Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Flash Manhunt

Oh man. I came across a few games this week that, for whatever reason, left me feeling pretty pissed off. But every time I come across a poor Flash version of a well-known title I have a certain amount of bile reserved just for it.

I mean, is it really that hard to produce a decent cut down version of these games? Why is it that out of all the Flash versions I've ever played, only Portal and Mirror's Edge have come out looking good? I suppose it goes without saying that I wasn't impressed with this really bad stick man version of Manhunt.

The whole thing is laughable from the very beginning. It starts off with our hero screeching to a halt and jumping out of his car before declaring that he's planning on killing his boss, and will we help him? It even gives you the option to say "No" and takes you back to the main menu. Who the hell is going to say "No"?

"No thanks, I just loaded the game for shits and giggles. I'm gonna go do something else now." It just seems so pointless!

Before can kill your boss, you need to get past the guards. The easiest way to do this seems to be by shanking them in the back. If you run around they'll hear you, so you need to move slowly by pressing the Shift key. You'll pick up several weapons over the course of the game, but from a distance they all look like a big stick.

All the guards have this mask on them, cribbed from the original game to add an air of authenticity, or something. I'm not sure whether it looks cool or silly, which most likely means it's the latter.

It's all insultingly easy in the early goings before hitting a certain amount of difficulty. Sometimes guards will be in a position where you can't get around them or easily attack them, so you need to make them move by catching their attention. The method of doing this can most politely be described as retarded; you basically run up to the guard, then run away before they can catch you. You really don't want them to catch you - they'll deplete your life points so quickly that you won't even realise you're in trouble until you see the "Game Over" screen.

There are trash cans all over every level, but these don't seem to do anything. The noise they make when you knock one over doesn't attract the guards - indeed, the health plan for hired goons these days isn't what it used to be, as these guys seem both short-sighted and hard of hearing. Unfortunately their knees are still perfectly fine.

These middle levels are a real pain in the ass, because if you die you have to start from the beginning each time, and you really don't want to spend that much time on a game this bad. Then, for no discernible reason, things get piss easy again. The guards are sitting ducks, for the most part, so you can take out whoever you want, whenever you want.

You also get to see the worst rendering of a chainsaw in gaming since the glory days of the Odyssey. Anyway, after about a dozen mercifully short levels, you finally reach the boss himself.

Oh, well... I guess that's that, then. Yeah, our hero pretty much abandons all thoughts of stealth and goes right in for a bloody kill. But if you had a gun all this time, what was up with sneaking around, garrotting hoodlums with copper wire?

The one thing you can say for Flash Manhunt is that it's in no way as graphic as the original. It's also in no way as good. Truth be told, I found the original Manhunt to be a pain the ass, as the focus seemed to be on graphic kills and not on excellent gameplay. This doesn't even have enough to please gorehounds, and there's nothing to appeal to the casual gamer.

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