MEGADRIVE GAMES REVIEWS - Z -

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Hello again, welcome to my A to Z games review of over 260 of the best (most popular) Megadrive titles. I will give a brief description of each game and rate it from 1 to 100%, accordingly games will be judged against other consoles from their era. As a bonus I will say if a game is region protected or not (i.e if a game is region protected, it will only play on a machine from the same country, or will need a converter) I will also say if the game is known by another name, or if it is availible for other consoles.

ZANY GOLF (4 PLAYERS) 85% (region free)

I love this game! The graphics are ropey and grainy, presentation is non existant, but it's a great game. The crazy golf style courses are veiwed isometrically, your cursor is used to view the play field and shoot the ball, and everything works from one button. You draw your power line backwards from your ball then release the A button. Up to four people can play over the imaginative courses, strokes not used, roll over to the next one and when you run out, it's game over. The courses themselves are fun and challenging, sure there is the normal windmill type, but Zany Golf allows you to, complete objectives to earn strokes and allows you to operate parts of the course too, such as bouncing burgers, fans, switches and pinball flippers. Ignore the ancient graphics and poor screen scrolling, give Zany Golf a try! (only on Megadrive).

ZERO THE KAMIKAZE SQUIRREL (1 PLAYER) 70% (region protected)

Zero is a kind of spin off from Sunsofts Aero The Acrobat, and it plays very similar. Zero can throw ninja stars, double spin jump, swoop, dive bomb and use his nunchuks. Controling Zero is fairly easy, although sometimes you will find yourself performing moves on accident, Zero's nunchuck move is strangely attached to the jump button while pressing down. The worlds are varied but cliche, and there are plenty of pick ups and bounus', Zero can inflate bonus warps by jumping on them, and fly high in the sky from various springs. The graphics are colorful and well drawn and the audio is good, with Bruce Lee type yells from our Japanese hero (wasn't Bruce chinese?). Collision detection isn't the best, and some of the platform sections are infuriating, such as the slime stage. Every now and again a gun sight appears on screen and mercilessly guns you. I do like the fact that there are loads of checkpoints and that if you die during a mini boss battle, his health stays where you left it. Zero isn't as enjoyable as it could be, it just seems a little too finicky and lacks the soul of some other platformers. There is little to choose between the SNES and MD versions, they both play exactly the same, although the SNES version has better presentation and slightly better audio and visuals. (also on SNES).    

ZERO TOLERANCE (2 PLAYER) 60% (region free)

Zero Tolerance shouldn't have been done on the Megadrive. It's a first person, 'Wolfenstein 3D' type shooter. Technopop and Accolade have done a sterling job. The introduction screens and menu's are very good, with your character controlling smoothly, strafe is done by holding the A button, while fire and select are on B and C. The in game graphics are understandably grainy, and blocky, the action is veiwed through a very small window, with the rest of the screen showing the handy map and weapons and status info. The scenery and enemy sprites are understadably blocky too, the frame rate is just about acceptable and audio is excellent, with ominous music and clear voice samples that tell you what you have picked up, and when your ammo or health is low. The problem with the game is that when you are engaged in a gun fight and you take a hit, you normally get spun, and loose sight of the already hard to see enemy sprites, that pop in mere feet in front of you, thus leading to some premature deaths, plus ammo is scarce. There is a handy password sysytem, and a two player link option, but I haven't tried this so I can't comment. (only on Megadrive). 

ZERO WING (1 PLAYER) 85% (region free)

Zero Wing is a fun shooter for the casual gamer. Although there is nothing is spectacular in the game, it just does certain things right. The ship has a choice to collect three different kinds of shot type that you can power up to a max of three levels, you also have a tractor beam that can pull in an enemy and use it as a projectile, although I have to admit I never felt the need to use it. The ship collects side pods that increase your fire power too, although they sometimes hinder your judgement when dodging incoming fire. A great feature of the game is to keep you moving ever forward through the levels, and not making you start from way back, like most shooters do. If you get stuck on a mini boss too long the game just takes you on past it after a few tries, and on easy mode you have endless continues. The graphics are sparse but well drawn and adequate, and the music is equally generic, but good. Zero Wing's accessability is it's own worst enemy, as hardened gamers will just think .. meh. If you do get this game be sure to watch the anime style opening titles, they are hillarious, with some of the worst Japanese to engrish translations ever! (only on Megadrive).

ZOMBIES A.K.A. ZOMBIES ATE MY NEIGHBOURS (2 PLAYERS) 90% (region protected) 

  

This game is so funny, a shooter with a difference. Zombies requires you to save all the people that are dotted around the map before they get munched by zombies. Your character has a large number of special weapons and items to choose from, rocket launchers can bust through walls if you dont have the key to a door, while drinking potions often tun you into an enraged werewolf for a short time, heck, you can even use a strimmer to mow those zombie's down. The graphics are excellent, and just about every zombie flick is paid tribute to. The audio is a parody too, half 1930's horror movie and half fun fair, there is creepy 'mwahahaha!' samples too! The game is very easy to get into, and the status screen easy to understand. There is nothing to separate this and the SNES version as they are nearly the same, I think the SNES version has slightly cleaner video and audio, but thats it. (also on SNES).

ZOOL (1 PLAYER) 50% (region free)

Zool is a platformer, it's an annoying, twitchy repetitive platformer. The graphics and sound are very good, but there is little direction with it, you never seem to be in control of the action. All the right ingridients are there, jump, attack, collect stuff ect. but it's just not any fun to play, rather like the James Pond series, the control of your character is just way too responsive for it too be any fun. Avoid. (also on PC, Atari ST, Amiga, Master System, SNES, Gameboy and Game Gear).

ZOOM (1 PLAYER) 60% (region free)

Zoom is a kind of throwback arcade puzzler, you make circuits around the psuedo 3D squares, all the time dodging or shooting your enemies, slowing them down, items can be picked up as points or to freeze your enimies allowing you to kill them, Pac Man style, you can also jump off the platform into the foreground if things get to hot. Plenty of people are going to like this sort of game, but I didn't find controlling the character so easy, with a few accidental deaths, plus it just wasn't that much fun. On the plus side the graphics and sound are decent, but the awful 'c'mon boy!' speech every time you make a square gets on your nerves. (only on Megadrive).

ZOOP (1 PLAYER) 60% (region protected)

Another take on the Puyo Puyo, Puzzle Bobble theme. You are the arrow in the middle of the screen and different color shapes come at you from all for sides of the screen, if you fire at a color the same as yours, it will be destroyed, if it is different then you will take on that color for your next shot. Simple but rock solid, there is no easy level here, action starts fast and hard and stays that way. The graphics are simple, with no effects to speak of and the music is of the elevator variety. Hardcore puzzlers may be ok with this title, but I didn't really want to go back after a few goes. (also on PC, SNES and Master System). 

 

konami*man.

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