Review by Psycho Penguin

"A very interesting game, to say the least"

Introduction

Solstice was a very interesting game released for the NES way back in the days. However, I only discovered the game about six months ago. Seeing it at Funcoland for 2 bucks, I decided that the price was right. 2 bucks is a good deal for a cool game like this. I mean, I have seen worse games being sold for more money than this game is. I mean, Solstice for the NES is a great game that will be loved by all, guaranteed! Well, some people may not like it because the basic gameplay of the game is so different, but most people will probably love it because the game is so different than the basic ''kill an enemy with a weapon'' game.

Storyline (8.8/10)

Solstice does use the basic ''Save the princess from the evil monster'' storyline that we all have come to know and love, but there is a new added twist added: the fact that you have to find several pieces of a magic wand that will apparently bring the princess back to life or something like that. I was not too thrilled with the storyline in the game (and it did get quite confusing at times, even when I am here trying to explain it to you) but it was fairly decent and did try some new things besides the basic ''save the princess'' storyline. Overall, I am not that big of a fan of the storyline in Solstice but it does get the job done.

Graphics (7.8/10)

The graphics were pretty cool, with some cool designs in some of the places. However, ther game is played in a 3/4 persepctive. The problem with the perspective is that sometimes objects are blocked by tall stuff in front of it, so you can't see what might be a very imprortant item.

Character Designs in Solstice were not the best I have ever seen but they were pretty good nevertheless. The main character had an unique look to him that was very effective, and the rest of the characters were also designed quite nicely. Overall, the character designs were really quite good.

Enemy Designs in Solstice were not perfect but they were still pretty good. I still remember that some of the character designs in the game were confusing to me, mainly because some of the enemies were stuff like flying discs and bouncing balls (sort of like Deadly Towers). But there were also other enemies like skeletons and goblins.

The perspective in the game is very interesting, because it uses this 3D perspective that has its advantages and disadvantages. The main advantage is the fact that the game looks very cool in the 3D perspective. The main disadvantage is the fact that the perspective made it hard to complete certain tasks, like jumping from one disc to another while below lurks spikes. It gets really tough after a while. Still I am glad they used this perspective in the game.

Overall, I really think the graphics in Solstice are good, especially for a NES game.

Music/Sound (9.1/10)

The NES has never really been known for its wonderful music and sound effects, but several games have featured great music and sound effects. Solstice doesn't quite make it to the top echelon of music and sound effect quality, but the quality of music and sound effects in the game is really quite good.

Music in the game is really quite good. The music in this game gives off a certain vibe that is very effective in persuading the player into thinking that they are actually in the castle and trying to escape themselves. The music has this certain beat to it, a dark and mysterious one, that really blends in well with the feel of the game. Overall the music in the game is pretty good!

Sound effect wise, the sound effects in Solstice are pretty good but certainly not perfect. I would have liked to hear a few more bone chilling screams and stuff throughout the castle, but that really is no big deal. Instead, your ears will hear some other sounds, mainly the sounds that occur whenever your character decides to jump. I like the sound that occurs whenever you pick up a key, it's a very funny sound. Overall, the sound effects in the game are great, although I would have liked to hear some other sounds!

Control (6.8/10)

Hmm... the control is really quite good but gets exteremely frustrating in some places. There are lots of awkward jumps to make and the control doesn't help any, which is why I gave the control a score of seven.

I think the biggest problem with the control in the game has nothing to do with the control itself, if you can believe that. I think the major problem lies in the 3D perspective of the game, and the fact of the matter is that the perspective leads you to some jumps that really aren't that fun to make.

Overall, I still like the control in this game, and I think it is as good as it could have possibly been for a game with a 3D perspective like this.

Gameplay (8.3/10)

What kind of game is this? A puzzle? A action/adventure? Both? Regardless of its category, its still pretty cool. You are basically this magician or something who needs to find five pieces of staff. You get different potions throughout the game, and different potions have different abilities. You need to effectively learn how to use the potions throughout the game in order to beat it, which is why I never beat it :0

Replay Value (Medium)

Solstice may not have the best replay value of all time, but the game is worth replaying for a while, mainly because the depth and length of the game is so large.

Challenge (Very Difficult)

The extreme length of the game, combined with some of the difficult jumps that have to be made (thanks to the awkward perspective of the game) make Solstice a very challenging game indeed!

Overall (9.3/10)
Cool and very fun game for 2 dollars? While crap like Hydlide is selling for more? That's ridicoulus. Solstice may be a bit weird but is pretty cool, and if you can get past the touchy controls you have a game thats well worth the investment. Not everyone will enjoy this game, but I most certainly did. And thats a SMcFadden guarantee.


Reviewer's Score: 8/10 | Originally Posted: 05/31/00, Updated 07/16/01


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