Saturday, 1 February 2003

Archive Review: The Mummy Returns

I have developed somewhat of an equation for you all to contemplate over. Here it is:
(Please Note: When posted on the original gamesreview site, this review featured drop down selection boxes which are not supported by this blog. I have included every "option" where a box existed. - admin)

(PS2 review)

Crap Movie based solely on CGI work(CM) + Crap Sequel based on more CGI work(CS) = really, really, shoddy computer game(CG). CM + CS = CG

The Mummy Returns isn't a game; its the sum of my hypothetical mathematics.

Rick O'Connell, you suck!

This game deserves the interactive treatment.

When working on The Mummy Returns Universal Studios, the developers, obviously saw Tomb Raider and thought: "Yes that's it! Let's try to achieve this style". The game is very much like your typical third person style quest game, with puzzles, enemy foes, key searching, and good old platform jumping action. The problem here is that the developers forgot to actually add interest. The game is so boring I looked back on my old maths lessons with an insanely eccentric teacher, Mr. Penna, dribbling over the blackboard, with delight. Almost as soon as I played this game I felt the urge to Scream. Slit my wrists via the CD case corners. Launch a one man mission against Universal Studios. Join the dark side. The menu screen felt painful to scroll around and then came character select.

Here we see the choice between Rick O'Connell; an Indiana Jones wannabe without the whip, and Imhotep (an Egyptian geezer with Tommy Cooper hat). I have not been Suicidal Drugged Kidnapped Drinking Chewing my arms recently so the movie, The Mummy Returns, past me by and therefore I have no idea of plot or story but quite frankly it could be the best story ever and I wouldn't care - the game Shovels Dung. "Is" Elvis Presley on a bad day. Sucks. Is total trash. "!*%$!**"

So you play a lame character or a Tommy Cooper imposter...great! Just hop on into the first level and maybe the gameplay will be good enough to excuse the story, characters, movie, and general concept between the franchise. Unfortunately the gameplay is so weak in The Mummy Returns that you begin to wonder if Universal Studios was actually momentarily invaded by a bunch of Survivor: The Interactive Game players Fans of The Crow Retarded Freaks with eye patches Evil henchmen from Sweden Mutated Zebras on crack where they made this game and published it just before the police arrived.

The graphics are bad, but not in the same league as The Crow or Survivor, and the fighting and gun fights are some of the most terrible ever licensed. Whatever Rick does looks bad. Rick on a whole is just destined to a life of lameness. It is as if his character has been cursed. When he fires a gun it looks more like he is Ejecting an orange liquid. Playing with matches. Violating a squirrel. A twat. When he launches a punch or kick, or swings his sword, it actually resembles The Crow. Mr. Blobby does Vegas. An Arabian ass workout. Crap.

You know a game's in trouble when the only good thing you can think of to say about the combat is the fact that you can still carry a torch while fighting. You can't use it for any purpose though, it just lights up the dingy locations. Pure Junk. Drivel. Tripe. And utter crap!

The camera angles mock you as they deliberately position in ways that not only make seeing the fights impossible but an experiment in using the force. Can't see the fight? Neither could Luke Skywalker in A New Hope. Deal with it!

Lets get to the real Lemon. Cheekiness. Slap'n'tickle. Meat and bones. This game incorporates the "Retard" button - a single button that performs nearly all of the platform movements like climbing, jumping, etc. While this button scheme is a blessing for those players out there who have accidentally gotten four of the five digits on their right hand lopped off in a tragic mishap, it is a nightmare of frustration for those of us who still possess five fingers and an opposable thumb. Not only does it place massive limitations on what your character can actually do, it means that you must accomplish jumps over deadly traps with a button which will act as a combat "block" until you are at the very edge of something jump-able, in which case it will change to a "jump" button at the very last moment. This sort of thing will cause you to die a lot in the same place, and that's never a good thing.

