Publisher: Virgin (1993)
I'm still trying to figure out why this slow, plodding mystery game was so popular on the PC in the early 90's. It couldn't possibly have anything to do with the tepid gameplay. Perhaps it was the abundance of eye candy, effectively combining live acting with nicely rendered environments. 7th Guest places you in a mysterious mansion for a night with six other ghostly "guests". As you explore the various rooms, you'll encounter ghosts played by live actors filling in parts of a very scripted storyline. In addition to watching video clips, you also need to solve a series of puzzles. While not particularly taxing, the fact that you don't get any directions makes the puzzles a bit more difficult and fun. Unfortunately the storyline is confusing and the snobby characters aren't particularly compelling. What's most notable about 7th Guest is its biggest downfall: the general lack
of atmosphere. Much like the early Alone in the Dark games, the developers failed to understand that bright, clean, colorful rooms just aren't very scary. Even the "surprise" animated clips that are supposed to be intense fall flat. 7th Guest is a novel concept, but despite its good looks, there's not much of a game here. © Copyright 2004 The Video Game Critic.
Publisher: Philips (1993)
I loaded up this game thinking "the CD-i really needs a good shooter". After playing it, I still feel the same way. Alien Gate's objects are large and high resolution, but its weak gameplay makes you wonder if the developer ever actually played
a video game before (a fun one, at least). Your silver ship is humongous, and it has feet and gloves sticking out of the sides, making it look like a goofy, high-tech scarecrow. A mean-looking bald head at the top of the screen dispenses waves of foes. Your enemies are large and diverse, including birds, bees, bombs, centipede, UFOs, and knives. Each wave has its own distinct digitized sound effect, and some of these are amazing. Unfortunately, the gameplay is excessively simplistic and lacks strategy. All you do is move around and shoot, and the early waves are woefully easy. I suspect most players will lose interest by the time the real challenge kicks in around stage 7. There are 25 waves in all, and a password is provided after every five. Alien Gate can be irritating at times. The sheer size of your ship makes it difficult to dodge anything. Certain enemies require multiple shots to destroy, and the first few hits don't even seem to register. Finally, the hysterical laughter during the "game over" screen makes you want to track down the programmer and beat the living [expletive] out of him. Alien Gate is a lousy shooter, but it doesn't have much competition on the CD-i. © Copyright 2003 The Video Game Critic.
Publisher: Philips (1994)
This lighthearted platform game is technically solid but would never give Mario or Sonic a run for their money. You guide a goofy-looking sorcerer's apprentice through six levels of cartoonish platform jumping action. The beautifully animated graphics are Disney quality, and responsive controls are easy to learn. You can jump on just about anything and even survive falls from high places. Unfortunately, one hit is lethal, and parts of the game are nearly impossible to survive. Despite the impressive visuals, the audio generally got on my nerves. The relentless bouncy music is nauseating, and the ultra-cute sound effects are cringe-worthy. The lead character is simply not cool, and will probably appeal more to little kids than adults. The thing I find especially odd is the presence of scantily clad females scattered throughout the levels - they seem out of place. The Apprentice has a few things going for it, but all in all it's very forgettable. © Copyright 2002 The Video Game Critic.
Publisher: TripMedia (1994)
This game wowed the critics in 1994 by delivering a mind-blowing audio-visual experience that put other CD games to shame, and even today Burn:Cycle is impressive. You play Sol Cutter, an electronic thief of the future who finds himself with a computer virus in his brain and only two hours to live. The game plays like your standard point-and-click adventure with some aim-the-cursor shooting stages thrown in. But what really sets Burn:Cycle apart is its superb audio and visual presentation which effectively immerses you in a desolate, Blade Runner-style environment. The futuristic architecture is awe-inspiring, and by selecting directional arrows you smoothly move through this mysterious virtual world. The characters and objects are completely digitized and look terrific. Each character has a distinct personality, and the acting is exceptional. Moody industrial music complements the action perfectly, and a soundtrack CD is even included with the game. The storyline is decidedly adult and can be convoluted at times, so having a strategy guide on hand probably isn't a bad idea. The controls tend to lag a bit behind your commands, but at least you can save your place at any time. Burn:Cycle is highly original and if you have the patience, it will suck you into its amazing world. It's a quality title that no Philips CD-i owner should be without. © Copyright 2003 The Video Game Critic.
Publisher: Philips (1995)
Publisher: Silicon Beach (1991)
Our high score: 1,450
Publisher: Philips (1994)
Dragon's Lair II: Timewarp
Publisher: Philips (1994)