Star Trek: Elite Force II is the visually impressive but otherwise rather disappointing follow-up to the incredible Star Trek: Voyager - Elite Force. It picks up for the prologue right at the end of season seven of Voyager during the events of the series finale, Endgame, and from there, jumps two years ahead. Despite dropping "Voyager" from the title, it's a true sequel and follows the same characters from the first game (well, those who made it out of the Delta Quadrant alive, anyway).
After an unwanted stint as a Starfleet Academy instructor, Alexander Munro (you don't have the ability to play as Alexandria Munro this time) is recruited by Captain Picard to join the crew of the USS Enterprise-E and start up a Hazard Team there. From there, you stumble onto a plot to create bioweapons that can destroy whole empires and, of course, must work with your team to stop it through both Rambo-esque overt assaults as well as Bond-esque covert missions. On paper, this game is an improvement over the original in every way. Unfortunately, the execution falls a little bit short.
The first thing you'll notice is how dramatically improved the graphics are. It's still nearly 20 years old, but it holds up well provided that you tweak the game files to force a 1920x1080 resolution (or higher if you prefer; I've read that it can go up to 1440p and still work well, but my monitor is 1080p, so that's what I forced). The array of weapons is pretty awesome, as well, with most being based on weapons from the first game but a couple being genuinely interesting new weapons. It's also cool to see more alien races to fight and environments in which to battle. Of course, the highlight of the game is the voice acting of the legendary and divine Sir Patrick Stewart as he reprises his immortal role as Captain Jean-luc Picard.
With everything the game has going for it, then, it's disappointing that it just doesn't perform as well as once might hope. The story is good, and it definitely feels like Star Trek, but it feels like Star Trek: Insurrection whereas the previous game felt like Star Trek: First Contact; it's good, but it's not great. Likewise, the combat just doesn't feel quite as fun. Weapons are nicer, and environments are more diverse, but it just doesn't feel as good, and I have no idea why. Both games used the Quake III engine, although Elite Force II did use some tweaks to the engine. I seem to be in the majority for that opinion, too, as even years after the release of Elite Force II, the first Elite Force was always far more popular online for both its single player and its multiplayer.
Star Trek: Elite Force II is a good Star Trek game and a good shooter, but it fails to live up to the standard set by its predecessor. It's definitely a lot of fun, and I thoroughly enjoyed my seven or eight hours with the game, but it just doesn't have that special feel to it that the first game did. It looks way better, has much better and more challenging boss battles, and should be the superior game, but it's just not quite as fun. Still, though, it's absolutely worth the $10 asking price on GOG, and I have absolutely no problem recommending it to Star Trek fans and fans of old school FPS alike.
My Rating - 3 Neps
I'm a teacher.
And I like to play video games. I like to collect video games. I like to talk about video games, and I like to write about video games. During the day, I teach high school history; during the night, I spend my spare time gaming. Then I write about it.