16 Reasons To Play Serious Sam HD

By Alec Meer on November 25th, 2009 at 5:23 pm.

(As revealed by Kieron’s, Jim’s and my recent run-through of the entire thing in online co-op).

This!


This!

This!

This!

This!

This!

This!

This!

This!

This!

This!

This!

This!

This!

This!

But most of all, this.

Face it, first-person shooters. You’re done. No need to bother anymore. There’s nothing else you can do.

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100 Comments »

  1. TotalBiscuit says:

    1 reason why you shouldn’t : Damn thing runs like crap at even medium settings on my PC that can play Borderlands maxed out at 2560×1600 without such much as a hickup.

    Having said that looks like it’s a problem on my end.

    • Alec Meer says:

      Yeah, fine for all of us.

    • derFeef says:

      You lie!

    • Vinraith says:

      There’s really no worse experience in PC gaming than having a bug/performance issue/whatever that only seems to affect you and no one else. Problems everyone has at least stand a reasonable chance of being patched out, or failing that fixed in a fan patch, or at a minimum you have others to commiserate with. Being the only person that CAN’T play a game is just… miserable. My sympathies TB, I hope it gets worked out.

    • qrter says:

      And Borderlands isn’t that much of a benchmark, I think, that game runs at a pretty good resolution on older systems. Its engine just scales well, which is the exception to the rule, in games these days (sadly).

  2. Roberto says:

    Agreed. Game is GORGEOUS beyond belief, so much fun. Frantic “holyshitholyshitholyshit” action, I love it.

    • SheffieldSteel says:

      I believe the phrase is “frantic action feeling” :D

    • Roberto says:

      I like my way better, because I literally yelled it several times. I suppose yours works too. I love the original, and thats basically how I’ve always described serious sam to friends.

  3. Arathain says:

    You lot been having fun, then?

  4. jsutcliffe says:

    aaaaaAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAARRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRaaaaaaaooooooooooooo (boom)

  5. Slippery_Jim says:

    It certainly makes me want to play it!

  6. Jim Rossignol says:

    The shot of Alec in a pink disco jumpsuit vs Ugh Zan is ultimate.

  7. Flowerpot Wang says:

    Boom. Looks awesome.

    Why do I always think of Cilit Bang when I see Serious Sam?

  8. Jamie says:

    This makes me cringe, everything looks horrible, some nice added graphical effects but the style of the characters is completely lost..
    Also characters standing in mid-air is very outdated, clashes with the new visuals.. it’s like using 3D models with doom..
    Think i’ll just go back to the original … WHICH IS ALREADY “HD”.

  9. Demaith says:

    An utterly and completely bland, tragically misguided and woefully archaic addition the FPS genre, just as the original Serious Sam was. Or at least that’s the impression I get from these 16 remarkably forgettable screenshots.

    Then again, as stated elsewhere I’m a big Painkiller fan so taste is perhaps not one of my strengths…

    • jsutcliffe says:

      Try saying that after you’re assaulted by exploding frogs in a room made of trampolines.

      Though I think that’s in Second Encounter. Bah.

    • Max says:

      Do not blaspheme. Serious Sam is mindless, epic, over-the-top killing to perfection. Satisfying powerups, tons of secrets, sweet weapons, etc. Painkiller was at best equal to Serious Sam in entertainment and at worst was tedious, frustrating, clunky, and poorly designed.

    • Jon says:

      ‘Painkiller fan’

      one of THOSE eh

    • Ashen says:

      Despair not, your taste is fully justified. Painkiller was (and still is) better than Serious Sam in pretty much every possible way.

    • Spacewalk says:

      Except multiplayer. And it didn’t have any clever gravity tricks either.

  10. Alec Meer says:

    Some people are no fun. Much like Painkiller!

    • Jazmeister says:

      I second this motion.

    • DD says:

      Well now i’ve played both serious sam and painkiller to death and dont really understand why painkiller is hated so much more on this site. Both are pretty mindless killing games. I will admit I had more fun in serious sam… but painkiller had a STAKEGUN for christs sake. Will someone inform me why painkiller is terrible?

    • Lack_26 says:

      Serious Sam, bright, colourful, Headless Kamikazemen. Painkiller, brown, nuff’ said.

