Remember when games were made by people who loved them and put extreme effort into making them to the absolute best of their ability? Probably not. Hexen: Beyond Heretic is easily up there with the greatest of all time. Easily. Everytime I play this I cannot fathom how once such a great industry, overflowing with talent turned into the bland, dumbed-down, soulless mess it is today. We've come down from seeing hundreds of great games and a handful of masterpieces yearly to seeing maybe 1 or 2 semi decent games every 4 years if we're lucky!
Hexen, while essentially a first person action fantasy game, takes a lot of influence from RPG games of that era, offering expansive exploration that see's you backtrack through earlier stages of the game to access areas previously unavailable until aquiring a key from a later part in the game. The level design is jaw droppingly amazing, some of the best ever, consisting of sprawling non-linear layouts which are almost psychotically well thought out. There are traps, puzzles scattered through-out the levels as well as hordes of blood thirsty minions to hack into pieces.
The setting is very similar to that of Heretic and the gameplay to an extent. There are different classes to choose from, each with their own strengths and weaknesses and each with their own diverse weapons and spells, the classes consist of;
The Fighter - Melee focused character with weapons more suited for striking range.
The Cleric - Which is an all rounder class, mixing the ability to fight with the ability to cast spells.
The Mage - Which is self explanatory, the mage starts off weak, with weak spells that are suited for ranged attacks until he becomes a badass later in the game with spells that allow him to fly.
Hexen is truly a masterpiece, a work of art, a crowning achievement in gaming, if you haven't played it already I suggest you do so immediately and if you have played it I suggest you play it again. Put down your bland whack-a-mole/military shooters and play a real game!