Gunman Chronicles Rewolf Software / Sierra 2000

This was originally planned as a free addon to Half-Life (under the title "Half Life: Gunman") but was then decided to put on the market as a stand-alone retail product. It concentrates on a single player story but is somewhat tiresome and gameplay is more like action-heavy titles such as Kiss Psycho Circus and Serious Sam, than Half-Life or even Deus Ex and System Shock. In plain English: Not especially ingenious puzzles and many opponents who however are not too intelligent. One should have a powerful uptodate processor with a lot of RAM, so that the events do not degenerate with the amount of explosions and opponents onscreen at once. As a Gunman one travels to 4 planets and about 70 levels. The biggest news present in the game are the variations of the weapons. In a menu one can change to many different settings and adapt the weapon to his special wishes.

After the start, one finds himself in a scene known from Half-Life. One goes on a suspension tram railway. However, a look from the window shows space scenery. One finds out some background to the mission and after the end of the journey, one reports for action. Everything is militarily drilled and the uniforms of the Gunmen remind of those of the southern soldiers in the American civil war. Afterwards one may arm oneself with weapons. Then it goes in a spaceship down to a primeval planet. One finds some gigantic dinosaurs as opponents. If one makes it through here, one escapes onto the next planet. Here one finds drones which remind a little of the opponents from Half-Life. However, I did not find an extremely fun game. Also, the Half-Life engine shows some age and weaknesses compared to newer ones. Only expressionless static pictures are used as sky backgrounds (reminding even of Doom) and what was already weak in Half-Life, in the year 2000 seems a bit ridiculous. In particular if (especially cool in the more sedate scenes) there were meteor showers or rainfall and the player could look heavenward and see a full moon. The lack of that destroys the illusion immensely. There the programmers should do their utmost and extend the HL-Script if they are to put on the market another standalone product. Up to about 2/5ths into the game, I was quite disappointed. There was nothing special, and then it gets quite suddenly much more difficult. From the moment at which one forms an alliance with an AI to come from a planet, the tension and difficulty rise precipitously. The first atmospheric level for me was those in semi-darkness with webs, as in System Shock 2 which it reminded me of. Suddenly the drones of the AI are not enemies, but form an alliance. One escapes that planet with the AI and onto the 4th, a Western scenario. Scorpions scurry on the ground and in the old west there's small houses with grandfather clocks which tick the time. Also the air raids with primitive helicopters are cool, especially when one flies above your head. On this last planet one can also use a tank. At first you have to fill it with gas and then it will work. From time to time one must get out to remove obstacles from the way or to get new fuel, until one has forged ahead into the base of the enemy. In the fights in this base, there are numerous places which remind of the best in Half-Life, as when the soldiers not only side with the players, but also with the aliens. Up to the end, Gunman remains amusing and diverse. I have played NOLF and Gunman directly one after the other. The play duration with NOLF is clearly higher and the graphics better but Gunman never irritates actually, and has also some really strong moments. A demo was released which included levels not available in the full game (see download below).

Screenshots
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Level Demo ~59MB (@ ModDB) Unique Demo Levels v1.2 To Play In-Game ~9MB ( @ Download.com)
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Videos
Full Demo 98MB plus Patch to convert to Steam version ~58MB / Intro ~112MB (uploaded by Scaryfun)
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ISO Demo ~530MB (upped by otiscrusher)
included in Half-Life Addon Pack - Fan-Made ISO (provided by Delacroix & upped by Scaryfun) 460MB


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