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In its fall, the comet had also released a virus which made members of the Order decay quickly and putrefy. To stay alive, they had to replace some of their limbs with their bionic equivalents. In this neo-medieval style epoch, technological weaponry and robotics is quite advanced, and largely used by the Order to protect itself from its enemies.
It is in this chaotic context that you will start the adventure. You must talk to the people and accomplish their various missions in exchange for money and new weapons. You can't trust anyone in this world as some of the missions you may receive are setups. A piece of advise: better do the missions the Front gives you.
Compared to the original Doom, there are some neat features that were added such as the inventory where you can store items that you may not want to use on the spot, the possibility to jump, breakable glasses, and the multiple use of weapons.
The real novelty is that your character evolves with time and practice, as in a traditional role playing game. However, only two characteristics can be improved in Strife: the accuracy and stamina. Whenever you complete your mission's objectives or simply practice, these two characteristics will evolve. As a consequence, it will improve your shooting skills, immediately noticeable by a smaller spread of the projectiles which gives you greater precision.
Strife's playability is good, but can be a bit slow at times. You can always hold your shift key down to go faster, but I personally don't think it is very good for the keyboard. Anyhow, you don't need that much speed as most of the time you can't shoot at the people in front of you. Another point that annoys me is the enormous size the game takes once installed on the hard drive. No less than 70 MB are required in order to play with the game without any other choices that are usually present in most of the games nowadays.
Both sounds and voices during the game are excellent. It is quite a pleasure in fact to hear the characters give you a mission order. Once you start talking to them, the characters you encountered will explain their missions and give advice while you view an animated close-up of them.
Because the game is based on the Doom engine, it supports multi-player over networks and modem connections. There you can have the old feeling back of slaughtering and "revenge-o-drome". However, in this mode you don't need to accomplish missions, and all you really need is a load of weapons and other accessories with a live target to shoot at. It is then that you are really freed from all your frustrations.
The screen definition (320 by 200) compared to the actual standards is not particularly convincing. Of course, it is appealing for people with lower configurations such as a 486DX-33 for example, but perhaps the development team could have added the possibility to change the graphical resolution according to the performances of your machine. With this low resolution, the characters as well as the various enemies you will encounter within the game are too cartoon-like, and you don't really feel as if you are in a chaotic world where your own survival is threatened every moment.
Click here for screen shots.
Written by Frederic zur Nedden
486 DX2-66 MHz or higher,
Min 8Mb memory,
MS-DOS 5.0 or later,
Hard drive with 70Mb of free space,
Double speed CD-ROM drive or faster,
VGA Video graphic card,
Mouse, joystick and modem support.
16/32-bit soundcards supported.
77 Geary Street, Suite 500,
San Francisco, CA 94108-5723.
Web site: Velocity
Distributed by 3DO Company