Game Over Online ~ Welded Warriors

GameOver Game Reviews - Welded Warriors (c) Crimson Fire Entertainment, Reviewed by - Pseudo Nim

Game & Publisher Welded Warriors (c) Crimson Fire Entertainment
System Requirements Palm OS 3.0 and 200k free RAM after install
Overall Rating 65%
Date Published Wednesday, July 24th, 2002 at 02:03 PM


Divider Left By: Pseudo Nim Divider Right

When I first saw Welded Warriors, I was literally ecstatic with joy. Boy oh boy, thought I, finally comes a Mechwarrior-type (or at least Battletech-like) game for the Palm! I can finally buy my own robots, upgrade them, and have them fight in an arena! Supercool, thought I. And so I delved deep into it, playing it to no end on my endless commutes to and from school, as well as during other opportune moments like walking and waiting at traffic lights. As I played on and on, certain key observations started to ceaselessly weigh in on my psyche. First, I realised that this game was about as close to Batletech as I am close to buying a $2,500 Sony VAIO VX series laptop (and believe me - I am a whole $100 close, and getting a dolla closer everyday, brotha). The next thing I realised was that the only difference I could ee out in terms of robot varieties was that I could choose the same robot, just with it looking like a bunch of grey scrap metal, a bunch of deteriorated-copper-green metal, or a crouching four-legged midget that appears to be a canine preparing for copulative intercourse.

That having been said, it takes a while before you can own your own crouching canine. First off you have to deal with the current robot you have (mine came in the grey scrap color scheme). You can buy exactly four upgrades for your piece of metal, and regardless of the names given to them, they fall into the folowing categories: laser (notice I do not say "weapon"), battery, shield and computer (which, apparently, increases your chances to hit, though I'll eat my hat if I noticed any difference whatsoever having paid 200 money units for it. At least it was cheap... must've been a Compaq... I mean HewPaq).

The game works as follows. You get a pre-furnished Mark I robot for which you can buy a Mark I laser/battery/computer/shield. You go into a bar, and challenge someone to a fight, doesn't matter who 'cause they all have the same skill level. You bet money, either $250, $500 or $1,000. Then you fight. Fighting works as follows: you see two pictures - left is your hunk of metal, and right is your opponent's. You have two bars: a life bar and an energy bar. As you perform attacks (Kick, Punch or Fire Gun), your energy bar depletes, and you have to execute Defend actions to have the bar recharge. While you do that, your life bar will go down, because your opponent will not just sit there and blink helplessly. Attacks that use the most energy are also the most damaging, so, indecreasng damage order, they are: Gun, Kick, Punch. At the outcome of the fight, you receive the money you bet less repairs. When all three opponents have been defeated, there is nothing left for you to do but enter the Arena, where you will fight an increasing number of opponents in succession depending on your levl. Those opponents are, strangely, the ones you just defeated in the Bar. That's basically the gameplay, in a nutshell.

There are also a couple of pure enigmas in the game. Three that I found, though I don't rule out more appearing. For one, there is this place called a Junkyard, where you would expectedly find junk parts to purchase. Out of the sixor eight planets I passed, only on Planet 1 was there a dinky busted up laser for a 10% discount (is that how they value garbage in those future flicks), and since then it's been empty. The second enigma is related to the people ubiquitously present in the center of the main screen: they appearto have conversation lines, but there are exactly three personality variations, and each has two possible responses: one based on you telling them something nonthreatening, and one based on you telling them they are three-eyed dorks for having nothing better to do than stand in the middle of the screen looking like, well, dorks. It goes without mention that, regardless of what you say, nothing happens - you don't make new friends, nor do you get into any fights. Here comes Enigma #3: some characters tell you "The Junkyard is full of treasures". I'll bet it was somethng trivial that my conspiracy-inflamed brain couldn't fathom, but I religiously visited the Junkyard all the time, trying all kinds of things, tapping everything, drawing psychedelic patterns on the screen, you name it. This did not, in the long run, help, and I wound up hating myself for being such a gullible dork, as well as seriously considering working from home to make $4,000 a week while having my unit enlarged by 6" (guaranteed!)and planning for a vacation to the Caribbean for $20.

Last, and, sadly (these days), least, I want to say a few words about the story of the game, because it brought back strong memories of December 2000, when "All your base are belong to us" was plastered anywhere from forums to teachers' signatures (yes, that happened. Yes, it's sad). The story of the game goes like this:

In the deep reaches of space... Planets were vulnerable to attack... Huge arenas were constructed... And giant robots duel for control... To dominate the galaxy... To protect or destroy is your choice...

The only two things I can say is that (a) I don't know about giant robots, but the story certainly "duels" with Rotomino Box' story, and (b) the part about choice is a blatant lie. Your choice is whether you want a tin can that kind soul stepped on, or a procreating leper dog for a robot, not whether you will save the galaxy or not.

In essence, Welded Warriors isn't the worst game you can get. By far not (I still shiver at the mind-numbness of that Rotomino's Box was, and its imagery still makes me twist and turn in my bed), but it's by far not the best, either. A few things could greatly improve this game, because it the foundation for it. First off, if there were a story, any story, it would help (the story CURRENTLY appearing in Welded Warriors cannot be called a story for fear that Shakespeare will turn the wrath of many dead white males upon us), it would help a lot, since the player would identify with it; and second, I think it would be a good idea to have moe mechs that actually DIFFER in something, and some upgrades for you to carry for them. The main issue is this game misunderstands the economic term "scarcity", which is SUPPOSED to mean that things are limited by nature, and we can simply not afford everything we want (hi Kimble), and hence interest is generated, because we choose thing, and play to have money and get the things we couldn't before. I think this game thinks rather that scarcity relates to scarcity of content.

Also what would help would be some NPCs that do something OTHER than mumble incoherent, irrelevant lines. Then this game would definitely be more worthy, seeing as there are no other ones out there quite like it. But as it is now... only superficial aficionados of mech simulators can enjoy this, and that, for a relatively short while.

 

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Rating
65%
 

 

 
 

 

 

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