Although the controls are really rough (it really should be point-and-click instead), it's still an intriguing story in an interesting environment.

Dead Space 2 [Steam store page]
Much better and scarier than Dead Space, good atmosphere. The camera isn't sluggish and not as close. Combat also seems more responsive, and melee is somewhat possible. The 'Force' is useful, though sometimes the item you're holding disappears.

This feels like a console game - smoothed movement, unchangable (close up) third person perspective. The combat is also poor and frustrating - with guns that seem like they were meant to be used with auto-aim. Melee combat is completely useless.

Left 4 Dead 2 [Steam store page]
Even though Killing Floor doesn't have a story line I still prefer it for co-op fun. This is incredibly easy, and the scripted way the special zombies pop out next to you is annoying unless you have the maps memorized.

Killing Floor [Steam store page]
The graphics are a bit rough but this game is all about speed and accuracy killing waves of experimental creatures. Forget story, the co-op is loads of fun with a group of friends, and fairly challenging as well.

The most difficult part is the way enemies rubberband - if you run full tilt on many maps, and turn around they'll still be very close behind you - rounding the nearest corner or doorway. The spawn locations also don't seem to be set specifically - they seem to appear directly around any corner that you haven't looked around in the last few seconds, or further ahead if you're running rather than camping. On some areas in maps they also drop down from above, off buildings or through holes in the roof.

These mechanics aren't necessarily flaws - they make the game much more fast paced and difficult than it would be if you could kite them more strategically. Kiting is still very much possible because the game limits the number of enemies on the map at any time - so if you can group them all behind you then they will slowly appear in front of you as you kill ones behind.

Passable, with some annoying features like AI soldiers that can blindly shoot you through canvas tents with deadly accurately.

Shadowgrounds [Steam store page]
A reasonably fun top-down shooter with a sci-fi storyline. The NPCs occasionally block your movement during combat - luckily they don't seem to take team damage. The flashlight also runs out of batteries slowly, which pulls you out of the game a bit.

The character creation sequence is creepy and combat is painful compared to real FPS. It suffers from lack of direction after you leave the vault, much like the The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion series. The world is nicely detailed - but this can't rescue the game

The shooter aspect is okay, and the frights are good, but when put together it's an unsatisfactory combination. If you added the fright to something like Half-Life 2 it would be a much better fit.

Movement through water is so terrible that I once backtracked half a level trying to figure out what I was missing because my character wouldn't exit the water onto the appropriate ledge. The flashlight is also the worst I've seen in any game - running out of batteries every 20 seconds.

The audio is also so shockingly bad it's worth mentioning. You can't locate enemies by the direction of their voices - many times the sound comes from the opposite direction. Extremely poor for an FPS.

The slow motion feature makes combat like shooting fish in a barrel, yet when you're at normal speed the AI grenades are way overpowered - one hit kill if it's anywhere near you.

In the end it's entertaining for a couple levels - but after that it feels like a repetitive mess of hallways, ghosts, and soldiers.

Penumbra Overture [Steam store page]
The story seems okay, but the motion controls are atrocious - there's a reason normal games don't have you move your mouse to turn cranks or use a hammer. It made it very difficult to defend yourself against enemies (and enemies can break down doors)

S.T.A.L.K.E.R.: Shadow of Chernobyl [Steam store page]
It has potential, but feels like a game that hasn't yet been play-tested. There is a general lack of instruction about controls and the little that is given is as entertaining as reading a manual.

The open world seems interesting at first, but your character gets exhausted quickly and soon you're trudging at a snails pace across the vast terrain. The pistol you've been equipped with has terrible accuracy, and to hit anything you need to be right on top of it. This is an impossible feat when your opponents have assault rifles and your character dies with a couple bullets.

Twenty quicksave/loads later you've finally been lucky enough to run up and shoot your opponent in the face before he can reload. Yet the gun you just picked up wasn't automatically equipped, and as you switch to the unweildy menu to activate it the game doesn't pause and you are mowed down once again. Eventually you survive and get it equipped, but you have to press the reload key to actually load the gun.

Now due to invisible areas apparently high in radiation one of the missions in the starting zone seems impossible to reach, much less complete. Not to mention that once you have slight radiation poisoning you might as well just reload a quicksave instead of wasting large amounts of vodka and bandages.

The AI itself is decent and manages to put up a fight while not being godlike - though it does cheat by omnisciently knowing your location. AI enemies only show up on the map temporarily after they shoot, like Tom Clancy's Ghost Recon, which puts you at a bit of a disadvantage. Bushes can also be annoying - not obscuring your location to the AI, yet making it hard to aim.

It's a pity they didn't actually play their own game. It could have been fun, but there are just too many rough spots to make it worth struggling through as-is. Realism is fine, but not when it interferes with the game being fun/entertaining.