Review Information
Reviewer Name: ShinobiMatt
Reviewer Email: Private
Game Difficulty: Easy
Difficulty Options: False
Game Information
Full Title: Rampage
Year Released: 1988
Game Type: Misc/Other
Max Players: 2
Introduction


I can still remember the day I first bought Rampage for the SMS. I had gone to my local store to buy a different game which they did not have in stock. I browsed through the games they did have, was impressed by the screenshots on the back of the box and took a chance with my hard earned cash. Was it worth it? Read on to find out.
Gameplay
RAMPAGE is a 1 or 2 player game that surely has it's roots in the old King Kong movie. You play as 1 of 3 giant mutated animals - Ralph the Wolf, George the Ape or Lizzie the Lizard. Your objective is to clear each screen of buildings. You do this by climbing up them, jumping between them and generally just punching the living daylights out of them. Trying to stop you are army soldiers with guns and rocket launchers, helicopters, tanks and all sorts of other dangers including lightening! ONE of the appeals with Rampage is that you can just pick it up and get into it almost instantly. It's pretty obvious what your task is, and you do attain instant satisfaction from the mindless destruction of it all. Neat little touches such as the ability to increase your health by eating the damsels in distress add to the enjoyment. HOWEVER, it's simplicity is its major shortfall. You soon realise that practically every screen is the same. Sure there's a couple more buildings, different backdrops now and again and an increasing number of enemies but you find the game gets so monotonous that your mind drifts away from your beloved Master System. ONE of the ways this is counteracted is with the simultaneous two player mode. Like a lot of games, there is more enjoyment in you and a buddy both taking charge of one of the giant creatures and creating double the destruction on the poor cities. And when that gets boring you can even get the characters to fight amongst themselves!
Graphics
As I've said in the intro, the first thing that grabbed me about this game was the still screenshots. The title screen is very similar to the arcade version. The in game backgrounds are colourful and nicely drawn. The 3 selectable main characters and large, detailed and well animated. There's some flicker as your character overlaps enemies but it not bad and doesn't detract you from the game. All in all it's another Master System game that looks vastly superior to it's NES counterpart.
Sound & Music
THE arcade version didnt have any background music so the programmers have had to make their own dittys up here. Unfortunatley their efforts are pretty tedious! The main problem is the main theme played during the game - it's not very original, not very catchy and quite repetitive. It doesn't help that the same tune is used for each stage as this means that every 60 seconds or so the damn thing starts again from the beginning. THERE'S quite a few sound effects played during the game which, although nothing special, do the job they're required to do. If only they were loud enough to drown that tune out!
Controls
The D button moves your character in the required direction. Button 1 punches and button 2 makes you jump. When your climbing a building holding punch with either up, down or backward (depending which way you are facing) makes you punch in that direction. Once your climbing a building you can move around them smoothly and can even leap from one building to another. THERE are a couple of irritation though. In order to climb a building you have to be stood slightly overlapping the edge of it and push up. This is fairly strict. If your not perfectly positioned it can lead to you character looking aimlessly at the sky as a tank sneaks up behind to launch a rocket in his butt. Also, the jump button only allows you to jump forward the way you are facing which can be frustrating when on the ground trying to dodge a large number of bullets.
Replay Value
Scores
Gameplay
Graphics
Music & Sound
Controls
Replay Value
REPLAY value is not great. As it's fairly easy, it is the kind of game you put on for a quick go but often knock off before your game is finished as it is too repetitive. Apart from slight changes in backdrops every screen is practically the same as the one before. By the time you've cleared 10 or 15 screens you feel like you've seen everything the game has to offer. AFTER I bought it, I did used to put it on more when I had a second player around which was alway a bit more fun. Even then though after a few screens we got bored and started just fighting each other. Who knows, maybe this is where atari got the idea for Primal Rage from!
Conclusion
To be honest I was disappointed with Rampage after I'd bought it. At first it seemed like it could be a quality game, but when the novelty of it wears off your left with a very repetitive platformer. It's a very good conversion of the arcade game, but the same faults apply to the original coin-op as well as the Master System version. As a home console game there just wasn't enough variety to recommend it.
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