Hard Reset Review
Plot? We don’t need no stinkin’ plot
Hard Reset comes from the same minds that brought us 2004′s cult hit, Painkiller, which was in itself a throwback to the old school run and gun gameplay, with no puzzles, tactics, or even a coherent story, just straightforward massacre-the-bad-guys-who-totally-deserve-it fun. Now, Hard Reset comes, and it promises to replicate the fun that Painkiller provided. Given the game’s PC exclusivity, along with the nose dive that Duke Nukem Forever took a few months ago, it is understandable that PC gamers are hyped about the game, and from early previews, it looked like Hard Reset was going to deliver on its promise.
Set in a dystopian future, Hard Reset puts you in the role of Major Fletcher, a soldier for the Corporation in Bezoar city. Because of *techno babble*, The Corporation regards the machines as its enemies. At the beginniging of the game, you are sent to investigate an attack in one of Bezoar’s sectors, possibly conducted by the machines. After *techno babble,* you discover that there is a twist in the story! Soon you find out that to solve the plot you need to *techno babble all the way to hell*.
It feels like the story tries really hard to make the opposite of sense, like its worried to you get too engrossed in it and forget that your only duty is to dispense bullets. This is quite the shame though, since the world you are dropped in just begs for a story. Bezoar city looks and feels like a great cyberpunk location, a capitalist dystopia with Orwellian undertones, juxtaposing high tech futurist elements in a grim, gloomy run down setting, with Japanese ladies voicing advertisements and vending machines that explicitly encourage you to “spend to be happy”. The level of detail that went into it is quite a sight to behold, and you can’t help but imagine how daily life is like in the city.
I really don’t need to explain the gameplay, do I? Enemies come in giant hordes, and you kill them. That about sums it up. You are given two guns to commit your machine genocide, a rifle and an energy gun, but they both transform into other kinds of weapons (shotguns, rocket launchers, railguns…etc) through buying upgrades, which is how you start building your variety of guns. I usually prefer FPS enemies of the human variety rather than machines, but it is quite satisfying to blast away at robotic enemies and see metal shards flying around the place.