This mod took over 2 years to make, contains new weapons, monsters, textures, sounds and code, making it the largest SPHL mod ever. Set in the Vietnam War, your mission is to assassinate one renegade colonel by the name of Kurtz, "with extreme prejudice". Unfortunately the only way to get to him is by wading through armies of Viet Cong and hostile US troops, not to mention hordes of the undead roaming the earth and feasting upon the flesh of the living. It's just you, Barney and your chainsaw against the world. "Think "Apocalypse Now" after Coppola is kidnapped by Rastafarian drug lords and given the full treatment. As the mod progresses, things aren't as one-dimensional as they seemed when you first accepted this mission... there's something fishy going on here, and you don't think it's the Nuoc Mâm. Rating? Five out of five." - Silver Sorrow, hangar16.com
To start of with the good things, Heart of Evil certainly is a unique mod. The Vietnam setting is a one of a kind in the long run of half-life mods. It looks as good as an half-life mod can get, with custom textures, models, weapons en effects.
The game has its own voice acting, sometimes serious and sometimes just goofy. The maps looks great and because of the games length you get to do a lot of sight-seeing around the different areas of the game.
The 60's fibe, the humorous natives, and little jokes slipped into the good story of the game makes it stand out.
But as good it seems this mod is far from perfect. In fact it has some serious flaws. The huge maps and unique puzzles are part of the game and to leave it would leave with a whole different game. But some puzzles are so far fetched, so hard to think a solution for and so illogical that it leaves you wandering around aimlessly around the huge maps.
The maps, which also present the problem. Everything seems like a maze. Corners which look the same, all kinds of different routes which makes you walk around the map 5 times. You have no sense of direction which way you should go, what to do, or why to do it. This makes puzzles just more confusing then they already are.
And the AI, specifically the friendly AI is makes me want to shoot myself. There are things like cars and radio's which you need Barney for because he's supposed to be smart and knows how to handle them. My god I've never seen worse AI trying to follow you.
In the end the game consists of 50% walking around with no clue what to do, 25% trying to get Barney to follow you and the last 25% is actually playing the game.
It's a decent mod but would be better if it weren't for some major flaws. I'd like to give it a lower rating but because of the huge contents of the mod and the amount of work I'll give it a 7/10.
It's still good, but if I were you I'd stay clear of it, to me there are a lot of better mods out there.
Heart of evil definitely stands out from most half-life mods. Even though some stock Half-Life content is used this mod still feels different from the original game. Quality wise it tends to jump all over the place. The story line is heavily based on the classic war drama Apocalypse Now. Your main objective is to hunt down and kill a man named Colonel Kurtz who has gone insane. As you make your way through towns, military outposts and jungles you will be attacked by Vietnamese soldiers, some of your own men who sympathize with Kurtz's methods, strange mutant creatures, zombies, and a bit out of place in my opinion, aliens. The level design and combat is great however some areas can become frustrating due to cryptic puzzles and very confusing layouts. The voice acting is actually decent for a mod although there is some poor voice work within. The allied soldiers can deliver their lines rather flat at times, but the worst is the Vietnamese soldiers and civilians. The voice overs for them were just over the top Asian stereotypes and simply sounded obnoxious.
Heart of evil is flawed but fine, its a long play through but you will feel some satisfaction when its all over. I also think the mod does a good job at emulating the creepy atmosphere of the film its based on.