#$%&*#@!! aliens! They kidnapped your shipmates and hijacked your ship. It's enough to get a guy. . ."
. . .PO'ed. Maybe they should call this Under Siege 2130, because this game is about a pissed off cook who got mad because some aliens hijacked his ship, and broke into his kitchen. Being the only one left, with a messed up souffle, and no one to serve it to, has made him snap. Consequently, you have the latest Doom clone, this time from Accolade, and the developers from Any Channel. Personally, I wonder what is Id (makers of Original Doom) going to do with all these saucy innovations everyone is thowing into the Doom stew. I mean this game really had some nice, new additions to the Doom Clone family, as have some other notables, like Duke Nukem 3D. Maybe they're sitting back and waiting and watching it all go by, and when the time is soup it up for one ultimate Final Doom (coincedently the name of next and supposedly last chapter in the epic series). But, enough about Doom. There's already enough of it in PO'ed.
The graphics in PO'ed are good, though a little bit choppier than most Doom clones. The graphics are very moody and dark to start with, making a lot of things indistinguishable from others, and also making the direction of the game kind of confusing (in fact it would be impossible if not for this really tight 3-D map that's just amazing). Also, the gamespeed is slightly out of proportion to the size of the game.
The enemies, while annoying, are very original, especially the walking buttheads that spit killer turds out their a....., buttcracks. Those actually made me feel sick the first time I saw it. There are some nice little effects, like the spray of blood you get when you kill a monster with a power drill, and the way you can virtually "be" the missle when you are shooting from a missle launcher. Very Zen.
The levels take a lot strategizing to figure out. With teleporting and all sorts of other options, it can be confusing even if you know where the exit is and have the map to show you how to get there. These are two completely different things in this game. Sometimes the exit can be right near the entrance and you won't even know it until you wipe out the whole level. Sometimes there are necessary teleports to go through, or on/off switches to shut off before you can complete the level (it would be nice of they put the exit on the map, and even tuned up the difficulty to compensate for it). There are often a lot of nice accessories, like the jetpack, and several power-ups you might want to get before you finish the level.
The control is alright, but a touch loose, making hits hard to avoid (which Accolade does nicely compensate for with a "thick" energy bar that goes down pretty slow for the number of hits you will be taking). The strafing is much slower than it should be and there are a few "cheap" hits. When turning around for instance, you take way too many hits and alot of hits from behind at that. It is often hard to get a bead on exactly who is hitting you, especially with those #$&*%@! bats, because they usually move faster than you can turn. Also the weapon upgrading system is kind of slow. For instance, on Level 2, you start with monsters firing arm cannons at you, and you have nothing but that dinky little butcher knife and your trusty frying pan. Certain things, like the jet pack on that level are also hard to get. The turbo feature comes in handy every once in a while, but not nearly as much as they would like you to believe.
The sound is decent, but not inspiring. The sound effects are nice though, from the sound of the frying pan clanging against everyone and everything, to that drill effect. If the monsters had been a little more colorful with their noises, or if Chef Boyardee would make little comments to himself, the sound would have been even better.
As I mentioned before, this game does have some nice, innovative features, like the turbo feature for foot mode and jetpack mode, the rotating 3-D map, and even this cool little backflip that rarely comes in handy, but is pretty tight just the same. The monsters are well varied, although difficult, like this rock-throwing thing that just keeps coming and is pretty hard to avoid. Then, towards the end, they come at you with a bunch of Robot Rambos that look like they live in the U.S National Armory. They not only throw the kitchen sink at you, but the refrigerator and the underwear you forgot to pick up after you were. . ., uhh, well (oops, wrong kitchen . . .).
The enemies do look nice (although not quite up to Quake standards) and that spider thing gave me the same chills Arachnophobia did. I liked the large size of the game, and the ability to save on the fly, although that probably diminishes the replay value to nothing, because once you finish this game (playing it on 'hard' will give you an ulcer), you'll probably want to smoke a ...,uhh, cigarette (remember, kids, smoking is cool!!), or in my case, drink a nice hot cup of Lipton tea --to my fans out there. I love that!
Really though, this game does offer a lot of fun and has solid gameplay. Perhaps more though as a 5-dollar rental than a 60 dollar keepsake. The fun factor here is good, but not up to par with Doom, or Duke Nukem 3-D which, I admit, is putting it against tough competition. But the replay value just isn't there either. Although I really like the innovations and you can see the differences a little minor tweaking to an established format makes. Doom was a great game, (or should I say the great game, for it's influence and originality), and PO'ed, along with most other Doom clones, is a good one. This is one the better Doom clones, for whatever that's worth.
If you really have to have a Doom game, get Doom for Playstation. It has better replay value (Original Doom, Ultimate Doom), and is just plain better. Or, wait for Final Doom, which, from the screenshots I've seen, will be the game. PO'ed is pretty good, but bottom line is: Don't buy this game unless you are rich.