Played through this after watching Dr. Dos's recent livestream and it holds up quite well as a Parasite Eve parody, once you tweak the game speed to make the cutscenes go faster. To borrow Zenith's metaphor, it's like a matcha latte - better than it sounds. The large cast of Da Hoodians work in the game's favour this time as they help flesh things out better than other ZZT video game 'ports' or parodies.
Interesting theory, throw in a few jokes and nobody will notice how bad the game is. Unfortunatly it dosn't work, or ol Chuck's Los Refrito's would be up their with Burgar joint. Nice try Tseng, no cookie. Pros: Parasite Eve was a good game Spoofs are funny Good idea Cons: P_E engine is very slow (might be just my system, it's a 486 [stop laughing please] with Windows 3.11 [you laugh again and i'll shoot you]. Good jokes VS Bad game theory fails I havn't played this game for a while, so i'll test it on my computer (when i played it first, it was on my 268), so i may be able to make it run faster. - Top Ranking Soldier - over and Out.
A good game in theory executed poorly. The map engine was very difficult to navigate. I'm going with Zenith on this one. Good story (hey it's gem hunter!) but incredibly tedious. I give it a 3 for having a battle against craNK.
Being a fan of Squaresoft RPG's in general (Parasite Eve in particular), I naturally had to grab this game. Essentially a parody of the Parasite Eve game, it's handled quite well, from the RPG battles to the cinema sequences that are almost the same as the originals (I dont count the dialog in the similarity).
The game starts with Gem Hunter and Kim playing a game of 5-card stud poker. They had taken a bet: if Kim wins, she gets to drag Gem Hunter wherever she would like to for the night. Kim wins, and she takes Gemmy ("I TOLD you to quite callimg me Gemmy!!") to an opera at Migraine Hall.
It all stays the same; just incredibly boring, until the people start setting fire. One of the actors is possessed by Steve, who has control of the Xamboxumbadria in all beings. And so, Kim must stop Steve.
The battles are handled quite well, with te ability to attack your enemy, use special attacks, or heal yourself. It's a lot more involved than most other ZZT RPGs, all because of the variety in ways you can attack (instead of "ATTACK" and "DEFEND"). While waiting for your AT gauge to charge, you must dodge the attacks of the enemy. Its usually more fun if you set the ZZT game speed up by 3 notches. Add to that, you have 3 equippable weapons, and the ability to find new items and November Energy abilities to use on enemies (or yourself).
The cinema sequences, which are used to advance the story A LOT, are handled like most other ZZT games. It takes a while to see where all the characters are, and what they're doing. The dialog is entirely done using message row text (and since this isnt MZX, its flashing, but I can deal with it). The only thing preventing me from ?ZAP-ing my way to the next board was the funny dialog, courtesy of Tseng.
It's amazing that such a game can be done so well in ZZT, so I give Tseng's effort 4.5/5.
IN REVIEW: HIGHS - Good graphics in most parts, funny dialog, RPG battles handled well for the most part LOWS - Cinemas can get boring. BOTTOM LINE - A good ZZT RPG, for those looking for something to rid them of the awful taste left by "Final Fantasy 2", or those who just have to have every RPG on z2.
If Tseng games were ice cream, Gem Hunter SE would be Rocky Road, Mega Job would be Mint Choc Chip, and November Eve would be Brandy and Butterscotch; a good idea in theory, but in practice overrated and just a little crap.
The plot leads on from Gem Hunter 2; following Kim's kidnapping by Aric on planet Seegeeb and Gem Hunter's saving of her from rabid dobermans, the two head to the Da Hood capital (whose name I forget), and make a visitation to an opera. Towards the end of the torturous performance, however, one of the actors begins acting (duh) strangely; before action can be taken, the entire audience spontaneously combusts, eith the exception of Kim. Gem Hunter survives being burnt horribly, and is taken to hospital while Kim goes after the killer; only to find he is possessed by an evil spirit or something called Steve who is making the xamboxumbadria of the Da Hood citizens (similar to earth's mitochondria) overcharge and explode. Being from Earth, Kim is not in possession of this organelle perculiar to Da Hood, and is therefore the only person able to approach Steve. With the help of Tyrone and the Boys in Blue, she tries to stop Steve before he blows up the entire city. The plot's a rip of Parasite Eve, and I like it.
So I like the plot. So why 2/5? Instead of writing a whole lot of crap I'll condense my scathing into a few bullet points;
- annoying RPG battle engine which is too slow to manouvere, mildly confusing and requires no real stategy beyond "dodge the bullets"
- horribly tedious "flashing line at bottom of screen" cinemas with borderline retarded dialogue
- inverted shading ruins the otherwise neat graphics
- too damn many of the aforementioned horribly tedious cinemas
- irritating, repetitive title screen and cinema music (courtesy of Kev Carter, who usually wrote much better (except the stuff in Freedom, of course))
Having said that, there's a few nice touches. Having all the cameos in the game explode horribly was neat, as was the effect of having Flatcoat Lab explode and 'turn into' a dark grey charred corpse was neat. The idea of having a third, locked file with a proper ending also adds to the gameplay, and the third file is admittedly engaging, having mini-games and a battle with craNKGod. But the game is less than the sum of these parts.
Don't get me wrong, I like Tseng games for the most part; I just find this one severely lacking. But hey, it's better than Welcome to Hell, which in terms of ice cream is that horrible Rum and Raisin flavour. =(
My advice here is to skip the game and just play the third file!
- all opinions on ice cream are subjective to Nadir
this game was awsome. I can not believe how Tseng made this game. He took an exact replica of Parasite Eve and edited the story a little to make it different and really funny. I recommend anyone who likes rpgs at all get it.
Reviewed: Mar 30, 2023
Rating: out of 5.0 This user has opted out of providing a numeric rating