Heretic II is the highly acclaimed conceptual sequel to the Hexen and Heretic series by Raven Software. Heretic II relies on a tweaked version of the Quake IITM engine by Id Software and plays from a behind-the-back third-person perspective as in the Tomb Raider series but still controls a lot like a first-person shooter.
In Heretic II you play Corvus, the Elf who was exiled to the Outer Worlds but managed to find his way back home. Unfortunately, home is not the place it used to be: the land is beset by a dark magical plague and Corvus' brethren have mutated beyond recognition and have become insane with bloodlust. Enter Corvus, our hero.
Raven Software have invested enormous effort in the animation of Corvus who has to run, jump, swim, climb and creep his way through myriad locations, solving puzzles and invoking magic while fighting off cursed inhabitants.
Corvus is however at his best when he has to fight and quite an arsenal he has got too. His main weapon is his sword-staff which he uses in a variety of ways (including pole-vaulting). Then there's his magical arsenal: a dazzling array of magic spells including fire- and lightning-based attacks that light up the screen with stunning pyrotechnics. On top of that he has his Hellstaff which fires energy blasts at a furious rate, the Storm Bow, whose magical red arrows create deadly thunder showers and the Phoenix Bow with its exploding ammunition.
One of the main attractions of Heretic II is the use it makes of Id's Quake IITM engine. The game is set in a huge, immersive gameworld characterised by meticulously detailed and realistically rendered architecture. Level design too is flawless with levels large, cohesive and intuitively structured with the occasional breathtaking in-game cutscene thrown in for good measure.
Other game features include multiplayer action, a drop camera, stationary look-abouts with MouseView and formidable enemy AI.
Conclusion: Heretic II is one game you just can't afford to miss.