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Game Over Online ~ Shattered Light

GameOver Game Reviews - Shattered Light (c) Simon and Schuster, Reviewed by - Niczak

Game & Publisher Shattered Light (c) Simon and Schuster
System Requirements Pentium 100, 16Mb Ram, 4x CD-ROM
Overall Rating 24%
Date Published Wednesday, May 19th, 1999 at 04:36 PM

Divider Left By: Niczak Divider Right

The RPG genre, one that has been lacking for years, really since the days of Ultima, Wizardry and the Elder Scrolls series has been making a small, quiet, almost unheard comeback in the past couple years. We have had a few great role-playing Games come out in the past couple years between Might and Magic 6, Return to Krondor and EverQuest. However for the most part the entire RPG scene has been weak at best. Shattered Light tries to portray one of the older Ultima games, however it fails in every aspect that Ultima succeeded.

The story behind Shattered Light is one that has been used time and time again, you are hero who has been brought onto the land of Delos to save the planet. You are suppose to accomplish this goal by tapping into an ancient power source and bring back life to the continent. Well that’s all and good, but in order to salvage that generic story you are going to need some serious pickup in the graphics and sound department, that however you are not going to find here. One huge aspect in gaming today is how it "looks". Graphics play the biggest role in the "first impression" department and, well, sadly Shattered Light doesn’t make much of an impression. This game features well .. Bitmaps. The graphics are below those of Ultima 6 and even worse the game REQUIRES 16-bit color, if you use any other mode you are forced to switch. The game is completely two-dimensional, meaning both the characters and the world are completely flat. This game requires no special hardware and runs in resolutions up to 1280x1024.

Another area we look to when it comes to getting into a game is the music. The music in this game is at best, boring. It’s mundane and repetitive, definitely not a title that anyone will be looking for a soundtrack to accompany it. The SFx are pretty much non-existent, even in battle they are dull and sometimes even unheard of.

On area that can, in some cases make or break a game is in the multiplayer department. Shattered Light does feature a somewhat comprehensive multiplayer system allowing you to use a built-in client/server meaning you have the ability to run a server off your machine. You can have up to 8 players in the game, in both an IPX and an Internet game. One somewhat interesting aspect to Shattered Light’s multiplayer engine is that you can modify characters stats and characteristics on the fly (only when hosting a game on your machine).

Most importantly with any game is the control, or game play. A game can be made great or ruined by it’s game play. The game play in Shattered Light is extremely simple, too simple. The game is completely mouse driven (except for chat) and gets very boring, very quickly. There isn’t a whole lot to say on the subject except you had better not play this game too much or else you may wear out your left mouse button due to the fact that it’s the only button used in the game.

Role-Playing games, since they are generally pretty lengthy, must, most importantly, be fun. I could see myself playing this game for maybe a week. After that it would be more than boring. It had a few of the makings of a good role-playing game however it lacks so heavily in some areas that it just can’t be deemed as "fun".

All in all I would call this a more than pathetic attempt at a modern role-playing game. While many RPG’s that come out today are in the first person and even take advantage of some graphics cards this game choose to stay with the older overhead view, but completely neglected to embrace any modern technology. When it really comes down to it there are so many features in this game that are just so horrible that really nothing can be concluded except that the game itself is completely and utterly horrible.


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