Dreamcast D-G

Alien Brigade – By Atari

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 Deep Fighter – By Ubi Soft

Sometime in the future, humanity is living underwater in the depths of the oceans. Unfortunately, the civilization humans have forged below the ocean is being threatened by various enemies, including mother nature itself. A devastating tectonic event may soon destroy the underwater colonies and it falls on you to save the colonies. You are Moray 2, a pilot just out of the academy who is given various missions of defence and exploration to ultimately help build a giant Mothership that will transport civilization to safety. To complete your various missions, you have to select from five different minisubs: Avenger, Spitfire, Tornado, Iguana, and Wraith. You can also use “Bob,” a remotely operated vehicle to assist. Each sub has characteristics that are needed to do any given job. Your missions involve anything from dealing with Shadowkin pirates to defeating giant Sea Spiders or even nasty jellyfish! What’s cool about this game is that the missions ease you into them, starting with easier tasks and steadily becoming more complex. The game has beautiful visuals with some impressive effects (e.g., the rippling effect with sunlight) and it also makes use of video for cutscenes. These can be campy but they are part of the fun. The frame rate is good in the animations and the visuals of the game, though some of the enemies may be lacking in detail. The sound effects and music are really good as well with a score that sounds like it belongs in a movie. Though the game isn’t fast-paced, the variety of missions and the immersive visuals will keep you interested. I should mention that control does take some getting used to, something that hurts the game some. Deep Fighter is certainly a good title for the Dreamcast, despite some weaknesses.

Review by TrekMD

7/10

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  Dino Crisis – By Capcom

My friends, welcome...to Jurassic Park! Oh, um, wait...wrong set of dinosaurs. Dino Crisis was first released for the PSOne and later ported to the Dreamcast. Though I made fun at first by mentioning Jurassic Park, the game pokes fun at itself by having the characters say that “this is just like the movie!” The game follows a special task force lead by a weapons specialist called Regina. Regina and her team are to retrieve a Dr. Kirk who was experimenting on something called “Third Energy.” Dr. Kirk had been presumed dead three years before after an accident while doing his experiment. Only, the doctor is not dead and his experiments have, somehow, transported dinosaurs into the island where he was conducting his government-sponsored research. Once the intro plays and Regina and her team are dropped on the island, the game starts. You are given several choices at various points of the game, which makes the gameplay not totally linear and keeps things fresh when you come back to play. Overall, Dino Crisis has been compared in its gameplay to Resident Evil, except you deal with dinosaurs instead of zombies. There are plenty of puzzles you have to solve in order to advance in the game. Some of these are word games, others involve finding pieces that will let you open up doors, etc. Visually the game looks really good. The dinosaurs look really good but there is only a limited number of dinos (compys, raptors, pteros, and T-rex’s). Their sounds are well done and do add to the atmosphere. You can only use the standard controller but adding a Jump Pack adds to the experience. This game is very good and fans of this type of game will feel right at home.

Review by TrekMD

8/10

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 Donald Duck Going’ Quackers – By UbiSoft/Disney Interactive

It’s June 5th and Duckburg’s famous reporter, Daisy, has been reported missing. Daisy had somehow managed to infiltrate Merlock’s secret temple and, while attempting a live transmission, she was detected by the evil magician. The signal broke and Daisy vanished. It’s June 6 and Donald Duck has decided he must save Daisy. With assistance from Gyro Gearloose, Donald will be able to transport to Merlock’s temple but, first, he must help Gyro get some additional components to make his transporter powerful enough to penetrate the temple. Donald must transport to various sites in the world to get the necessary components. On his mission, Donald must gather the pieces of the Boss Warp Pad, find his nephews’ toys (which are under Merlock’s spell) and beat Glandstone Gander’s time. There are 22 levels that Donald must search through if he is to save Daisy. Going’ Quackers is a really fun title for the Dreamcast. The gameplay is straightforward and easy to learn, since the game was really targeted at younger players, but that does not mean adults can’t enjoy it. I think the issue for older players will be that the game isn’t huge. Nonetheless, the game has very good graphics and sound. The landscapes are beautifully rendered and the characters are well designed and animated. While drawn with polygons, they retain the classic looks from the Disney cartoons. Game sounds and music really add to the atmosphere of the game. The tune that plays through the game is catchy and never gets old. There are some cool tunes also when Donald achieves certain tasks (and he even dances to some of them). The control works perfectly and you can even add a Jump Pack for some force feedback. Donald Duck Goin’ Quackers is a really good game that all can enjoy.

