Deadly Tide

a game by Microsoft
Platform: PC
Rating: 6/10

Description

Overview

Ever see the movie Independence Day? Well, Deadly Tide's storyline is similar ... except everything is underwater. The game starts out with a nicely-done cinematic intro which leads the player into his/her role as undersea fighter pilot. The aliens have come from outer space to take over earth, they have formed colonies under our seas and plan to drown the earth by raising our sea level little by little ... they must be stopped, and of course it's up to you. With every mission the story unfolds a bit further, until finally the aliens ... sorry, I'll leave the ending to you.

Gameplay/Interface

The interface of Deadly Tide is very simple -- you let the video take you through each mission while you blow away everything that moves. It's like a cinematic shooting gallery; all you do is point and click. I found the mouse to be the best and most effective weapon, but for you die-hard joystick jocks there's that option as well. There's really nothing to it; you don't have many choices in the game as the computer takes you through each mission flawlessly. This is a big downfall with me. I like to be able to control my every move. If you are not a good shot at first, never fear; you can play the mission over and over and over until you get it right (by memorizing the pattern). Deadly Tide is like picking up a short novel and kind of playing the main character. The movement is great (although you don't get to control one bit of it) and it helps you to feel somewhat like you are actually there.

Graphics

Outstanding. This is the highlight of the game; it's pure eye candy. This game is just as fun (if not more) to watch as it is to play. So turn off your TV and watch Deadly Tide!

Audio

The audio is fine -- lots of explosions, good musical score, etc. Nothing that spectacular; in fact sometimes it was hard to hear the between mission briefings (not that it mattered).

Enemies

You can control the enemies' firing rate and accuracy with the difficulty setting, which is a nice feature. I found that difficulty setting 1 was challenging, but not to the point where I had to keep replaying sections just to get out alive.

Originality/Cool Features

Deadly Tide is not an original idea; it is very similar to games like The Hive and Rebel Assault. Microsoft's attempt to "immerse" the player in an underwater world with original aliens and ship designs is the only thing that makes Deadly Tide different from other "shooting gallery" games. Although the movement and life-like action are very good, it's unfortunate that games like this are only as fun to watch as they are to play.

Difficulty

Deadly Tide has a nice difficulty setting feature. You can choose easy, medium, or hard; it can't get any simpler than this. Don't get too excited, though; the difficulty setting only changes how accurate and how often the enemies fire. I found that the easy setting gave me a good challenge without having to replay sections over and over trying to get it just right.

System Requirements

Pentium 75 or greater, Windows 95, 8 MB RAM, 25 MB hard disk space, 4X CD-ROM drive, SVGA 256 color monitor, 1 MB video card, mouse or joystick, sound card

Bottom Line

For its genre, Deadly Tide is a formidable game. For this reviewer, it was a little lacking in interaction. I never really felt like I was playing a game; it was more like watching TV. The storyline was short and not well developed, and I solved the game in under three hours. My CD player constantly choked on data and would cause me to reboot -- a big annoyance -- but I persevered and learned to deal with that. All things considered, I give Deadly Tide a 75 out of 100 for great graphics and cinematics. If you are sick of that old science fiction novel, pick up Deadly Tide for a refreshing change. For hard-core gamers, don't delete Doom.

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