I think it's a great game. Wonderful atmosphere with a nice setting. Apparently, I'm a huge wimp, though. I thought it was pretty scary.
Also going to have to agree with people on least giving the Russian voice overs a try.
Yeah, I might do another playthrough with Russian voices and a more difficult setting. Though to be fair, it's pretty easy to mask mediocre (not terrible, but mediocre) voice acting when you don't speak the language : P
I like the setting and the atmosphere of the game but there are few things that keep putting me off it.
First of all it's heavy as hell to run, with no graphical fidelity to back up the enormous requirements to run it smoothly on max settings with HD resolutions. Expesially so since the levels are very small to begin with so there isn't much to load up.
Which brings up my second gripe, levels are small. Way too many loading screens keep popping up as I play on, which is one of the remnants of a game designed to run on lacking memory capacity of a console.
Then of course the other console centric stuff like small FoV and mouse acceleration, but putting past those it's one of the "poorer" console ports I'd still recommend playing just because the rest of the game carries itself quite well.
Modern gaming apologist: I once tasted diarrhea so shit is fine.
"I envy Obama, because he can spy on his own people and get away with it." - Putin
You also want to enable vsync. Apparently the game prepares everything as though you'll be using 3D displays, which means when you aren't it's creating double the frames and then dropping what isn't used... vsync apparently forces this to be disabled, which results in a pretty huge net gain for framerates.
By the way, the game doesn't get harder on ranger difficulties... it gets easier. You're still starved for ammo on regular hardcore, but because it's not being designed to be "everyone dies in one good hit", monsters still take 50 bullets to bring down. On ranger? One headshot from the revolver puts them down. Lack of crosshairs is irrelevant since shotguns aren't precision weapons to begin with and you'd be using ironsights for everything else, anyway.
The only thing I've noticed that's harder on ranger than regular is knifing people in the back, and there's really only a couple of places where that's even relevant. Everywhere else you can sneak by without fighting or just go in guns blazing.