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The Razz Soundbyte: PERFECT DARK ZERO.

Byline: Steve Lawson

RARELY has a title received as much hype as Perfect Dark Zero, the game Microsoft hopes will do for the 360 what Halo did for the original Xbox.

Hmm... hope is a fickle mistress.

As First Person Shooters go, it certainly looks fantastic - there's tons of detail, hi-tech visuals and a decidedly next-generation feel to the game.

But the gameplay and storytelling raise doubts. You play as Joanna Dark, secret agent fighting the evil Datadyne corporation.

Each level begins with a tedious briefing and ends with a breakdown of how you've fared.

As you progress you can't help feeling there's no central thread. It's like a series of missions strung together with electric blue fibre-optic cable.

There are plenty of reasons why you should buy this - but the story isn't one of them.

My other gripe is the lack of challenge in the gameplay. You're practically led by the hand through levels - there are even chevrons on the floor to show you the way!

Still, it's a shooter, and I've no problems on that score.

Aside from the shotgun and some rockets, the weapons aren't immediately lethal - and they run out of ammo faster than anything, ever.

So you'll do a lot of reloading, evasive rolling and taking cover. The AI enemies aren't the smartest but there are loads of them.

In conclusion, there's enough razzle dazzle here to impress new gamers but experienced shooters will want more

CAPTION(S):

TAKE AIM; There's enough here to impress new gamers but others will want more
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Publication:Daily Record (Glasgow, Scotland)
Date:Dec 9, 2005
Words:257
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