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Reviewed: Odium
Author: Chris Kim       Date: December 17th 1999
Page: 3

There is hardly any artificial intelligence in the enemies. The real schemes used in the game merely consist of moving back and forth and attacking. Depending on the purpose of the battle, the enemies will either attack the characters or some other object that is crucial to the battle. The battles for the most part turn out to be extremely difficult, not because of great AI, but because most of the enemies are significantly stronger and have better weapons. The only AI that the computer possesses is the ability to run away from the heat of battle when being attacked upon. In fact, sometimes the AI can turn into AS (artificial stupidity), one time, while in battle, while the player was being attacked upon, rather than try to get help and run into the other enemies, they simply ran into a corner and pretty much committed a suicide. The only real trace of intelligence that the enemies have is the ability to track and find the player (which isn't saying much) and attack with supreme fire power.

The main reason the game is so difficult is simply lack of supplies. During the course of the game, not one character can die, if a player losses all their hit points, the game ends there on the spot. Weapon ammo and health items are very sparse and far in between. Not only do weapons lack ammo, but the player almost always will have to resort to hand to hand combat, which is extremely difficult simply because the player has really crap ass weapons that lack any real strength. There are, however, some really cool weapons like the flame thrower, which puts a flame upon an enemy and packs a huge attack strength along with a long last fire attack. The enemy is on fire and every turn will lose some hit points as the flame is retained.

Cool, Level Up
Joy, Sewage
Missiles Hurt

One strong point of Odium is the simple and easy to use interface. The interface has a very strong mouse driven system where the player control to weapon equipment is done through the mouse. It is very intuitive and much like Septerra Core's interface. Movement is accomplished simply by clicking on a spot on the map and selection is done by highlighting and clicking a player. Weapon selection is cinch with clicking a pop up menu and then selecting it. A simple right mouse button can be used to select and switch between weapon commands for quick response. The quick interface of only having one type of armor and weapon was a nice simplification that many gamers will find an open invitation to first time gamers. This was likely a goal of the programmers, as the game is also very short.

Scary Place
Hmm... Human Mutant?
This Is A Good Sniper Spot

Another strong point of Odium are the graphics. Although being limited to a 640x480 resolution, the graphics look very well done. The graphics are once again, very similar to Septerra Core with a slightly less colorful palette. When compared to Commandos, the graphics seem to have a very strong resemblance. The game can take advantage of a 3D Accelerator if one is found, which assists in rendering the models and shadowing, which are by all means very good looking. The models can consist of anywhere from 800-2000 polygons, which are a ton of polygons. This set of polygons is quite evident and is likely true because of the extreme fluidity and smooth motion. The shadow casting of the engine is another very strong part of the game, the shadows cast a very realistic and motion smooth shadow onto other objects and the ground. Light sources are pretty accurate from the shadow points, and the game makes pretty good use of it. The environments in which Odium are rendered, are done in near perfection that look and feel almost alive. While the backgrounds aren't animated, the shadowing and lights used are done very well.

Cat Walk
Oh Too Common
Museum Views

Another part of the game is the sound effects that may or may not maintain interest. If one word can describe the sound effects, that is uninspired. The voice acting of the various characters in the game is just barely acceptable, the audience really can't feel the emotion or intensity of the feelings of the voices in the game. The sound effects, while sound decent, are used in repetition way too often. The same sound effects for guns, explosions, and other stuff is pretty standard. The musical score used in the game is pretty cool, but nothing too memorable.

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Added:  Friday, December 17, 1999
Reviewer:  Chris Kim
Page: 3/5

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