Publisher: Flying Wild Hog
Developer: Flying Wild Hog
by: Nicholas "BAPenguin" Puleo
There was a time in gaming on the PC when first person shooters were just pure adrenaline rushes. You never let go of your left mouse button, you circle strafed till the A and D on your keyboard weren’t readable anymore, and ducking behind cover never even entered your vocabulary. Hard Reset is a game that reminds of us the golden age of PC first person shooters. Crafted by Flying Wild Hog, made up of former CD Projekt RED developers (Witcher), it’s easy to see why this is a quality, PC centric shooter.
There’s a story to be had in Hard Reset, one that plays out with comic book style cut scenes which mask loading screens, but it’s one that’s easily forgettable and won’t lessen the experience any if you miss it.
The core mechanic of the game centers around two guns - which oddly are switched with Q and E keys. Your main gun shoots bullets while your secondary shoots electricity. Both weapons can gain a host of upgrades to make them more powerful - things like scopes, higher damage, melee style attacks, and even mortars can be attached. Your character can also be upgraded to include better health, improved HUD and other goodies. As for the weapons, it seemed like use was a personal preference, and one didn’t have any significant advantage over the other. Neither gun requires a reload button.
The enemies of Hard Reset vary in size, but not in difficulty. All of them are robotic bastards hell bent on making your life miserable. The game’s difficulty never really lets up, constantly forcing you to backpedal and look for red barrels or electrical conduits to shoot to slow down the enemies pursuit. Usually shooting these objects causes a glorious explosion of sparks and metal objects.
It’s worth mentioning the Hard Reset used a custom graphic engine, and with it comes a really gorgeous futuristic city. Everything has a nice glow to it and with so many lights comes some really great reflections. The environments aren’t just for looks either, little terminals are fully interactive and become heads up displays themselves in the game world to use - whether you are upgrading a weapon, opening a door, or other...less useful things.
All in all if you’re looking for a decent “old school” shooter on the PC with pretty graphics, intense combat, and no nonsense gameplay - Hard Reset should be right up your alley.