There is nothing good to say here. The enemy A.I is also so weak that you may as well be up against A contorted monkey. Enemies from The Crow. Air. A bunch of schoolgirls. Sean E after a few pints. . Be prepared to face foes that will run straight past you, and keep on going, or stand to confront you only to pause in motionless parody as you do your "Rick O'Connell thing".

This game also boasts poor voice acting from non-movie types who couldn't act if Universal Studios had paid them. Oh, they had! Steer clear of Mummies, especially ones that are apparently "Returning". If you rent this, you are a fool, if you actually buy it, just get out and close the door behind you.



At least your not in a Japanese POW camp.


Where to start.... pants A.I, crap gameplay, rubbish control, hideous graphics/sound, boring, short.


I didn't want to offend The Crow and give this game 0.0

by The Critical Alien
© 2003

Archive Review: Survivor: the interactive game

(Please Note: When posted on the original gamesreview site, this review featured drop down selection boxes which are not supported by this blog. I have included every "option" where a box existed. - admin)

(PC review)

Welcome to Survivor: The Interactive Review! The only review you'll ever read that's actually more fun than the game itself! Test your vocabulary as you customize an actual review! Cringe in fear as we tell our frightening tale! Wonder what the hell is wrong with the creators of this game! Simply choose your favorite words and interact away!

"The tribe has spoken. Your are the weakest link. Goodbye!"

The magical World of Survivor

All right ladies, this is it. We've bashed Enter the Matrix, owned Tao Feng, brutally tackled The Crow, and positively eaten The Mummy Returns, but that era is over. There's a new load of horse dog cat fish monkey baby monkey crap in town, one so bad that it caused me and the alien to become violently ill with explosive diarrhea. mysterious yellow discharges. The Arabian Flu. zombie brain rot. an uncontrollable nose bleed. Stand back, everyone - Survivor: The Interactive Game is here!

I imagine that the majority of you out there know the basic premise of the Survivor television show. A bunch of stereotypically dumb Americans are dropped on a sheltered ranch, preserve, or lush tropical island in the "middle of nowhere" where they must survive. Week after week, they face challenges to win supplies or immunity from exile. Every episode, some poor loser schmuck sap dolt retard marooon is kicked off the show with the last remaining member claiming the million dollar prize.

I've endured most of the first season and the entire second season of the show and can attest that Survivor: The Interactive Game is nowhere near as interesting. In fact, you could probably sleep on broken glass eat your own liver configure your AOL account watch your parents 'do it' play The Crow and have more fun. Most notable on this game's long list of problems is the fact that YOU CANNOT PLAY IT. Just get ready to yell "Argh!" "Doh!" "Craaaaap!" "!@#$%#$" "Flimshaw!" at the top of your lungs because this is all you're going to see. That's right, the game doesn't even work. There is a patch to fix this error and get the game started, but as of this writing, I have yet to get past day 2 1 0 -4? without crashing out to the desktop. While this offense certainly warrants a toss into the garbage toilet sewer paper shredder Sun , it definitely isn't the only thing that makes Survivor the absolute worst game of all time.

You'll choose from one of the 32 cast members from the original Pulau Tiga or Outback shows. You can also make a custom character that is actually not customizable. There are a few stats to tweak, but they really don't make a difference in the game at all. Pure crap. dung. poop. number 2.

Each "episode" (there are between 3 and 13) consists of 5 stages: 2 Survival Periods, 2 Challenges, and the infamous Tribal Council. The Survival periods are about as much fun as watching paint dry throbbing hemorrhoids staring at air being buried alive , since you don't do ANYTHING. You don't move your character - he she it just wanders around aimlessly trying to get some task done, like fishing, which actually looks more like urinating into the river. You don't explore at all and you definitely don't do anything that might be mistaken as 'fun.'

The purpose here is to build alliances with other players through multiple choice conversions that make no sense whatsoever. Just click on another aimlessly wandering person and start chatting. Here's a snippet of a conversation between Debb and I:

Debb: Don't you trust me?
Me: I must be losing my mind.
Debb: You must have got a bad coconut.
Me: That's a good one.
Debb: I don't trust you.
Me: Whatever.
Debb: I've got work to do.
Me: Let's take one thing at a time.
Debb: What have you heard?
Me: Don't you trust me?
Debb: What's bothering you?
Me: What do you think?
Debb: I wonder what's going on at home.