      Ergo, Serious Sam > Painkiller

    • malkav11 says:

      Serious Sam, same level palette with minor variations in architecture and enemy/powerup placement. Painkiller: every level radically different and creative. Serious Sam: no physics. Painkiller: physics. Serious Sam: powerups of some kind. Painkiller: achievement style unlocks for customizable powerup kits.

      Painkiller > Serious Sam.

      I’m sure they both have their charms, but I could never get into Serious Sam in large part due to the saminess of the early levels (and I have no reason to believe they ever change up dramatically).

  11. Matzerath says:

    It would be hard to go back, because this is on a very short list of FPS games that I’ve actually finished.

  12. WilPal says:

    Did the original have online co-op?

  13. cullnean says:

    you dont say!

  14. wellsaidted says:

    Indeed. Engage humotron!

    In truth, Bioshock/Half-Life 2/Far Cry 2/Borderlands innovationisms matter little when confronted by A MAN IN A TANKTOP HOLDING A 12 FOOT CHAINGUN.

    Also in a disco suit.

  15. 1stGear says:

    I don’t understand how people can like Painkiller and not like Serious Sam and vice versa. Admittedly, I haven’t played the latter yet as I can’t afford it at the moment. But really, aren’t they basically the same game?

    • Wooly says:

      I agree, and love ‘em both.

      Also,
      AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA

    • Tei says:

      Painkiller seems more about hordes on small dungeons-like areas, is dark and gritty.
      Serius Sam is one of these games, like L4D, that don’t make sense in singleplayer, play best as coop, and there is a brilliant hilarious cheesy lotsa fun, game.

      Painkiller is Quake1 with a emo cut.
      Serius Sam is you, with 3 of your friends, after 8 beers.

    • Droniac says:

      They’re definitely not the same. Serious Sam is a totally over-the-top everything-goes game with awesome 8-player co-op. Painkiller is this dark, gothic-style game that tries to take itself seriously in spite of its ridiculous scenarios and lack of awesome 8-player co-op.

      You haven’t played co-op until you’ve LANned through Serious Sam with 7 friends… (or this HD version, with 15 friends!)

    • MD says:

      Personally I would love a game that played like Painkiller, with Serious Sam’s atmosphere and sense of humour.

    • -Spooky- says:

      @ Tei

      Indeed. Sunday morning around 1 am on a LAN. After few beers and lot of shitchat.. who cares about story and something else. Always fun..

    • Tei says:

      On the other hand.
      Playing Serius Sam HD alone, on your room, coop or not, sober… is not the same experience.
      It seems a game that really needs you in a particular mental state, ready to laught at silly things.

  16. Railick says:

    Playing Serious Sam reminded me a lot of playing Unreal when it first came out, you know before the Tournament got tacked onto it :P Of course Serious Sam used all those tricks in Doom and all the other FPS games cranked up to a million so it wasn’t EXACTLY the same (like monsters popping out from behind doors you didn’t know where there or suddenly appearing in a hoard BEHIND You and you don’t know they’re behind you until you’re half dead and then you turn around just into to get full dead but next time you play that level you expect it)

    • sana says:

      Unreal is hardly comparable with Serious Sam. In fact it tried not to be one of these typical gun-down-monsters-running-at-you shooters, with the Skaarj dodging your projectiles and all that other fancy AI stuff.

  17. Calabi says:

    Its just as archaic as all the other FPS’s except all the others dress theirs in shite cliche stories.

  18. Abe says:

    Just bought this from Get Games. Best 115 SEK I ever spent.

  19. mbp says:

    Is it exactly the same game just with better graphics? I replayed the orginal earlier this year and I recognise all those screenshots.

    Is the online mode compatible with the original game too? When I replayed the game I (in 2009) I was amazed to discover that the net code still works great and there were still people on line playing co-op games. Contrast this with recently released Borderlands which has absolutely awful internet support that prevented huge numbers of PC gamers from playing co-op.

    • Roberto says:

      It is exactly the same game with updated graphics, ‘Im pretty sure the netcode is incompatible with the old game simply because its a new engine. That said, it is just as awesome as the old one, but waaaay prettier.

