No One Lives Forever Preview
Now that the PS2 has been out for over a year, we've seen around ten first-person shooters come out, but I feel the only ones worth mentioning are Red Faction and Half Life. Which means that the PS2 needs a few top-notch FPS titles, and one that can make an impact as GoldenEye did. The PS2 will receive a bunch of FPSs in early 2002 and this game might just lead the pack. In this suave, 60's set FPS you assume control of Cate Archer to investigate the murders of two senior agents. The culprits of these murders are in an evil group called H.A.R.M. Archer, on the other hand, works for the U.N.I.T.Y., a British spy agency.
NOLF's prime gameplay is in the single player mode. Not only does it have a lot of cut-scenes and cinemas, but it's also filled with witty comments. Additionally, some cases allow you to choose what to say. Depending on what you choose will determine the responses from the people you're talking to. The dialogue is, overall, a fun thing to listen to and is graced with humor.
All great spies have their bag of gadgets, but some of the gadgets in NOLF are just ordinary objects that you would see the great McGuyver use. You have a cigarette lighter disguised as a blow torch; a hairpin used as a key to pick locks; perfume which can be used as knock out gas; and even sunglasses that are actually a camera. In addition to these nifty gadgets is a slew of useful weapons: a Morris Model 14 spear-gun, an AK-47 assault rifle, a .45-caliber sniper rifle, a Hampton Carbine, and a Sportsman EX crossbow, just to name a few. Mixed in to the heavy paced action is a hint of stealth. Sneaking by is sometimes the only way to go, especially with the security cameras. All the levels have their own flavor. One level, you're atop an airplane with nothing but a parachute and a prayer; on another, you're scuba diving deep inside a sunken ship. In addition to all the levels found on the PC version, are four new flashback levels. Before her engagement as a spy, Cate was a petty thief. Therefore, as Cate, you run the streets and steal purses while avoiding the FIVE-0. In the second level, your goal is to break into two safes in a store while the owner is closing. Most of the levels run at a good 30 fps and at times nearly 60. Right now the visuals are looking as sharp as the PC version's, with smooth textures to boot.
NOLF's controls are like most others out for the PS2. The right analog lets you aim while the left one controls your movement. The D-pad scrolls through your weapons and inventory while the shoulder buttons control most of the action such as jumping, shooting, and sneaking. While aiming at an enemy, auto-aiming is used to lock-on to the closest body part (i. e. legs, arms, head). Unfortunately, NOLF does not support a USB mouse and keyboard hook up.
Monolith's PC to PS2 port is shaping up to be a very impressive title and with the help of two new levels and sharp gameplay it should be great to play. NOLF is scheduled for a February 15th release.
12/13/2001 Joseph Comunale