I'm sorry, but I don't know how to speak "Stupid." "Dumb." "Monkey." "Your Crazy Moon Language." "Rain Man."

Next is the Challenge phase, where you'll compete in some of the sorriest excuses for mini-games known to gamer. Some games involve trivia contests that only the biggest Survivor nerd would have even a vague shot at (ie. For how many hours did Keith stand on the log?). Others involve first-person shooter aspects where you are pushed down a fixed rail with only limited ability to aim. You might want to look back behind you in order to take a shot at a target you might have missed, but you can't shoot any direction other than forward. There is also some sort of puzzle that takes about 3 seconds to solve.

What idiot f***ing idiot dumb f***ing idiot thought this would be fun? The worst part about it is that there are more lame games! Thank god I was never able to play them due to the best crash bug in the world.

If you actually manage to keep playing, you'll eventually make it to Tribal Council where you'll vote someone off. Aha! Take that, you stupid computer player! But get voted off by a bunch of computer controlled players and you might as well give yourself a wedgie. swirlie. tittie twister. wet willie. nose job. A picture is worth a thousand words - or just three specific ones.

Don't forget that during the course of your survival sickening meaningless experience, you'll be looking at what might be the worst graphics to hit the PC gaming scene since they invented color monitors. It's even more visually offensive than The Crow. any Army Men game. Michael Jackson. Thick, crusty edges are everywhere, there's absolutely no collision detection and the textures are, well, nonexistent. For some reason, sections of the ground have a tendency to suddenly disappear. The sky looks like a 2-year old's finger paintings melted crayons something your cat coughed up and the trees look like grass stains on a pair of old jeans. Even the video footage taken from the actual show is crappy. I've seen better looking things in the dumpster. under the couch. in the litterbox. In my mouth.

The audio isn't any better. The small bits of voice acting in the game amount to basic tribal grunts that signify anger or happiness. The rushing of the river sounds like a guy sitting in his bathtub playing with his rubber duckie soap-on-a-rope toy boat Survivor game disc . Even the "tribal beats" are enough to make a hedonist suicidal.

Just in case you were interested, there's also some sort of multiplayer mode. I'd love to tell you more about it, but since the game crashes more than a bumper car Giants: Citizen Kabuto Evel Knievel , I could never get it going.

Do not, I repeat, DO NOT under any circumstance give this game as a gift to anyone you would like to stay on good terms with. Not even die hard Survivor fans could possibly enjoy this game. Instead, send a copy to your worst enemy. Infogrames. They'll never recover from this horrible disease. How did the same company that published the excellent Civilization III give this stinker the seal of approval?

If you actually bought the game for yourself, return it. I don't care that you opened it already - demand your money back. Just tell the store manager the box contained false advertising. it made you violently ill. It started stinking up the house. It attacked you. to try playing it.

Seeing as how this game is the worst thing I have personally ever seen, it deserves special grading treatment. No dear reader, a "0 out of 10" is much too high for a debacle such as this. Instead, this game gets a bitch slap and the very first "-0.0 out of 10'.

So there you have it. Indisputable evidence that anything can become a game, but only something really special can invent a new grade. Do not, under any circumstances attempt to play Survivor: The Interactive Game. You definitely won't survive. smile. ever laugh again.

Vote me off, please!



A bug that won't let you play!


Worst game ever made, shocking graphics, shocking mini-games, just crap!


Need a good Frisbee?

by Joey T 2003

Archive Review: Battlefield 1942

(PC review)

Somebody once said, "war is hell". Well, sure, but give Battlefield 1942 a spin and your soon be doubting such words. War has never been so much fun, and I say that with my tongue firmly in my cheek.

