Review by Joe Santulli


Animated FMV

Graphics: 8

Sound: 8

Gameplay: 5

Overall: 6

The 3DO was around just long enough to experience every genre done good and bad. It was considered a "cutting edge" system at a time when Full Motion Video (FMV) games were still considered a way to go. Well, in recent years game designers have shied away from the FMV genre, primarily because most gamers simply donít like Ďem. Iím not one of those gamers. I happen to enjoy a good FMV game. In fact, Iíll go on record as saying that Dragonís Lair was a favorite of mine, as was Space Ace. I played through the Sega CD games Critical Strike, Ground Zero Texas, and Farenheit, and I can say I liked them all. Strahl isnít the best FMV game on the 3DO (I think Psychic Detective gets that honor), but itís a good one.

Consisting of completely original art done in classic anime style, Strahl is the story of a young swordsmanís battle against evil forces. Heís trying to get the world to develop, you see... and each battle he wins moves the development along. To play, you simply have to "follow the leader" (one of the gameís downsides), guiding the main character through each scene.

The gameís merits are strictly on its artwork. Gameplay is limited to four directions, an attack, and a strength move (tap repeatedly). This is too bad - because had the game taken a cue from Dragonís Lair or Space Ace, you would have had visual clues, not solutions, to guide you. As it stands, you simply have to react quickly to the onscreen commands.

Strahl is a great looking game, with little breakup in the full-screen video you are presented with. Besides its lacking gameplay style it also suffers from being way too short. Either of these corrected would have yielded a real winner, but instead it winds up somewhere lost in the mediocre bulk of 3DO titles.


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Last updated: Wednesday, December 10, 2003 02:32 PM