Review by TrekMD

8/10

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 Doom For DC – By Cryptic Allusion

We all know and love Doom, sadly a sequel or port was never officially released on the Dreamcast. Thankfully the Dreamcast has a diverse and healthy homebrew scene and there have been many attempts to bring various different games to the platform in one form or another. Amongst all of the Doom ports that exist for the Dreamcast, this one stands out above all. Where as many ports by various homebrew devs have tried to incorporate the Doom gameplay but maybe haven’t hit the mark with quality or playability or they have tried to incorporate TOO much such as levels from other Dooms and mods, this version created by Cryptic Allusion is truly top class. This version is massively true to the original game for PC, it even encourages you to play the game using keyboard commands rather than controller. The game also allows for multiple levels, difficulties and it even lets you play with full screen OR if you are so used to having a border round the action (32X) you can view it with the border, though why you would is anyone’s guess. It’s also important to note for those of you Jaguar fans that thus far there is no soundtrack, only the ambient sound effects inherent. Some people prefer this because it adds a nice realistic sheen to the game and makes it eerie and unsettling when you hear enemies making noises as they approach. The graphics and controls are nice though, as it’s a homebrew port it isn’t the best looking version of Doom you’ve ever seen, but certainly it’s the best looking Dreamcast port. Ignore all the other messy and rushed ports to DC this is the definitive version and is the only one you need.

Review by dcultrapro

8/10

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 Dragons Blood – By Interplay

Dragons Blood is one of the rare action hack and slash Dreamcast games in existence. Most of the Dreamcast library consists of pick up and play fun games but Dragons Blood is an actual sword and sorcery hack and slash from the 3rd person perspective with excellent graphics and a brilliant fantasy story. Known as "Draconus: Cult of the Wyrm" in the US, Dragons Blood is a long, action packed and meaty action game with some slow/bulky but realistic and deep combat mechanics. These involve building up combos, counters, defending, magic and you even have to consider your momentum going into certain attacks. You can choose from 1 of 2 characters, a male warrior Cynric and a sorceress Aeowin, and during levels you can collect "Blessing Wisps". There are 2 types, red ones instantly replenish your health, so it's often best to not approach them until you need them, and blue wisps are used to purchase character upgrades such as armour, spells and attributes. Dragons Blood is an excellent, fun, action packed game well worth picking up for serious gamers who own a Dreamcast and want something more akin to modern games such as "Enclave" on the original Xbox or more recently "World Of Warcraft" or even "Elder Scrolls"

Review by dcultrapro

8/10

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 Drill – By Handmade Videogames

This is one of those rare pieces of work that really make you realise HOW MUCH effort people put into these homebrew Dreamcast games. Drill is a fabulous looking homebrew vertical shooter similar to Psyvariar 2, Gunbird 2 or Castle of Shikigami where, instead of controlling a ship you control a character. The graphics in Drill, for a pure homebrew title, are fantastic; it has a very unusual art style with the enemies mostly being either bug/insect looking creatures or a mixture of bug and robot. The game is somewhat limited in its style, homebrew developers can only do so much with the resources at hand, but in that respect I definitely tip my hat to Handmade Video Games for producing a fantastic looking and challenging shooter. The game is very much a bullet storm shooter and it is pretty unforgiving. You have to be prepared for a steep learning curve as the game only provides you with 3 hits and then you’re dead, no continue, no restart, you get hit 3 times and you’re out. The controls are pretty simple and are explained well in the tutorial mode but it is only a very brief overview and gives you no insight into how the game is meant to be played in order to get further. It also incorporates strategic dodging elements like Ikaruga and Psyvariar too. Sadly as of writing this I was not able to master the best techniques to play the game properly as I cannot make it more than about 20 mins without dying horribly but this by no means suggests that it is a bad game, rather that I am not yet skilled enough to proceed much farther. All in all this is a great little shooter, one of the best looking homebrews for DC and well worth a download onto CD.

