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Chaos Engine, The

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indigo has written 3 additional reviews

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Written by indigo

March 8, 2005

Comments

Whenever the Bitmap Brothers made a game- it was compulsive to take a look. That's because you expected something special, nine times out of ten you would be blown away! The high standards of design and ingenuity were present in all their games and other developers could only dream of reproducing the Bitmap style. The Chaos Engine is a prime example.


Graphics, Sound & Gameplay

We have all seen top-down shoot-em-ups before. But presented with the choice of having your character aided either by lets say- your best mate or directly controlled by the computer AI, the co-operative nature of the game was at the time unsurpassed. What also made this game unique was the scale of the playing area, while exploring a single level it could take you hours to eventually find all the secrets- a tribute to the deviousness of its creators.

Starting a new game you were presented by a lavish menu giving you a choice of tough mercenaries for hire, all were strangely memorable in appearance and played differently. Then it was time to enter the game worlds, each having a specific fresh gothic style teeming with godless monstrosities just waiting to be blasted into oblivion.

The game worked well as your pair of merc's hunted down and eventually destroyed nodes which opened the doorway to the next level. At the end of each section you could eagerly upgrade your characters stats, preparing for the battles ahead. I should point out that the competitive nature of the game sometimes put players at odds when stumbling over power-ups, it then became a race to see who picked up the weapon upgrade first (as seen in the Gauntlet series).

It should also be mentioned that the excellent atmospheric music was supplied by Bomb the Bass, who contributed to the Bitmaps' other classic game Xenon 2: Megablast.


Conclusion

With the advent of true three dimensional gaming, with such titles as Tomb Raider and Grand Theft Auto- it is sometimes easy to forget where it all began, in the ingenuity of game studios like the Bitmap Brothers who influenced a generation to strive for new creative standards. Overall The Chaos Engine is a cornerstone in style and gameplay and is well worth dusting off a copy.






Score
  • Graphics: 9
  • Sound: 8
  • Gameplay: 9
  • Overall: 9

Review Comments

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Zone Warrior

February 12, 2023 by AtariCrypt

Once again, pesky aliens are giving us Earthlings lots of grief. We previously fought them off but they managed to pinch a time machine so are using that to alter history and wreak havoc by taking crucial hostages from each period in an attempt to halt their influence. From the invention of the wheel in prehistoric times to England's King Arthur uniting Britain! And where would any of us be today without Japan and its technical wizardry? Yep, we cannot allow this - the fight is on!

Son Shu Shi

March 21, 2021 by ST Graveyard

What an accomplishment this game is. Created with such a small team, the result is really amazing. The game oozes creative passion. While the gameplay is really well balanced, it is a tough cookie, very hard from time to time with its moments of sheer frustration. As of level 3, timing becomes key. You will need to practice and learn the levels to complete this game, there are so many bad guys on screen it sometimes gets a bit hard to take.

Blood Money

April 4, 2020 by Morcar

Graphically, it's also nice on the eyes with well-defined graphics and animation. You really get the feeling that the developers put some thought and love into the game. Remember what I said about the large levels? Well these are wonderful and are very different to each other, they also scroll fairly smooth in all four directions.

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