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Solar Crusade gives you the best graphics on CD-i

>> Thursday, January 15, 2009

Solar Crusade is an on-rails FMV shoot 'em up designed and published by Infogrames Multimedia created using Softimage 3D and modelled on Silicon Graphics workstations hardware for the Windows 95 operating system and Philips CD-i video game console. It is the follow-up sequel to Chaos Control. Something I've never seen anyone mentioning is that the amount of graphical detail in Solar Crusade is very high. While flying through the desert, have a look at all the details, the fog whirling and the textures all around. I think I've never seen a CD-i game offering these kind of graphics. Considering its announcement in 1996, it took Infogrames three years to produce Solar Crusade. Eventually it wouldn't have made it to CD-i: the system was all but dead but Infogrames still published the CD-i version in 1999. But why did they have to misprint the CD-i logo in the left corner!!

Let's have a look at what CD-i Collective had to say about this game: "The war is over. The Kesh-Rahn forces are obiterated. Earth has been freed from the alien menace. All is well within the earth defense fleet... or is it? Picking up a short time after the end of CHAOS CONTROL, Lt. Jessica Darkhield and company discover a derlict freighter while exploring the battlefield near Mars. Upon closer inspection they discover something they wish they never had... the Kesh-Rahn LIVE!!!

Whoa! Coming out of left field, INFOGRAMES released SOLAR CRUSADE long after the commercial death of CD-i. The sequel to the brief, but stunning looking CD-i classic Chaos Control, Solar Crusade shows that even a track-shooter deserves a decent sequel. Are we of the Collective happy to see it? Two words... OH YEAH! We were expecting a very poor showing from a title released this late in it's life (something like Laser Lords or Rise of the Robots). Happily, Infogrammes served up a decent swan song for their CD-i development.

Visually, it's dead on from the previous game, with only a few noted exceptions. Primarily... It's DARK. Really dark. From level 1 and up, it just seemed everything video wise was encoded a bit on the dark side. Not too offensive, but it wouldn't have hurt them to kick the brightness up just a bit. Sadly, the weapon effects are still the same. Single lines with Atari-esqe sound effects to acompany it. All else we can knock on this game is the anime. While definitly a step up from the rigid characters of the original, now they seem to be a bit too... bizzare in some of their movements. They needed to find a middle ground, still, its an improvement.

The addition of different weapons, and ammo levels was nice, making it so you couldn't just blast away only worrying about your gun heat. But, visually there is no difference between the weapons. Others do slightly more dammage to bigger bosses, but you'd never really notice you changed, unless you count the fact that each new weapon makes its own (anoying) sound. Personally, I'd have been happy even if they'd just made the lines come from a different area on the screen. heh.

As in the original, sound is so bizzarely varied. For the video, nothing but the best of sounds. Enemies engines scream by. Sounds of your ship coming almost too close to the hills echo in your speakers. For the combat of both you and the enemy, effects that would make the old Apple II cringe. Lip-sync for the anime characters is quite shoddy, making some of it like watching the old dubbed japanese monster movies. However, they did allow the voice actors to portray SOME emotion. Adding a small spark of life to the otherwise flacid and very one-dimensional characters.

Control with the mouse is dead on, with very little to complain about. Using the 3 or 4 button pads is ok, but the cursor does move a bit too slow to keep the enemies from getting in some cheap hits. One nice thing added though is branching paths. You must do something to open up other areas of the level, or you'll just keep looping in the same level until you figure out what it is.

To sum it up, a nice improvement over the origial game. Still flawed, but definitly the challenge was raised. Would make a nice addition to any CD-i players library. Think of it as a less interactive version of THE LOST RIDE only without all the programming bugs TLR has."


1 reacties:

Anonymous,  January 18, 2009 at 10:17 PM  

What do you think is the best fmv shooter Bas?

