Review by KasketDarkfyre

Reviewed: 09/30/02 | Updated: 09/30/02

Good intentions, poor presentation.

I’ve played several different types of games on the Jaguar and I have to say that Cybermorph is one of the few that has all the makings of a great game, but falls flat in the audio and visual department. With muddled colors, lack of backgrounds and the inability to hear anything worth listening to in the music department, what makes this game slightly above average is the impressive game play. Games such as Iron Soldier and I-War on the Jaguar make much more of an impression in the presentation while Cybermorph does more on the game play side of things.

The story that you have unfolds in the distant future and in a distant galaxy. To counter the numerical superiority of the Pernitia Empire and win the war, the Federation perfects ''living steel'' weapons, quickly shipping them to the besieged front. Unfortunately, a Pernitian raid has stolen the security pods, and only their recovery can stop the fall of the Federation. Operation Cybermorph is activated; you must fly the Transmogriffon prototype ship into enemy territory, searching for pods while fighting Pernitian forces. Skylar the computer and the T-Griffon's shape-changing ability are on your side, but ultimately a weapon is only as good as its wielder.

-The Game Play-

What you have is a game that allows you to lock into a target to destroy them by any means that you deem necessary. By saying that, you aren’t locked on a single run through enemy territory, but rather you can scout out your terrain and then find the best means necessary to take out the enemy. This is something that I haven’t found in very many games in which you have a complete control interface over where you go and what you do. The game itself is one part shooter, one part strategy and one part puzzle game, which leads into a game that allows you to control just how fast or how slow it goes.

Most of the game can be defeated with sheer firepower and simply overwhelming your enemy, but there are critical portions of the game that require you to think and act accordingly in order to get anything done. Although the game seems to have a straight-forward view, in all actuality, you simply have to navigate around the different situations and not get yourself caught up in something you cannot control. As you progress through the game, the puzzles get a little harder and the enemies become smarter to your movements, demanding that you change up your strategy in order to defeat them.

Control isn’t much of a problem and anyone can learn how to use the limited interface that is located here. For the most part, you’ll see that firing and selecting weapons is so easy that anyone with a brain can pick up on it. However, you’ll find that selecting the different weapons and actually making it through the game takes quite a bit of practice. The screens that you have to help you come with your weapon power and weapon selection, so every button on the Jaguar controller is used in some fashion to make you a top ace pilot.

-The Visuals-

The visuals that you find in Cybermorph are something of a disappointment. For the most part, you’ll find that the game just doesn’t seem to have enough detail or depth to really get you into the mood and theme of the game. While the subtle shading of the environments show a little bit of depth, they lack the all out detailing that games such as Iron Soldier have in which you can tell just what it is that you’re taking out. The environments are also muddled, and without a true background to work with while you’re playing, it can seem just a little lonely while you’re searching for the next target to blast out of existence.

-The Audio-

Another disappointing factor in Cybermorph is the overall audio presentation that is given to you as you play. The title theme is what you have to look forward to, but after that, you’re stuck with the sound effects that seem to be muted throughout all of the stages. The blasts and explosions all sound good on a stereo system, but you’ll find that the game seems to end there and the boredom begins if you don’t have something to fire at. One of the better features is the fact that Skylar talks to you throughout the game, but says nothing important and it seems as though you really don’t have too much communication in any case.

-The Verdict-

While Cybermorph flourishes in the game play and control department, it seriously lacks in the audio and visual. You’ll find that the game just doesn’t have enough presentation to keep the interest for too long in between the battles and that might be a turn off for some gamers. The game play itself is about as solid as it gets with plenty of action and free-flowing environments for you to run through. However, if you’re looking for a game that is solid in all areas and not only gives you a solid game play function but audio and visuals as well, then you need to start looking elsewhere.

Rating:   3.0 - Fair

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