Review by dcultrapro

7/10

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  Dux – By Hucast Games

Dux is another nice Dreamcast Indie shooter this time by Hucast Games. It is very similar to Last Hope but in my opinion it is far superior due to its clearer and prettier graphics and a massive array of power ups and weapons to collect and use. The whole package just screams easy to pick up and play, hard to master. The graphics are colourful, vibrant and the enemies are varied. It does share some striking similarities in terms of level design, enemy movement and behaviour as well as the general look and feel. But it manages to make things much more fun and engaging than Last Hope. Dux has a very inoffensive outwards appearance but it’s certainly no Ikaruga or Borderdown in terms of the quality of the graphics, though that really shouldn’t deter you from trying this wonderful little shooter or its soon to be released remixed version known as “Redux”. Similarly to “Last Hope: Pink Bullets” it features gameplay/difficulty tweaks as well as graphical improvements to aid in making the game more playable to the general population. On the whole, Dux is an excellent indie shooter that really moves forward the side scrolling formula forward for the Dreamcast. With its nice controls and interesting power ups such as the forward facing shield item that allows you to absorb most directly incoming projectiles. The missiles also shoot in both directions vertically from your ship while your bullets fire directly forwards and diagonal laser beams arch out and around the environment! Sadly it will not defend you from the enemies lurking on the ceilings or floors so there is a fair bit of strategy involved. A very enjoyable if uninspiring shooter for Dreamcast, checkout Redux very soon.

Review by dcultrapro

8/10

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 Evil Twin – By UbiSoft

One thing that the Dreamcast has an abundance of is Platform games! Rayman, Sonic Adventure, MDK2, Fur Fighters... the list is long and plentiful. So many people might ask "why do we need another one?" but Dreamcast owners should definitely give Evil Twin a try, because as its name suggests... it is a far darker themed platformer than they will have seen on the system. Evil Twin takes you to a world of dark childhood dreams, with weird oversized animals and insects attacking you, levels that look like they were made out of the sort of lost stuff you might find hidden under your bed, buttons, cloth, zips, drawing pins etc. In terms of artistic style Evil Twin is probably the most original platformer on the console, with imaginative level design and enemies and a gripping storyline as well as having truly delightful musical elements. Unfortunately it’s not all good news where Evil Twin is concerned. It is notorious for being one of the last retail games to be released for the system and as a result of this it was, many felt, terribly rushed to get out on time. The graphics sometimes have noticeable tears or textures might be missing, the collision and general physics mechanics in the game are very hard to get used to. Quite often you might find yourself jumping for a platform and from your perspective you may have timed the jump perfectly but Cyprien will inexplicably fall into the ocean or fly off into the distance. However if you can get past the frustrating glitches in both control and graphics there is a lot of charm and a lot to love here. Evil Twin isn't a fantastic game but its certainly worth a look for any self respecting platform fan and will reward you with a very long and engrossing story that will keep you hooked start to finish.

Review by dcultrapro

6/10

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 Fast Striker – By NG:DEV.TEAM

Fast Striker is a brilliant vertical shooter effort from the excellent NG Dev Team! The first thing you will notice about Fast Striker is the visuals. The graphics are awesome, the polygon ships and backgrounds all look insanely good. The bosses are probably the stand out part of the games graphical style being epic in both scale and visuals, often having multiple moving parts and always shooting hundreds of bullets at you. One way this game differs from some shooters of the same style is that you will collect coins or “Nuggets” whenever you shoot enemies. You can shoot enemies either while tapping fire or while holding it down however if you hold fire down the nuggets/coins will not drift towards you, where as they do slightly move towards you if you are simply tapping. I assume this was done to stop you holding fire down all the time, which I think is a great idea. It can sometimes be hard to keep up with what’s going on in this type of game, however with FS I found myself able to handle everything well even in pretty tough situations, due to the clever decision to make the backgrounds fairly uniform in terms of colour scheme and style throughout each level. Each mode that you chose gives you a different character to play with. There are several game modes: Novice, Original, Maniac and Omake. And the differences in these modes is pretty striking, each one has a different enemy style in terms of graphics and behaviour and you also get different rewards from shot enemies depending on the difficulty. One final thing to note about Fast Striker is the excellent ability to upload your scores to the web to compare with friends. For a console that died 12 years ago the Dreamcast is still going strong and receiving quality titles, and Fast Striker is one of the best of recent years.