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Games 0-F

3rd Degree - PF Magic
7th Guest, The - Philips Freeland Studios
Accelerator - SPC/Vision
Adventure of the Space Ship Beagle, The - Denshi Media Services
Affaire Morlov, L' - Titus
Alfapet - Adatek
Alice in Wonderland - Spinnaker
Alien Gate - SPC Vision
Alien Odyssee - Argonaut
Aliens Interactive CD-i - Dark Vision Interactive
Ange et le Demon, L' - Smart Move
Apprentice, The - SPC Vision
Apprentice 2, The - Marvin's Revenge - SPC Vision
Arcade Classics - Philips ADS / Namco
Asterix - Caesar’s Challenge - Infogrames
Atlantis - The Last Resort - PRL Redhill (Philips ADS)
Axis and Allies - CapDisc
Backgammon - CapDisc
Battle Chess - Accent Media (for Interplay)
Battleship - CapDisc
Big Bang Show - Infogrames
BMP Puzzle - Circle (for ZYX)
Brain Dead 13 - Readysoft
Burn:Cycle - Trip Media
Caesar's World of Boxing - Philips POV
Caesar's World of Gambling - CD-I Systems
Cartoon Academy - Bits Corporation
CD-i mit der Maus - SPC Vision
CD Shoot - Eaglevision Interactive Productions
Change Angels Kick-off - HMO
Chaos Control - Infogrames
Christmas Country - Creative Media
Christmas Country - The Lost Levels - Creative Media
Christmas Crisis - DIMA
Clue - 3T Productions
Clue 2 - The mysteries continue - 3T Productions
Connect Four - CapDisc
Creature Shock - Argonaut (for Virgin)
Crime Patrol - CapDisc
Crow, The - Philips POV
Cyber Soldier Sharaku - Japan Interactive media
Dame was Loaded, The - Beam Software
Dark Castle - Philips POV
Dead End - Cryo
Defender of the Crown - Philips POV
Deja Vu - Icom Simulations
Deja Vu 2: Lost in Las Vegas - Icom Simulations
Demolition Man - Virgin Interactive Entertainment
Demon Driver - Haiku Studios
Discworld - Teeny Weeny Games
Dimo's Quest - SPC Vision
Domino - Wigant Interactive Media
Down in the Dumps - Haiku Studios
Dragon's Lair - Superclub / INTL CDI
Dragon's Lair 2- Time Warp - Superclub / INTL CDI
Drug wars - Crime Patrol II - CapDisc
Dungeons & Dragons - PF Magic
Earth Command - Visionary Media
Effacer - CapDisc
Escape from Cybercity - Fathom Pictures
Evidence - Microids
Falco & Donjon & The Sword of Inoxybur - BMi / Zephyr Studio
Family Games I - DIMA
Family Games II - Junk Food Jive - DIMA
Felix the Cat - Philips Sidewalk Studio
Flashback - Delphine/Tiertex (for US Gold)
Flinstones Wacky Inventions - Philips Funhouse
Fort Boyard: The Challenge - Microids
Frog Feast - Rastersoft

CD-i Games Index G-M

Go - CapDisc
Golden Oldies - SPC Vision
Golden Oldies II - SPC Vision
Golgo 13 - Japan Interactive Media
Great day at the races, A - CD-I Racing, Dove Films, Total Vision
Guignols de l'Info, Les - Canal+ Multimedia / INTL CDI
Heart of Darkness - Amazing Studio (for Virgin)
Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, The - Philips Kaleidoscope
Holland Casino CD-i - HMO
Hotel Mario - Philips Fantasy Factory
Inca - Coktel Vision
Inca 2 - Coktel Vision
International Tennis Open - Infogrames
Jack Sprite vs. The Crimson Ghost - PF Magic
Jeopardy - Accent Media
Jigsaw - Novalogic
Joe Guard - DIMA
John Dark: Psychic Eye - CapDisc
Joker's Wild!, The - Accent Media
Joker's Wild Jr., The - Accent Media
Kether - Infogrames
Kingdom - The far reaches - CapDisc
Kingdom 2 - Shadoan - CapDisc
Labyrinth of Crete - Philips Funhouse
Laser Lords - Spinnaker
Last Bounty Hunter, The - CapDisc
Legend of the Fort - Microids
Lemmings - DMA Design / Psygnosis
Lettergreep - Wigant Interactive Media
Lingo - SPC Vision
Link - The faces of evil - Animation Magic
Lion King, The - Virgin Interactive Entertainment
Litil Divil - Gremlin Graphics
Litil Divil 2: Limbo Years - Gremlin Graphics
Lords of the rising sun - Philips POV
Lost Eden - Cryo (for Virgin)
Lost Ride, The - Formula (Lost Boys)
Lucky Luke - The video game - SPC Vision
Mad Dog McCree - CapDisc
Mad Dog McCree II: The lost gold - CapDisc
Magic Eraser - Circle (for ZYX)
Mah-Jong - Japan Interactive Media
Making the Grade - 3T Productions
Man Before Man - Cryo
Marco Polo - Infogrames
Mario Takes America - CIGAM
Master Labyrinth - AVM AG/HQ
Mega Maze - CapDisc
Memory Works, The - Compact Disc Incorporated
Merlin's Apprentice - Philips Funhouse
Microcosm - Philips Freeland Studios
Micro Machines - Codemasters
Monty Python's Invasion from the Planet Skyron - Daedalus CD-i Productions
Mutant Rampage - Body Slam - Animation Magic
Myst - Sunsoft (for Cyan)
Mystic Midway - Rest in pieces - Philips POV
Mystic Midway 2 - Phantom Express - Philips POV

