Serious Sam: The First Encounter (In The Flesh) Croteam / Gathering of Developers 2001

Serious Sam is based on a self-developed engine from Croteam (in Croatia) and is focused on fast loading weapons and tough & fast player reactions. The creative developer team had in mind to release a traditional DOOM kind of shooter. The background story is an alien invasion of Earth. The Earth is nearly beaten but one fighter proved himself in battle, and is called Sam -Serious Sam-. He is sent back to Egyptian times to save the world but he arrives too late and the aliens and their alliance are there already. Headless attacking, screaming *lol* enemies turn on Sam. Also there's little, one-eyed aliens and big scorpion-like aliens. They implemented a good graphics engine which is quite fast. Animation of the enemies is worked out well with an alternating linear level design with only a few repetitions. In the beginning of the game, Sam is joking around sometimes and reminds me of Duke Nukem and is what i liked (I played that one again too). But after playing 1/3 of the game, it seems the developers ran out of ideas. Although the rooms differ, they're basically big square areas (sometimes with open places, sometimes filled with buildings). On the other hand you are entering some empty room or level and just do something unimportant and suddenly the enemies will attack from all sides. What I liked in Doom was the firing into a new building which causes enemies to search for you. This kind of detail is not implemented here. The enemies are teleported to all sides and attack which got boring after a while. Getting some help from experienced designers would have made more out of it. At the end of the game, more stronger enemies are present and also huge end bosses which are impressive. Serious Sam, although it's a pure shooter, is fun to play even with weaknesses in its design. I personally favor Kiss Psycho Circus but will play Serious Sam later on in co-op mode.

See also: #Serious Sam Gold Edition, #Serious Sam HD: The First Encounter, #Serious Sam Classics: Revolution, #Serious Sam VR: The First Encounter

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Final Demo ~83MB ( @
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Public Test 1 Demo ~46MB (@ Official Site) Public Test 2 Demo ~72MB ( @ FilePlanet)
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Full Demo ~140MB / Music Addon ~75MB / v1.05 Update ~5MB (upped by keropi)
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Fan-Made Maps
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ISO Demo ~465MB (upped by Scaryfun)
Video Reviews
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included in Serious Sam 3 BFE: Deluxe Edition DVD ISO Demo 3.69GB (uploaded by _Antithesis_)
Original Alpha Version 127MB (uploaded by Delacroix)

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