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ESRB Rating - M for Mature (17+) My Rating - M for Mature (20+) Parents, do not under any circumstances buy this game for your kids.
Graphics: This game is what Quake players have been waiting for since they started the saga. The graphics in this game easily rival those of Splinter Cell or Deus Ex: Invisible War. The movements and textures are spot on and the detail is insane. Every weapon has massive detail put into it, and the matching flashes for each weapon are spot on with their real life counter-parts. Some weapons are more futuristic than others but all are equally detailed. Painkiller took over the graphics scene for almost a week with its perfect use of the Havoc Engine ragdoll physics. Painkiller?s graphics in simple terms, astonishing. Painkiller gets an A+ in graphics.

Sound:

The sound in this game is also spot on. You hear the clanking of your boots as they rapture the textures beneath your feet. Running through a castle produces a mixture of clanking and your feet slamming the brick. Likewise, running in the grass produces a slick gliding sound, like running on wet grass. The grunts and moans of the demons will soon get repetitive though, after seeing 3 different types of demon all grunting the same way you lose the sense of realism. Sound in Painkiller is well done, yet repetitive at times. Painkiller gets an A- in sound.

Story:

You are Daniel Garner, a man who never expected to celebrate his wife?s birthday in a body bag. Daniel is killed in a car accident and finds himself stuck between Heaven and Hell, in a place called Purgatory. Its survival of the strongest until you are approached by an Arc Angel who has a job for you. If you accept, then after you complete the job you will be purified and receive the gift of Heaven, but if you fail, its to Hell you go. Naturally you accept, and so the story begins. The forces in Hell are planning a war against Heaven, and as Daniel Garner you must put a stopper on their plans. While killing hordes of demons, your main job is to kill all four of Lucifer?s generals. By yourself, its quite a job. The story has been used before, many many times, and therefore Painkiller gets a C+ in story.

Game play:

All aspects of the gameplay in Painkiller are amazing. The controls are dead on without a change being made to them. The mouse sensitivity might need to be adjusted for maximum aiming capability but other than that the gameplay owns. The action in Painkiller is non-stop as hordes of demons pop up from the ground, bust through doors, and appear out of thin air to try and be the one to take your head. Its an action game for adrenaline junkies and people just looking for a fast paced shooter in the same. The use of black tarot cards in Painkiller adds to the advantage of power-ups. A black tarot card can be applied for a one time use to power a specific ability of Daniel?s for a battle. Black tarot cards are especially useful during boss battles. Painkiller gets an A- in game play.

Appropriateness:

To say that this is a good game for the graphics and gameplay is one thing, but this game from a Christian standpoint is something to be thrown out as fast as can be done. Many think its a great game supporting Christianity because of the demon blasting and the fight for Heaven, but there are many knocks against Christianity within Painkiller. Violence, blood, and gore are frequent in this game, it just becomes a level to level thing to blow a demon?s head off. Blood is all over the place, and the Havoc physics engine just adds to the gore. You shoot a stake at a demon near the wall, and he is pinned to that wall. You will see massive amounts of gore when the shotgun is introduced into the weapons category. The devil star pentagram is used as the loading module for this game. The main menu screen contains the devil star pentagram with a demon crucified on it, as a direct spit on the crucifixion of Jesus Christ. You will be in close proximity with Lucifer himself, as portrayed from the developer?s standpoint, along with many of his minions. At the end of each level in the game, you hear satanic chanting as the final soul is shown, where you step into the soul to end the level. While you kill demons you gain their souls after their bodies have vanished, upon which if you obtain enough souls you turn into a demonic form of yourself, ripping and blasting your way through anything standing. From a Christian standpoint, the shape-shifting of yourself into a demon is very satanic. Eve, as in Adam and Eve, is 95 percent naked at least 3 times that I counted in this game. The developers placed her hair over her chest to have a bit of cover, but her features are blatantly viewable during the cutscenes. Painkiller gets an F in appropriateness.

Overall:

As a game, from a gamer?s standpoint, Painkiller is non-stop, action filled, and full of fun. Painkiller will get repetitive if you are not patient with the run and gun scenario. Its a fairly long game, but the length is cut down by the easy gameplay and over-powered weapons. An average gamer could easily beat this game in 10-12 hours of straight gameplay. I wouldn?t recommend this game to any Christian or avid parent looking for advice for your kids because of the highly suggestive subject matter, the violence, the gore, and the blood that is pertinent in this game. If you are a gamer, seeking an adrenaline rush, and a huge gore-fest, then Painkiller is for you. Painkiller gets an overall grade of a B- or an 84 percent.

Final Ratings

Graphics: A+ Sound: A- Story: C+ Gameplay: A- Appropriateness: F

Overall: B- Overall Percentage: 84%

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Christ Centered Gamer looks at video games from two view points. We analyze games on a secular level which will break down a game based on its graphics, sound, stability and overall gaming experience. If you’re concerned about the family friendliness of a game, we have a separate moral score which looks at violence, language, sexual content, occult references and other ethical issues.

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