Battlefield 1942 is an online FPS set in 1942, surprisingly. It has a small offline element, where you fight bots, which is fun but should really be seen as a form of "training" for the real thing, online play against other human beings. My first reaction to the battlefield was that of complete awe. The battles are so large scale! Tanks clash against tanks, planes swoop overhead, boats glide across the ocean and infantry infest the large maps terrain. The idea is to capture land and hold it. Each map has a set of flags that represent a checkpoint that must be taken over by either side. As each side gains flags their"ticket" points go up and down. If one side holds 5 out of 6 flags, the other side will lose it's ticket points fast. Once it hits 0 that team loses. These points represent the amount of reinforcements available for that team... the more flags you hold, the more you can keep re-spawning players and vehicles. This system really does create some great battles. One of my funniest experiences of this game was on the Omaha beach map once as allied. It was a 64 player server and the map started up, off us allies went on our landing craft to hit the beach whilst the axis lined up in their bunkers ready to chew us up. A nameless player kept insisting that some axis artillery was hitting the battleship our landing craft and us spawn from but we ignored him. We hit the beach, and were mown down by machine gun fire and snipers. We failed to take the beach head flag. But our battleship suddenly then blew up... it had been hit so much from the axis side it sunk! We could no longer spawn since we had no spawn point! Our boat had gone, the axis held the beach... all we could do was watch the axis team run down to the beach and dance around in joy as we pondered about in ghost mode. It was all over yet the map did not end... everyone got confused then we realised one allied player remained on the battlefield in the only remaining landing craft but he was a joker and had gone right to the edge of the map, way beyond the axis players draw distance, and was camping there, knowing everyone on the server relied on him to die. He stayed put smugly, and after 20 minutes he had managed to empty an entire 64 player server on a busy night!


The first thing you do in bf194 is select your side, axis or allied. Both sides have realistically depicted weaponry and vehicles such as the allied Sherman tank and the axis Panzer mk iv. You won't be finding any arcade style big guns here - that's not to say there are no "big" guns! In this game you can man fixed weapons such as artillery pieces on land and even the huge front guns of a battleship. This is not to mention the tanks, planes, and other vehicles you can drive. Maybe you would prefer to just stick to your feet as an infantryman, fine. You get to chose between 5 pre-defined classes each with their own weapon set. These are quite typical in their style, the assualt class with its light maching gun, the sniper with sniper rifle, your medic class, anti-tank class, and my favourite, the engineer. What makes the engineer so fun is the ability to lay mines and TNT as well as being able to repair vehicles. Setting a line of mines along a road along with a stick of dynamite only to then see a player looking cool in his German Tiger Tank is beyond satisfying. Along comes the tiger... bang! Fireworks, you detonate your bomb, the mines react and all blow up, you have yourself one very dead tank crew. You will find yourself fighting in so many varied battles in this game, from the beaches of Omaha on D - Day, to the slopes and ridges of Iwo Jima in the Pacific. Almost every major World War 2 battle is in this game, and EA are still bringing out new maps with every patch!

There is no blood in bf194, and the damage modelling is not particularly realistic. It is not horribly unreal though, it is aimed at being fun, and in my view works very well at capturing the realism without seeming like some sort of simulation. 3-4 shots will kill, and a headshot will kill in one hit, so sniping is very HS orientated and is generally alot harder than in most games but once you get good sniping really pays off in this game.

Battles can consist of anything up to 64 players! And EA really have gone out of their way to get this game fantastic server support. Virtually every server is a dedicated official EA one, hosting 64 player battles. The in-game browser is pretty neat with a good filter system and the ability to add favourites (something many games forget). You really don't need to use Gamespy or the All-seeing eye here, it's that good. The other factor here is that of the old chestnut, lag, and I can tell you now that this game has some of the best netcode I have ever seen. Even on a 64 player server the average ping will be 15-50 for most players and lag really never seems to be an issue on the official EA servers. This really is a marvellous achievement, brilliant server support alongside a game with an exceptional netcode which gets better with every patch!

