Dissolution is a science fiction, single-player mod for Half-Life 2 that mixes adventure and action game-play. Set in the year 2089, in a universe dominated by a mega corporate entity, Xterrier, the player awakes in a hidden lab to the voice of the mysterious Wilson. Guided by Wilson, the player must make their way through the ravaged Xterrier 581c colony, making use of any and all resources they can get their hands on in order to survive, all the while attempting to piece together the events leading to the colony's collapse and their own identity.
I think the most kind thing I can say for this mod is that it didn't drag on for very long. And that it was relatively inoffensive; it didn't make me sit through ten hours of Combine Soldiers and poorly scripted sequences, and that for all intents and purposes it seemed professionally designed.
In short, I see this as a wasted two years only to produce a Bioshock clone which fails in every respect where Bioshock succeeded. It makes the same attempt at an idealistic society that we saw in Bioshock, but it falls flat under a hundred metric tons of bland, featureless corridors and oft-repeated, dry, dull posters and advertisements. Bioshock succeeded on the shoulders of its fantastic art deco design philosophy and keen eye for period advertisements and sensibilities. Dissolution, on the other hand, is another bald space marine saga set in a space colony/spaceship/underground facility, coupled with a fruitless attempt at injecting personality and style.
Also emulating Bioshock is this mod's attempt at introducing a story line with a twist; the only problem being that I saw said twist coming within the first ten minutes of play. The final revelation delivered in a bland monologue by the game's "villain" felt like a perfunctory and unnecessary confirmation of what I already knew.
While we're on the subject of the story, it was uninspired and unmotivated: none of the characters had any clear motivation for what they were doing. I didn't understand Wilson's desire to conquer death, or some such rubbish, nor did I get why Bell was such a tyrant. These things were never explained adequately. And don't get me started on how lame and weak the whole crow thing was. It could have worked with more details put into the script, but honestly...
What's next? Your enemies bullrush you like overpowered lemmings, devoid of personality or feeling, or even dialogue. Complaints regarding gameplay have already been more than addressed, so I won't bother.
Wasted my time.
If you need a picture to define word "Boredom" you could took screenshot from this mod.
Boring intro. I had strong wish to leave game even at this point.
Sterile environments with lack of objects. You can go mental by simply living in that place.
Total lack of ambient sounds. Always silent corridors - no electric buzzing, no pipe bubbling, nothing. Oh yeah, corridors. With 90 degree turns. All way long. Simply walking around here is boring too!
Gameplay cycle from hell: speech-locked door-firefight with pack of guys-keycard-speech-firefight with pack of guys-unlocked door. Boring train ride is optional.
In-your-face shootouts. As interesting, as digging in your own nose for treasure.
If you want something about rioting colony go replay Red Faction 1. Or System Shock 2. Just don't waste your time to play this.
4 out of 10 only for voice acting.
Poor voice acting. Crude textures and environments.
While the idea is cool and the story is thought-out, it just is not very fun to play. Combat is sparse yet concentrated. All the levels feel extremely empty. It gets very boring after a while. And it takes forever to do anything it seems. Also the added sound effects are of poor quality and feel cheap. I didn't like it very much at all. 4/10 for effort.
This mod is boring. Pure and simple. Good attempts at a decent story and voice acting is done well for the most part, everything else is lacking. Terrible modeling, all I see are rehashed hl2 models with a different skin color. This is especially apparent with the character models, who are all literally hl2 characters with green uniforms. The weapon modeling is horrid, looked as if they came from a hl 1 mod. Game play is just as bad.
Combat is terribly unbalanced, why the hell does it take 3 shots to the ******* HEAD with a pistol to kill ONE enemy? And half a magazine of a M4 to kill one guy? Does it make sense to make the melee weapon be a one hit kill weapon? While the weapons the player uses are terribly underpowered, the enemies on the other hand have OVERPOWERED weapons that seemingly kill the player within a few shots. In the mod's first gun fight, the AI spawn with at least 5 men shooting at the player with pistols while the player only has a small desk for cover. I was forced to use CHEATS to get past that part.
The atmosphere of the game is somewhat there, it attempts to present a Bioshock/Deadspace like theme to the mod, but falls flat with the crude presentation (the introduction was a spinning planet that looked like a ****** claymation movie with a moon and satellite rotating around it for 15 minutes while a british dude rambled on about how humanity was almost wiped out. *yawn*) The constant corridor map layout doesn't help at all.
In terms of pacing and progression, the mod resorts to the overused "find key card and go to locked door" concept way too many times.
Overall I'd say this mod had potential, but just turned out to be a boring mess. It's kind of hard to believe that it took about 2 years for this mod to be made. It seems to me more effort was put into the voice acting, music, and story rather than actual game play and presentation. (There are actually people there who gave this an 8/10? Get real people)
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