Sunday, January 23, 2011

Review: Absence

Title: Absence
Dos - 09/09/2008, SDL - 24/12/2008
Length: 18 Levels
Level Format: Continuous
New Story: Yes (7 Pages) - Read This = 33 Pages
Graphics: Most new with some from Doom
Sound: New
Special Features: Experience upgrade feature, textured floors and ceilings, 4 keys, exploding barrels, medkits, power calls, handprint readers & turrets.
Dos/SDL: Both versions available (Dos version reviewed)

Initial impressions: A lot of hard work has gone into this, especially the coding features and graphics. The new status bar especially is very well done. The first level is quite difficult until you get a feel for the game and used to handling the wrench as a weapon. Beautiful layouts and well thought out maps.

Gameplay: Challenging initially but things become easier the more the player increases their experience levels. There are many challenging areas and the Boss battles can be quite hard. The maps are large with plenty of places to explore and the gameplay mixes things up a bit over the levels.

Mapping: The mapping is extremely well done for the style of mod. When you base a mod in the one environment you will get some familiarity with layouts and levels. The maps are large with everything that is placed there for a reason and not just decoration. Secrets are plentiful and well worth searching for. The maps can be a little predictable later on as you become more familiar with the placement of guards and the authors mapping style.

The exe runs very smoothly and there is always interesting gameplay. The graphics are very well done which helps make the environments well worth experiencing as you play through the mod. The data discs are a great addition and help keep the player more involved in the storyline. The experience upgrades are a fantastic new addition to Wolf and really add some interest in thinking about what component will benefit you best to upgrade at each opportunity.

Dislikes: The first level is very difficult and killed me multiple times. The gameplay and map layouts can become a bit predictable after a while.

Dean's Score: 8.0/10
Difficulty: Quite difficult in parts, especially the first level
Best Level: 9
Worst Level: 15

This is definitely one of the best mods of 2008 and the amount of work put into it is evident. The addition of experience upgrades, passwords for computers and data discs are fantastic additions to Wolf and really helps the player immerse themselves into the mod. A lot of fun and a mod that keeps you wanting to play right through to the end.

Havoc has released a 'making of' document for Absence that can be downloaded HERE.

Where Can I get it?: You can download the mod in Dos HERE or the SDL version by clicking HERE or on the screenshot at the top of this post.

Disclaimer: All reviews are only my opinion when playing the mod and are not intended to discredit anyone or the hard work they have put into creating their mod.

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