Weapons are limited to a pistol, shotgun, sub-machinegun and explosives in the forms of grenades and explosive canisters. All of the weapons have a great feel to them. They are solid, destructive and very satisfying. They have girth. When firing the sub-machinegun you will have to work really hard to keep it steady from the constant recoil. The shotgun makes a bloody mess, especially during headshots. The enemy's cranium splatters like one of Gallaghers' watermelons in his cheesy Sledge-O-Matic routine. The enemy also exhibits a great tumbling animation that makes it look as though they were hit with a wrecking ball.

The weapons wreak havoc on the environment as well. There are many things to nick, break, blast and explode. The walls will be filled with bullet holes and hopefully covered with the blood of the enemy if you're doing your job properly. You can interact with various items in the environments such as computers, sinks and crates. Items can be picked up and thrown when you find yourself without a weapon. When some of the more aggressive enemies make their appearance later in the game you'll have to take cover behind various obstacles otherwise you'll quickly be filled with holes. As long as you're a pretty decent shot you will be able to make short work of the enemy. The AI will strafe but they won't jump out of the way like something from the Matrix. If you're having trouble hitting them, you can try blowing them up by throwing grenades or tossing explosive canisters and shooting at them to make them blow up.

For the first part of the game you will battle the same guy over and over. At least it looks like the same guy. I call him Bozo the Clone. He's more of an annoyance than a challenge and if he starts to get overwhelmed he calls in reinforcements which are more clones of him. Damn these futuristic games that can get away with these things. It gets a lot more challenging later in the game when enemies come from above, below and out of the shadows. They are more aggressive and often times more powerful. The game will respond to your skill level and will react accordingly by providing you with more health and ammo when you need it. Not unlimited amounts, but enough to keep the challenge alive. Great feature. It keeps us all in the game regardless of how inexperienced some players may be. Unfortunately the game doesn't have a multi-player mode but considering how good the single-player mode is, all is forgiven. A good player will be able to blast through this game in an afternoon.

SiN Episodes: Emergence is a good looking game. It's got some really nice visuals and a really good sense of depth. The audio is a little sparse but at least we're not forced to sit through boring cutscenes just for the sake of forcing a storyline on us every few minutes. The story asks more questions than it answers, and if you want some answers, you'll have to buy more installments of this game as they are offered.


  • Intense Combat - Face off against ruthless enemies, like jetpack soldiers and mutants that evolve as you fight them.
  • Witness enemies that adapt to your actions and truly work as a team, as they cover each other, and help fallen comrades to get back on their feet.
  • Outsmart your opponents by using your environment to your advantage as you set up traps using lethal elements of the environment.
  • Location based damage rewards accuracy while melee combat moves enable you to get up close and personal.
  • Unprecedented Interactivity - Blast your way through highly interactive environments powered by an enhanced version of the Source engine.
  • Characters dynamically react to what you're looking at and the environment.
  • Target and shoot off specific vehicle parts and literally blow cars to pieces. Experience the next level of vehicle combat with a flexible positioning system enabling you to move around the interior with an unprecedented degree of freedom, allowing you to pick the ideal position to attack that enemy position up ahead.

By Mike Chasselwaite
CCC Freelance Writer

Rating out of 5
SiN: Episodes: Emergence (PC)
For a budget title, the graphics are a notch or two above generic.
Although the weapons are limited, they are responsive, destructive, effective and a lot of fun to use.
Music / Sound FX / Voice Acting
There isn't a lot of dialog but that's a good thing. The sound effects are good but the music isn't very interesting.
Play Value
About the only replay value you will encounter is the trial and error segments of the gameplay.
Overall Rating - Great
Not an average. See Rating legend above for a final score breakdown.

Review Rating Legend
1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid
2.0 - 2.4 = Poor
2.5 - 2.9 = Average
3.0 - 3.4 = Fair
3.5 - 3.9 = Good
4.0 - 4.4 = Great
4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy
5.0 = The Best