Descent Reviews

As I suspected, the UK press liked Descent a whole lot more than I did with all of the reviews I found scoring around 90%. The bulb on my scanner has gone so it’s photos only I’m afraid until I get it fixed/replaced. I’ve uploaded the images unaltered so everything should be just about legible.

The first is a matter of fact review from the April 1995 PC Review:-

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Next, the March 1995 PC Format describing Descent as the first game to better Doom:-

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This is the harshest of the reviews at 89% from the March 1995 PC Gamer:-

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It scored 94% in the April 1995 PC Zone write-up, featuring an alleged guest appearance by David Hasselhoff:-

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And finally by request, here is a review for Descent 2 from the April 1996 PC Zone:-

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Contraption Zack Reviews

I found a handful of Contraption Zack articles among the magazines. This first from the April 1993 PC Review is the cover disc I must have originally played the demo from.

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As for reviews, here is a tiny write-up from the February 1993 PC Format.

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And this is a full review from the March 1993 PC Review. Both of these reviews broadly match my own opinion. I don’t reckon the repetition is as big a deal as stated here given how short the game is though.

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The Legacy – Magazine Reviews

I only found the two reviews for The Legacy and they differ wildly. The first from the June 1993 PC Zone below is the most negative citing criticisms such as the game being more Lovecraft than Poe, objects just lying around, the room layout not making sense and the combat being difficult. All of these are true but I didn’t regard any of them as major issues. I may be doing the reviewer a disservice but I do get the strong impression they barely played the game. Certainly none of these screenshots are beyond the very early levels. One thing I do take out of this review is the Horrorsoft games it mentions were horror dungeon crawlers along something of a similar vein. I’d forgotten about them entirely and really should try them out one of these days.

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Onto the second review from the May 1993 PC Review. This is the one that got me to buy the game 23 years back so it goes without saying they liked it a whole lot more than PC Zone. The version I played did allow for saving of custom screen layouts so this must have been added post review. It still scores a very healthy 8 which is the same as Lemmings 2 and X-Wing which both got reviewed in the same issue. Maybe timing was The Legacy’s problem in the end with two big titles like that in the same month. To compound this, Veil of Darkness and Shadow Of The Comet both with a similar horror theme are in the same issue. It clearly wasn’t a bad month for PC gaming although the balance was redressed to a large extent by Accolade’s Wacky Funsters. Hopefully I’m the only person who remembers that turkey.

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Finally, the August 1993 PC Review featured a brief guide to playing The Legacy which I happened to spot when doing those Tornado scans. It’s a long way off a walkthrough but offers a few hints to help out in those difficult opening sections.

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Tornado – Magazine Reviews

I had a request for some scans on Digital Integration’s 1993 flight sim Tornado. My feelings on flight sims are clear enough so I can’t say it’s a game I ever played or know anything in particular about. It was clearly highly regarded at the time however and I managed to find a couple of reviews. The first comes from the September 1993 PC Zone:-

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I don’t have many magazines going back this early so there is just the one more from the August 1993 PC Review:-

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The Lawnmower Man Review – PC Format

Finding reviews of The Lawnmower Man proved unusually difficult. Looking through all those 1993/94 magazines, it’s clear that CD gaming was only just beginning to take off over here and didn’t get a whole lot of coverage. When they were covered, CD games were often relegated to short independent sections near the end and the titles weren’t even listed in the reviews index with all the floppy disk games.

I did find one brief review in the July 1994 issue of PC Format. This issue gave an introduction to CD-ROM gaming with buyers guide to drives and something of a catchup on CD games reviews.

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I’d possibly be slightly less harsh on the gameplay but more or less agree with every word. The 32 colour graphics would explain why it looked so awful. Sam and Max above fairs considerably better and rightly so.