Half-Life 2 Episode two is another quality product released from Valve. The product spews of fine tuning and extensive care and the carefully crafted environments really show. Valve stays true to the first person "discovery" narrative where the hero, Gordon Freeman, is just as clueless as the player but through battling his way through White Forest, he discovers more and more about the Combine force that invaded earth.
Immersion in the game is a key part of the story and Episode Two does not dissapoint. Characters are well scripted and animated making the game play out like an interactive movie. Environments and enemy interaction are well thought out and further add to the immersion. The graphics are not on par to other graphical powerhouses like Crysis and Unreal Tournament 3 but it still manages to look beautiful and doesn't require a monstrously powerful computer to run it.
Gameplay remains the same as the previous two iterations of Half-Life 2 with the only addition of a new enemy. The action is broken up by narrative and puzzles meaning the game has great story-like pacing but this same formula was used in the previous iterations of Half-Life 2 and for players who played through the other two will be treated to the almost the same kinds of action.
Half-Life 2: Episode Two is great for the hardcore Half-Life fan who has to know what happens to our hero but I would suggest against it for someone who is partially indifferent to it. While you may be blown away by the immersive narrative, the gameplay, although good, is the weakest point of the game.