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Dueling With Guns
One of the first and most popular MMOTPS games out there is Maiet Entertaiment’s Gunz: The Duel. Originally, Gunz was only available in Korea but picked up mass popularity due to its originality and highly stylized combat and presentation. Soon after launching and receiving a fair amount of publicity, the game was made available to a worldwide audience outside of Korea, in which it was known as Gunz: International. Eventually it shutdown and was revived by a global online distributor. Gunz is now being published to North American gamers via ijji Games, and offers players minor character customization, PvP modes, PvE quests, and of course, tons of guns.
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Simply saying that Gunz is a high-octane, adrenaline-charged shooting fest would be cutting the game short of just how much fun this game can be. The core modes of play consist of deathmatch and team deathmatch, but that’s just a small part of what the game has to offer.
Players can partake in a quest mode, which is extremely difficult; a duel mode where players face off against each other in a lavish hall, one-on-one until a victor is claimed; and gladiator, a mode that consists solely of fighting with swords or daggers.
Each mode requires a different measure of skill, and players will definitely need to use skill in order to make it out of any match with money or experience.
Since Gunz uses a gameplay model that sees players freely being able to jump around, hop off walls, run up walls, dodge in different directions while in mid-air or cling to any surface using a dagger or sword, it’s not horribly easy to score loot. In fact, the more style, skill or technique players use to land a kill, the more bounty is received. This pushes players to perform all kinds of finger-grinding techniques to either stay alive or bank a frag.
As an action game, Gunz does well to hold its own and offer up gameplay rivaled by no other action-MMO on the market. While S4 League comes somewhat close to a similar playing style, it greatly lacks the freedom of movement that Gunz has or the ability to really make good use of the environment. This is what separates Gunz from so many other games out there that see players with the quickest mouse-centering abilities picking up most of the wins. In this game, players who can get out of the way but are a bad shot are just as likely to win a match as a player who can pinpoint a headshot with a rifle. In this regard, Gunz stands head-and-shoulders above the competition with its balanced and diverse gameplay mechanics.
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Gunz combines the hyper-stylistic action from movies such as The Matrix and Equilibrium with popular weapons and swords from animes. Mixing the likes of PvP deathmatch modes with quest-oriented battles against the NPC is a real breath of fresh air for this online shooter.
It’s not just that it has a blend of PvP and PvE scenarios; it’s that the game has a truly unique feel to its premise, gameplay and swordplay. Cash shop items are available for players who want a truly distinct look from everyone else, as well as an advantage during the game.
For the most part, Gunz: The Duel, to be as old as it is, really sets itself apart from the rest of the herd with its gameplay. Oddly enough, to this day, Gunz is still the only game of its kind.
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Graphics And Sound
You won’t be blown with any of the graphics in the game, and the music isn’t particularly noteworthy. However, what the game lacks in smooth animations or well crafted model files, the game makes up for it with its gameplay.
The environments have an original feel to them and each map is distinctly designed for players of various skill sets; some favoring the dagger or sword while others favor some run and gun techniques. Each design is reflected well with favorable texture mapping and a fairly acceptable lighting system.
My biggest complaint in the area of aesthetics, though, is not with the graphics or the music but instead, with the gun sounds. A lot of the weapons sound really piercing and lack any sort of deep bass effects. While some may complain that real life weapons are more piercing than guttural, the weapons can come off as sounding a bit annoying after a while.
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What’s a game entitled “Gunz” if it doesn’t have a lot of guns? The good news is that there are a lot of guns in Gunz, the only problem is that there aren’t any customization options available for the guns.
The upside is that gun fanatics will take pleasure in being able to use a wide variety of pistols, revolvers, sub machine guns, assault rifles, shotguns, rocket launchers, and the option to dual-wield any single-handed weapon.
Despite the lack of being able to modify the weapons, Gunz still allows for enough variety to be enjoyable. In fact, there are so many guns in the game that it would be difficult not to find something that suits the style of any shooter fan.
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Gamers looking for a straight-through third-person online shooter with off-the-wall action (pun intended), can’t go wrong with Gunz: The Duel. If you’re tired of going down in a few hits in games like A.V.A or Operation 7 and prefer being able to use the environment to your advantage and look cool while doing so, then Maiet Entertainment’s gun-ballet masterpiece should fit the bill perfectly.
While the graphics are dated and the sound isn’t spectacular, the wide availability of content, weapons and quest items should be enough to keep most action fans satisfied. This game is highly recommended for any gamer looking for a fun time with a free online shooter.
Gunz: The Duel Review
by: William Usher ; edited by: Michael Hartman ; updated: 4/17/2012 • Leave a comment