Gamestyle Archive intro: words cannot put into context how rare a review from Dean Swain was at Gamestyle. The overlord soon settled into his throne whilst the faithful team contributed so much material at times there was a 2 week queue before going live.
Now Timesplitters was a fun if limited experience with its appeal increased due to the CV of the developers. It really shows where first person gaming was heading and had a strong visual design. This review is an early Gamestyle piece dating from around November 2000.
The game that I was most looking forward too on the PlayStation 2… And why? Because the people behind Timesplitters are a splinter group from the team behind the legendary N64 games, GoldenEye and Perfect Dark. And maybe that’s why I can’t help but feel disappointed with this release, I guess I was expecting a game that would be even better than those two classic first-person shooters, to be fair Timesplitters is a great game but it’s a very simple game compared to GoldenEye, in story mode there is basically no story, yes I know this sounds strange but that’s how this game is.
Free Radical (the team who produced the game) have tried to go back to the game play strategies of games like doom, the basic idea is this – make your way through the level by shooting down the local baddies of that time zone, collect an object which is at the hidden somewhere and then once you have that, then you must make your way back to where you started – by which time the alien scum that is chasing you across the galaxy appear (ok there is a bit of a story) and these little bas#*ds can only be killed by shooting their heads off.
For a Playstation 2 game, the graphics are rather plain (take a look at the sky for starters – it’s just blue – no clouds – no nothing) but the way they move is something special, very fast and very smooth. The only thing that lets it down is the jagged edges, but I guess this is something that PS2 owners will have to get used too (the lack of automatic anti analysing of the PS2 proves annoying) Another thing that players may find annoying are the controls, the left analog stick controls the walking while the right stick controls looking around from left to right & up and down. After you have mastered these strange controls (bring back the N64 controller!) then this game can be very playable – if a little boring on one player mode – it comes alive on multiplayer.
Timesplitters is a return to the old school games of the late eighties, leaving out the cut scenes and getting straight to the point – game play, just don’t expect the stealth and style of GoldenEye.
Gamestyle Score: 7/10