NOLF2 Add-on & MP Plans

There's an article on future plans for No One Lives Forever on GameSpy with word on plans at Monolith for future releases of both a tool package and an expansion pack for No One Lives Forever 2, their spy shooter sequel. There are scant details on the add-on, except that it's expected before the end of this year, and that it will put players in the role of one of the bad guys, rather than as Cate Archer. What they have to say about plans for a free multiplayer patch is more concrete, including word it is expected within the next couple of weeks. Here's the deal:
The “first big release” (as Monolith put it) is a huge NOLF2 multiplayer patch which will be released within a week or two, adding deathmatch, team deathmatch, and a new gameplay mode called Doomsday. The patch should contain over 10 maps, many based on NOLF2 single-player levels (including Siberia, Japan, and Khios), but including large pieces of original architecture as well.
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Re: Hmmm
Mar 10, 2003, 09:12
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Re: Hmmm Mar 10, 2003, 09:12
Mar 10, 2003, 09:12
 
When i first got and played NOLF 2, my impression was that it was generally an inferior game to NOLF1, but ok in it's own respect.

After replaying the original again, and then immediately going to the second, i was considerably more impressed.

First, and most obviously, the graphics are much better.

Second, the interface is much better. Fore example, tools can be used just by clicking on their intended items (ie, instead of manually clicking on your lockpicks, and then opening the lock, you can just click on the lock and you will switch to lockpicks and start picking).

Third, the quality of the voice acting, while different from the original, is still very good. Just listen to some games with average or poor voice acting, and you'll see the difference..

Fourth, miscellaneous bits. When played back to back against the original, I think it's easier to see many of the minute, evolutionary, changes made to the game that make it a more enjoyable game. Things like the hide bar to let you know when you're hidden and like the level of polish the game has.

This does not take away from some of it's shortcomings though, shortcomings which really are only valid in comparison with the original:

The game feels more forced: the original just seemed to flow, from place to place, from conversation to conversation, everything was just right and only very seldom was there any lack of synchronicity (wow, don't think ive ever used that word in a sentence that didnt involve a Police record). NOLF 2 felt forced in many places: not just where events transpire, but in conversations, humor, cutscenes and almost everything else. I had a sense of "This thing is here only because it wasn't here in the original". Samurais are a perfect example.

Emphasis on run-and-gun. A design choice, and i think a bad one. Almost every scenario in NOLF 2 can and(arguably because of respawning) should be handled using run and gun tactics. Really, what is the sense of cautiously watching someone, following their route, and quietly and efficiently executing them only when their replacement spawns almost as soon as you can secrete the body (i had this happen to me once in the russian library...grr). Once you realize there is no real benefit to being stealthy, the game changes considerably.

NOLF 2 is still a good game(IMO), and yes, one of the year's best. A worthy successor to the original, but not above it. Some people wonder why there's been no sequel to HalfLife, and i think this game represents the answer: It is very, very difficult to make a successor to a game that is so very good. Even it is the best it could be, people will detract from it because it is either 1) too much like the original, or 2) not enough like the original.

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