Advent Rising Review: Should You Buy?

Advent Rising Screenshot

Advent Rising Review: Should You Buy?

Advent Rising is an action-adventure first-person style video game developed by GlyphX Games in 2005 for Xbox, OnLive, and Windows. Advent Rising tells the futuristic tale of Gideon Payne, an altruistic hero and rookie pilot that attempts to save all humans from an evil alien race. The Seekers are hell bent on destroying the humans that colonized the galaxy while another benevolent race revere the humans to be fantastical creatures with extraordinary gifts. In Gideon’s case this turns out to be true as he is imbued with superhuman powers such as levitation, energy blasts and energy shields. Let’s dive into whether or not this game is worth the investment or simply a rental.

Glitchy Control Systems

Advent Rising Screenshot
Main protagonist Gideon Payne in combat.

An action-based shooter, Advent Rising incorporates elements of role-playing in that you unlock new skills, powers and weapons and increase your ability to utilize them in different situations. This game has already been released on the Xbox where the control system attempts to replicate the keyboard and mouse combo of the PC. Now that it’s been released on the PC these features are somewhat redundant. Some of the technical problems that plagued the Xbox version have been addressed such as the chugging framerate which is as smooth as glass on the PC but there are other problems that keep this game from reaching the top of the heap.

The Xbox version featured a move called Flick Targeting which was an auto-lock targeting system that allowed you to use your other hand to access different button configurations. Since you can do this with the keyboard and mouse the Flick Targeting is only useful for changing the lock-on from left to right when you use the mouse wheel. At least the lock-on is still a good feature, not that you really need it with the mouse since accuracy is improved significantly with its use.

Advent Rising Storyline

Advent Rising Screenshot
Run for cover in the exciting landscapes of Advent Rising.

The story line is right out of any sci-fi novel. Alien races have learned after years of exploration that they are somehow connected by a legend of a mythical race of superbeings that will one-day return and unite all the races together. The legend states that the mystical race is simply referred to as humans.

Featuring an unprecedented collaboration between interactive entertainment and science fiction writing, famed novelist, Orson Scott Card, embellishes on the gripping storyline behind Advent Rising, and will author a novel based on the game.

In Advent Rising, a common legend pervades the galaxy – that of a powerful, ancient race that will one day unite the universe. Millions of cultures from vastly distant worlds revere and hallow these mythological beings known as humans. One race, the Seekers, know humans actually exist and are threatened by their potential power. Under the guise of benevolent explorers, the Seekers travel throughout the galaxy in a desperate attempt to eradicate any human society they unearth.

Players assume the role of Gideon Wyeth, a remnant of the last human outpost, on the brink of discovering the incredible powers that lay dormant within him. It is these powers the Seekers are so desperate to suppress.

Features of Advent Rising

Advent Rising Screenshot
Gideon Payne and crew fight their way through their enemies.

Some of the weapons are slow such as the plasma and rockets. Character models are irregularly elongated and have a spongy bounce to their movements which doesn’t feel very solid. There are also instances where characters get stuck in the environment.

The voice acting and soundtrack are second to none. The music doesn’t just mimic the action it actually foreshadows events in true Hollywood fashion. There is some cornball dialog that seems like it came from an anime production but thankfully those moments are few and far between. The explosions are impressive from both a visual and audio standpoint. They almost set a new standard, which is good considering that some of the graphics are rather boring, especially some of the overused textures.

Parting Thoughts

Advent Rising is a good game, it’s short but it’s good. There are some flaws that you need to overlook but there’s nothing here that will ruin the entire experience. The lack of a co-op or multiplayer mode reduces the replay value, but you can go back and experiment with different combinations of powers. In all, Advent Rising, with the different control system glitches, is probably only worth a rental.

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