The Operative: No One Lives Forever is a free game developed by Monolith Productions in 2000. Since then, the game has become free to download for Windows. It was widely praised at the time of its release because of its graphics and gameplay.
You play the role of Cate Archer, a “beautiful but deadly” operative whose mission is to defeat the evil organisation H.A.R.M. Unlike other first-person shooters with secret agents like Project IGI, Extraneüm or Splinter Cell Double Agent, this game doesn’t take itself very seriously and has a lot of comedic moments.
Light-hearted and unique theme
The Operative: No One Lives Forever is heavily influenced by spy movies of the 60s and TV shows like Get Smart. Your character is the stereotypical female operative, complete with a mini-skirt and perfect looks.
Besides guns, you’ll also find some ridiculous weapons and tools to help you. Explosive lipsticks, robotic poodles, and other humorous objects are there to help you. Waitresses will also tell you they’re not cleaning up the mess you make when killing the numerous foes you’ll encounter.
There’s no doubt this game looked great in 2000, but it shows its age now. Enemies are blocky, textures are ugly, and there was no widescreen support back then. Some animations also look a bit clunky.
That being said, the graphics are colourful, with many different enemies and settings. Instead of grim, dark corridors, you’ll be running around in Morocco, in snowy mountains and even in a spaceship!
Lots of gameplay features
Besides the wackiness of strange items and ridiculous settings, it’s an extremely fun game thanks to its many mechanics. Of course, the main thing here is to kill your enemies with various conventional and not-so-conventional weapons. You’ll also use parachutes, go scuba diving, and let’s not forget the trip, as mentioned earlier, to the spaceship.
This game is ideal for people who aren’t put off by dated graphics. Shooters nowadays are “serious”, so this game is a welcome change of tone and a throwback to perhaps better times.