Graphics and Sound

Battlefield 1942 uses the Refractor 2 graphics engine in order to create large and detailed maps. This engine is very nice indeed. I find the colour of the terrain in this game very lush and rich, more so than most. Player models are very detailed, right down to their facial reactions to the situation. Player models will look frightened in big gunfights and smile with delight after getting a kill, it is truly impressive. Textures themselves are not the most detailed out there but look good enough. The palm trees sway in the wind, the sun light glitters down across the oceans... there is nothing wrong with the graphics in this game.

Sound is often taken for granted in games. As long as people can hear the game they are happy, well not me! I am just as concerned over sound in games as I am over it's visuals. I have a 5.1 speaker set up and trust me, once you played games in 5.1 or 6.1 there is no turning back, it's just too damn good. Bf1942 has good sound, the music is cheesy and I turned it off quickly, but the sound effects themselves are of high quality. Explosions go off in the distance and a few seconds later you hear the delayed "pop" of them as the sound reaches you. The ambient sounds really create an atmosphere. You become tense as you hear the faintest of sounds... could that have been an incoming aircraft I just heard? The sound does have issues though, you get a horrible "crackle" effect sometimes which sounds terrible and happens randomly. This tends to link with people using more than two speakers, but it is an annoyance that does not happen for me in other games.


At the end of the day the only thing that truly matters when it comes to a game is it's gameplay. Does it play well? In the case of Battlefield 1942 I would say yes it plays well. It plays so damn well you could compare it to a really enthusiastic penguin who wants to fly and eventually builds a glider. It has issues, one being the fact that it is a demanding game and requires a high spec pc to run well, and the fact remains that it is hardly a game of any depth. But so what? It's fun, it's playable, that's the main thing. It could do with more weapons for sure, and blood would be nice, although there are some blood mods available out there free for download which are pretty good. The modding community for this game is alive and already we have seen some nice mods - the most popular being Desert Combat: US Army versus Iraq in modern setting with modern equiptment/vehicles. They are a laugh, but i prefer the world war 2 setting myself.

Battlefield 1942 is not for everyone. It is a FPS based on taking checkpoints, holding ground, and not based on a team deathmatch setting. This may not appeal to some since it does mean that the emphasis is on the checkpoints, or flags, and not just all out battle. For me, this is a good thing. It means that teams must act as a group and use teamwork becuase if they don't and instead all rush to get the kills the enemy will grab the flags and win quickly.

I have gripes with the game such as the way standard hand grenades seem to do so much damage to tanks when they should do very little, but these are minor. Battlefield 1942 is a fine game worthy of merit. It is not only a playable game, it's a technological achievement.



Huge battles, great graphics, fun, addictive, easy to pick up


Requires a high system spec, could do with more weapons to select from, tanks seem too weak for what they are.


Great game: not for everyone.

by The Critical Alien
© 2003

Archive Review: Batman: Dark Tomorrow

(Please Note: When posted on the original gamesreview site, this review featured drop down selection boxes which are not supported by this blog. I have included every "option" where a box existed. - admin)

(Gamecube review)

The caped crusader strikes again!

( Warning: This review contains an obscene amount of exclamation marks(!) )

I just need to clear something up before we get rolling. In a fight between the most well known of crime fighters out there, Batman Superman Spiderman The Red Raven Captain America would totally win. Just needed to clear that up.

Not the game, but better!

Batman: Dark Tomorrow is yet another game based on the popular character. Virtually every Batman game to date on any platform has been poor. So, does Batman: Dark Tomorrow take advantage of the next-gen console and finally give Batman a worthy product? Nope.

Batman, the man that just won't die, despite being killed a few times, is back! I can here the music, you know from the 60's show, yes its getting louder.... "BATMAN!" Yey, I love that bit.

(This is Mojo's first review: First impression - Simply Legendary! I'm speechless. Crap, he sucks! Give him a moment... Not sure yet. )

Batman: Vengeance was the first recent Batman game to improve the trend in this sector. It was quite average, but this was a step up from any other. So this new title simply drags the franchise right back down and the ironic thing is, it does it with "vengeance". Batman: Dark Tomorrow even rivals the 2001 N64 shocker, Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker, as being the "worst" Batman game of all time.

