August 25, 2006

Also available for PlayStation 2

Me again, and this is another review here, and this time, on the game Black. First thing I would like to say about Black is do not listen to what people say about this game, it is nothing special, it is mediocre in nearly every way. Sure this game has glorious visuals for a current-gen title, but after that, I’m sure you will find that this game is incredibly shallow.

The gameplay in Black may very well Black’s biggest weakness. This is probably one of the most repetitive games ever made. The main idea of the game is to kill everyone and destroy everything. And for the first half-hour this is great, you’ll actually feel like you’re in a blockbuster action film. Guns are blazing, things are blowing up and the action is intense. However, soon you’re going to get bored of this, and for a good number of reasons. For one, each enemy will take pretty much a full clip (30-60 bullets) to bring down with your standard assault rifles. This isn’t so bad up close because it’ll only take about 3 second to unload a clip, but at long distance or even medium range, it’s a whole different story. This aspect of the game is probably, the worst. There is nothing more aggravating than to sit for about a minute tapping the trigger button for those accurate shots until finally, 60 bullets later; your target is down. Over the course of the game, this can drive you insane, literally. The AI in Black is also atrocious. If you shoot an enemy, instead of scrambling for cover, he will run towards you, run by you, and then start looking for you after he just passed you by.

The repetitive style of Black doesn’t stop at the gameplay, it goes right into the graphics. In Black, There are only 5, (count them) 5 enemy models. This isn’t too bad for a game that only lasts about 6 hours, but then again, when at the end of the day there are nearly 1,300 enemies you will need to take out to finish the game, yeah, that is bad. Not only that, there are no physics, so you will see each of the three pre-animated deaths about 400 times. The environments are extremely dull; each level looks about the same except the main tone of colour used is different. The only places you will ever visit are factories, power plants and other standard industrial locales. The last big problem is the horrible cinematics, which you cannot skip no matter what. These scenes are boring and long, and made even worse by horrible, dry, dialogue.

Take a breather now because that was just a prelude…. And now, for the worst part of all (drum roll please). If you can survive the awful gameplay and cinematics and actually make it to the end of the campaign, you will be rewarded with a short cliffhanger ending that is stupid and could’ve been made up by a three-year-old! Yeah, the ending is actually that bad.

The good is that the explosions, lighting, and camera blurring effect can be stunning. The blurred reload feature works out great and adds some realism and depth to a game that really lacks the both. The only other good thing this game has to offer is a great score. This all adds to the sense of being in a blockbuster action film you’ll experience in the first half-hour or so. Only problem with this is that the same tracks will get played over and over again and you will tire of the music fast too.

Conclusion – Black is your average shooter that really has nothing special about it. This game takes repetitive gameplay to a whole new level, and without multiplayer, absolutely no replay value. Luckily this game is saved from being a complete waste because it does have nice explosions and lighting. But in the end, if you’re a serious FPS fan, rent it first, if you’re not, avoid this one completely. I give Black 60/100.

Rating: 60 / 100

Reviewed by Robert


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