By: Joe Rolfe
Unless you completely stay away from the mere sight of
action and adventure games, chances are you’ve heard of the
MDK series. More notorious for what exactly MDK stands for
rather than the gameplay itself, the folks at Bioware have
produced two high-quality action romps over the past few years
that both have gone pretty much unnoticed by the average
gaming crowd. Even with it’s thrilling combat sequences,
dark mature themes and quirky humor that only the minds of
Bioware could come up with, MDK and, to a lesser extent, MDK2,
never really garnered a public approval despite the consistent
high scores of media critics alike. However, the sequel has
seen a respectable number of sales, so mass-market identity
can only be a few more sequels off, right? Just kidding.
Anyway, MDK2 was published on both Dreamcast
once again receiving great accolade. In case you aren’t
quite sure with what the game was all about, it was, bluntly,
a humorous action-platformer with three strangely different
anti-heroes to use. Here’s a quick rundown of the game’s
- Play as all 3 quirky characters: the hero Kurt, the
robotic dog Max, and the eccentric Dr. Hawkins, each
offering a different gameplay experience.
- Larger rooms, outdoor environments, trickier enemies,
and more overwhelming odds.
- 10 levels of 3D action tell the story of the
Streamriders' return to take over the Earth
- Loads of new gadgets and weapon additions!
- Target your shots with enhanced Sniper Mode that
lets you enjoy limited movement to avoid enemies, and
includes new ammunition like Bouncing Sniper shots to
catch enemies around corners.
- Improved stealth abilities with Kurt's new suit's
Cloaking Device and Chameleon Power features.
- Fly, jump, and glide using the amazing ribbon chute.
- Combat the enemy with such unorthodox munitions as:
- The Smallest Nuclear Bomb
- The Portable Black Hole
- The World's Most Interesting Bomb
Even with those great features, was Bioware’s prime title
perfect? No, quite not. From the start it was obvious that
MDK2 was designed for consoles and partially for the platform
genre. The game involved far too many jumping and hopping
sequences that would make Mario proud. MDK2’s difficulty was
unbalanced as well, being that some parts of the game were
linear and easy to cruise through baddies, yet others seemed
like a near impossibility. With this in mind, Bioware is going
to tool Armageddon so that gamers don’t become frustrated
beyond reality like most of us did with the previous ports.
Customization of difficulty and control schemes are the name
of the game, plus new in-game hints to help guide stuck
players through those tough spots (and there were a lot
of them). Plus, duel analog support will be included in
Armageddon too, consequently giving the gamer a much more
precise control over those hard jumping areas of the game.
Without a doubt, MDK2 is one of the most wildly
individualistic games of this year. It shared a few problems,
but no flaw could hide its true quality. Armageddon is
supposed to ship to stores in December, so if you missed out
on the Dreamcast and PC version, now has never been a better
time to pick up Bioware’s incredible action frolic.