Critical Depth (PlayStation) review
"Critical Depth is a very enjoyable action game. It takes vehicular combat to a whole new level, literally. Many people may just find this as another Twisted Metal wannabe, but itís is different is so many ways. There is a better storyline in Critical Depth, and well, its underwater. Maneuvering with submarines rather than cars is a totally different experience. Thatís enough proof for me that itís an original game. "
Critical Depth is a very enjoyable action game. It takes vehicular combat to a whole new level, literally. Many people may just find this as another Twisted Metal wannabe, but itís is different is so many ways. There is a better storyline in Critical Depth, and well, its underwater. Maneuvering with submarines rather than cars is a totally different experience. Thatís enough proof for me that itís an original game.
The graphics in Critical Depth are just above average. The frame rate is slow and choppy. There can be so many explosions on screen at once that it obstructs your view. This can be very frustrating when chasing after your opponents. The environments can look too empty at times. I know in reality the ocean is vast and enormous, but this is a video game! Another bad thing about the graphics are the little extra fishes, or as I like to call them, ďspace fillers.Ē Their only purpose in the game is to just get in your way. The game also could have used some more FMVs. The opening sequence isnít enough for me.
On the other hand, there are also many good points about this game. The submarine models look excellent. The subs in the game modeled after the real ones are very accurate. There are also many creative subs that look just as good. Another good point is that the subsí movements through the water look very smooth and realistic. If you ever saw a sub move through water, you wouldnít know the difference between the two. The missiles and torpedoes that you shoot from your submarine also look and move realistically. What can be more enjoyable than watching your heat-guided missile chase down an enemy sub? Not much.
The sound in Critical Depth is pretty good. The menu music is only average. You really just donít notice it since you spend little time in menus anyway. The in-game music is also just average. You never notice yourself saying how good the music is, but you never notice if itís bad either. But maybe thatís because the sound effects are so large in number. Every time you fire a torpedo, you hear the swoosh as it launches from your sub toward your opponent. Utilize your shield, and you can hear the bzzzzzz as it protects you from enemy fire. There is hardly ever a silent moment while playing this game. That works well for me.
Believe it or not, there are storylines behind all of the violence. Every character has their own storyline, but donít get excited. The storyline is very Twisted Metal-esque. After completing all of the missions, you get a short conclusion of their storyline. What sets it apart from Twisted Metal is that in between each mission, a little bit of the storyís plot is revealed. This is very nice and unique touch. The only thing that reduces this rating is that the endings are just weak attempts of ironic humor. Dramatic endings would have been a lot better than the comical ones.
The controls are decent. Having the shoulder buttons as the firing triggers does take getting used to, but after awhile, it becomes second nature. Turning can become frustrating, especially when trying to find an enemy sub. You turn slowly in every direction looking for your target when you finally realize heís right above you. But by then, itís already too late. Moving through the water is easy, but moving quickly isnít. This fact is very apparent when chasing down an opponent. Other than these two bad spots, the gameís controls are responsive and easily learned.
The gameplay has its pros and cons. The game is VERY difficult when played normally. I took me several tries to get passed the first stage. Collecting ďpodsĒ to complete levels is fun and enjoyable. But the best part of the gameplay is blowing up your enemies! Whatís more entertaining than destroying enemy submarines with depth charges and laser beams?
Critical Depth has a high level of replay value. Completing the game with each character certainly adds to the replay value, even if the endings arenít that good. After that, this game is only fun to play against a friend. But thatís not too bad. So get a couple of your buddies over, and have fun blowing up each otherís subs.
Replay Value: 7/10
Overall, this game is pretty good. It reminds me of the good Twisted Metals. The graphics and gameplay have their high points and their low points. The sound effects are awesome, and the storylines are very intriguing, until you get to the endings. There is quite a bit of replay value in this game. I recommend for everyone to at least rent this game. You should find it enjoyable. I did.
Community review by cdbavg400 (November 15, 2004)
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