Review: Dark Sector

Dark Sector/ Format: PS3, Xbox 360, PC/ Rating: Mature/ 1 Player (10 Online)/ Release: 3/25/08

Be the Glavine

One of the most underrated games of the new platform era, Dark Sector combines Resident Evil 4 gameplay with an Alex Mercer from Prototype personality.Or should I say that Alex Mercer takes Hayden Tenno’s mindset?Regardless the two remind me of each other.Tenno starts the game off with a bang, snapping the neck of a USSR enemy.Dropped by the U.S. government, it’s Tenno’s job to find a man named Mezner and kill him.

I took control of Tenno from here and used his special agent skills to dispose of the numerous soldiers that stood in my way from point A to point B.After a short helicopter fight, Tenno gets knocked unconscious and ultimately infected by a mysterious man and what appears to be an immortal creature.After a soldier tries to wrap up our hero, the Glavine comes alive.

Throwing and swinging the Glavine is as much fun as I’ve had in a video game.After a few tosses and a couple of advances, I got an upgrade that let me throw a powered-up version.From here one-shot kills are at an extreme and necessity.The sound the soldiers make after being struck is gruesome, however awesome.It’s a satisfying sound at times, if you’re into gore and extreme pain. If you’re not maybe try playing on mute.

After I was done with a few soldiers and had realized how to properly use the Glavine, Tenno found a few… let’s call them monsters, eating a soldier.These creatures were much faster than zombies or any other slow moving monster, so it’s tough to give them a proper name.Using the Glavine here is critical and maximizing the number of one-shot kills is crucial.The monsters are not friendly and attack in numbers.These creatures give the game a survival-horror feeling, which is very important to the gameplay and another reason why I compare Dark Sector to RE4.The further I got into the game, the more powerful the Glavine became.I found myself playing other games similar to DS and wishing I had a sharp weapon that I could throw and punch my enemies with.

There was also a pretty legitimate economic system that allowed for upgraded weapons.After you kill “x” many bad guys, search around for ammo and briefcases that hold the files to unlock upgrades for your shotgun, pistol, or machine gun.The files also carry information on the upgrades that describe when they were created during the Cold War and what exactly each one does.

I realized that the game could have used music and monsters that didn’t make the generic noises, but the lack of music gave the game that scary feeling.The monsters were creepy as Hell because usually there were swarms of them and Tenno fought all the battles by himself.Maybe the best part about the game, however, is the “finisher.”When Tenno injured an enemy, human or monster, they would turn red indicating I could put a finisher move on them.These moves consisted of chopping off arms, snapping necks, and slicing heads off.After I realized how much fun this move was I tried to segregate as many enemies as possible, injure them enough to bring them to their knees, and then go in for the finisher.

The immortal creature mentioned before turns out to have a connection with Tenno.He eventually gains access to a similar suit and from here the gameplay becomes the most fun.Tenno was stronger, and completely upgraded after putting the suit on.

Overall the campaign is very fun, and after I finished it I unlocked Brutal mode.The name says everything as enemies are stronger, faster, and better attackers.If you want to call yourself a hardcore gamer beat Dark Sector on Brutal mode.The graphics aren’t great, but for an early ’08 release they’re not bad at all.After the campaign, I moved over to the multiplayer modes.

Multiplayer consists of two modes, one that puts one infected against AI bots and up to nine human controlled players.The objective is simple: if infected, kill as many soldiers as possible with the Glavine; and if a soldier… kill the infected.The other mode has two teams, both with infected characters.Soldiers try and protect their infected and kill the other teams’.Being infected is the goal here considering it’s the best way to rack up kills.I had control of invisibility, a completely power-upped Glavine, and grenades.There aren’t a large amount of gamers online with this title though, so it’s probably best to find a buddy and both pick up a copy.

Dark Sector is an ideal Empty Wallet Gamer game.Not only is it a really good game, but you can find it used at Gamestop for $4.99 on PS3, or $3.99 for Xbox 360.If you’re reading our reviews in hopes of finding a great game for a great price, look no further than Dark Sector.The replay value I would rate as moderately high.You’ll be playing it for a long time since there’s really no point in trading it in with the price so low.Don’t overlook this title and give it a chance to impress.

-By Geoff Barry

Final Verdict: 85%