Back around the year 2000 or so, the cult favorite first person shooter, Serious Sam, was released on PC. While most FPS games were starting to gravitate toward more story-driven gameplay around this time, Serious Sam stood out by being more straight up arcade action. Now you can relive the classic FPS title with shiny new high-def graphics with Serious Sam HD on PC and Xbox LIVE (Xbox LIVE version reviewed here).
Don’t expect a heavy narrative style FPS game like Call of Duty or BioShock, You’re just Serious Sam out to blast waves of crazy enemies. Even though he’s “Serious,” Sam still spouts plenty of humorous one-liners through the game. My favorite is when he whistles the Indiana Jones tune after avoiding a giant rolling bolder!
While the HD graphics are certainly improved from the original game, some of the environments seem a little sparse in comparison to other recent shooters. I’m not an expert on FPS games, so I had younger brother Jeff help out with this review. He says the play control is great for folks familiar with these styles of games, but he would have chosen to put the jump button somewhere else. Also, you’ll have to make sure to save often, as there are plenty of unseen instant death traps that can cause you to have to start the level over if you didn’t save. There are multiplayer modes, too, but it’s too bad you can’t have local co-op on a split screen.
Even so, Jeff and his friends all agree that Serious Sam HD is a lengthy and worthwhile DLC game that’s a great deal even at 1200 MS Points.
Serious Sam HD is rated M for Mature with ESRB descriptors of Blood and Gore as well as Violence. It’s certainly bloody, but the violence is almost comical as most of what you blast are wacky enemies like headless screamers with bombs for hands or hulking six-armed dinosaurs. While Serious Sam is definitely best for adult gamers, I would be OK with more mature, older teens like Jeff and his friends playing this. They’re nearly old enough for M rated games anyway.