Review by UnknwnMage
Reviewed: 05/26/02 | Updated: 05/26/02
Wow, has no one played this game?
As I am the first to review this forgotten relic, I would like to state simply that this is one cool game. Not too many light gun games have been made, and fewer were any good, or difficult at all, but this one was always my favorite.
The game is based in a kind of 30's pulp/film noir setting. Think Maltese Falcon only with a lot less back stabbing.
The game starts off with a ransom note. You are Stevenson, a gumshoe. Your daughter has been captured by the sinister King Dom, who has instructed you to capture the 5 Black Panther diamonds and meet him ''or else''. Thus your quest begins...
The graphics were decent for 1986 but there was far better out at the time. Most colors were monotone and the background design looked mostly like stock graphics. You, Mr. Stevenson, resembles Humphrey Bogart only...shorter,
with glasses, mustache and a rather large schnauze.
The sound was actually pretty good, the title music was excellent evoking a noir like feel. The stage music is listenable, and changes enough that it doesn't irritate you after awhile. The sound effects are basic, nothing too elaborate but thankfully, it does its job.
I've said once and I'll say it again: this game is hard. The game's blessing is also its curse. To move Stevenson you have to shoot, with makes him jump. Otherwise, he walks strait into any obstacle that comes his way. The gameplay is cumbersome at best, which adds to what would ordinarily only be a mild challenge. If you don't hold the gun to the screen (c'mon raise your hands, you know you do it) the difficulty is almost doubled. Mysterious bottles of moonshine get throw at you from the right hand side of the screen, lots of pitfalls, falling rocks, bombs and other projectiles to kill you, which only takes one hit.
This is where the game truly takes a hit. Once you get through it (if you haven't thrown your machine against the wall yet, that is) you'll be so relieved you wont play it for a week...but then you'll play it again because it is sadistically addictive.
Rent it (if you can still rent NES titles...) if you plan on beating just once, otherwise you could probably find it in a bin someplace for 5 bucks. Either way you get your money's worth.
Overall, a pleasant gaming experience. Not overwhelmingly great but fun to pull out and play for an hour or two. Enjoy!
Rating: 3.5 - Good
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