Evil Dead Review
For Dreamcast and PlayStation
By Contributing Writer Jimmy Payne
As a big fan of the Evil Dead movies, I was more than a little excited
when I found out that THQ was working on a game based on the hilarious
trilogy. To my dismay, the only thing that THQ and developer Heavy Iron
Studios could come up with is a bad hack-and-slash game that isn't worthy of
the beloved Evil Dead name.
The only reason to play this game at all is to listen to the funny voice-
overs by Bruce Campbell, who could very well be the king of catch phrases.
In addition to phrases from the movies, the game also has brand new ones that
would make Duke Nukem proud (such as killing an enemy and then saying, "Say
hi to disco for me"). Of course, a game that bases its appeal solely on
voice-overs tends to get old as soon as you've heard all of the voice-overs.
It's frustrating to play Evil Dead because it's clear that Heavy Iron has
some level of talent; they just didn't know how to use it when they were
making this game. The eye-pleasing backgrounds do their job of giving the
game the same dark and smoky atmosphere of the movies, with familiar
landmarks like the destroyed bridge, the tool shed, and the deserted house
When it comes down to the actual gameplay, Evil Dead is no better than the
average game from 989 Studios. The Resident Evil control set-up works very
well in Resident Evil because you usually have plenty of time to stop, turn,
and move on. On the other hand, when a game like Evil Dead throws fast-paced
action at you on a constant basis, stopping and turning often results in
As if the control wasn't screwed up enough, the overall direction of the
game is also sadly misguided. You'll often find yourself surrounded by
enemies and spending large amounts of time just trying to fight your way
through them all. What makes this so excruciatingly annoying is the fact
that the vast majority of the time when you kill a monster, another one pops
up to take its place within seconds. This makes combat a ridiculously time-
consuming process and also eliminates any potential exploration aspects that
the game might have otherwise had.
Evil Dead feels even more like a poorly-designed arcade game when you
consider the fact that enemies can surround you and severely injure you with
relative ease, but with each kill you acquire another health pack. The
entire game seems like a horror-themed version of Tekken 3's repetitive
side-scrolling mode, only without the enemies dropping entire turkeys
whenever they die.
Succeeding or failing in Evil Dead doesn't have much to do with skill,
which is strangely fitting since it didn't take much skill to create the game
in the first place. Even the most loyal of Evil Dead fanatics would have a
hard time justifying the purchase of this mindless button-masher.
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