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5  |  A Bit Of A Wrek (Wreck)...
Darryl B. , 8/4/2005 3:34:56 PM
Eh. T-Mek was a great, pulse-pounding, fast-paced arcade game, but a bit was missed/messed up in this translation.

In the arcade original, any racing game (Need for Speed, Grand Theft Auto) was combined with Battlezone as you battled meks (kind of a cross between tanks and hovercraft, I guess) for survival in an apocalyptic world (why is it that these post-war worlds ALWAYS have the best games?!). You could chose between one of several meks, from ones that are light on their feet (so to speak), along with weapons and armor, whereas the ones that had the most devastating firepower and heaviest armor moved slower. Destroying a mek left behind a glowing sphere of some sort, which you could scoop up (hopefully before another player could) to bring down some of the damage your mek had received during the round, a glowing thing that appears during levels, if you could drive through it, grants you increased powers (like defense), and there were bosses after several stages that you had to defeat.

Unfortunately, with this version, the controls here are over-responsive, making you miss your targets a lot, as moving your cursor usually passes up a mek; just fire a lot and hope enough of your shots hit their marks (via target scope that was apparently made at a post-nuclear K-Mart by a blind guy).

Some of the sound effects are also weak, and what's this about the "cinematic sequences like the arcade classic" as it said on the box? Most of them were cut out! Why put in that lie when we can obviously tell that isn't true? Granted, this isn't a big thing -- this is in regards to a Lord of the Rings Sauron-like official telling you to "cease fire!" at the end of a round, along with shots of what an upcoming boss' ugly mug would look like -- but it was just blatant false advertising nonetheless (unless this was another victim of changes being made to a game at the last minute after the packaging was finished, which could be true).

However, several new levels that were added to the game that weren't in the original (one of which looked like you were in a giant, radioactive honeycomb, or something), but that didn't help save this adaption of T-Mek, anyway. Sure, it's fast and fun, but with the movements being jerky, the radar difficult to read, and with the overcompensating of the controls making it even more difficult, that leads to a waste of chits (or whatever currency is used in future, devastated worlds, like in the Water World movie). Granted, I've seen a few people recommend this game on the net here and there for "must-buy 32X games"-type threads ("must avoid" seems to be more the case, in my opinion), but possibly they never played the arcade version. Likewise, this almost received a 6 from myself, but that's still not a very high score. So a few people have enjoyed it here and there...just don't pay too much for this game if you feel you HAVE to have the thing, no matter what.

Me, I'd rather just be watching my back in that future world, rather than seeing what my souped-up SUV from hell could do to the other guy. (Guess I'd be considered a pretty dull person there. I suppose I'd have to take up Bridge instead.) 5/10

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