Where did all those freaky programs about UFO’s, extraterrestrial creatures and paranormal gifts go? Did the government use a strict form of censorship? Did they hush it all up in the extinguisher? Or is it just simply a case of mankind who has lost interest in these fascinating subjects? Apparently there are still human beings around who are fascinating by these paranormal activities. They’re called “codies”, they pop up in the most successful racing games and now and then they dare to explore new horizons. With the help of the free radicals (Free Radical Entertainment that is) they tried to put the paranormal problem back in the spotlight. A breath of fresh air in the action adventure genre, you say? Who knows, only my review will tell!
After pressing start and adjusting the difficulty level, being normal or challenging, you’re immediately thrown in the action. You take on the role of John Vattic. He wakes up in a medical institution but can’t remember a thing. What is he doing there? How did he get there and most important: who slapped his ass so hard making him look like a truck ran over him? Since you don’t have any knowledge of your antecedents I can’t really tell you anything about it because it would spoil all the fun. Practice makes perfect is the message for Second Sight. Through playable flashbacks you’ll get to know your past and learn how to solve the present, yes indeed; its originality is a fact.
John is a mixture of Agent 47 from Hitman and James Earl Cash from Manhunt. The resemblance only concerns his looks. His bald hair-do refers to Agent 47 while his cloths reminded me of those of mister Cash. Apart from his tough looks, Vattic is actually a wussy to the backbone, maybe an anti-hero even who couldn’t hurt a fly. I did say “couldn’t” because the guards will soon make it impossible for John to just sit and be beaten up. During his first confrontation with an aggressive guard he comes to the conclusion that he has paranormal powers. Heavy boxes can cause some serious damage especially when thrown hard at the face of an opponent. But John doesn’t use his hands though, everything is done by his paranormal mind, making it even cooler ofcourse. You’ll learn new psi-abilities as you progress and besides the fact that they’re a feast for the eye, they’re also very useful. If you’ve been swallowing bullets for ages with a pretty empty health bar as a result, you might want to use your healing ability. Tired of all those annoying guards? Just sneak past them with your charm ability. For a short amount of time John will turn invisible making him all Sam Fisher-like and resulting in some stealthy gameplay. If there’s really no way out you can always depend on your psi-attack. The poor guards will hit the floor sooner than you can say “supercalifragilisticexpialadocious”. The über-ability in my humble opinion is the projection ability. John’s soul will leave his body and you’ll have full control of his soul. You can now visit unreachable places, for example: your road is blocked by some red lasers, just exit your body, walk through and shut the power down. You can even enter the body of a guard, control him and shoot all his homies to make your journey a lot more pleasant and easier. The telekinetic ability can also be useful if you want to scare the living crap out of the enemies. Focus on your power on a television screen, shake it up a bit and the guard will be kneeling down and begging for mercy.
If you thought you could just use all these cool abilities ’till your PS2 breaks down, you’re plain stupid! Of course there’s a limit to your powers. Beneath your health bar you’ve got a psi-bar indicating how much psi-power you’ve got left. The meter fills up automatically but when camera’s or guards spot you, it will be immediately drained. “What now, oh all mighty reviewer?” Well, thanks for John you’ll find some nice guns here and there, ranging from a simple pistol to a true Russian machinegun. So don’t worry, Second Sight will offer enough violent content!
The fact that Free Radical Entertainment is responsible for the looks of the game is pretty obvious. The characters are all very similar to those seen in the Timesplitters games, complete with awesome animations and nice lighting effects. The diversity of locations also deserves a pat on the back. From the winter wonder land of Drubensk to the dreary psychiatric institution, the designers have really put their selves to the test. The sound man seems to be a capable chap too. The oppressed intro tune will make you shiver and the details in the sound department are really eargasm worthy, eg: you can even hear the ticking of the clock.
Second Sight has become a mind blowing experience. The flashbacks, the psi-abilities, the storyline, the lush graphics, the oppressed soundtrack, everything leaves its own mark. Heck, I’m getting all poetic here:
Second Sight is:
a breath of fresh air on a boiling summer day,
do you want me to go,
or should I stay,
whatever it is,
make sure you don’t miss,
this awesome piece,
of gaming bliss!