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FPS games are a dime a dozen these days but if they all turn out like MG:BH I will take them all.
The world of Mace Griffin is a familiar one. Borrowing from almost every other game if it's type it relies heavily on a mix of space combat and straight ahead run and gun action. So what would make you want to take this journey over the other 6,847 games out there that MG:BH imitates? To put it simply this game is executed so well that you are most likely to overlook it's shortcomings and obvious comparisons, oh and did I mention it is actually fun to play? Read on and find out why this underrated title deserves your second look!
Warp Speed Mr. Griffin! From a technical standpoint MG:BH is far from repugnant. The level design is great and the abundant use of textures is appreciated. What does bother me is the capricious frame rate. One minute it's silky smooth and the next it's jittering worse than a basement geek trying to ask a girl out. It never detains from the action but is quite noticeable when intense action flutters the screen. The onscreen characters are very nicely modeled and animated but truth be told there are very few alterations so after a few levels you have pretty much seen them all. You can definitely tell this game was built on the XBox but it seems the developers didn't take full advantage of the hardware. The overall visual quality as it stands is more than suffice.
Spoken Word Bounty Hunter The story behind Mace is very typical of your space shooter clique. You are an ex special forces soldier, a mission gone bad ends you up in prison and upon exiting said asylum you become a lethal bounty hunter. The voice of Mace is done by spoken word personality and Black Flag frontman Henry Rollins. His monotone dialogue suits the character very well and adds the overall "I don't give a rat's ass yet I am a rebel hero" overtone. You are given jobs around the galaxy such as eliminating hostile threats to protecting important diplomatic figures. The game play is pretty straight forward and the action never seems to let up.
It Ain't Like Dusting Crops! What seperates Mace from your average FPS is space travel and combat. After given each mission you hop aboard your trusty space cruiser and jump to the next planet. When arriving to each planet you are usually greeted with swarms of enemy fighters and must eliminate them before landing. This is all done in real time so for shits and giggles I actually left the ships controls and wandered around my cruiser just to see if it could be done. Sure enough I went down in flames but the freedom you have is very nice. Once you take out the fighters you must land your craft, this is not as difficult as it sounds, just pass through the rings at the correct speed and you are good to go. The meat of the game is of course shooting goodness and I do love my S controller for FPS games. The variety of weapons is nice but I find myself somewhat attached to the mini-gun and the sniper rifle. The controls are fairly simple for those use to the genre and everything else seems just right. Mace Griffin is the perfect example of how to make a great FPS game.
Mace Griffin: Worth My Money? Needless to say that with so many things just right it's hard not to recommend MG:BH to fans of the genre. It does everything just good enough to make it a worthwhile adventure while being long enough to hold your attention. There are 12 total missions and each one can last from an hour or more. The only drawbacks are the timed missions and the overall feel of "been there. done that". While not the greatest game in the FPS category it is certainly better than most of "me toos" currently flooding the market. Recommended for fans of FPS games and action in general!