screenshot below.

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In the shot above, you're trapped in this room with the headless freaks shooting at you. After you slaughter about 50 of em, Sam stops and screams : "Is that the best you can do!?!". Suddenly you hear a stampede of skeleton bulls(they sound like horses) coming from afar. Then Sam says "Uh-Oh", as the room pictured above begins to be circled by the invading army. Suddenly you hear the high-pitched scream of Scorpion machine gun demon and the gates fly open as you desperately circle strafe and pray you'll survive.

This is the kind of white knuckled action Serious Sam excels in. It helps that the graphics are gorgeous, with massive horizon lines and a super cool Egyptian motif. Most of the monsters are incredible to look at as well. From the giant Doom Inspired Devil bosses, to the anime inspired Bio-Mech machines, the variety is excellent. My personal favorite are the headless Kamikaze Bombers. They come running towards you with no head(how do they scream?), screaming with a bomb on the end of each hand. Wait till you hear 50 of 'em screaming at the top of their lungs as they rush to blow you up. Regard the screenshot below for the Kamikaze Bombers running at Sam.

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One of the best features of Serious Sam is it's multiplayer support: Serious Sam supports Online deathmatches, scorematches and Co-Op play. You can battle through the whole one player adventure online with multiple partners. It's pretty sweet. Not only that, but Serious Sam supports split screen play for 2-4 players on one computer. You can also go online with the splitscreen and join death or Co-op games. Pretty sweet for $19.99 eh?

If you're looking for a visceral one player experience that eliminates any kind of story-telling or events, such as Half Life, and just concentrates on seeing how skilled you are with a mouse and keyboard in a major "twitch" fest, this is the game for you. The one player game is intense and awesome, and the multiplayer support offers incredible replay value. Any first person shooter fan should go out and get this game without hesitation. And the $19.99 price tag and multiplayer support should make this game appealing to any PC gamer looking for something to wow his/her friends with. This game is highly recommended.
--Mike O'Toole

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