Escape from Monster Manor
|a game by||Studio 3DO|
|Editor Rating:||9/10, based on 2 reviews|
|User Rating:||10.0/10 - 1 vote|
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Escape from Monster Manor, the first 3DO game from Electronic Arts, will be a first-person-perspective gun game with a supernatural twist. Armed with only a handheld ghost zapper, your mission will be to recover the scattered fragments of a shattered talisman from a creepy haunted house.
All Manner of Monsters
Monster Manor will summon forth memories of the classic PC game, Castle Wolfenstein. You will move in first-person perspective through a murderous maze, zapping any ghosts, grim reapers, or other spectres who come after you. As the search unfolds, players must explore shadowy corridors, clammy catacombs, eerie attics, a mysterious hedge labyrinth, a twisting series of treacherous mud caves, and a graveyard.
The BDO-generated graphics will try to blitz you. Onscreen you'll see your hand holding the ghost zapper as you move left or right to advance through the mazes. You'll face truly creepy-looking beings, primarily sinister spectres. The early version showcased five different ethereal fiends. Each time a phantom puts a hurt on you, the skin on your hand becomes a little more transparent until you're just a bag of bones!
The CD sound, if it remains true to the prelim version, will send shivers up your spine with horrific screams and moans. You'll likely find it hard to believe that audio can do so much to chill the atmosphere of a video game.
There's No Escape
Escape from Monster Manor is a 3DO ghostbuster waiting to happen. If your tastes tend toward the macabre, stand by for a ProReview next issue.
Download Escape from Monster Manor
It's an age-old monster-hunter's question: How do you kill something that's already dead? If the answer escapes you, you'll never escape from Monster Manor.
Currently, some of the best 3DO games are either direct ports of games from other platforms, or they're based on existing games. Escape from Monster Manor is sort of Wolfenstein 3D with a sheet over its head. Instead of a castle, you're in a haunted mansion. Instead of Nazis, you battle fiendish spectres. And, like the classic gun game it's based on, Monster Manor is a blast.
Spirits in the Material World
Evil, demonic spirits are running amuck in the world! It's all because the magical Talisman has been broken asunder, and its pieces have been scattered throughout the 12 areas inside, outside, and beneath Monster Manor.
Your challenge is to find the pieces of the Talisman, but you must tear through a host of ghosts and demons to do it.
Monster Manor is a maniacal monster hunt. You play via a first-rate, first-person perspective, with a view overlooking a hand that's holding a ghostzapping electro-gun. As you creep through the Mansion, you find Keys to open doors. Ethereal beings and demons slither and slide after you, usually when you least expect it.
The challenge is a little hairy and a little scary. The ghosts and ghouls don't differ much in their terror tactics, but their aggressive attacks make you more than a little nervous. As long as you move forward cautiously and watch your back, your chances of survival are very high. However, in every level there are spots where the dead gang up on you mercilessly. Be quick or become one of them!
If there's a gremlin in the game play, it's the long, sometimes tedious hunt for the Talisman fragments. After you blast the nasties, they don't reappear, so you may find yourself engaged in a lengthy, meticulous room-to-room search.
Moving Amongst Monsters
The controls are crisp, with a couple of creative touches that help you keep the spooks at bay. You glide through the labyrinthine Mansion with ease...even if the horrific atmosphere makes you uneasy. To monitor your status and progress, a single button press displays a status screen, another press displays a map. The solid automapping feature (similar to Wolfenstein's) is vital to your foray. When something arouses your suspicion, pressing the L and R buttons produces a quick sidestep, a slick, valuable move that enables you to quickly peek around corners.
A Beautiful Screamer
The creepy graphics and sounds will make your spine tingle. Knife-wielding ghosts, grim Reapers, and vile disembodied heads ambush you at every turn, These demonic-looking creatures won't make you forget the Hellraiser gang, but the av.esome 3DO scaling graphics will make you jump when you turn a corner and run into one up close and ugly! The graphics also help you monitor your health by graphically showing the skin on your hand gradually withering away as the monsters mangle you. It's ghoulish but cool-looking.
Monster Manor's sounds aren't as complex as the graphics, but they succeed at complementing the horriffic visual mood. The recycled mix of screams, groans, and disembodied warnings is much like you'd find in a carnival haunted house ride. They're repetitious but chilling. Turn out the lights and you'll be seriously creeped out! Little kids and people prone to nightmares had best stay out of Monster Manor!
A-Haunting You Must Go
This is ghost-busting fun with a gun. Sure, veteran gamers have been there and done that, but you can't keep a good game concept (or an evil spirit) down. Escape from Monster Manor is bury good!
- Back into suspicious areas - that is, turn completely around and enter facing backwards. That way you can outwit ghosts waiting to ambush you from the sides.
- As you get closer to the piece of the Talisman in every level, power-ups are few and far between. Consider conserving your gun's energy by running instead of fighting.
- You must turn Blue Reapers brown to destroy them.
- The green slime blasts have limited range.
- Sharpshooters can zap monsters if they're partially exposed.
- Your blaster has nearly unlimited range.
- Always study the map to plan escape mutes to power-up areas.
- Watch out for moving objects that are just there to make you waste ammo!
- Display the map (press C, A) to pause the paranormals.