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I’ve played many FPS games, and so have most gamers… It seems in this day and age, we use shooters as more a standard for graphics than gameplay. Every now and then an exception comes about, Half-Life, Halo, Doom, Painkiller... You’ll probably shake your head at a few of those, and think up the vilest string of curses you can comprehend, but if you look into the designer diaries, and read what the developers truly thought, you would’ve seen the dedication to make a fun game, something new and improved. In the case of Painkiller, it was a tried and true formula, updated to current standards.
What does this have to do with Terminal Terror? Like System Shock, it was far ahead of it’s time… too far ahead. Optional missions were presented, stealth missions were thrown into the mold, and civilians were an important part of the gameplay. Kill an innocent, and you would be branded as a criminal and imprisoned. Your allies are vital to your survival, introducing a somewhat new approach to first person shooters. Above all, you had a branching story; you could choose your destination in a way, making your move when you wanted to make a move. Not only that, but a hit detection system came into the mold, calculating your damage and impairment upon the location you’ve been shot. Get a hit in the leg, you’re slowed down, wound your arm and it effects your aim, and if your eyes are wounded, blurred vision.
As you can see, it wasn’t very conventional at all; a completely new and refreshing take on the gameplay that was sadly overlooked by the Doom audience. You take the role of hero Nick Hunter and this time around your mission is to imprison escaped terrorist Bruno Riggs who has escaped jail thanks to the help of terrorist cell that has some diabolical schemes in store for the world.
In addition to what has already been detailed, some other features come into play. You have an inventory bar that limits the storage space you hold for different items, be it grenades, ammo, or weapons. The game is presented in a first person view of course, and the screen is somewhat small, but it isn’t cluttered and unorganized thankfully. Action is fantastic, as the distance your grenade is thrown is approximate to how long you hold down the fire key, or your weapon appropriately lets off a blast of fire. Enemies are somewhat intelligent, so the AI is better than expected. This breaks away from Doom’s inane enemies, who zigzag bizarrely and fire randomly.
Sound is great, but the music isn’t. I’ve turned off the music several times, as it’s a looping track of some bizarre pop-techno or lame “action” music. As for sound, you’ll probably laugh the first time your character lets loose a over-enthusiastic “HEY-YAH!” as he kicks at enemies, but for some strange reason, you will find yourself attracted to it, I myself consider this as my exclamation if I ever choose to become a ninja. Gun fire is nice, and it doesn’t seem like some flat artificial note like the gun-fire of many other FPS.
Graphics are nice, and I mean nice. Despite the fact that most characters are 2D sprites on a 3D planes (think Doom, but with less hideous pixilated walls) and there’s a lack of pixel terror when you get in a sprite’s face. It’s not great, but it’s nice, clean, and cool, just like you know you want it. Smooth and sexy, that’s how I would describe it.
So, I’ve told you enough. If you want guns, action, thinking, and an “oval” game (my word for all-around goodness) Terminal Terror will fit into that very rare group. Give it a try, and remember, if you don’t like it, be considerate and think out the interesting features this game presents. You have to give the creators some credit for originality.