Archive for Saturn Reviews

REVIEW: Guardian Heroes

Months ago, I covered Golden Axe: The Revenge of Death Adder. I’ve since  been replaying other beat ’em up favorites—(un)coincidentally all fantasy themed: Dungeons & Dragons: Tower of Doom/Shadow Over Mystara, King of the Dragons, Three Dirty Dwarves, and Guardian Heroes (reason #1 I bought a Saturn). Developer Treasure are fan-favorites for their inventive games (my opinion: gimmicky memorizers). Thankfully Guardian Heroes eschews typical Treasure tropes (over-frequent bosses, mini-games), even if the sequel Advance Guardian Heroes (GBA) doesn’t…but that’s another wretched story.

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REVIEW: Magic Knight Rayearth

Wanda and I loved watched the Magic Knight Rayearth anime when were young (probably not young enough), and she’s read the manga. It’s stupid, charming magical girl nonsense, but I suspect (after seeing every episode of the Sailor Moon live action series) I have a high tolerance for such garbage. MKR for Sega Saturn is notable as the last US Saturn game, and for being published by Working Designs. How is it? Like most mediocre games that Working Designs arbitrarily releases (Albert Odyssey, Shining Wisdom), just okay.

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REVIEW: Virtual Hydlide

I’m America’s biggest Hydlide fan. Hydlide is old-school fun and Super Hydlide (Hydlide 3) is uniquely enjoyable. While Virtual Hydlide is rough, it’s not like the haters would have you believe. As an approximate remake of Hydlide, Virtual Hydlide was dated even in 1995 and there’s no excuse for the (much discussed) sluggish framerate. Still, it’s not the 1/10 game many claim—I say at least a 4.

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REVIEW: Braindead 13

NOTE: Just for fun, the Japanese box art is shown, but Braindead 13 came out in America (and is American).

Braindead 13 is an interactive cartoon (ala Dragons Lair) released on about every system (including CD-i, 3DO, and Jaguar), and another “game” that tries the definition of the word. While the premise is fun (sassy repairman escaping monster-filled mansion) and the animation is plentiful, the play is trail and error tedium. With infinite lives, prepare for 1001 deaths.

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REVIEW: Double Switch


Double Switch is the spiritual successor to Digital Pictures’ other (sexier) FMV game, Night Trap. Like most FMV games, Double Switch is a good idea poorly executed. You and a rather sassy kid are trapped in a mansion/apartment building, besieged by mobsters. Armed with a surveillance system and rooms full of traps, you must protect the residents by dropping the thugs into pits, swinging things into them, etc. Looking at the game’s components singly, it all seems pretty cool: Using the surveillance system is novel. The mansion is large and full of sarcophagi, stone statues, and other weird décor. The characters are spunky, including a cute girl reporter, an old woman dressed in slinky Egyptian pajamas, and a band that you can watch rock out whenever you want. And there are lots of scenes to see, which add up, more or less, to a fun conspiracy-type plot about an Egyptian curse.

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