My initial reaction upon starting this up and seeing the splash-art was pure giddiness, and then, "Wait, this is for free??!"
From the well made maps, to the nice graphics, and the cool scripted moments, this scenario was hard not to binge.
The atmosphere in every level is superb; probably the most immersive maps in Marathon, in my opinion. Even the simple things like the sound of a door whining open really grabs you and pulls you into the setting. The well made gun sprites really give Apotheosis X the edge over Rubicon X, which has pretty terrible and low-poly-esque sprites in my opinion.
The only issue I have, and it was something I pretty quickly got used to, is that the enemies are all a little bit too dark and colorless in appearance. It works well for the setting, but may impact gameplay and enemy recognition just a bit.
The story is pretty interesting too; about another long-forgotten Jjaro experimental species returning to glory and all that jazz. Neat. Personally I don't think the "noah" or the "angels" or whatever they are really got enough physical representation in the game. I would have liked to fight alongside or even against them a bit more, but usually when they appear they are walled off and intended to only be observed, so I didn't even fire a 'test shot' at them.
Oh! And the Pfhor Assassins! Marathon needs more fast, close-quarters enemies that really give you an adrenaline rush, and make you think twice about your next move. I loved their introduction in the original Apotheosis, and was so happy to see that big scary man go dashing across that hallway, silhouetted in the dark. That was the most memorable moment from the original.
Anyway, I loved every minute of this & I'd love to play anything else Hypersleep makes; these 25 maps are killer.
(btw I played on Major Damage, but will replay on Total Carnage eventually)
On level 8 of 24 now, and so far these maps are fairly easily navigated and also decently detailed. Not much is new, except some changes to a couple weapons and a new boss-like enemy. I am definitely going to enjoy the several hours of new content! (I don't actually know when these maps were made, but they are new to me)
Update: I got stuck on the map "endymion" (lvl 9) and had to cheat myself an uplink chip. Then, on the next map, "fission for trouble" (lvl 11; i guess i missed another exit from 9), I have an uplink chip given to me but can't find the "hidden" input slot. ????
Also, I hate vacuum levels.