In the late 90’s or very early 00’s I remember renting a game from the local video store with visuals that were bloody and somewhat clay-looking. The only memory of it I could recall was a desert level and a lot of shooting. Soon I completely forgot about the game and it wasn’t until a month ago that I stumbled upon a cover that instantly reminded me of the title. Reloaded was that game.
I’ve never played Loaded (Reloaded is obviously a sequel) but I’ve heard it was a much better game. Sequels not living up to fans’ expectations are common; it can be hard for a developer to create a sequel to a great game. You either improve on the flawed aspects of the first or just make something entirely new.
Reloaded gives you six (seven if you use a cheat code) characters to choose from before going on the bloody quest to kill the antagonist, C.H.E.B. They’re sick bastards with problems and an itchy trigger finger. This IS the “hardcore sequel” after all; it’s uncensored, uncut, but is it any good? Each mission has you running around the map killing lots of enemies while completing not-so complicated objectives. Grab three of these, two of those, open this, and open that. Killing enemies can be a clunky endeavor because you can’t use the analog sticks and when enemies come in an angle you have to flee, turn around, and shoot. After killing off most of them the levels become just blood-stained landscapes that I wandered around in like an idiot trying to figure out where to go. I spent a lot of time in the first level running around looking for some green things that a hippie needed so I could get a broken bridge repaired. The game’s map sorta helps, but it’s basically a neon Etch n’ Sketch that replaces your health and ammo display.
While the action can be fun, the game doesn’t do anything amazing and is just rental-quality. You might enjoy going through dozens of enemies (bring a friend, there’s co-op) but being entertained will last you a few levels. I stopped playing after the fourth and the game started to bore me. Even if I did complete the game, I just can’t imagine replaying it with a different character. It isn’t terrible but it’s nothing to get excited over.
The soundtrack is pretty cool, though.