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Shadow of the Beast (Genesis) artwork

Shadow of the Beast (Genesis) review


"Shadow of the Beast is a game I'm not sure to like or dislike. It got great graphics, great music, a great story but the game is hard like hell so how to like it ? I played the game using an invincibility code or else I couldn't even have get past the first level, seriously. "



Shadow of the Beast is a game I'm not sure to like or dislike. It got great graphics, great music, a great story but the game is hard like hell so how to like it ? I played the game using an invincibility code or else I couldn't even have get past the first level, seriously.

STORY -9/10

I thought the story was great. You're a human child that was stolen after birth and brought into a world filled with nasty creatures. These creatures made some experiments on the baby and he transforms into a kind of half human half creature as he's trained to become the Warrior of the Shadow Beast. His masters brain-wash him, making him forget all about his human life and his past. One day, the warrior discovers the truth about himself, about his past as a human. He seeks revenge from the creatures who transformed him into a monster and stole his life so he leaves on a quest to avenge himself. No introduction in the game itself though, only in the instruction manual.

GRAPHICS -9/10

The graphics are awesome. The backgrounds are all very nice for a Genesis game and look pretty realistic. The trees looked very awesome, you should see them ! The grass and the clouds and everything... really. The graphics were like spit into 3 scrolling layers which make them look so great and all, it makes a really cool effect ! Like for example, in the level you start in, if you run -- it's like when you run for real ! The first layer (the background) is the sky and mountains, with the clouds moving while running and such. The second layer is the one the character is on, with some other things like trees. The third layer is like right in front of the screen, like the opposite of the background, with a wooden fence moving as you run. It's so hard to describe but it's so well done ! It's like there's some kind of depth into the screen ! Nice graphics ! I took off one point because the main character looks terribly bad and the enemies are so-so. (9/10 for the US version but the Japanese version of the game would get 10/10 because the enemies were re done very well (more detailed and colorful) and the character too.)

MUSIC/SOUNDS -9/10

The music is great too. It got some surprisingly catchy songs. I won't be humming them in my sleep but while playing the game, it's really cool to listen at. Nice instrumental sounds. The great music goes well along the great graphics of the game but somehow, the music doesn't really fit the game itself. The music doesn't go well with the feel the game should have had. It's like the music was meant to be for a completely different game but the music is great anyway. The sounds are pretty low so you won't really hear them.

GAMEPLAY -6/10

This game is very nice when you look at it : awesome graphics, catchy music, great story... but poor gameplay. Very poor gameplay. The game is kind of hard. You have no continues (the SNES version corrected that though), only 12 health units. Loose these 12 Health and you get Game Over. And it's very easy to loose all your health under some minutes. The enemies are very hard to hit. You punch, thinking you've hit the enemy, but somehow, it's the enemy who's hit you ! What's that ? You don't even see the enemies coming at you, they just appear from nowhere on the screen while you walk, just in front of you ! You have like 2 sec to press the attack button on time to hit the enemy. Crazy stuff, I tell you. You can pick up Health units and life potions but there are few in the game. The bosses are weird and you only have to punch them until they die, they just wander around, things like that. You can also get some weapons (an energy beam and a shooter). In the game, you enter levels and collect Keys to access other levels, etc. And there are only 3 or 4 different levels, a level outside, one inside a tree, one in a castle and a cave. You can finish this game in 30 minutes if you're good but the game is pretty challenging sometimes. The bosses are huge but disappointing. You just wander through the levels, killing boring enemies, jumping over a pit, climbing up and down ladders... boredom... there's some puzzle elements like finding items and pushing switches, avoiding traps etc. but nothing that special. And that's not all ! The game is glitchy like mad ! Example : enemies sometimes disappear of the screen, things appear suddenly, invisible walls, and the worst of all ; the game freezes if you do something you weren't supposed to do and it happens A LOT of times. What I mean is that if you don't do the things in the right order, the game becomes glitchy. If you go fight a boss before collecting a item you were supposed to collect, the screen gets glitches, invisible obstacles appear, it freezes or you die for no reason. Other things I've seen also is no-return level glitches. Like, if you go down a ladder in the wrong room, you cannot go back the ladder and are stuck in the room so you have to reset the game. Wasn't that game tested or something ?? The game is only fun when using the invinbility code because, the game is good, but way too hard and frustrating, that's why.

OVERALL -7/10

The game cost a lot of money back in time and wasn't worth that much. If you can get the game for a low price, it's your choice then. But remember : the US version is very glitchy so get the Japenese version, there's no dialogues to understand anyway. The Japenese version also has options (the US doesn't), better graphics, new sounds and rehashed gameplay, but the music isn't as good.

Rating: 7/10

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Community review by wishingtikal (August 11, 2003)

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