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:-
Next, the March 1995 PC Format describing Descent as the first game to better Doom:-
This is the harshest of the reviews at 89% from the March 1995 PC Gamer:-
It scored 94% in the April 1995 PC Zone write-up, featuring an alleged guest appearance by David Hasselhoff:-
And finally by request, here is a review for Descent 2 from the April 1996 PC Zone:-
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.
As for reviews, here is a tiny write-up from the February 1993 PC Format.
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.
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.
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.