Review by dcultrapro

8/10

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  Floigan Bros – By Sega

Floigan Brothers? Who the heck are the Floigan Brothers? The only gaming brothers I know are Mario and Luigi! Well, get ready to meet Hoigle and Moigle, two wacky brothers who love to help each other. They both run the family junkyard. Hoigle is a small guy but he’s the handy one, usually having to help Moigle get stuff. In fact, Moigle is trying to create some contraption and he and Hoigle have to work together to get all the needed parts. Moigle is a much bigger guy, so he has to help Hoigle at times if they are to complete tasks. There are also three mice that live in the junkyard who will give helpful hints to the brothers. Try to catch one if you want even more help! Floigan Brothers is a unique and original game for the Dreamcast that is loads of fun. The game is an adventure-type game where you take control of Hoigle in order to help Moigle. You will need to do things yourself but you’ll also have to play with Moigle, change his mood, point stuff out to him, and even get him to help you complete tasks that you can’t complete alone simply because you are too small. To help you learn the controls, the game has a “Cookies” module where you’re essentially in the kitchen helping Moigle bake some chocolate chip cookies. Then you can go into the main game to get all the parts needed for Moigle’s project. Floigan Brothers has great cartoon-like graphics that are bright and colourful. The game music is good and, surprisingly, the voice acting is really good as well. If you are looking for something a bit different, Floigan Brothers is for you.

Review by TrekMD

8/10

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  Frogger 2: Swampy’s Revenge – By Hasbro Interactive

Frogger was first released to the arcade in 1981 and it quickly became a favorite of many. The game has, since, inspired all sorts of sequels for pretty much every game console out there. So, the Dreamcast could not be left out and it got Frogger 2: Swampy’s Revenge. In Frogger 2, our titular frog is joined by his girlfriend Lillie Frog as they must save Lillie’s baby brothers and sisters from the evil Swampy the Crocodile. The game has to modes of play: Story and Arcade. In Story Mode you will play the game linearly to advance through. As you clear levels, Arcade Mode becomes available so you can come back and play to beat time, find gold coins, etc. or to even play in Super-Retro levels you’ve managed to unlock (using gold coins). There are also three different multiplayer games to choose from: Capture the Frog, Race, and Snake. The Super-Retro levels are modernized versions of the original arcade game but the actual arcade game is nowhere to be found here. As with any Frogger game, the trick here is to jump around the various levels to complete them. Your frog does control well, which is quite important as accuracy is need to beat the game. Some of the levels will be reminiscent of the original arcade, which I think is a nice touch, but there is clearly plenty more here. The game graphics are very colourful, sharp, and well animated. I laughed a bit when I first saw Frogger jumping as the animation is a bit funny. The game sounds and music are also quite good. This is certainly a very good Frogger title and fans of the franchise should own this for their Dreamcast.

Review by TrekMD

8/10

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  Gauntlet Legends – By Midway

Designed by Ed Logg, Gauntlet was an Atari arcade title that quickly became a hit when released in 1985. The game allowed four players simultaneously to fight against all sorts of ghoulish monsters while collecting treasure and is well remembered for many of the phrases the narrator pronounced (e.g., “Elf needs food, badly!). Over the years, the game inspired sequels and various console follow ups with a varying degree of success. So, how does Gauntlet Legends on the Dreamcast fare? Quite well, I must say. Midway was able to pretty much capture the feel of the original while modernizing the look and adding elements to the game. Now there are eight characters to choose from at the start with more characters becoming unlocked. Each character can be selected by more than one player as their clothes come in different colours. You can choose to be a warrior, a dward, a knight, a valkyrie, a wizard, a sorceress, a jester, or an archer. As in the original, each character has their own strengths and weaknesses. You start the game by entering the Tower of the good wizard Sumner and from there travel into the various worlds of Gauntlet. In each you will face all kinds of monsters but you will also find various power ups to help you along the way. There are even some secret levels you have to uncover. Gauntlet Legends has fantastic graphics with excellent music and special effects. Of course, the narrator voice is here as well to give you hints but also remind you that “Wizard needs food, badly!” I should mention that up to four players can participate together, certainly the best way to enjoy this title. Gauntlet Legends really is an excellent game that should not be missed in your Dreamcast library.

