Review by SegaBeat
"If you get past some of the Saturn version of Quake's problems, then you might enjoy this."
In late 1997, Sega's ill-fated Saturn system was dying, as fewer games were made, sales decreased, and less 3rd party support. It seemed that ID software was not interested in porting Quake to the Saturn system, so Lobotomy Software (developer of Powerslave) took care of the Saturn conversion, and they did a decent job on it. In Quake, you play as a Sarge at a first-person view. In the beginning of Quake, you have choice to warp to either the Normal room or the Easy room. This obviously means you will be given a choice on what difficultly level will be set during your playtime. Once you enter, you will be given 4 warp stations. In station is basically an "episode". Each episode has about 6 levels to play through. Once you enter in Episode one, you start the actual game. At first, you are given an axe covered with blood, and a little shotgun. As you proceed through the levels, you will pick up more weapons and upgradeables to a previous weapon of yours. For example, later on you'll pick up a Double Shotgun which basically uses twice the power and the number of shotgun cartages you use on it compared to your previous shotgun. Other weapons in the game include a Nail-Gun, Super Nail-Gun, 2 different types of Rocket Launchers, and a Lightning gun. But be warned that some of these weapons won't be enough to stop your enemies.
As you proceed in the horrifying levels of Quake, you will encounter numerous types of monsters that will quickly start attacking you. This includes Ogres, Knights, Fiends, Zombies, Vores and Shamblers. Some of them are pretty easy to kill, while others, mostly the Fiends and Shamblers, are challenging to defeat. These guys move quickly and once they are close, they attack very brutally. So, at times, you need skills for both attacking and evading in order to defeat some of the enemies. In addition to killing monsters, Quake also offers some sequences needed in order to open doors or pathways. Often, you need to find a key in order to proceed, and other times, you need to look around a room for a number of switches to go on. These techniques are pretty interesting to play through. Lastly, once in a while there are traps in a couple of levels in Quake. I was once walking across a hallway, then the next thing I know, one of the sides of the walls moves towards me and pushes me into a pool of lava. So, you need to be careful when playing Quake when you got challenging enemies and traps like this. Quake is a fun FPS game, but at times, its difficult level drives me away from enjoying it. Also, since the game is 9 years old, some of the FPS gameplay is outdated.
These are some of the best graphics I've seen programmed into the Saturn to date. The environments are a decent size and the textures, for the most part, are pretty realistic looking. One of the best graphical features in Quake is the light effects. They are perhaps the best I've ever seen on a Saturn game. Quake's levels are often gothic-looking places, such as dark castles, dungeons or sewers. And they definitely offer great atmosphere. The enemies have interesting designs and are detailed pretty decent. At times, however, some of your enemies look blocky, which takes away some of the horror to be found in them. Still, even on outdated hardware, a couple enemies still look creepy. The games frame rate runs at about 30-40 frames per second, but when you get to large rooms, or when there are more then 2 enemies on your screen, the frame rate feels clunky, which affects the gameplay. But other then a few flaws, Quake performs very well on the Saturn's hardware.
Most of the game's music is horrifying but also mysterious. Most of them didn't really catch my ear, but most of them fit well in each stage and gives them a gothic/horror atmosphere. Nine Inch Nails composed Quake's music, and in my opinion, it's well done. The sound effects are pretty good also. The roars of your enemies are very effective. There is no voice acting in Quake, but our character does make a few noises. In my opinion, Quake's sound is only okay with me, but I'm still giving it a positive feedback because it truly does fit in the game well.
When I played through Quake for the first time, it was hard to get used to. Since the game was first released on the PC, the controls had to be worked differently for the Saturn control pad. You need to be really good with the Saturn control pad in order to master the basics of Quake. The good news is that Quake supports the Saturn 3D Control Pad, making movement easier then the standard controller.
Is Quake for the Saturn worth buying? Well, only if you're really good with the Saturn controller, and if you can handle some difficult levels and enemies, and if you never played the PC version. Quake on the Saturn is exactly like the PC version, except the game has a few minor extras, but it also has no multiplayer support, which is found in the PC and N64 versions. The lack of multiplayer support really brings down some of the fun found in Quake. Also, Quake is only about 4 hours long, so the game can be finished in a day, or (if you only play an hour or so a day) about a week. One more thing worth mentioning is this game's lack of story. Quake offers good atmosphere, but rarely any story. The only hint of story you will get is a full screen of text when you finish each episode, that's it. So, if any of the problems that I mentioned to you above don't bother you, then Quake on the Saturn will satisfy you with its solid gameplay and good atmosphere.
-Great graphics for a Saturn game.
-Good atmospheric music
-At times, the game is pretty hard
-No multiplayer support in this port of Quake, unlike the PC and N64 ports.
-Very little storyline
-Awkward control layout at first.
Reviewer's Score: 7/10 | Originally Posted: 04/24/06
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