Review by Mr Bump

"D2 - Worth the wait?"

Just over one year late and D2 is finally with us. Has it been worth the wait? I'm afraid to say the answer is a resounding NO! For those of you that haven't come across it before, D2 is the sequel to a Playstation game from about three years ago that was very much in the mould of Myst. There was also a Saturn game called Enemy Zero, featuring the same central character – Laura Parton. From what I have heard neither were much cop (I never played them), but great things were promised for D2.

The story – what I can make of it – has our hero, Laura, travelling on a plane across Canada, which is hijacked by terrorists and hit by a meteorite in quick succession (it never rains, it pours! ^_^). Laura wakes up after the inevitable crash to find that she and a small group of survivors not only have to face the sub zero conditions, but mutated human monsters, bent on death and destruction as well.

D2 starts off promisingly, with a nice CG intro and an exciting in game cut scene that sets the mood and shows off the very pretty graphics (although not a patch on Shenmue). Things go downhill fairly rapidly………

The game is split into three main sections; Indoors, Outdoors and Combat. Indoor sections are dealt with like the old PSX D, where everything is seen in first person and you move ‘on tracks' – as if it were pre-rendered. So, if you are standing by the door and press forward, the camera slides over to the bed, if you press right, you turn to look at the door and so on. This means there are certain points in a room that you can examine and everything else is out of reach. This totally destroys any sense of exploration as you are lead by the nose to anything of interest and seems utter madness as it is all being generated by the DC and could have been much more open.

When outdoors things switch to a third person Tomb Raider type of affair, that works reasonably well. However, you soon realise that all the game comprises of is: Run from A to B, watch lengthy cut-scene, Run from B to A, watch lengthy cut scene, run from A to C etc.- you see where this is going.

For combat, things revert back to first person, with your chosen weapon held before you, like so many FPS. However, in a break from tradition, your feet have been firmly nailed to the ground ^_^ – so instead of an exciting bit of Quake action, the proceedings merely comprise of point and shoot the nearest monster with your unlimited ammo machine gun.

Add this all together and what you end up with is a mildly interactive ‘B' grade movie rip off of ‘The Thing'. Even the slightly entertaining hunting option gets repetitive. To make matters worse, whenever there is a cut scene (which can't be skipped), your DC will go mental, constantly switching tracks on the GD-ROM, which after five minutes constant, really starts to grate!

There are so many things that annoy me about this game – the fact that all conversations are one sided, because Laura chooses never to speak – the fact that Laura is trapped in Canada, in the mountains, in winter, but never changes out of her high heels and short skirt! I could go on.

There are a few plus points – some of the bosses are quite imaginative and interesting, the story does have a few twists and turns and the graphics are very pretty, with some nice face models and animation. Overall though, very disappointing and tedious and to really kill it off it's only about 8 hours long!


Reviewer's Score: 3/10 | Originally Posted: 01/01/00, Updated 01/01/00


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