Once you get Bedlam installed and started up (no mean task in itself), you're greeted by some terrific intro scene animation. Giant blimp-like spacecraft fly past your viewpoint.
The camera pans over various futuristic landscapes and hardware. The rendered animation is really quite good. Unfortunately, it doesn't appear to do anything to explain the game's story, which consists of the following Highly Original Concept (as Dave Barry says, I Am Not Making This Up): "Biomechanical creatures, originally created to handle menial household chores, have mutated and taken over the planet. Enter you. A hard-ass mercenary..." Gee. I've never heard that one before. The first thing that becomes obvious is that this is a total rip-off of Origin's Crusader: No Remorse. Same isometric view, huge explosions, even similar colors and artwork. The one twist is that in Bedlam, you get to pilot three separate heavily armored RATs (Remote Assault Tanks) in an attempt to wipe out the infestation. Speaking of the RAT you're directing, it's an interesting piece of machinery. Although it floats around the playfield without apparent feet or wheels, it's incapable of jumping off the smallest ledge. It can deal death with several kinds of weapons (outfitted in the handy, MechWarrior-esque weapon installation screen), but it can't hop off a two-foot tall overhang. Go figure.
If for some reason you're dying to play a triple-headed rehash of Crusader: No Remorse, then by all means grab a copy of Bedlam, preferably in the bargain bin. If you don't believe me and really want to see for yourself, go grab the demo from GT's website.
One's first sight of Bedlam is its Windows-based opening installation screen, which is unreadably scrambled with any display resolution and font setting other than 640x480 with Small Fonts. If you hunt around a bit, you can find the invisible buttons that will let you install the game. Congratulations. During the intro, you notice another problem. The game has cranked your sound card volume to 100%, causing mucho distortion, and the game includes no volume control feature. Zip. Zero. Nada. Perhaps the manual tells of a hidden volume control. Where's the manual? You up-end the box looking for the manual. There's no manual. No manual? Well, there's a dinky 22-page CD jewel-box insert that passes for the manual. Let's call it a pamphlet. This pamphlet, and various keyboard exploration, confirms by omission that there is no volume control. There's no documentation on how to save a game, either, although the pamphlet mentions the ability to load a saved game, so a save-game feature must be there somewhere, but I never did find it. I'd say, if you really want to buy this game, ignore the box requirements and call GT Interactive to find out what obscure specific configuration they used to test the game.
The Biomeqhs are coming and it's the job of gamers to stop them. Bedlam has the feeling of Syndicate with its array of weapons, levels and destruction. Bedlam doesn't feature mega-corps with killer cyborgs though. The people of Earth make a deal with the Spacer race to save them from total annihilation in exchange for precious salvage (what a deal). As gamers play through the isometric levels of the game, the simple but effective control lends itself to completing the missions introduced. There are over 20 missions in different zones. There hasn't been any confirmation on the game featuring the link option. The graphics look sharp so far. similar to Syndicate or even A-Train. This coupled with the gameplay could make for one interesting title.
- MANUFACTURER - Gt Interactive
- THEME - Shooter
- NUMBER OF PLAYERS - 1
Fans of the critically acclaimed action/strategy game Syndicate should keep an eye out for Bedlam. This title, a PC port, has players controlling three members of an elite mercenary team as they wander through cities, docks and factories to blow away rogue robots.
Bedlam is set in the distant future, after mankind has created biomechanical creatures to take care of menial tasks and other time-wasting dirty work. Unfortunately for us, the 'bots rebel and kill millions of people, forcing humans into underground shelters and orbital platforms. It is from one of these platforms that players guide a team of mercenaries to rid an entire city of the biomechanical menace.
After the team purchases weapons from the space platform's shop, it's sent into five different areas of the city: the airport, industrial zone, docks,urban area and business district. Each area is viewed from an isometric perspective and is filled with buildings, puzzles and at least 12 different enemy biomech species. The team members can be scattered throughout the area to accomplish individual objectives, or they can be moved around together to better deal with enemy gangs.
Each team member can carry up to seven weapons selected from an arsenal of several hundred.
Each area is divided into five maps, with one mission per map. Some missions have the team searching for and destroying key installations and doing away with nasty biomechs. But the team will have to do a lot of searching-the areas are enormous. Each map contains a total of 64 game screens.
As players progress across the landscape, they'll discover hidden tunnels, secret walls, pressure pads and teleporters. They'll also come across power-ups, such as cash to buy weapons, shields and speed boosts.
- MANUFACTURER - GT Interactive
- THEME - ACTION
- NUMBER OF PLAYERS - 1