PlayStation gamers have been given more than a few first-person perspective action games in the past year or so. Starting with Kileak: The DNA Imperative, gamers witnessed a futuristic journey into the halls of action using a mechanized attack vehicle. That legacy continued with its sequel, Epidemic. Now. the team at Genki in Japan have stepped up the genre and created Brahma Force.
The key in Brahma Force is exploration. The game's levels expand around you as you traverse the landscape, enemies and power-ups scattered all over the place. Working your way into the heart of the enemy ship is your goal, and each floor presents a new problem.
Instead of being a blast-'em-up carnage fest. Brahma Force is heavy on puzzle solving. Before each mission, you are briefed on the objective and given pointers on where to find the goal. Your dexterity is put to the test, and you'll find yourself looking up, down and jumping to higher levels with ease.
The game controls very naturally, and every button is placed for ease of use. Probably the biggest diversion from the formula of first-person perspective robotic hunt- and-search games is that you can jump. While on its face, that doesn't seem like that big of an upgrade, but once you start playing, you quickly realize what kind of dimension it adds to game-play. Hidden passageways are sometimes not so obvious from sight, and only by jumping can they be reached. Jumping over obstacles instead of having to go around them makes travel a lot easier.
The first couple of levels don't pose any major challenge to the experienced gamer. As you get deeper into the ship, levels get bigger and more complex, with elevators, catapults and secret doors. Positioned around each level are computer terminals, which when activated put you in contact with your team for more info about the level. If you miss an important detail from their transmission, you can call it up on your recorder.
The graphics in each level change as you get deeper into Beltlogger 9. The game isn't made up of flat floors and platforms, but inclines and ramps to travel down. Gather a new weapon and collect WPAs to super-charge your ammunition. Extra health, energy and the like are scattered evenly around each floor.
Weapons consist of a standard rifle, laser, missile launcher and bomb. Within these categories, there can be more than one weapon.
There are two stages of health: durability and energy. Durability counts as health. When it reaches zero, you are dead. The energy bar represents your shield energy. Your mech has a shield which can be used as long as you have energy. Press and hold the button to activate it. and watch the green glow surround the ship. The only drawback is that you get knocked backward when hit, shield or not.
The Bosses are big and detailed, with rendered cinemas that play while you fight them. Finding their weak points can be difficult.
If you prefer puzzle solving to fast action and blasting, Brahma Force is for you.
- MANUFACTURER - Jaleco
- THEME - Action
- NUMBER OF PLAYERS - 1
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Forget about Kileak or its sequel, Epidemic. BRAHMA Force, the third installment of the Kileak series, is by far the best, offering greater freedom of movement, faster gameplay, and more organic enemies.
After receiving a distress signal from an excavation colony on a distant planet, BRAHMA (Bipedal Robotic Assault Heavy Mechanized Armor) units are dispatched to find out what's going on. Armed with a nice variety of weapons like guided missiles, rifles, and bombs, you move through a series of winding hallways and open warehouses in search of clues.
This outing requires you to match your wits and thumbs against a horde of enemies, including flying drones and angry robots. Tough sub-bosses must be eliminated by strategic thinking, not just superior firepower.
Clean, mech-heavy industrial graphics and clear explosions highlight the game, which unfortunately is light on enemy interaction. The enemies, however, are much better-looking than those in the previous Kileak games. Generally good sounds are impeded by annoyingly obtrusive voice-overs (almost every terminal has a speaking part).
Although it's not as fun as Doom, BRAHMA Force's game-play is entertaining and arcade-driven, with a speedy mech that has the ability to jump. While not a tour de force, BRAHMA Force is still worth a weekend.
- Audio clues are important,, like the alarm that signals approaching enemies and the Info from computer terminals.
- The game Is played mostly on multiple levels, so you must constantly look up for Inactive platforms or elevators. While riding elevators, look for power-ups on top of hallway bunkers.