Article Author :PCGS Date : 3rd May 2005 Comments :0
Pariah includes the typical weapons that you may be able to see in just about any other FPS title. There are around seven weapons in allwhich includes a shotgun, rocket launcher, grenade launcher, standard machine gun and even a strange electric blade for some melee kills. Also included is a small healing device that simply injects your arm to heal you. This is the only way to get health throughout the game, and the health bar acts a lot like Halo's shield bar in the sense that it is split into four small sections. Each section recharges itself after being hit, and once one section is empty you can use the healing device to refill it. Taking another little note from Halo, or the Unreal Tournament series for that matter, are the vehicles. Surprisingly there are only two different vehicles here. One is a four-wheel buggy with a machine gun and rocket launchers, and the other is a more futuristic motorcycle-looking vehicle with a mounted machine gun. None of this really strengthens the gameplay at all, and it becomes even more dull when you have to ride shotgun in some of the rail- riding sequences.
There is actually only one somewhat unique system in Pariah . This would be the weapons upgrade system. By finding green floating icons throughout the game, you can upgrade any of your weapons for a total of three different upgrades per weapon. Every time you upgrade a weapon a certain feature will become more advanced. So upgrading a specific weapon can reduce recoil, make loading times faster, or even allow you to use remote grenades as in the case of the grenade launcher. The number of upgrades made to a weapon can easily be seen by the number of lit up blue circles on each weapon. It's not exactly revolutionary, but it does add a small lasting appeal to the game.
Pariah's multiplayer aspect does mix things up a little, but it is nothing to get overly excited about. The multiplayer contains the same traditional modes including deathmatch, team deathmatch, capture the flag and assault, and is capable of supporting up to 16 players online. Different weapon-loadouts and troop types can be selected upon entering a match. There is also a siege mode which is where you must defend your specified base on the map. Unfortunately bots aren't supported, but there is an odd practice mode which just puts you in on a map all by yourself so that you can simply learn it better. Chances are you'll have much more fun with the multiplayer.
Graphic-wise Pariah is still using the aging Unreal 2 engine. It's not much to look at especially when compared with todays later FPS titles. The textures look bland and outdated, and probably the only thing that looks half decent are the cool blurry explosions emitted from the grenades and the bright sun flare effect which is the result of pushing this engine to its limits. Other than that, there's not much glamour here. It looks like now would be a better time than any to switch on over to the new Unreal 3 engine.
If you are a fan of Halos single-player campaign then you might slightly enjoy Pariahs dry atmosphere and gameplay. The dull storyline and run'n'gun linear gameplay just isn't enough to attract the attention of most gamers. Some fun can come out of the multiplayer side of Pariah, but in such a case it may just be more reasonable to pick up a copy of Unreal Tournament 2004 which can be cheaper and provide you with a much better multiplayer experience. In the end, Pariah feels more like a mod for UT2004 instead of a full-fledged retail title.