Review by TrekMD

9/10

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 Geist Force – By Sega/AssemblerGames

Geist Force is an unreleased beta for the Dreamcast that was fan released in 2012. Unfortunately, the game was not finished so the beta is not truly playable. This is really unfortunate because the game looks fantastic. The story of the game is set on a mysterious planet where the forces of the Galactic Federation and an evil Alien Queen fight over control of some mysterious force. Your job is to pilot a fighter ship to defeat the invading alien forces in order to protect your planet and maybe even the Galaxy. The story of the game itself, though, is more interesting. Geist Force was one of the first games in development for the Dreamcast. It was developed so early that the full specs of the console had not even been determined. The game was first shown at E3 1998 and then again at the 1998 Tokyo Game Show where it was reportedly 80% complete. Geist Force was originally to be released as the Dreamcast’s launch title in North America, but was cancelled in the latter half of 1999 . The game was intended to be similar to Star Fox for the SNES. In 2011, the folks from AssemblerGames were able to get a prototype of the game after a series of donations and they later released it to the public (those who donated received pressed discs of the game). This beta has graphics that are simply amazing. The intro (which has no sound) shows a planet’s invasion by the alien forces followed by scenes of the human teams preparing to defend their world. The game then starts but it isn’t entirely playable. The first stage can be played, though there are issues. Some other areas can only be explored. Unfortunate, as this really had potential.

Review by TrekMD

None

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  Giga Wing – By Capcom

For centuries, civilization has fought many wars with one goal: find and posses Medallion. Medallion is a divine stone capable of bringing both prosperity and destruction to mankind. After many wars were fought, Medallion vanished. Now, in the year 2050, Medallion has been found once more and the war has started again. This time, the weapons are more powerful, more destructive, and more advanced than ever before. It is time for the war to be over. Four pilots are tasked with the mission to destroy Medallion. To do so, they have been given a mystic stone with the power to destroy Medallion. Can they achieve their goal? Giga Wing is a vertical shooter for the Dreamcast that was first released to the arcades in 1999. This version is a perfect adaptation of that arcade game and offers two modes of play: Arcade and Score Attack. The former is for one or two players while the latter is for one player only. You can choose from four characters/ships to play, each with their own characteristics. Raijin (piloted by Sinnosuke) is a well balanced plane, Porchka (piloted by Isha) can fire eight homing missiles at once, Carmine (piloted by Ruby) is the fastest plane, and Widestand (piloted by Stück) has a powerful guided bomb. There are five stages with very different environments but the one constant here is the multitude of enemies you will face. Thankfully, you do have special weapons like the Reflect Force, which lets you bounce your enemies shots back at them. Giga Wing is fast paced, has superb graphics, great sound, and an excellent musical score. It is also straightforward and lets you rank up points like crazy. This one is a must!

Review by TrekMD

9/10

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 Gunlord – By NG:DEV.TEAM

One of the best Indie games of recent years, Gunlord is the epitome of “homage”, it is an excellent platform game and clearly draws inspiration from the classic Mega Turrican for Mega Drive (and indeed the rest of the classic Turrican series). Gunlord is massive, remarkably well made, and gorgeous; it is basically the ultimate retro video game release for Dreamcast. The production values really ooze out of every frame, the gorgeous graphics and wonderful soundtrack adds to the excellent experience. The game is somewhat linear but the level design is so extensive and some levels are so massive that you will not feel like you have seen everything after your first play through. The emphasis in this game is pretty much split 50/50 between shooting and exploring. Some of the wonderful touches really make you appreciate how much effort NG:DEV put into making this game so similar to the classic sci-fi platforming games of yesteryear, such as the poorly translated intro sequence text that pretty much every game of its type had, the awesome hardcore gameplay and excellent, simple control set-up. Gunlord is an essential purchase for any Dreamcaster and is reason enough to go out and buy one if you don’t currently own one.

Review by dcultrapro

8/10

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