Review of Painkiller Resurrection

Painkiller Archive

by Artas1984
Review of Painkiller Resurrection

This game is the example of the ultimate failure of the development. It’s a disaster to the PK franchise...

Plain and simple: after 5 years they release a game that has a smell of decay...

Story and presentation: there is no point in telling the story, since this is a "gun and run" shooter.. Who cares anyway.. The presentation is weak with cartoony cheap intro pics, no animation here. The character looks like a drunk Max Payne just got beat up.. The title after the loading looks extremely cheap, like it might have been drawn by a 7 year old kid. You now get the feeling that Painkiller Resurrection will be one of the philosophically cheapest games you ever have faced.

Visuals: the game looks even worse than Painkiller Battle Out Of Hell, which by it’s 2004 standards had the best graphics, perhaps second only to Half-Life 2. So after all these years they release a game that looks worse than original, but lags like Crysis..

Soundtrack: it’s a custom thing, however is not appealing that much anymore and at points does not really fit the game. All i can say it is not even close to the original Painkiller’s soundtrack and all that awesome background and fighting music. Some soundtrack parts in PK Resurrection are repetitive from older Painkiller games.

Sound: quality is mediocre at best. One would expect that after all these long years they would improve the in-game sounds. Worst off all they added the voice overs - irritating chants, those nobody wants to hear..

Customization: thought the options menu and HUD remain almost the same from the original, there is no cfg file in the Bin directory. The cfg is located in Data/Lscripts/Main/Cfg.lua - this is an incredibly bad turn from original Painkiller, where the cfg was easy to edit in the Bin folder..

Models: level design is far less attractive that that of Painkiller Overdose, not even comparing to original Painkiller.. Levels are made without fashion, chaotically dispersed with no logics to their constructive look. In contrast all of the original Painkiller’s levels were designed from real world places or at least were made to represent the most familiar installations build in earth. However Painkiller Resurrection levels are a joke. There is one level in the game, that does not even have textures - can you believe that? Monster design does not exist at all - the are the same 5 year old monsters from original games and a new one - that looks like a rotten potato with a face, like it has been crushed by an 18wheeler. This new monster has the MOST horrible design i have ever seen in any game...

The final bosses in the game are just re-textured monsters from original Painkiller - a re-textured black demon and a re-textured Alastor..

Gameplay: dramatically changed - no longer you need to clear the area from monsters in order to progress to the next chamber, in most cases you can go free where you want - it looks like an improvement, but in fact this is the worst change in the game - because with this gameplay change the game is automatically stripped from any challenge values the original Painkiller had. It strips the game from the challenge and fun of speedruning and finding shortcuts - key success elements to original game and my favorite part about it. This new gameplay also makes alot of errors and confusion. It makes the player wonder where to go, monsters sometimes bump right before your face, often you go the wrong way and so do not trigger many events those suppose to happen - and that causes game errors also. In general the gameplay somehow feels incredibly boring when compared to the previous games; it is hard to explain why, but that is just the way it is - once you start macing up evil monks in the Cathedral, you feel like you have seen and done all this before, and just don’t feel the motivation to play.

Challenge value:

1) 5 stars run is not possible due to the many physical 3D holes and glitches in the maps and due to the object displacement miscalculations as well as due to the changed gameplay, that makes no sense in collecting items like in original Painkiller.

2) Speedrun will not be competitive, because of the changed gameplay.The speedrun formula worked perfectly in the original Painkiller, where every level was divided into subsections - that made you learn and remember the pattern of how to skillfully and effectively clear the areas one by one as fast as you can. For a speedrun video observer this was an entertaining video to watch, because it showed the skill needed to perform the runs and delivered competition between the players. This type of gameplay also forced you to search for shortcuts, those were not originally intended; that overall made the speedrun very attractive and competitive. Now here, in PK Resurrection, this speedrun formula does not work in some levels - there is simply no entertainment and competition value left when monsters spawn randomly, sections can be skipped without any fights not even using shortcuts and skipping those sections can result in either un-triggered events or errors, especially in levels like Gloomy Mountains, Haunted City.

3) Black tarot cards - you don’t feel the motivation to collect the black tarot cards, because the cards are the same from the original games, and the requirements to get the tarot cards are either dull, boring, repetitive or impossible due errors.

Artificial intelligence: downgraded from original PK. What the monsters in Serious Sam and Painkiller lacked in AI, compensated in numbers.

Here, however, the AI is the worst i have ever seen. It’s hard to imagine how can this degradation occur after 5 years...

Cooperative: does not exist, although was promised..

Multiplayer: should not even be included.. We have PK++.

Game technical design: the game core materials like models, scripts, hud and events are located in lua files, those can be opened like text files with a program like Dragon Unpacker. However even original Painkiller was weak on this trade, since this is a unfavorable scripting language that causes many errors, and many scripts are written in polish.. This also was one of the very few reasons that original PK had serious flaws. Map files are located in pkm standard and can be extracted in the game editor to modify. But there is not much left to edit, because you can not change the 3D models, so no matter how you try, the game is an epic fail from the start.

Errors: i don’t usually separate this, but in this case i have to. I have never seen so many bugs and errors in any game ever.. One after another - lua script errors, windows errors, dll errors, freeze-ups and hangs..

Support: almost does not exist, the game was developed by "fans", not developers, and the idiot publisher just wanted more cash. Epic fail. There was a patch released that did nothing major to improve the situation.

The final huge mistake was that the game was only released on steam - this is just horrible, no need to explain why..

Final words: It is amazing to see how once released, original Painkiller was an epic game, that revolutionized the fast paced FPS genre and set a benchmark for future games, but and from then it only went down hill to it’s most miserable part - Painkiller Resurrection...

I really can not find anything special or positive to say about this game. I give some credit, because somehow the patching does work and you can actually finish the game even after many attempts and reloads from many errors. Only some minor situations and some minor level elements were nice in this game at times, those reminded what PK is all about.. I mean, if at least the game had been error-free and finished, without the many 3D holes and glitches, it might deserve a better rating - and that would be still bad, but now it is simply impossible. Gamespot’s 3,5 is too good for this crap.

Overall what a horrible release - not much of entertaining, not competitive, dull, repetitive, lagging like hell, 5 years late, without promised features, irritating elements, decreased level design, decreased gamepaly, decreased sound, deceased graphics, full of bugs and errors, uncompleted in general with the 3D design, and only available on steam. So in general - nonsense..

About this site

Painkiller is a first-person shooter video game released on April 12, 2004. It was developed by Polish game studio People Can Fly and published by DreamCatcher Interactive.

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