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Turok: Rage Wars (Nintendo 64) artwork

Turok: Rage Wars (Nintendo 64) review


"Did you know that there were multiplayer first-person shooters for the N64 other Goldeneye and Perfect Dark? No really – it’s true! Turok: Rage Wars is the fleshed out multiplayer scenario that didn’t quite pan out in Turok 2: Seeds of Evil. It might not offer the compelling single player found in Rare’s dominating shooters, but the combination of well designed maps, balanced weapons, and a flying drill called the cerebral bore (which does exactly what you think it..."



Did you know that there were multiplayer first-person shooters for the N64 other Goldeneye and Perfect Dark? No really – it’s true! Turok: Rage Wars is the fleshed out multiplayer scenario that didn’t quite pan out in Turok 2: Seeds of Evil. It might not offer the compelling single player found in Rare’s dominating shooters, but the combination of well designed maps, balanced weapons, and a flying drill called the cerebral bore (which does exactly what you think it does) means you should consider removing that Perfect Dark cartridge from your N64 and inviting your friends over for this new (old) outlet for your phallic aggression.

I do hope you have friends, because playing by yourself isn’t entirely fun. The campaign isn’t so much a campaign as it is a series of pre-determined multiplayer matches that you play -- by yourself. Can you get 15 kills with only 5 lives? Probably, since the AI is moronic. Playing the campaign with one character will unlock more characters. If you play enough times, you can unlock all the characters. This is extraordinarily repetitive since all scenarios are a variation of one of the game’s four modes: deathmatch, team deathmatch, capture the flag, and monkey tag.

Monkey tag isn’t as epic as it sounds. One person is the monkey. The monkey can run fast but has very low health and can’t use weapons. The other players chase said monkey and score a point for every instance of monkey-cide. If the monkey reaches a special spot on the map, he or she will return to their upright form and someone else will become the monkey. As an added bonus, if the monkey finds his precious bananas, he will return to normal and arm himself with the usual instruments of destruction while the other players are mutated into the furry targets. Poetic justice?

It is fitting that your arsenal contains the trademarks of the Turok series, including a crossbow, a boomerang, weapons that inflates your foe until they explode, and of course the standard viral weapon that injects an alien fetus into your target. In the hands of equally skilled players, you will not find one weapon to be your assured doom. You may be shocked, in fact, to discover that you begin each match with all your weapons (though you are limited to the 5 weapons you select before the match begins) but no ammunition beyond 50 bullets. How can you sublimate your hate for your friends with such a cache? Fortunately there is anti-gravity ammo containers mysteriously floating at all reaches of the map to ensure that you have what you need. This is welcome, for you will run out of ammo for a weapon often in a single firefight.

The glory of Rage Wars is in its maps. Unlike the generic spaces of Rare’s shooters, Rage Wars’s arena maps have convoluted tunnels, sniper nests, ladders, walkways, and all the features one would expect from a modern shooter. This is done by utilizing a clever feature called a “jump button”. If you have been playing Goldeneye a lot this skill might seem difficult to utilize, but with a little practice you will be jumping up and down with new found liberation.

It is for these latter two things that you will primarily enjoy Rage Wars. Careful attention has clearly been put into map design and weapon balance at the cost of the single player experience. Still, what the game does, it does very well. If you like shooters with interesting maps, fair weapons, a gun that drills a hole through your foe’s cranium, and the ability to play as a velicoraptor then it follows that you should try Rage Wars.

Rating: 7/10

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Community review by dagoss (January 15, 2008)

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