Games I Own: No One Lives Forever

Written by Joe Martin

February 11, 2009 | 09:24

Tags: #games-i-own #no-one-lives-forever

Companies: #monolith

Ah, No One Lives Forever. Definitely one of my favourite games ever and it has been ever since I played the singleplayer demo ages ago. The demo was three full levels long, which I remember thinking was unprecedentedly lengthy at the time.

Mostly though, I remember being wowed by one level in particular that takes place on a pilotless passenger plane, which you have to jump out of without a parachute. The aim of the next level is to grab a ‘chute before your freefall comes to an abrupt end.

Essentially Austin Powers: The Game, Monolith’s super-spy extravaganza is set in the middle of the sixties and casts players as Cate Archer – the only female operative in the secret Unity organisation. Also, after a string of assassinations from a group known only as HARM, the only operative actually left alive.

What makes NOLF such a great game, other than its length, is the sheer irreverence that it treats itself with. Everything is a stereotyped caricature of itself, from the leather cat-suited Cate, right through to the cycloptic Russian assassin, Volkov.

Games I Own: No One Lives Forever

To dismiss No One Lives Forever as nought but a humorous shooter though is to do it a great disservice, in my opinion. There’s so much more to the game than that.
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For one, the game steadily allows players to expand their arsenal and improve their skills. You can collect bonuses for completing missions in certain ways, find extra weapons to carry over into the next level and search for intelligence about your enemies. Playing stealthily you can even sneak up on your enemies and listen to some of the funniest in-game conversations you’ll ever hear.

On one of the early levels in fact you can even open up a totally new area if you can get to it undetected, going deep into a secret Berlin-based laboratory to find their mystery project – a cloned goat that’s three stories tall.

Games I Own: No One Lives Forever

No One Lives Forever consistently refuses to pin itself down to one play style too, with infiltration levels and interrogations popping up later as you try to uncover more and more information about your enemies and their plot to...take over the world!

No One Lives Forever has everything that you’d see in a good spy movie. There are great gadgets, like the perfume knock-out gasses, dozens of weapons with multiple attachments and ammo types. There’s some fantastic level design too, with Cate journeying through foreign cities, into space and deep down into the centre of the earth. There are big explosions, sexy ladies with open-neck tops and hundreds of evil henchmen in shellsuits for you to mow down.

If you’ve not played it and you even suspect that you might like it then you owe it to yourself to play it. You can buy it in most places for less than £5 now. It’s also worth mentioning that NOLF features my favourite gun from any game ever, the Shepherd’s P38. It just feels great to use.

Random fact: There are different skill bonuses available in the game for completing missions in different ways. One bonus that I’ve never figured out the benefit of though is the Reputation Bonus, which you get if you give nice replies all the way through a mission briefing. If you think you know then please tell me.

Number of Times Completed: Countless times – at least ten.

Joe, Out.
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