Midnight Mutants

Atari 7800

Review by Joe Santulli



Graphics: 10

Sound: 7

Gameplay: 9

Overall: 9

In what may perhaps be called the most bizarre videogame in history, this action role-playing quest really delivers for 7800 owners.

I'm not repeating the ridiculous plot, but I will say that it involves headless zombies, a giant skull that collects eyeballs, walking pumpkin people, and Grampa Munster. No, not a videogame facsimile, Atari licensed the real "Grampa" Al Lewis. Now this is MY kind of game!

Gameplay is very straightforward, but not linear (did that come out right?), so you won't have a hard time picking the game up quickly. Beating the game, on the other hand, requires a fairly specific order of actions, and a goodly amount of skill. There are about a dozen items in the game to find, so you're not overloaded with complicated magic. In fact, the action is much more prevalent than the role-playing. You can throw knives, axes, and shoot a blaster gun. When you're not fighting, you're exploring. Both of the 7800 buttons are used, but the right button is more of a pause. By pressing it, Grampa's face pops onto the screen with some helpful advice. You can also select the item you want to hold from this screen.

The large Grampa graphic is impressive, but not nearly as impressive as the full-screen bosses (did you say bosses? On the 7800?) you'll have to take on at three points in the game. There's even a cinema introduction. Lots of extra work went into this one. It also seems as if the sound has been enhanced, possibly with an extra chip in the cartridge. Although sound effects are minimal (the sound of your axe hitting a zombie gets a bit grating), the tiny musical scores are catchy. Don't make the same mistake I did by playing the game with the sound turned down.

So what's the bottom line? I'll go out on a limb and say that Midnight Mutants is the best game in the 7800 lineup. It's highly original, addictive, fast-moving, and easy to play. It also features a widely varied and detailed graphics extravaganza, and above-average music. It's just the game for a dreary evening.



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Last updated: Wednesday, December 10, 2003 02:28 PM