Compact Disc Interactive

Compact Disc Interactive

Games N-Z

Name that tune - Philips Fantasy Factory
New Day - Bits Corporation
NFL Hall of Fame Football - Philips POV
Othello - HMO
Pac Panic - Philips ADS / Namco
Palm Springs Open - ABC Sports / Fathom Pictures
Pool - SPC Vision
Pinball - CapDisc
Plunderball - ISG Productions
Power Hitter - ABC Sports / Fathom Pictures
Power Match - Two's Company
Pursue - BEPL
Pyramid Adventures - Compact Disc Incorporated
RAMRaid - PRL Redhill
Return To Cybercity - Fathom Pictures
Riddle of the Maze, The - Fathom Pictures
Riqa - Bits Corporation
Rise of the Robots - Mirage Technologies
Sargon Chess - Spinnaker
Scotland Yard Interactive - AVM AG/HQ
Secret Mission - Microids
Secret Name of Ra, The
Shaolin's Road - Infogrames
Skate Dude - Viridis
Smurfen, De - De Telesmurf - Infogrames
Solar Crusade - Infogrames
Solitaire - BEPL
Space Ace - Superclub / INTL CDI
Space Ranger - Studio Interactive
Special Operations Squadron - SPC Vision
Sport Freaks - SPC Vision
Star Trek - Philips POV
Star Wars: Rebel Assault - LucasArts
Steel Machine - SPC Vision
Striker Pro - Rage
Strip Poker Live - Greenpig Production
Strip Poker Pro - Interactive Pictures
Super Fighter - The Super Fighter Team / C&E
Super Mario's Wacky Worlds - NovaLogic
Surf City - Philips Sidewalk Studios
Tangram - Eaglevision Interactive Productions
Taco's Toyroom Troopers - Creative Media
Tankdoodle - Creative Media
Tetris - Philips POV
Tetsuo Gaiden - Creative Media
Text Tiles
Thieves' World - Electronic Arts
Tic-tac-toe - BEPL
Tox Runner - ISG Productions
Treasures of Oz - Philips Kaleidoscope
Ultra CD-i Soccer - Krisalis
Uncover featuring Tatjana - SPC Vision
Uninvited - Icom Simulations
Video Speedway - ISG Productions
Vinnie the Pinguin - Pandemonium Labs
Voyeur - Philips POV
Voyeur 2 - Philips POV
Whack-a-Bubble - Creative Media
What's it worth - Marshall Cavendish Multimedia / Spice
Who shot Johnny Rock? - CapDisc
Wordplay - BEPL
World Cup Golf - US Gold
Zaak Sam, De - Toneelschool NL
Zelda - The wand of Gamelon - Animation Magic
Zelda's Adventure - Viridis
Zenith - Radarsoft
Zombie Dinos From The Planet Zeltoid - Philips POV

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