Title Nemac IV Game Type 3D Action Players 1 Compatibility OS2.0+, 020+, 2 meg ram, CD only Submission John Haas (firstname.lastname@example.org) Review Nemac IV arrived towards the end of the first wave of "Doom clones" for the Amiga. It had a distinctly different look and feel than the others (Breathless, Alien Breed 3D, Fears, Gloom, etc.) and obviously took a huge amount of effort to create. The levels (and there are 40 of them) are immense and very impressive graphically. There is a great deal of texture mapping and the detail is amazing. System Requirements/Configuration The minimum system requirements are pretty low: OS2.0+, '020 or better, 2 meg ram, 5 meg hard drive space and a 2x or better CDRom drive. I'm not sure how playable the game would be using an '020 but I would guess it would not work very well. Notice that AGA is not required. In a somewhat unusual move, the authors chose to support just about ALL Amigas--OCS, ECS, AGA and graphics cards! I never thought I'd be playing a game of this type on my '030/33 powered A600 but I do and it works well. You can throw virtually any screen mode you want at it which makes for some interesting experimentation. Most looked great but required more horsepower than my '030/40 A1200 had, so my normal mode turned out to be either PAL or NTSC low res. The pixel resolution is adjustable, you have high resolution 1x1 (which is wonderful but takes either a high-end Amiga or requires a small window) or 2x2 (which starts looking like Alien Breed 3D). As in virtually all of the games of this type, the window size is adjustable. I like the higher resolution pixel setting so my play window is relatively small. If one doesn't mind the "AB3D look", then you can go 2x2 on the pixels and have a full or nearly full screen play window. The bottom line is that to be enjoyable and playable, the all important frame rate must be substantially high. Nemac IV gives you a fighting chance to achieve this even with lower end Amigas because it is so configurable. One trick to get more speed on the slower machines is to turn off the floor and ceiling textures. This speeds things up considerably but makes the game much less interesting visually. The Storyline I really don't want to cover this, the plot is too huge and complicated. In a nutshell: You're disguised as a robot and must make your way through a massive bunker controlled by murderous enemy robots. The object is to destroy this bunker. Animations Besides the huge ones at the beginning and end, the game contains several smaller ones. These must have taken a huge amount of work and are a nice touch. They appear every few levels and serve several purposes: Foreshadowing an enemy or weapon that you'll be facing soon, plot definition, or just plain entertainment (one is even humorous). Explosions and Light effects One of the truly neat effects of Nemac IV are the explosions. Not only are they stunning looking but objects in the vicinity of them actually react. Some health might be blown across a room or some ordnance such as a grenade might itself be detonated by another explosion. You can blow things up on the other side of walls and doors which is very useful. Enemies You'll encounter about a dozen or so different kinds of enemy robots. These range in size from very small ones, which are harmless and look like a shoebox, to huge, seemingly invincible, grenade slinging bipeds. Weapons Not a huge selection here. You have grenades, remotely detonated bombs, machine guns and plasma guns. While not great in number, they are simple, effective and fun to use. This game is proof that you don't necessarily need a vast assortment of weapons for it to be enjoyable. The grenade was by far the most fun to use. Puzzles As is standard with this type of game, the player navigates a maze in search of the exit. Puzzles and traps abound. The puzzles consist mostly of tripping switches to activate doors and walls and acquiring codes to open doors leading to previously unreachable sections. Some of these puzzles really make you think. Secret Levels (criticism) As mentioned earlier, the game has 40 levels: 37 regular and 3 secret ones. The secret ones were notoriously hard to find (at least for me!). I played the game from beginning to end three times and only stumbled onto a secret level once. I had to resort to a cheat found on Aminet to finally play the other two secret levels. Bugs (Slowdowns, freezes, etc.) I like this game a lot but did find it to be somewhat buggy. It was prone to annoying slowdowns, freezes and outright crashes. There are two types of slowdowns. The first type occurs when there is a lot of action going on and (I'm guessing) would not happen on a more powerful Amiga. The second type of slowdown would occur when almost nothing was happening. This happened consistently on certain levels. Sometimes the game would snap out of this funk within a minute or two, sometimes it would freeze for long periods of time, and sometimes it would simply freeze permanently (crash). Sometimes I was able to pass through walls which I should not have been able to do. One level (18 I believe), is a real mess with walls that come and go and I'm certain it wasn't programmed that way. Occasionally I would find myself being fired upon by an enemy robot only to find that it was imbedded in a wall and not visible to me. Despite bugs such as this, the game is very playable and very enjoyable. I must say that I got quite hooked on it and would strongly recommend it.