Arkham Asylum, the place our hero normally ends up dumping the crooks, has been broken into. Many old adversaries have escaped and are now on the lose causing havoc in Gotham City. The bat (man) must sort this out. That's the story by the way. The problem is that this game is so poor in every way the story becomes completely un-important. This title includes the worst camera system I have personally ever had the misfortune to stumble across, and it has some of the worst controls ever put into binary.

The camera is fixed angle ala Resident Evil. It worked fine for Capcom's classic, but it virtually kills Dark Tomorrow. The issue is the camera angle will randomly alter, often during fights, and this not only causes complete confusion, it makes being able to see the fight impossible. You see you could be in a room near a door in a bundle but the camera would think that, because you are near a door, you will be coming into the corridor! So it cuts to corridor when your still having a scrap inside the room. Pow that!

This one bug is enough to justifiably sling this junk into the trash but there is another issue, one so evil it actually might be enough to make this game satanic. Combat! So here you are, running around as Batman, a pretty cold hearted and brutal type of good guy, and you face an angry horde of punks, thugs, and generally shady characters, and take them on... but you don't actually "kill" them! Oh no, this games requires a more "moral" and "liberal" approach to crime fighting. You have to "Batcuff" every last one of them! If you don't cuff them they will just keep getting back up, again, and again, and again! Whoever took the executive decision regarding this feature over at Kemco needs immediate ass-kicking.

What adds insult to injury here is that you also have smoke bombs and "Batarangs". These bat gadgets would seem cool to use and deadly but they are all made completely pointless. All you need to do in this game is kick or punch an enemy once, just once, and they will go down ready to be cuffed. So why bother fighting? Just tap'n'cuff! This new "Tap'n'Cuff" gameplay sucks major balls. It is absolutely terrible. But there is more! Each time you apply the cuffs you get a cutscene of Batman cuffing the baddie! I do not need to spell out to you quite how tedious and repetitive this one cutscene becomes after you have played this game for more than, ooh 15 seconds. It can't be turned off! Junk!

The enemy A.I is very basic. They simply run at you and get cuffed or shoot at you. When you have six guys blasting away at you it becomes difficult to survive but not due to anything except for the fact you have to manually cuff everyone shooting at you, one by one. You cannot simply fire back and kill them - you need to get close! Boss fights are probably the only part of this dog where gameplay makes an appearance. They are quite fun compared to any other time you will have in this game although pretty easy and uninspired. You just fire your Batarangs and get some melee action in against the likes of The Joker, Mr. Freeze, and Poison Ivy, but sadly no Penguin - surely the king of Batman baddies?

Another giant rat? Oh, well okay...

This game starts as it means to go on, with the worst first level I have ever played in a computer game. You begin on a rooftop and have to slide down to other buildings via your Batcable. This is hard due to the stupid way the cable is very small and hard to use (along with the camera system) and it is very boring due to the fact it goes on for around 30 minutes - without one fight! Oh, and incase you were looking at the pic to the right and wondering... yes this game is letterboxed and no you cannot change this!

There is a first-person view mode for when using Batarangs but it is very hard to use and really just feels wrong due to the common third person view you normally use. This is more or less all that I have to say regarding this game. Graphically it is very dull, except for the caper himself who looks quite decent, the sound is just average and really not worth much note, and the gameplay is almost nonexistent. That or very well hidden. Batman: Dark Tomorrow is yet another example of a really poorly designed and deeply flawed entry in the world of Batman games. The funny thing is this title is actually one of the very worst, even compared to games as old as Batman: Forever from 1997! Stay away from this game. Even the most hardcore Batman fanatics will pull their hair out whilst in contact with this disease.



It proves that Batman really is cursed when it comes to computer games.


Terrible camera system, way too much Batcuffing, weak gameplay, weak graphics, just downright dull!


by Mojo Jojo 2003