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Publisher: Apogee Software Developer: Interceptor Entertainment Release Date: July 31, 2013 Rating: N/A (M suggested) Platforms: PC A Steam code was provided by the publisher for this review If I could make a motto for Interceptor's reboot of the fabled classic FPS Rise of the Triad, I'd say it's all about "no frills, more kills, all thrills." Or, better yet, "Faceshooter: The Game", because you'll be doing a lot of face-shooting in this ridiculously gory and tough-as-nails shooter. With a slick coat of paint, a bargain price point of $15, and a storied past, can the new Rise of the Triad match the revelry of its predecessor or is it a sordid reminder of why 1990's shooters are extinct? The plot for Interceptor's reboot is simple; infiltrate a mysterious island-thing and kill a bunch of pseudo-Nazi soldiers. You can choose from one of several UN soldiers, each with his or her own unique stats. Some characters are faster or stronger than others, but all have their own play styles. No one character is particularly better than the other; the choice is all based on how you want to kill bad guys, whether it's speed assassinations or tank-like massacres. I'm happy to report that Rise of the Triad is almost as good as the trailers and previews show. Combat is fast, frenetic, frantic and filled with as much circle-strafing as you can handle. The reboot is at times painfully faithful to the original, down to the terrible first-person platforming that should be abolished. Thankfully, the excellent gunplay and lighthearted action more than make up for the aggravating platforming sections. The plot won't win awards but if you were coming for the narrative, you're looking for the wrong kind of experience. Levels, which are well-designed and match the originals closely, revolve around killing as many enemies as possible and stealing loot hidden throughout the environments. Ammo for powerful weapons is liberally placed and plenty of hidden secrets are scattered throughout. Levels are broken into smaller sections that feature an end-set boss. These guys are brutally hard to kill and will test your mettle at every turn. Their new looks are also a welcome change from the originals. All of the bosses have silly things to say, but that doesn't make them any less terrifying to fight. When you defeat one and progress forward, you feel like a burden's been lifted off of your shoulders.....until the next boss fight. It's a good thing ammo and health packs are abundant, as Rise of the Triad will bring you to your knees. The game is classically difficult, meaning the default Normal settings will kill most players quickly. You can't camp and enemies will swarm in droves. In fact, the only thing you can do is circle-strafe until body parts and organs are all that remain of your foes. The campaign will last about 12 hours on the Normal and Hard difficulties, longer if you dare to take on anything harder. You'll need to unlearn regenerating health and many other modern shooter sensibilities. Rise of the Triad is old school, and pretending it's anything else will lead to your untimely death. The visuals and sound design are decidedly new-school, with decent-looking objects and textures and a pulse-pounding hard rock remixed soundtrack. And while the character and weapon models won't win any awards, the environments are suitably dreary and detailed. If your rig can stand the heat, beta Ludicrous settings are up for grabs. I tried them once and got an achievement, but the settings didn't seem to cause my PC that much trouble. As you might have guessed, you'll rarely have time to admire the visuals in the middle of combat. And the new musical score does a great job of capturing the essence of the original while adding a modern flair. The guitar riffs in particular are great and channel pure 90's rock while still feeling like something from this generation. Interceptor has done a good job of making the game stable, though I do wish some of the settings ran better. Oddly enough, I experienced framerate drops and slower performance on High and Medium while Ludicrous generally ran smoothly. It's reverse logic that I don't get, but it could be less-than-perfect optimization. I'm guessing these minor issues will get patched later on. Otherwise, I didn't run into any game-breaking bugs or serious glitches. Rise of the Triad's campaign is its bread-and-butter, but what of the multiplayer? Thankfully, it isn't some tacked-on addition that Interceptor kicked out the door. It's classic deathmatch and CTF as you remember it, with the addition of insane speed and endless chaos. Players will run around like chickens with their heads cut off, frantically spamming rockets and green baseballs to stave off opponents. It's crazy and hard to keep up with but an absolute joy. Sure, the multiplayer is nowhere near as deep as modern titles and has limited maps and modes, but at the price the game offers more than enough content. A couple of years ago, id Software tried to reboot Wolfenstein. I was one of the few people to like it, but it was far from the Wolfenstein I was hoping for. Interceptor took no chances and completely remade (re: updated) Rise of the Triad for a modern audience without sacrificing the gameplay or essence. At $15, you really can't ask for much more, save for a bit more variety in the multiplayer. Check your brain at the door and embrace profanity, violence and ludicrous gibs! Pros: + Faithfully recreated + A blast in multiplayer + Great remixed soundtrack Cons: - Random performance bugs - MP could use more variety - Platforming still sucks Overall Score: 8.0 (out of 10) Great If you like spraying lots of bullets at walking bloodbags, Rise of the Triad is for you.