Review by Al Giovetti, 12/18/96
Genre: 3D rail shooter
Publisher: GT Interactive
Requirements: 486DX2/66 or faster (Pentium 100 recommended), 8MB RAM (16MB RAM recommended), SVGA video card, Windows 95 with DirectX installed, mouse. NOTE: This demo will not work with Matrox Millennium video cards.
Company line: After 47 years the war between the two largest corporations on planet Amok finally comes to an end. Now the Bureau, a small outfit that profited heavily from the Great War, is desperate to provoke a new one. To do so, they have hired you (your name is Gert Staun) to pilot a modified battle walker/sub called the Slambird. Immersed in a 3D nightmare, you must demolish buildings, blow-up army bases and sink underwater bunkers...all to destroy peace.
History: GT Interactive has produced Duke Nukem and Quake. AMOK comes from the game company that stole the show at the 1996 E3 in Los Angeles. A new dynamic company with a lot of radical new game designers strutted their stuff and arrogance to a stunned public from within the spyder like skeleton of their exhibit.
We interviewed the Scavenger AMOK team while at E3 in Los Angeles. The interview was broadcast on the Computer Show. At E3 the product was very promissing, but the final game was not as exciting as the preview appeared.
Plot: A 47-year war lays waste to the land. You have a high tech underwater battle platform called the Slambird which walks along the bottom and kills everything that moves. You are supposed to incite another war so that the corporations can prosper again.
Missions: There are nine levels with "lots" of scenarios according to a company spokes person. Each level has a new plot and different setting and enemies. The Slambird changes for the changing goals and environments, including land, sea, desert, mountain range, city, and underground. 20 unique missions to choose from.
Weapons: Missiles, cannon, heavy missiles, and bombs. Powerups found throughout the maps change sub weaponry.
Gameplay: Can be described as addictive. You can define your own keys for control under options. The interface uses a red box for the homing missiles and a radar screen to locate enemies. You must aim the cannon by facing your enemies. A map in the upper right hand corner tells you where you are on the landscape. A red arrow keeps you moving forward into the next section of new baddies. Once you clear a level you are notified.
Artificial intelligence: The game difficulty is adjustable from hard to easy, but does not have a difficulty matrix. Hard simply throws more baddies at you.
Graphics: The resolutions vary from 320x200 to 800x600 pixels. VGA and SVGA graphics look great at distance and fuzzy close up like many 3D games. The graphics are quality job if too dark for my tastes. Amok utilizes the Bspace algorithm to create a fast, detailed, true 3D world to explore. The Bspace algorithm allows the player to "affect" the gaming environment thus player can demolish buildings, blowup army bases, and sink underwater bunkers. Advanced color palettes and fogging technology create the most realistic underwater and above ground battle scenes. This is really not a 3D game engine, it is more of a 2.5D game engine.
Animations: Move smoothly through each action of your battle robot or monster in 256-color low resolution. Sprites are used for animations rather than three dimensional objects as is seen in a true 3D game. Choose between playing in a window, full screen, and even multiple resolutions and color depth to make the game frame rate acceptable on multiple machines. Explosion animations are especially good.
Voice actors: none
Music: "Funky" music "pumps off the CD, " according to Marshall Rosenthal another new review name on the landscape.
Sound effects: The sound simply was average with good sound but not spectacular effects.
Utilities: The disk will not install on the hard drive other than minimally. The save game is console game style. You receive codes that allow you to restart a game from five saving positions. See the cheats to access these areas.
Compare to Archimedian Dynasty, Deadly Tide, and Tigershark.
Hints and tips: Amok official strategy guide from Prima Publishing is available for around $20.
Use lateral movement and you can avoid all traps and enemy shots.
Cheats: This cheat will allow you to start at any mission in the game by doing the following: 1. Go to the option screen and highlight PASSWORD and press Enter. 2. In the space next to PASSWORD type ZZZCYX. 3. A new menu item will appear on top of all of the other options called LEVEL SELECT: to allow you to select 9 different levels to start from. 4. Highlight this new option and use the left and right arrow keys to select a level. 5. Highlight BACK TO MAIN and start the game. Amok Cheat Code Page.
Journalists: Joe feels that Amok is mostly hype and very little game and suggests, "... you'd probably do best to look elsewhere."
Publish your review or preview by sending us the text via email.
Pete, Adrenaline Vault Review
GT Interactive Amok Web Site
Marshall M. Rosenthall, Boot, volume 1, number 5, January, 1997, pg. 88, (80%).
Joe Grant Bell, Computer Games, issue 77, April, 1997, pg. 72, 60%.
Scott Wolf, PC Gamer, volume 1, number 5, May, 1997, pg. 125, 65%.
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