Burning Force (for Genesis) Short Review

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Sir Han J. Lee

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Nov 26, 1990, 3:50:28 PM11/26/90
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Taking the advantage of the Thanksgiving break (thank God! I needed it!)
I picked up, for the first time in my life, three new games for the Genesis
in three days. Actually, it was my brother who bought the Burning Force,
despite my recommendation against it after I got somewhat dissapointed by
their (Namco) earlier title, Phelios. BUT, boy! am I glad that he bought it!
Of all those three games, Burning Force proved to be the BEST one. Moreover,
it quickly became one of my favorite games for the Genesis. Here are
my short reviews and comments of the three games.

Burning Force (by Namco)

Prologue:
Take Space Harrier and increase the playability to the max, and you get
Burning Force, Namco's second title for the SEGA Genesis! You pilot
Hiromi Tengenji, a beautiful female student at some space university who
needs to pass her pilot exams by fighting all sorts of mechanical monsters.
Basically, their are 6 levels (according to the manual, I have yet to
kill the &$^%@ last boss) each with 4 areas. (so there are 24 stages in all,
including the bonus stages).

Taking Control:
In each level, during the first two areas, you control a hover-cycle,
which can only stay on the ground but it can also jump by hovering over
a hydraulic "jumping board." In addition to moving left and right, you
can also cotrol the speed; this feature especially make the game more fun
as you can slow down to avoid enemy shots and so forth.
During the 3rd and 4th areas, your hover-cycle gets transformed to a
jet. In these stages, you can't control the speed of your vehicle, but
you can move in all 8 directions.

You pick the fire power:
There are two weapons that your vehicle can carry, shot, your major unlimited
weapon, and missile, limited weaponry with huge destructive power.
There are are four different types of shots you can pick up along the way,
each having its own advantages and disadvantages: Normal shot (your basic
equipt weapon), Wide (shoots a wide range of normal shots - this ones my
favorite), Laser (powerful, but range is narrow), Cross Laser (a cross between
wide and laser, shoots rainbow-like beams in a wave manner).
For the missiles, there are Homing (homes on the enemy) and Mega (huge
destructive fireballs that circles around to obliterate everything).
Picking up weapons is kinda tricky, but fun. In the earlier stages, they're
mostly found on the ground, but later, you have to jump in order to pick
these up (similar to getting money in the arcade game "Hydra" by Atari).

Beautiful graphics:
Graphics in this game are absolutely stunning, one of the best available for
the Genesis, from the colorful title screen that has animated picture of Hiromi
(one of Namco's pin-up gals) to the breathtaking background scenary and the
wonderfully detailed and colorful bosses and enemy robots. 3-D scaling,
although not as smooth as the arcade, is exceptionally smooth, done much
better than the Space Harrier II. Each object on the screen also has its
own shadows, which adds more realism to the game.

Bonus stages pumps up the juice:
My favorite stages are the 4th areas of each level, the bonus stages.
There are no enemies in these stages, but some obstacles block your
way though. Pick up colorful balls with different points to raise your
score or get extra men. The graphics in the bonus stages remind me of
those super duper computer generated graphics in the Sunday NFL game opening
theme.

My ratings:
Guide: 8-) :-) :-| :-( X-( exellent to worst in left-right order.

Graphics 8-)
Music :-)
Sound :-)
Funness 8-)
Difficulty 8-) (the best I've seen in any Genesis game, not too difficult,
not too easy)
Character 8-)
Manual :-(

Overall 8-) (a must-have for any Genesis owners who likes shooting games,
especially Space Harrier genre)


Reviews on Fire Shark and Final Zone later...

Han. ___
/| /|| |/\
hl...@cory.Berkeley.EDU / |/ || |>-|
/_____||_|_/

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