Review by Insectdroid

"Tons of platform fun to be had."

Halloween Harry (later renamed to Alien Carnage) was perhaps one of the most underrated PC platform games ever.

Set in the good ol' ''not-too-distant-future'', nasty aliens have arrived on Earth and are slowly turning innocent people into evil zombies. You get to control some dude named Harry, who is apparantly Duke Nukem's brother or something, as he is called in to sort out the whole crazy mess. There's four levels - the sewers, factory, office and finally the alien mothership - that Harry has to clean out in his search for the Alien leader. (Wait till you see who the leader is...)

This game isn't easy to get into it. It's one of those games that require a bit of patience and time in order to enjoy. However, once you get into it, you're more than likely to want to see it through all the way to the end. It's tons of fun... a good mix of shooting, puzzle solving, exploring and other puzzle-style elements all make it an enjoyable, challenging, and sometimes even frustrating, experience.

Harry has several weapons and skills at his disposal. You have to ''buy'' weapons from vending machines, and in order to be able to buy weapons, you need to kill baddies. This makes powerups and items a bit more scarce, as you'll really have to earn them, rather than recieve them freely like in many other games. Harry doesn't jump around - he flies using a jetpack. (another Duke reference...) But even that ability comes at a price, because you'll have to purchase energy for your jetpack too, giving the whole game a more strategic approach. You have to learn to conserve your fire power and jet power, which makes the whole thing very challenging.

Speaking of challenge... the levels here are HUGE. This certainly isn't something you're likely to complete in a day or two.

There are some bad points, though. I personally think the balance of the levels are a bit off. There are only 4 levels, each one with 5 stages. I think a better approach would have been to create MORE levels, with LESS stages. As it stands, there isn't a whole lot of variety, and 5 stages makes each level a bit monotonous, especially when you consider how long and hard each stage is.

Despite that, the interesting mix of different gameplay elements make the whole thing a total blast. Sure, it might not have the best graphics or sound, the plot is totally cheesy and it's not the most imaginative title ever conceived...but it delivers what each and every game is supposed... pure, uncompromised, gaming FUN. If you are a veteran gamer, collector, platform fan or just want a decent, playable game and aren't fussy about polish, then Harry is for you. If you love Harry and want more of the charm and magic, you might wanna check out the sequel: Zombie Wars.

Reviewer's Rating:   4.5 - Outstanding

Originally Posted: 09/09/02, Updated 09/09/02

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