Date: September 24, 2020
Serious Sam is back!
Serious Sam is back after a long wait since Serious Sam 3: BFE back in 2011. Serious Sam 4 was officially announced back in 2013, but it was put on hold for the developers to see what the future of the Serious Sam series could hold after being backed by Humble Bundle. The developers of Croteam may have waited a while for this release, but during the spang between 2013 to the mess we’re currently going through in 2020, why not play a gory mess of a game? Serious Sam 4 comes at us on release day with a few visual and animation bugs that will be fixed after the post-launch date with a good patching or two. Not sure why they waited for the release to send out this update, since the Beta preview of the game was clear as day to find the visual bugs and the little things that could happen if you moved too much or get to ragey with some of the primary enemies to make them freeze or become a T-pose. But seeing that most of the bugs we’ve seen will be fixed soon, we’ll stick to the side that most people like about the Serious Sam series, the big hoard battles, and getting into their co-op mode to slash some demons with some friends because Serious Sam is back!
Blast from the past
Getting back into the Serious Sam mood, we’re dropped right into the action in Serious Sam 4. After not playing the past Serious Sam games for a while now, getting into the classic shooter seat and causing a gory mess with anything that doesn’t look human is precisely what Serious Sam is all about. First impressions of the game showed off some great graphics and weapon systems during a big battle that kept my frames in a healthy state to enjoy what I was doing until I was pushed back into the past. After the first battle scene and getting into the story a bit more as Sam and his team head into town to fight off the mental hordes that are taking over the world, I was able to see the drops in frames with a few visual bugs that were hard to look away from when looking at walls and some grassy areas, making me seek out how soon the developers were going to fix these issues.
With my first impressions being, you’re pretty much along to fight off all the different demons coming your way because of the AI companions not there to help out a lot like playing a basic COD singleplayer mode was hard to enjoy. Showing off all the old friends we saw in Serious Sam 3 was nice to see in the updated visuals in today’s age of gaming. It takes its course to give the gamer that classical shooter experience we all know and love, but pushes your hardware to the test nonetheless. While the visual improvements are nice, it was hard to enjoy it simultaneously, with the game’s optimization being a little off at first. While these bugs are being worked on, it was hard to enjoy the attacks that came my way when hundreds of Mental hoards ran down the stairs to kill me while I tried to shoot them all. Serious Sam 4 gives off a great classical shooter, feel, and arcade look to enjoy while playing, but if you want to rely on your AI companions to help, think again. Playing in co-op mode will be your best bet for playing this game in higher difficulty modes.
Finding that Classical look and feel
Getting back into the classical feel of the game, Serious Sam 4 does a great job when it comes to giving the gamer an excellent arcade shooter feel with the old demon mental models being the same from Serious Sam 3. But being able to look way more realistic and a little scary at times when there are hundreds of the raw mental orange suit guys running down a corner in the streets trying to kill you. When it comes to getting that blast of the past feel, the developers over at Croteam were leaning towards the loyal Serious Sam fans that like to mow down any enemies that come their way and have to find the right combination of weapons to use when it comes to running mental hoards and the big guys that you want to kill from far away before they get too close, ergo the Emetic Anthropolyp.
The visual improvements that got Serious Sam 4 in my liking table didn’t fall sort when you can enjoy a classic shooter game that used to be an arcade visual vibe that the developers at Croteam were able to put the game into a modern system. However, it does have some optimization improvements to work on after release. A true Serious Sam fan, like myself, likes to enjoy the little things in life when it comes to moving down hoards of mental with a mini-gun or drop-kicking them into the other detention to get a gory mess the classical vibe on my screen. With the game having around seventeen S.A.M. Skill Points to choose from, you’re able to get round about the same amount of playtime Serious Sam 3 was able to give us, but with a twist of roaming around the map more to give off a nice open feel to find hidden items and secret sections of the game.
Should you get back into the Serious action?
Serious Sam 4 is back and giving the fans precisely what they have been waiting for since the release of Serious Sam 3 and the announcement of the new game back in 2013. A visually improved classical arcade-style shooter game from the serious that we all know and love, with a twist of different skill groups and weapons to have fun messing around with to race to the end to save the world for the mental hoards that have taken over. Being a $39.99 game right off the bat might be a little much for some seeing that the game does have a few bugs that most aren’t too happy to see, seeing that the developers did have a lot of time on the game to notice them. But if you’re able to look away from most of the basic bugs that the Serious Sam series fans have seen in the past, then you’re in for a treat when it comes to playing that classical arcade game that will give you a blast from the past.
Jump into the game with an open mind at first with the hardware optimation issues at the time of this review, but Croteam will fix the problems soon. But if you’re able to look away from the primary visual and AI bugs of the game, and you’re into a classical shooter where your only job is to destroy anything that comes in your crosshair, then Serious Sam 4 is for you.