Back in the early days of the 21st century, two titles stood out for their excess gore. Those games were Raven Software's Soldier of Fortune games. They received great success from critics and gamers alike, and their gimmick of gore made them popular. However, the most recent game in the series isn't handled by Raven. Instead, it's gone to Cauldron, creators of 2003 sci-fi FPS, Chaser, as well as the History Channel games. They don't have a very impressive résumé, but if you think about it as a single game, rather than the company that created it, you should have a good bit of fun, if only for a short while.
Well, let's start with the sucky crap. We're in a a bit of a list, here. Let's see... AI is retarded (though not up to Rogue Warrior's status), the enemies do a crap load of damage to you, even on the easiest difficulty. Hmm... the voice acting hits that fine line between bad and decent, enemies pop out of nowhere (though not as much as others like to make it out to be), and the game only hits around 5 hours.
Sure, its got its fair share of flaws, but the presentation is actually pretty well done. It has some nice music, but it gets kind of repetitive by the end of the game. The textures look great, however, and the lighting is superb, and often makes some textures look even better than what they would be normally. It makes the entire game look simply gorgeous and adds a layer of "awesome". Despite all of this, before-mentioned voice acting brings it down a notch. It overall presentation is strong, but be prepared for some annoying voices.
Gameplay, obviously, is the best part of the game. Sure, you can die fairly easily (though I only died thrice the entire game), but running behind cover for two or three seconds and you're ready to go out and pop off a crap load of limbs. Speaking of, the gore in this game is more over-the-top than any game I've ever seen. Every weapon in the nearly 2-dozen guns is purposely overpowered to the point of awesomeness. If you shoot any enemy in the head a time or two, their head will explode. Shotguns can blast off arms, legs, and heads with a single shot, if done correctly. This goes well beyond the level of blood an violence the first two games had.
And why are you killing everybody? Two different reasons. For the first half of the game, it is simply because another mercenary killed the person you were supposed to protect. The other half is because you're going to kill the person who ruined your "boss lady's" face. Yep. Its simple. It isn't atrocious, but it definitely didn't grasp me and pull me into the game. In storylines like this, it doesn't effect my opinion in the slightest.
One thing I'd like to mention is that the developers took influence in the level designs straight from the first two. They're ultimately linear and they look similar. The deserts are taken from the first game's Iraq mission and the Jungle's are pulled the Double Helix's Columbia mission. As I've already said, they look gorgeous, but they are fairly short. Not to mention that enemies like to spawn behind you at times and bash you instead of simply shooting you and quickly getting rid of the threat. But it feels like a Soldier of Fortune approach to the Serious Sam formula, with a few tweaks. It has its charm, but the short game time doesn't let it last for too long. After you beat it, it has an "Well, I'm done" feeling to it. However, f the ending says anything, a sequel may be in the works. However, with its critical reception, it likely isn't going to happen.
The multiplayer side is pretty stale, as it only has the basic modes. That being said, it offers a few thrills as you pop your enemies head off with a perfect sniper shot. So satisfying. Beyond that, it doesn't offer anything to keep you there for long, aside from fun. Its a fun diversion, but you probably won't stay for long.
Despite all of the game's flaws, I simply loved it. The over-the-top action, mixed with the excess gore and charm won me over in the long run. Not to mention that it is one of the most fun games I've yet played, and you've got one happy guy waiting for a even bloodier sequel.