There are a few unforgivable faults found in the game. Even though you will fight countless foes on your way through the levels, often times enemies can be flat out skipped if you just keep running and jumping your way through. Obviously you will miss many secrets and have a lower score as a result, but there were numerous instances when instead of having to fight my way out of a situation, I could have easily ran to the next checkpoint. Which brings me to my next criticism; checkpoints that are far too plentiful. There are many checkpoints in even the smallest of levels. At times, I swear I averaged a checkpoint every 30 seconds of play. Compound this abundance with the fact that you can walk back to a checkpoint and overwrite a save, and it becomes far too easy to clear challenging encounters. Once again, coinciding with the theme of a replayable game, Serious Sam DD XXL is the kind of experience meant for those who want to improve on their scores and not blast through to the exit.
On to the co-op, which brings a host of new problems. One of the biggest draws of this port of Serious Sam DD XXL was the fact that you can play two player co-op. Yes, there is drop-in two player co-op. No, your buddy does not get to earn achievements, even if logged in. Unforgivably, both characters have to share the same stacks of guns. I was shocked to find that when I went to change my gun stacks, it changed the stacks for my partner. The game also features customizable control options, and it just so happened that my partner and I preferred different layouts. We were surprised to discover that changing the layout for one player altered the scheme for the other. Unfortunately, these design decisions seriously hampered our enjoyment of the co-op. As you may have guessed, progress in the game is limited to the primary player. This means that if you get past the first act with a buddy, your friend will not have any of their progress saved nor will they retain any of their inventory. It is all about player one in this outing, and it can make co-op a drag.
Despite the faults, Serious Sam DD XXL remains an entertaining romp for consoles for the right crowd. The game is at its best when you are playing single player and are trying to top your scores, hunt for secrets, or just wreak havoc with a set of high-powered weapons. The game falls short in the platforming and pacing aspect, but you really have to play the game more than once for maximum enjoyment. There are also some unforgivable pitfalls in the cooperative mode. Serious Sam Double D XXL will release for the Xbox Live Arcade on February 20th for 800 Microsoft points ($9.99).
A review code for XBLA version Serious Sam Double D XXL was provided by the publisher.
The Co-Op Experience: Sweet and simple two player local co-op. All progress is saved only to the primary profile
Co-Optimus game reviews focus on the cooperative experience of a game, our final score graphic represents this experience along with an average score for the game overall. For an explanation of our scores please check our Review Score Explanation Guide.