Painkiller (2004)

Video Game  |  Action  |  9 April 2004 (USA)
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Ratings: 8.2/10 from 321 users  
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Everything was going great in Daniel Garner's life. He had a loving wife, a house, a job...until one rainy night, his attention wandered and he and his wife were killed in a car crash. ... See full summary »



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Title: Painkiller (Video Game 2004)

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Credited cast:
Daniel (voice)
Lucifer (voice)
Catherine / Eve (voice)
Asmodeus (voice)
Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Alastor (voice)
Sammael (voice)


Everything was going great in Daniel Garner's life. He had a loving wife, a house, a job...until one rainy night, his attention wandered and he and his wife were killed in a car crash. Separated from his wife, Daniel is sent to a place between Heaven and Hell, a dark, twisted landscape of the surreal, populated by demons and lost souls. For thirty years, he wandered this realm, trying to understand why he was refused admittance into Heaven. After this long time, he was offered a chance by Sammael, an angel of God. Kill the four generals of Lucifer's army, and he would be allowed into Heaven. They just didn't tell him how hard it would be. Now, the vastly outnumbered and tormented soul of Daniel Garner, an ordinary man from an ordinary life, must do what the angels cannot without starting Armageddon. He must stop the imminent attack of the Pearly gates. Heaven's got a hitman. Written by Anonymous

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Plot Keywords:

angel | demon | lucifer | hell | stake | See All (10) »


Heaven's got a hitman




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Release Date:

9 April 2004 (USA)  »

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Featured in Rise of the Video Game: Level Three (2007) See more »

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User Reviews

Surgeon General's Warning: Painkiller will significantly increase your heartrate and numb your brain!
26 September 2006 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

First-person shooters have gone through a lot of changes over the past decade. As a result, many gamers consider it a necessity for a modern first-person shooter to have a compelling storyline, realistic gameplay, and tactical combat elements. But when I go back in time to play classic shooters like Doom and Quake, and find them to be just as fun as they ever were, I realize that there's nothing wrong with releasing a throwback shooter in this age. Painkiller is such a throwback shooter. With lightning-fast action, creepy atmosphere and enemies, straightforward but very interesting and varied levels, over-the-top blood and gore, and tremendously satisfying weapons, Painkiller proves to be a perfect alternative to Mountain Dew.

You play as Daniel Garner, a regular guy who gets killed with his wife in a horrible car accident. While your wife spends her afterlife in Heaven, you're trapped in a place between Heaven and Hell called Purgatory, making you wonder why your soul isn't "pure". During a war between Heaven and Hell, you're offered to kill Satan and his minions to spend the rest of your afterlife in Heaven. If you're familiar to first-person shooters, you know what that means...lock, load, and kick some demonic butt! You'll travel through interesting and varied levels like a graveyard, cathedral, prison, military base, an orphanage filled with evil children (my favorite), and more! The enemy variety is equally excellent. Instead of the generic demons that you find in other games that take place in Hell, you get to fight against Nazi zombies, knights, escaped prisoners, prison guards with Tasers, among others. The nearly endless variety in Painkiller, along with the simple gameplay, is what keeps you addicted to the game from beginning to end.

The simple gameplay is mind-numbing, but in a good way. You don't worry about frustrating puzzles or keycard hunts; all you do is kill anything that moves while avoiding getting killed by them. Every single shot from your weapons is utterly satisfying. The primary fire and alt-fire attacks on each weapon are so completely different that you can consider each weapon "two guns in one". For instance, your shotgun's alt-fire freezes your opponents, the nailgun's alt-fire electrocutes your opponents (similar to the Lightning Gun from Quake), the stakegun comes equipped with a grenade launcher, the rocket launcher comes equipped with a chaingun, etc. Enemies drop souls that you can pick up, and every 66 souls you pick up, you turn into an invincible demon that can instantly blow his enemies up. What's more fun than that? Not much, really!

Just because Painkiller's gameplay is a throwback to the good old days doesn't mean that its graphics and sound are. On both the PC and Xbox, Painkiller delivers incredibly detailed environments with plenty of enemies on the screen at once -- all at a silky-smooth framerate. The heavy-metal soundtrack really gets your blood pumping, and the voice acting in the cutscenes is quite decent. Havok-powered physics also allow you to push objects around and destroy parts of the environment, adding a bit of realism to the battles.

Parents, if you do not like your children literally blowing enemies into pieces while watching their body parts flopping around like ragdolls, then don't allow your children to play this game. There's also a character in the cutscenes who uses her long hair to cover her breasts. But if you can handle the game's content, then you're almost guaranteed to have a blood-pumping ride. A definite 10 / 10 to this one!

4 of 5 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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