Home > PC Games, Ported Reviews, Steam > “Alpha Prime” Demo Impressions

“Alpha Prime” Demo Impressions

Hey, Frayed Wire readers! This is a post Josh made on his old site, but is now being moved here! He wrote this back when he first got Steam.

I recently downloaded the Steam software, which lets you download and play PC games through your online account. Free demos are also available on Steam, making it a worthwhile download even if you don’t plan on actually buying anything. Thanks to Steam, I may be bringing you more “Impressions” posts because of the large database of demos. The first demo I will write about is of a recently released game called “Alpha Prime”.

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There are a lot of crappy shooting games out there nowadays, and when I chose to download this, I wasn’t sure if I was about to play one of those crappy shooters. When the demo was installing itself, I saw that Metacritic gave it a 58 out of 100. Oh great, I though to myself. But I still tried it out, only to find that I agree with that score somewhat. The graphics are great, but the physics and sloppy hit detection made me think of it as a Half Life 2 gone wrong. Many things seemed to be shamelessly lifted right out of the Half Life 2 series – syringe-type health dispensers, identical masked enemies, the flashlight, the way objects are held in the center of the screen if you pick something up, and just the overall mood. But while these things I just mentioned didn’t do anything to harm the actual gameplay, I found myself disappointed at all these glaring Half Life 2 rip-offs.

I’m not saying the gameplay was good, however. Sure, It wasn’t bad, but the awful hit detection really hurt it. At one point I tried to shoot a rocket at some big flamethrower-wielding man. When the huge explosion did nothing to harm him (his legs didn’t even buckle or anything like that – he just kept on walking as if nothing happened), I was convinced he was on my side. Unfortunately, when I ran into the room with him and started shooting the bad guys, he turned around and pointed his giant flamethrower at me! Guess he wasn’t my buddy…

Another problem was that enemies didn’t react quite right when I shot them. I once shot someone in the leg, and blood came out their head. Uh, yeah…. Something else that bothered me was that if you ever shot a dead body, they wouldn’t budge or show any sign that they were just shot. All that would happen was an unrealistic amount of blood would splash out. If I shifted my view and then turned back around to look at the body, all the blood would be gone.

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Personally, when I sit down to play a game, I’m not planning on watching a movie. But Alpha Prime had me doing just that at time. Unfortunately, Alpha Prime’s cut scenes are long and boring. I suppose you can skip them, but when I do and find my partner slouched over lifelessly on the nearby seat, I kind of wonder what just happened. These cut scenes also sport some horrendous voice acting. The lips never even move when people besides the main character talk! The fact that the main character seems to be a emotionless killer with a deep, wispy voice doesn’t really help you to connect with him on a personal level, either.

The demo of Alpha Prime was actually quite difficult, even on the “easy” setting. WAY too much health was depleted when you jumped 10 feet off the staircase, also (and those cases where you were forced to do that, there was no other visible way down). Alpha Prime may keep your interest because of the difficulty, but because of the sloppy hit detection, crappy sound, and boring cut scenes, you won’t be missing much if you skip this game altogether.

By Josh60502

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