Waterworld

a game by Rama Design, and Ocean

Platforms: Sega GenesisGenesisSNESSNES

Genres: Action, Adventure/RPG, Strategy/War

See also: Movie-based Games, Pirates Games

Waterworld is a conglomeration of three different game styles involving shooting, action and swimming. These game styles are integrated to bring Waterworld from the big screen to your home.

The end result isn't too exciting. Despite the three types of gameplay,

Waterworld gets repetitious. Another flaw lies with the graphics. While the backgrounds of the action stages are detailed, the rest of the game needs work. Of course there is nothing much to show in a world of water, but... another point that needs to be brought up is the character detail. There should be more. Your bullets are nothing more than white pixels. The control is loose, and it'll take time to learn how to control both your character and your ship. Try to learn how to flip your Trireme around quickly. It helps when you get swarmed by jet skis.

The cycle of levels starts out with you piloting your Trireme, a small but maneuverable boat. Enemy jet skis and boats will start attacking. The object is to clear them out. Aircraft will attack during the later levels, and sometimes you'll have to defend an atoll. That means the jet skis will start kidnapping people.

In the tradition of Defender, you will have to save them. The shooter levels are often broken up by underwater sequences. The Mariner (you) has a certain amount of strength, and you can only stay underwater so long. When the meter on the screen runs out, the stage is over. If you don't make it back to the surface, you lose the bonus. All sorts of aquatic critters try to hit you. Unfortunately, you don't have any attacks.

The action scenes take place within the atoll. You must find your way through the ramshackle city in search of the Smokers. Once you execute each and every one, you'll be treated to a shop sequence. Along the way you'll collect weapons from the bodies of those you've slain. These are far superior to the cheesey weapons you start out with. You will notice that unless you have a gun, you can't do a jump attack. This gets a bit frustrating.

The shops are important. It is here that you can repair your ship and buy weapons. The things you can purchase range from a Gatling gun to aquatic mines. The power-ups for the most part are useless, except for the Gatling gun, which chews up enemy boats like you wouldn't believe! There is also an Uzi that might prove to be helpful. It's best to use your money on Gatling guns and repairs. Everything else is a waste of money.

In terms of a game-to-movie translation, Waterworld isn't half bad. The music is very new age and very relaxing. It reflects the film well. The scenes couldn't have been closer. Cinemas might have helped keep things from becoming monotonous, while retaining the feel of the movie. If you enjoyed the movie, Waterworld might whet your appetite for adventure.

MANUFACTURER - Ocean DIFFICULTY - MODERATE THEME - ACTION NUMBER OF PLAYERS - 1

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