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Herzog Zwei (Genesis)

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82
MobyRank
100 point score based on reviews from various critics.
4.0
MobyScore
5 point score based on user ratings.
Written by  :  Kyle Levesque (329)
Written on  :  Sep 16, 2010
Rating  :  3.4 Stars3.4 Stars3.4 Stars3.4 Stars3.4 Stars

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Summary

An interesting concept.

The Good

  • Quick Playing
  • Good Variety of Units
  • Units Need Energy to Move
  • Decent 2 Player Mode
  • Varied Environments
  • Great Naval Strategy
  • The Mech Avatar is Awesome

The Bad

  • Poor Unit AI
  • Some Units are Useless (Motorcycle)
  • Orders Cost Gold? What?
  • Music Can Haunt You for Years!
  • Running Out of Energy Means You Explode. Ouch.

The Bottom Line

Herzog Zwei will always stand out to me as one of the best but strange games on the Genesis, right alongside Fatal Labyrinth and The Immortal. This game is very, very Japanese. If the fighter jet that turns into a 'Mech wasn't clue enough. Unlike Command & Conquer you find yourself dealing with slowly producing units that come from a number of bases on the map. You can conquer a base by inserting small units (usually infantry) into it until they take it over. After take-over a base can manufacture a set selection of units depending on its placement and size. You can issue 8 different orders to the 8 different units. You can't control them exactly, but you can order an infantry to capture a base and drop him right on top of it, he'll figure it out.

This game isn't easy to pick up, there are a lot of subtle nuances to it. Oh, you'll always fly around shooting the shit out of stuff, that's fun - but you need your units to win more an more as the game goes on. It's a bit like trying to coordinate children or sheep, at times. You herd them together and send them off to die... well... that's like neither children or sheep - but you know what I mean.

If you don't know about energy you'll simply watch your Avatar explode over and over again. Things in this strange world need gas to go, and bullets to shoot - and so do you, Star-Scream. You can power up over bases owned by your side. This is perhaps the ONLY real time strategy I've seen where every unit has an ammo capacity. Sure, they can get more bullets, but they need to re-supply from a truck or a base - that's a nice level of realism.

Herzog Zwei is still a great game to play via emulator at work, or on the portable Genesis system they just came out with. The complexity and the simple fact that it is very different from other games have made it a lasting classic.