Review by super magus
"Almost....ALMOST brought the series back"
Lemmings; without a doubt one of, if not THE best puzzle games of all time, with it's ability to frustrate you to the point of insanity. The first Lemmings game was (and still is) an unbelievably great puzzle game. An expansion/sequel came out later called ''Oh No! More Lemmings!'' and was just as awesome. After that, they tried to continue the series further with Lemmings 2: The Tribes. Unfortunately, Lemmings 2 was a bummer. Psygnosis wasn't about to give up, so they tried their hands at 3D with Lemmings 3D. This was a disaster. I'm sure I wasn't alone thinking the series was dead there, but then they came out with Lemmings: Revolution. They went back to the original abilities for the Lemmings, and went back to the tried-and-true 2D walking. This game definitely had the potential to bring the series back in all of its shining glory, but didn't. I'm here to explain why. On to my review.
In Lemmings, the level starts with a pre-set amount of Lemmings dropping from a hatch in the ceiling. The Lemmings have no minds of their own and will walk straight forward until they run into a wall and must turn around and walk the other way, or they walk into a trap and meet an untimely demise. Your job is to help the Lemmings get from their starting hatch to the goal. You do this by clicking on what you want the lemming to do (build a bridge, dig a hole, etc.) and then click on the lemming. Each ability can only be used a certain number of times, so you don't want to waste them. You can't pause to select the ability, so you have to do it on the fly and think fast. There are traps you have to negotiate like water, spikes, and the occasional weasel that walks around to kill your lemmings. To add something new to the series, Psygnosis included water lemmings and acid lemmings. Each type of lemming can respectfully walk on water or acid and not die. This makes for some pretty good levels, and is wisely not overused. This is simple and works great, but there's one particular bug that gets on my nerves. Since the game is played on cylinder-shaped levels, you watch the other guys by rotating the level. Sometimes the cursor will go through the wall and you'll be making lemmings on the other side of the level build a bridge in the middle of nowhere. This makes some levels a lot harder than they should be.
The lemmings have finally settled in their new homes and have been living peacefully, but the evil weasels invaded their village and kidnapped all the lemmings and took them to their underground tunnels. It's your job to help them escape. Exciting, isn't it? But, let's be honest, you don't play puzzle games for their story, and, if you ask me, Lemmings doesn't need a storyline.
The graphics in this game are not anything spectacular. The lemmings are little guys with blue bodies and green hair and look nothing like actual lemmings, but that's okay. Everything runs smoothly, so there's no complaints here.
The music in this game is catchy, as is always with the Lemmings games, but fails to be as memorable as the original Lemming's music was. The sound effects in this game are the normal sounds like a pick-axe banging against metal, dirt being thrown as Lemmings dig holes, and the like. But, there's one particular sound that everyone eventually grows to love, and that's the sound of the Lemming's going ''pop!'' when you blow them up. Few sounds are better at relieving stress (and this game will give you a lot of it) than that nuke sound, and it's one of the few things that keeps you from going completely over the edge.
Here we get to the ugly part of the game-its difficulty. Normally a low difficulty score means the game is far too easy, but this is just the opposite. This is one of the most ridiculously hard games I have ever played. The first couple stages are easy because they're just introducing you to what the commands do. After that, you get a few levels of moderate difficulty, then you're plunged head-first into some of the hardest puzzles ever known to mankind. A lot of these stages I see no way to be humanly beatable without being the person who made the game. There are some stages that are excellent as far as difficulty goes (Mission: Impossible and the Bamboo Maze being my favorites) but a lot of them are virtually unbeatable. The Lemmings games have been known for driving people insane with hard levels, but this time they went too far. The first Lemmings games were so hard that you would tear out your hair in frustration, but you would keep playing. This game is so hard that you will stop playing, and that is bad. The levels also seem to be out of order. You'll play an extremely hard level, and then one after it will be pretty easy, and then it gets impossible again. This game definitely could've had a little more time spent on it.
Worth your money?
Surprisingly, after that rant about the difficulty, I can safely say that this game is worth your money. Why? It's because that this game only costs ten measly bucks. Sure, you may quit in sheer anger, but the few great levels the game has makes it well worth the ten bucks it'll cost you. So, if you like a good puzzle, and don't mind a game that you'll probably quit before clearing 100%, this would still be a good buy.
So, there you have it, a game with the potential to be excellent and to bring a much-loved series back into the limelight, killed by the thing that the series was so well-known for in the first place. Unless they do something spectacular very soon, I see this as the end of the Lemmings series. If you're craving a good puzzle game, I suggest you go on Ebay or something similar and buy a copy of the dual ''Lemmings and Oh No! More Lemmings!'' CD. You will not be disappointed.
- Some catchy tunes
- Some levels are just excellent
- Only 10 bucks
- Very glitchy
- WAY. TOO. HARD.
- Levels not plotted in a good order
Reviewer's Rating: 3.0 - Fair
Originally Posted: 11/12/03
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