Search for Eden

Screenshots from www.flyingomelette.com

Reviewed by Deathamster

EVO is a unique game that doesn't quite fit into any single genre. It is basically a sidescroller, but it borrows many elements from RPGs and adventure games. Unfortunately, it is the focus on those elements that detract from EVO's overall quality.

As an animal living in prehistoric earth, you eat other animals to gain EVO points (much like experience in RPGs). By earning enough EVO points, you can choose to evolve different parts of your animal's body, thus transforming its looks and increasing its attack and defense power. These changes can also affect the play control, as certain forms allow you to jump higher, run faster, or even fly. This is where I thought the potential for a truly great action-adventure could come into play: Imagine if certain stages could only be completed if you evolved a certain way, and that by evolving differently, you'd have to take a different path through the game.

Well, it doesn't quite work out that way. You can get into a bonus stage for learning to fly, but that's about it. At the very least, I would have liked to have seen really difficult stages that would've required you to evolve a certain way in order to pass them. But, alas, the stages are all very easy, and practically devoid of any level design. Each one contains a different type of animal for you to eat, and that's about it. There is little reason to not simply choose the strongest parts for your animal and evolve it that way.

In case you should not believe me that the potential for a tough action game is there, and if you believe this game was just meant to be an easygoing adventure, then my justification for my ideas are the boss battles. Some of the bosses are brutally difficult to beat, and nigh impossible if you aren't evolved to the strongest available form. I really admire that the designers gave you such tough boss battles to deal with, but I wish they had put half as much effort into the stages. And as tough as they are, their difficulty is nullified by the fact that you can instantly restore all your HP just by evolving a body part during the fight.

Another problem with EVO is that the music starts off good, but becomes incredibly repetitive by the middle of the game through to the end. I normally don't care too much about graphics or music in games, but this is one of the few times in recent memory where a game's music drove me nuts. The graphics are nice, but the cartoonish look of the enemies hurts the atmosphere. You're certainly not going to get the same feeling when confronting the T-Rexes in this games as you did from Jurassic Park.

So, while EVO has some good ideas, they weren't used to the potential they could've been, and the entire game ends up centering around the build-up of EVO points to advance and survive.

Overall Score: 2.5/5 Stars

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