Saturday, May 21, 2011

Serious Sam HD: The First Encounter

Serious Sam HD: The First Encounter is the HD remake of Serious Sam: The First Encounter, the first game in the seminal Serious Sam series.

Not that I have played the original, but I would like to start off with what the HD adds to the game. The game, like its name denotes, runs in many high resolutions and has improved textures, models, and environments but will also handle low resolutions if you so desire. Additionally, according to the Wikipedia entry, it also adds 16-player online co-op, deathmatch, dedicated servers, and achievements; Not to mention the likely better compatibility with modern computers. The one thing I question is if these high resolutions make sense. While textures have been improved they are still very low on detail and simply look bland in this high resolution.

So onto the gameplay; In short Serious Sam is serious fun. It has a bunch of unique enemies with a strangely high number of melee only thrown in. These enemies are not deployed or combated with the normal finessy style of a FPS but instead are often simply spawned en-mass in-front of you; There is no peaking up from behind chest high walls, peering around a corner, or slowly taking aim, just keep firing until no enemy is left standing or you run out of bullets. The one aspect I liked about this a lot is the increased dependence on strategy instead of lightning fast reflexes. You have time until you have to fire your first shot so the importance has been moved to what weapon you select more then how quickly you fire it.

The first encounter with this enemy which is a mini-boss as this point
but will, by game's end, be thrown at you in the hundreds.

As the game progresses the bosses just get bigger and bigger.

The water effects are some of the best in the game, but are underused.

My mini-review of Serious Sam HD: The First Encounter.

Getting it to Run (on a Windows 7 x64):
Run as Administrator and Windows XP SP3 compatibility mode.

Windowed Mode:
Fully supported.

Supported, no side effects.

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