To start, I will admit that I never did play the original version of Nexuiz when it was first released in 1999. I loved first person shooters but never quite got around to playing Nexuiz even though it was built off of the Quake Tech 1 engine as a mod. That may be because I wasn’t as into the PC Arena FPS community as a whole or maybe because my old rig wasn’t strong enough to play certain games. As it was it struggled to run Quake and Unreal Tournament when I would play them. Whatever the case may be, Nexuiz never quite made it onto my radar.
But Nexuiz did have one hell of a community following; a community which has continued to support the game throughout the past decade building it into one of the strongest arena FPS’ out there. With all those supporters out there, a company called IllFonic announced that a full commercial version of Nexuiz was being developed for Xbox LIVE Arcade, Steam and the PlayStation Network. The IllFonic version of Nexuiz would be developed using the CryEngine 3game engine and the artwork was revamped to be representative of a futuristic Victorian era setting.
Upon the release of the new Nexuiz on XBLA, the game received mixed reviews across the board. While many players enjoyed the updated graphics and art style of the game, others were a bit turned off by the controls of the game and some random, game interfering bugs that hindered the game play. So while fans loved the return of the fast paced arena FPS game with rule changing power ups that were to be found throughout the game, they could quickly be turned off of it because of a few buggy issues that made Nexuiz almost impossible to play.
Well, IllFonic seems to have heard the complaints of these fans and seemed to have fixed most of the issues with Nexuiz during the Beta version of Nexuiz for Steam on the PC. In the 12 or so hours I have put into the game, I must admit that I have come across no bugs that hindered my enjoyment of the game. The only issue I have with Nexuiz is actually an issue with my game play as I must have really rusted out since the age of Quake II. I am not used to the increased speed of the game play and found myself on the losing end of many an alien shotgun blast.
Despite that, Nexuiz seems to be a very enjoyable PC arena FPS. If there were bugs on the XBLA version of the game that annoyed fans, I have yet to encounter any in the PC version. The game runs smoothly and the fast pace of the game doesn’t distort the advanced visuals found in the game. Every detail you see in the wall or on your weapon when standing in a static position is still clearly visible as you are running and gunning throughout the chosen arena. That is if you can even manage to run and gun at all.
With more than one hundred “dynamic mutators” to alter the rules of the current arena of play, you can often times find yourself trying to adjust your play before the enemy has time to adjust theirs. Because of this, sometimes you have an extreme advantage over your opponents but just as often find that you are at the disadvantaged side of the rule change. This all depends on your style of play, but it seems that the better players of the game will certainly have the upper hand during all rule changes.
With all the updates and upgrades IllFonic’s Nexuiz has received over the original, hell, even over the XBLA version, Nexuiz is certainly a PC friendly arena FPS that stays true to the nature of the original game. There is a substantially different feel to Nexuiz on the PC than that over XBLA and I chalk that up to being a good thing. After all, it started off on the PC and it should be that the game plays best on that platform as well. Fans of the original game should be surprised at how much better Nexuiz plays on Steam. You can definitely tell that the heart of this game is still the PC.
Nexuiz is available for pre-order now on Steam for the price of $9.99 and will be released on May 10, 2012.