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The Punisher: No Mercy
The Punisher: No Mercy was released for the PlayStation 3 in July of 2009. It is available exclusively for download from the PlayStation Store for just $9.99. Comic books fans will probably get a kick out of playing The Punisher character in this first person shooter game. Otherwise, it’s sort of hit and miss.
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This FPS lets you play as The Punisher or one of many other characters as you shoot your way through a handful of levels. It has a single and multiplayer aspect that lets you play on the same maps, and the AI is good enough to make for great practice before getting online to go at real people. There’s nothing really fancy about the game that sets it apart from other shooters, but the gameplay is smooth and the controls work really well.
The maps in this game are comparable in size to some of the mid-size maps in the Call of Duty games, but they tend to be very flat. By that, I mean there are hardly any elevated positions and most of the time you are on the ground with everyone else. Not having to look up and down really simplifies the gameplay, so you do a lot of running around and shooting. The maps are at least laid out in ways that offer lots of places to go for cover, and you’ll quickly learn where to look out for bad guys.
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Graphics and Sound
Graphics in this game are pretty good, thanks to its use of the Unreal game engine. The environment is somewhat interactive, meaning you can break glass and blow up some things, but for the most part everything is solid and unmovable. The game settings have a lot of detail, but you get used to the way it all looks pretty quickly. The animations do run very smoothly no matter how fast things get, and that is a plus. All that aside, the graphics still don’t compare to what you might find in a more expensive disc-based game, like Resistance: Fall of Man.
This game bears an M (for Mature) rating due to violence and profanity. It has an R-rated soundtrack full of F-words and everything else you can imagine. One round of gameplay sounds like a table discussion in a Quentin Tarantino movie. One character likes to belt out “Jesus f---!” constantly. I can see a lot of parents getting really angry the first time they hear their kids playing this one, so be warned. Otherwise, there’s not much else to say about the sound and its basic gunfire effects.
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Based on the other reviews I’ve read about this game, one of the biggest complaints is in regard to online play. Some people can get it to work and others can’t. On a Sunday night, I had no problems getting online and finding other players, but on a Monday afternoon it kept disconnecting me or freezing up during ‘loading’ screens. I don’t know if it is a programming bug or just a server bandwidth issue, but either way the developers need to get it fixed ASAP or gamers will turn their back on this game. It’s too new to be having that much trouble.
Be sure to check out my hints, tips, and tricks for getting a better score when playing this game online.
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Despite some flaws, I am enjoying The Punisher: No Mercy. For what it lacks in diversified content, it makes up for with a good straightforward gameplay, and it is fun to jump into and shoot some bad guys for a little while. For the $9.99 price tag, it’s hard to complain too much. I’d recommend it for comic book fans.