  20. Martin Edelius says:

    Yeah, you can call me a miser all you want – Serious Sam does nothing for me.

    • Lack_26 says:

      You either have no sense of fun, or were born less than 15 years ago.

      (Or, a chance mutation in your genes has lead to the improbable situation of you not getting anything from Serious Sam).

    • Dave says:

      I don’t like it either. I understand why I am supposed to like it, but I don’t. I’d rather play TF2, UT1-3, Borderlands, HL2, Quake 1 through N, Doom 1 through… 2, Duke Nukem 3D, any Rainbow Six game before Vegas, or even whatever that horribly racist “Who wanta some Wang?” was that had nukes, than Serious Sam.

  21. Junch says:

    EPICCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCCC!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  22. DMJ says:

    Serious Sam is unashamed to be a game. During its development, nobody ever said “We can’t do that – it’s unrealistic.” I suspect, however, that people regularly said “We can’t do that – it needs more chainguns. And a rocket launcher. And make it neon green.”

  23. Dzamir says:

    It was one of few title with a good coop experience out of the box

  24. Lobotomist says:

    Got me by the eleventh screen :)

  25. amishmonster says:

    Well-played.

  26. Chiller says:

    Wow, you people actually like this more than Painkiller.
    Unconceivable!

  27. Carra says:

    Makes me long for Serious Sam Full HD – the second encounter.

  28. haircute says:

    Serious Sam COOP is serious damn business. You have me frothing at the mouth, RPS. I can’t believe I’ve not seen or played this game in eight years.

  29. Vinraith says:

    Co-op insanely batshit shooty fun with co-op? That sounds like a sure fire winner to me. If Borderlands persists in being mildly broken I may just substitute this to hold us til the price drops.

  30. Frankie The Patrician[PF] says:

    That’s conspiracy, first the store with the special sale and now you…man!

  31. Nimic says:

    This is amazing fun to play 2 or 3. That is, Serious Sam, I haven’t tried this yet. I assume it would be just as good, though.

  32. Ben Laserlove says:

    Hey, if I buy it though GetGames, do I unlock it through Steam or what?

    • Nighthood says:

      Yes. I bought it, it gives you a download link and a key, the key can be used with steam. It was surprisingly streamlined.

  33. baf says:

    What, no screenshots of the SBC Cannon? That’s the best part of Serious Sam!

    For those who haven’t played it: It fires absurdly large cannonballs — they’re about as all as Sam himself, and couldn’t possibly fit in the cannon. The cannonballs bounce off walls and are affected by gravity, and when they fall to earth, they keep on rolling until they lose momentum, crushing any monsters foolish enough to cross their path. It’s absolutely the most glorious weapon I’ve ever seen in any FPS.

  34. agoran says:

    Actually, cannonballs are way bigger than Sam :)

  35. Pl4t0 says:

    looks pretty epic :D

  36. Simon says:

    What difficulty do you all play this (or the original SS) on when in Co-Op?
    The game quickly gets boring if you have unlimited respawns and 200hp that auto-regens while an enemy does 1-3 dmg (tourist) but it equally gets boring quickl when you have 100hp, a monster does 30-50dmg and there are 900 monsters coming at you.

  37. bhlaab says:

    How do i turn off the stupid resizing/jumping around crosshair!

  38. Frosty says:

    But but but…..do they still have the weird brainhead developers as a easter egg?

  39. Buemba says:

    Man that final boss blew my mind when I played the original. Easily one of the most memorable moments I’ve had in a FPS.

  40. AlenL says:

    Hey, Biscuit… come over to the seriously.com forums, and we’ll see what we can do for you…

  41. Casimir's Blake says:

    1 reason why you really shouldn’t: 80%+ of the game is spent fending off a billion enemies in huge arenas. Oh, I agree, solo and – especially – in co-op, it’s fun for a while. But there is a distinct lack of diversity in the level design, and if they haven’t bothered to make a new campaign, I’m not going to bother giving them my money. The repetition will wear you down eventually, whereas a good Doom megaWAD such as Plutonia 2, will at least vary its levels so you’re fighting below or above enemies, in tight corners or wide spaces.

