Saturday, January 19

Turok, Trash or Treasure?

Turok is finally coming back to visit you in your home for the first time after a six year void since the disappointing Turok: Evolution. The newest in the series, which is plainly titled "Turok", is coming from Propaganda Games and will be available for your Ps3, Xbox 360, and PC on February 5th, 2008.

A demo recently was recently released on the Playstation Network so ryizzel and I decided we would review it for you and give our two cents on it.

This two stage demo starts you out as Joseph Turok with his "buddy" Slade in a dark cave with dripping water and perfect acoustics to echo even the quietest whisper. You'll realize this every time Slade says something as you tramp your way through the cavern searching for your way out. Slade says a lot of things, usually nothing important. He also likes to remind you how he'll "Leave your ass behind if you don't hurry up". What a good friend.

As you work your way through the cave, you'll hear strange noises coming from up ahead, these noises are followed by screams of fear and pain. That combined with the dripping water, the dark, and the sense of claustrophobia all make this part of the demo very tense the first time through.

You start out the demo with a bow, two sub-machine guns, and a knife. You can dual-wield any two one-handed weapons that you wish in this game. Shotgun and a sub-machine gun? Sure! Dual-shotguns? Definitely! The left handed weapon is controlled by the left trigger buttons, and the right weapon with the right triggers, easy and fun. There's also a large assortment of weapons in the demo, everything ranging from a pistol to a pulse rifle.

Though the most fun weapon in my opinion is of course, the knife. This thing is wicked. You have the choice to hack away at your enemy until they fall to their knees, or you can use R2 when you're close enough to your enemy for an instant kill where it transitions smoothly into a third-person view of Turok executing a very bad ass killing move, then transitioning just as smoothly back into first-person.

That's not the only time you enter third-person though. Does everyone remember why Turok was so cool in the first place? The dinosaurs of course! Every now and then a dino may pin you to the ground while trying to rip your throat out and you have to mash either the trigger buttons, or rotate the analog stick like mad to get the savage beasts off of you before you become a part of their digestive system.

Eventually you'll work your way out of the cave and you have to regroup with Slade (with whom you were separated in the cave), and this is the first time you get to see non-hostile dinosaurs, little Compsognathuses. You know, the little rooster sized dinosaurs. They will bite at your ankles if you sit still too long though, feisty little buggers.

We get to witness one cutscene in the demo where we see a little bit into Turok's past that explains the scar on his cheek, and why he carries a knife. He's a member of a group called the Wolf Pack, that's all I'll give away for now.

Naturally after you find out why he has a knife, you have to use either that or your bow to eliminate a few human (if indeed they are human) enemies who are patrolling the area. You could go silently, or you could just blow them all to smithereens with whatever weapons you have currently. I found it most fun to provoke the local dinosaurs and then hide while they tore into my enemies for me.

The whole thing looks great, the people are very detailed, and the dinosaurs ferocious. Ragdoll physics are fun when you blow an enemy twenty feet in the air due to a well placed grenade, but the bodies of your fallen foes feel like they have no weight to them. I barely ran into the corpse of a raptor and the thing slid ten feet in front of me. The raptors in the game are easily twice your size, I find the weightlessness highly illogical captain.

As far as music goes, Turok doesn't have anything spectacular. The music it has fits, it's easy to ignore, but it just doesn't add much to the game itself. The battle music however gets very annoying quite quickly. I'm pretty sure it's just the same 15 second track over and over.

So finally, at the end of the demo I had enjoyed myself, and it left me looking forward to the game's release. Though, I'd wait for the reviews to see if it's worth the hefty price tag before getting it, Turok is a fun First Person Shooter, but it doesn't bring anything new to the genre. The full release version is going to have a 16 person online mode, but if you're looking for a shooter I'd go for Unreal Tournament III or Team Fortress 2 from the Orange Box.

The Turok demo gets an 8.0 from me. Fun, but not incredible.


Sooo....its my turn to give my review of the demo...joys...

From what I experienced in the 30 minute demo, Turok is just another generic shooter. This doesn't mean its a bad game, just not a good one. The demo contains everything you'd expect from a Turok game, dinosaurs, A bow, and a expansive jungle environment for the player to explore.

From what I've gathered in the demo, our Dinosaur hunter has joined a group of mercenaries named wolf pack who are tasked with tracking down a war criminal on a planet inhabited by dinosaurs. The demo consists of two levels, a small cave which appears to be a nest for raptors and a vast, open jungle.

You get a variety of weapons to use in this game, Pulse rifles, SMGs, Shotguns, and Grenade launchers are all at your disposal to wreak havoc upon your enemies. The best of all of the weapons was the knife. When you get close enough to an enemy, you can execute an instant kill move. Another cool feature was using the shotgun's alternate fire, a flare launcher, to distract the dinosaurs. You could even shoot enemies with the flares and the raptors would attack them.

My main problem with the demo was that it didn't leave me wanting more. With games like Farcry and Crysis on the market, this game seems vanilla. Turok has all the features every FPS should have, dual wielding, a large variety of weapons, and lots of crap to shoot at. I really hope in the full version of the game, the devs include things that make Turok unique.

Turok gets a 7 from me. While its not innovative, it's still enjoyable.


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