Iron Soldier (Jaguar) review
""Mech for the Jaguar" "
"Mech for the Jaguar"
When you ask a Jaguar fan what his or her favorite game is for this console, you usually get Aliens vs Predator, Tempest 2000, or BattleSphere as the number one game. I can't say for certain that Iron Soldier is my personal favorite, but it's well in the same league as these other great games. It's easily one of my top five for the Jaguar - and I think most other Jaguar owners will agree.
Developed by a company named Eclipse, the concept is straight-forward. Your character is a soldier in the near future. You have a total of 16 different missions to work through as you literally walk around the 3D polygon playfield in a giant mechanical robot suit. This suit is armored like a tank and is heavily-armed with various weapons, including rockets, grenades, and a kickass gatling gun that's perfect for drilling helicopters out of the sky.
The game offers you a first-person view from out of the control window of your Iron Soldier suit. As you walk, the view of the outside sways up and down slightly, giving the game a more realistic feel. As you lumber around, you blast away at tanks, rocket batteries, buildings, aircraft, and even other Iron Soldiers! The graphics, while built from 3D polygons, are very simplistic, with most buildings portrayed as plain colored boxes.
But not all of the graphics are vanilla: open fire with your weapons, and you'll grin as you enjoy fantastic explosions with debris mushrooming and cascading down - not just flat 2D fireball sprites. I especially love to chuck grenades at the arrays of fuel tanks you'll see scattered about - one good hit, and you'll wipe out an entire field of buildings - and anything else nearby!
I normally don't get that excited about the music in a game, but IS actually has some energetic, catchy tunes. I enjoy the opening scene of the game: we see a view panning down a tall skyscraper to an Iron Soldier with guns blazing - and all the while the theme music is pulsing quickly in the background, setting the mood.
But of course not everything is perfect. I find that the difficulty of the missions seems to be wildly uneven. I've managed to complete some missions after just one or two attempts, yet other missions have taken a dozen or more tries before I finally stumble through to a successful completion. Also, it seems that with some of the missions, you can only compelte the mission by destroying certain targets in a specific order. For example, I must have tried to complete the "Pearl Harbour" mission 15 times before I stumbled onto a sequence of attacks that worked perfectly.
Still overall, IS has a terrific balance between cartoonish arcade action and the realism of a tank simulation. On a scale of 1 to 10, with 5 being an average run-of-the-mill game, I give IS a strong 8.5 - or maybe even a 9!
Community review by LS650 (May 24, 2007)
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