Well I tried to post this review on gamespot, but of course glitchspot wouldnt allow it and gave me a 404 page every time I tried. I think maybe older games cannot be reviewed any more or something. Also user scores and reviews seem hidden and broken at the moment for older games. Cmon gamespot... Anyways here is the review. It's nothing amazing, but I am pissed I cannot actually post the review, so I'll post it here. Well that depends if glitchspot will let me or not...
Turok: Battle of the Bionosaurs
This game is interesting for about 10 minutes. Then very quickly you get sick of the extreeeeme repetition and needless frustration.
I had very fond memories of this game, as it was one of the first video games I ever had. Unfortunately, my happy nostalgic memories of this game couldn't hide the fact that the actual game is pretty mediocre.
You play as an Native American looking guy and you start the game with a knife and bow. You will fight the same 2 or 3 enemy types over and over for the whole first level and the combat is pretty boring. Enemies will always just charge at you then charge in the opposite direction, then back at you again. So the best strategy is to tip toe your way right to the limits of their patrolling range and poke them with your knife a few times. Sometimes enemies will stand in place and shoot at you if they have a gun. Annoyingly, hitting an enemy with any weapon doesn't slow them down or stop them, they will continue charging at you undeterred by the consequences of very recent shotgun blasts to the face or shankings from your knife. It is pretty annoying because often you will hit them then they will charge at you and damage you 2 or 3 times even while you are hitting them. I guess the enemies just have no fear of death or feel no pain or something. Perhaps all the enemies are on drugs I dont know. Really, it's probably just a badly developed combat system. Oh, and you wont just fight each enemy in the level one time, you will surely have to backtrack many times and refight all the boring enemies.
Really though this game is less of a side-scrolling shooter and more of a platformer. The platforming isn't easy either. You have to be pretty precise and then you have to be ready to whip out a weapon to atttack the enemies that often ambush you right when you land a jump. This game is like 60 percent platformer 40 percent combat. The platforming is more fun than the combat so that is good I guess. Plus you have to ration all your bullets since ammo pickups aren't all that frequent. You always feel guilty using your guns since they have limited ammo so most times you will have to use your knife then in order to conserve your ammo anyways.
The game is setup so you have to collect 3 key things to progress to the next level, but usually when you find one key you have to drop down and backtrack through the entire level again. If you are observant of the levels and find semi-hidden new weapons, guess what your reward is? You get to drop down and backtrack again through the level to reach where you decided to jump to get the weapon... Later on when you find the second key can you possibly guess what happens?, the game alll of a sudden gets amazing and you never backtrack again. That is what happens.... I wish heh. Of course now you have to drop down and walk through the level yet again...
I played until level 3 and the repetition and extremely frequent backtracking was enough for me. After probably 10 years of not playing this, I never feel the need to play it again.
The gameplay is just extremely tedious because of the backtracking and boring combat. The only fun moments are when you discover a new more powerful weapon that will be fun to use for awhile until you have to mow down tons of boring enemies with it and your brief moment of joy for finding the weapon is immediately gone as you realize that your punishment for finding the weapon is that you have to jump down to an earlier part of the level and backtrack again.
The one thing this game did very well though, is the soundtrack. The songs is this game are pretty great. I think even as a kid a reason I kept playing this game was because I liked the music.
So basically, this game is only worth playing for about 30 minutes to hear the music. After that, the crappy gameplay will make you never want to play the game for a very long time despite how good the music is. Holy backtracking s*** I said backtrack a lot in this blog. Not my choice though since that is what the majority of the game consists of.
The game should really be called Turok: Backtrack of the Backtrackosaurs on the Backtendo TrackBoy...
If you want to see some backtracking in video form, here you go:
I play Turok 2 on the N64 and remember enjoying it, but I never bothered with the handheld Turok games. Good to know I made the right call! It's really annoying that you can't trust Gamespot to function properly with even the most basic requests. I don't understand why they can't maintain this site properly.
I think I remember this game on the GBC, but never played it since Turok on the N64 was much better anyway.
I just thumbed up it. And you're right, there's quite a bit of backtracking. Cool ass music though. :)