Volition FreeSpace 2 Review - Page 5

The Audio Department
First person perspective games are never complete without the ear factor to immerse yourself in. The buzzing of a pulse cannon behind you in Unreal Tournament is all it takes for an instant 180 degree turn and a quick return of the favour.


So how do the sound effects in FreeSpace 2 fare? With the myriad of fighters and capital ships slugging it out around you, the audio factor is not used as an indication of hostile craft behind you but more as an indication of fear. On a sortie next to an enemy capital ship, the growing high pitched shrill of its fighter beams charging is all that it takes to make you hit the afterburners and get the hell out of there before you get sliced. The audio missile lock indicator of an enemy missile is all you need before you turn wildly to the side, hit your burners and release a whole string of countermeasures. Flak cannons firing at you have the distinctive crackling of fire-crackers when their rounds explode around you. The screams of your dying wingmen mean you have fewer fighters to cover your ass and take out that immense Shivan cruiser.

Eat My Missiles!

Your virtual eyes are blind to anything beyond your field of vision and all you have to fall back on are your trusty speakers for more information. Nothing jolts you up more than heart-pounding siren call of the anti-fighter beams. That is, until they have a plug-in to let you smell fearů The orchestra of explosions, gun fire and screams make it a truly immersive experience.

Slug Fest!

In-game music is first rate and doesn't distract you from gameplay. In fact, it complements the environment you're in very well. The use of Spectrasonics' "Symphony of Voices" creates an eerie and apocalyptic feel during briefing and flight. This is especially so when the mission you're on is a grope in the dark and the unexpected happens. I'm glad to know that no effort was spared in the audio department.

A Science Vessel Makes Its Jump

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