Written by  :  Colin Rowsell (45)
Written on  :  May 27, 2002
Platform  :  DOS
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Trying to stuff two universes into a can - almost, but not quite...

The Good

Neuromancer is a well-conceived blend of cyberpunk and Sierra-style gaming. The alternation between the "real" world and the matrix is stark and unsettling, with genuinely different styles of gameplay. All of the main elements from the book are there, though Neuromancer is careful not to be too straitjacketed by its source. The graphics are well done, with a suitably grey, dark-toned colour palette.

The Bad

Games based on great books invariably suffer from the comparison, and Neuromancer is no exception. Perhaps the main element missing in the game is the incredibly crowded, bustling cityworld that surrounds William Gibson's characters in print - everything seems very small and sparse. Cyberspace is extremely tough to navigate, especially at first, and it's hard to generate any real empathy or feel for what's going on.

Despite a fair amount of freedom, the game does still seem like a walking tour through the plot, and fans of Sierra titles will probably think that Neuromancer isn't quite up to scratch on puzzles, graphics and atmosphere. As with virtually every other PC game from this period, Neuromancer is outclassed by its sister version on the Amiga.

The Bottom Line

Fans of the book, or cyberpunk in general, should probably take a look at Neuromancer. It tries to do a great deal, and doesn't quite reach any of its goals, but is still a worthy attempt at a different kind of adventure game.