Let's look at my favourite game, Half-Life
, using these criteria:
1. Minecart level? NO, but see #14.
2. Ice level? YES - a walk-in freezer you must traverse quickly while solving a jumping puzzle.
3. Egyptian level? NO.
4. Underwater level? YES, many, with big nasty alien fish.
5. Forced scrolling level? NO, but this scenario occurs in a few puzzles.
6. Inconsistent water? NO.
7. Offscreen healing? NO - dead is dead, sucka.
8. Too late, dead end? NO.
9. Weapons disappear? NO (thank God!)
10. Dark/Light Worlds? SORT OF. Some very dark & scary levels, others out in the desert sun (still scary).
11. Food heals? YES - drink cans of soda for 1 health each!
12. Mimic chests? YES. Sure, I'll buy that headcrabs = mimic chests.
13. Deadly animals? YES, oh yes... Houndeyes and headcrabs for example.
14. Train level? YES - A loooong train level (ON A RAIL), with many stops (and not for ice cream either!).
15. Red key/red door? NO - a little more subtle than that. You need Barney to open some doors.
16. One-off item/power? NO.
17. King impersonated? NO.
18. Guns/Bare hands? NO, though the crowbar can be more useful than the Glock in the first level.
It has to be mentioned (SPOILER ALERT) that although the "official" Boss is defeatable by the player, there's an additional "Boss" at the very end who CANNOT be handed his own ass. Too bad, because by then you really want to.
Score: 6.5/16. I think Half-Life passes the test as a relatively non-cliched game.