Join Date: Jul. 21st, 2002
Location: Inside Asia
Review: Prolium: 1.0
[ Transcript of review for Prolium: 1.0 | Posted by Vlosk on 2003-06-02 | Score: 6.5 ]
Prolium; Initial Release.
Top down is about as different a view as you can get, for UT anyways. Note that this is ‘different’ not ‘bad’. I love what Prolium does to UT; its quite refreshing, and though has a bit of a learning time, it plays quite well in the end. Also, it should be noted that there is much more to Prolium than meets the eye, though it’s a little hard to really notice at first, due to the drastic change IN your virtual eye…
Besides the view, the essence of Prolium us in the way one combats other players. Instead of the rampant frag-fest, there is supposed to be a bit of strategy; enhanced by the fact that you gain experience and in doing so gain better weapons and the like. The options are well setup in the GUI, and it seems to run fairly well. I do have an issue with this sort of RPG mentality, though, as it makes the better players better, and sticks the lesser players in even a deeper slump than before. I suppose this is the ‘glass half empty’ view to such a system, but it’s a bit annoying to be squashed by bots with 1337 weapons of destruction when all you have is an assault rifle and an impact hammer. However, you do get to keep your new treasures after death, so it is not nearly as bad a problem as it could have been if your loot was reset during each spawn.
Besides the RPG-ism additions, the other big changes Prolium makes involve: a large radar like object over your player, and a massive change to the interaction of projectiles and the like. The radar is a bit confusing, but makes sense after a few minutes of play. It also shows your mouse cursor in the middle ring, allowing you to properly aim your weapon; as in ut2k3 the 3rd person mesh is not pointing in the exact same direction you are currently shooting at. A suggestion though, for future releases, would be to keep this little icon showing the aim relative to the player, but to free the mouse itself so that you could all but point and click Diablo style. The most frustrating part of the entire control scheme was not moving around, but actually hitting the opponents… especially when they have bigger guns than you do.
Pickups have also been tweaked; they take the form of a BR-Ball mesh-like object, and act very much like UT-classic relics. I was rather impressed by this; it played well, looked sharp, and all in all, these pickups were quite handy. Also, when you die the relic drops away from you; again, nice touch, though the lifespan of these items could be adjusted some. Besides these relics, the only other change to actual inventory dynamics was in the form of projectiles: the mod boasts a massive overhaul of projectile interaction (you can shoot down rockets, etc). However, I really didn’t notice overly much of this, and though if looking for it I could see it, it hardly compares as a feature on equal scale to the gameplay tweaks and map work. Also, I was rudely interrupted a few times, due to a crash that looked an awful lot like this:
ProeliumBioGlob PR-PipeDream.ProeliumBioGlob (Function Proelium.ProeliumBioGlob.TakeDamage:0000) Infinite script recursion (250 calls) detected
Destruction of rockets is one thing, but I would stick with static projectiles if it left the game run for more than 10 minutes. Such REALLY needs to be addressed ASAP, as otherwise the game is very stable, plays well, and has a distinct and refreshing feel.
All in all, this is a wicked little mod; very clever, and the fact that it changes so much but still looks like a part 2k3 is very impressive. There are a few enhancements that are desperately needed though; first and foremost is the crash regarding special projectiles. (And while this is being tweaked, I suggest they also look into exaggerating the effect a little). Besides this, all I would really like to see is more variation in the maps (Pipe dreams is perfect; the rest could use a little work, and more would not go unoticed), the option to scale the height of your camera, and perhaps the addition of jump (I couldn’t jump, which though not overly important was a bit annoying) and ability to see your mouse cursor anywhere… Regardless, this is a great little mod that shows an awful lot of potential; for the time being I feel it earns a 6.5 out of 10, but should the tweaks above be mentioned I would have no issue giving it an 8.5 – 9.5 instead.