    I will say, though, that this is the ONLY reason Serious Sam still isn’t regarded as a classic FPS.

  42. jonfitt says:

    I liked the original, but was not connected at the time so didn’t play coop. It might be good to get this and get some online coop going.

  43. lio says:

    hmmm i see no reasons there ;)
    i only ever really tried a demo of serious sam… not my kind of shooter… just like farcry it’s more like holiday island than the grissly gritty kind of shooter i like… hence i always prefered painkiller by large (see, i can give a reason why i prefer painkiller^^) – i just prefer the darker setting, i guess…
    oh, and painkiller had the better set of weapons at least as far as i can judge…

  44. We Fly Spitfires says:

    Damn, dude. That looks awesome!

  45. DarkNoghri says:

    I can’t really justify buying this, as I finally got around to buying TFE and TSE just this May (ish). That said, anyone want to play TSE? I still haven’t played it.

  46. Urthman says:

    I guess it’s different when you see it in action, but those screenshots look worse than the original game to me. The lava giants, for instance, look much cooler in the original. And I don’t see any Hippy Mode here. Really, if they were going to re-do the graphics, they should have made them more cartoony, not more pseudo-realistic.

    Plus the original game runs perfectly with everything maxed out on my machine. What a fun game.

    (P.S. Reminds me of when I bought UT 2004 several years after it came out and had a machine that could run it maxed out. The first time I turned all the settings up to max and hit OK, the deep-voice announcer said, “HOLY SHIT!” — really cracked me up.)

  47. theSeekerr says:

    You have a stakegun……which takes so long to reload that you’re bored by the time you get to shoot another zombie thing.

    Serious Sam is FAST killing craziness. Painkiller is boring.

    • Kanakotka says:

      Then… use another gun? Painkiller was always faster paced and more intriguing than Serious Sam, if you ask me, though Serious Sam had an overall better engine for it’s time. Re-releases are just stupid, really. I’m not paying for a facelift of a game i already own.

  48. Kanakotka says:

    My impressions on the enlisted reasons, starting from the top;
    “Eh… : / ”
    “Eh… :| ”
    Choose one on random cointoss, repeat for 16 times.

  49. ChampionHyena says:

    SERIOUS SAM SUCKS LIKE SO BAD FOR REALS, YOU GUYS

    MY PREFERENCE FOR ANOTHER GAME BASED ON THE EXACT SAME FORMULA ILLUSTRATES THE SUPERIORITY OF MY STANDPOINT

    Sweet Mormon Jesus, kids. Is playing and thoroughly enjoying both Serious Sam and Painkiller so mortifyingly unnatural that it warps the boundaries of reality as we know it? Is it that important that you take sides in the arena of monster-clogged story-free killfests that take their biggest inspirations from a game that came out in 1993?

    I swear. Some people just wanna argue so much that they take to pointless merit-free debate like a Reeban Electrofish to water.

    • MD says:

      I haven’t read the entire thread, but from what I’ve seen most people are just having fun! Each falling at various points on the spectrum from ‘happily taking the piss’ to ‘serious but not particularly worked up’.

      PS They’re not ‘based on the exact same formula’ at anything more than a really superficial level.

      PPS The RPS guys totally started it! You should be telling them off.

    • MD says:

      On reflection, “They’re not ‘based on the exact same formula’ at anything more than a really superficial level.” is a rather terribly-worded sentence. But you know what I mean.

    • Dave says:

      (I don’t like Painkiller either. So there!)

  50. Al3xand3r says:

    I played a bit up to the first boss and I don’t think the HD upgrade is worth it at all. If you have the original game, stick with that. The extra shine makes some things look really weird if anything. The models in many cases are the same as the old models with a normal map on top, my own character had a blob shadow instead of a proper one, physics feel weird, lighting also… There are many things betraying its old school roots visually and it just looks off. Play the original or if you want better graphics then Serious Sam 2 which in my opinion looks better than this ovrerall despite not having normal maps and shinies everywhere. Its levels are more complex in architecture as is the models’ base polycount (some in Serious Sam HD look REALLY bad, they seem to be all the old models with normal maps on top) making it all look better.

    • Dodo says:

      then buy it to support the developers and get them to release serious sam 3!