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The House of the Dead (SEGA Saturn)

Mature
ESRB Rating
Genre
Perspective
Theme
71
MobyRank
100 point score based on reviews from various critics.
3.7
MobyScore
5 point score based on user ratings.
Written by  :  MasterMegid (897)
Written on  :  Oct 27, 2009
Platform  :  SEGA Saturn
Rating  :  3.8 Stars3.8 Stars3.8 Stars3.8 Stars3.8 Stars

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Summary

Not by Dostoevsky…..

The Good

Released in 1998, as the Saturn’s sun was setting, The House of The Dead, is a port of the wildly popular, arcade coin-op. But back in the 32-Bit era, consoles could barely run 2D arcade games. So is the port of HOD any good?

In, The House Of The Dead, you play as either Rogan, or G. They are agents from the AMS. They go to investigate, the rumors of paranormal activity, at an old mansion, just outside the city limits. What they find will prove to be worse than anyone imagined.

HOD, is a rail line shooter. Meaning, that the player has very limited choice of movement. Only when choosing a path can you control where you go. This is done by shooting the area, you wish to explore. There are many winding paths, some more challenging than others. Which helps to add to replay value. (What is a arcade game without it?-MM-)

In either one or two player mode, you move through out the house, killing zombies, and other horrors. All the while trying to rescue any scientists that were left behind. Saving scientists gives you extra lives, and more points, the more points you have, the better ending you will earn.

Gunplay in HOD, is extremely violent. And all of the violence from the arcade version has made it to the Saturn in tact. Blow open, a zombie’s chest and you can see the internal organs. Shoot the top of their heads off, and they will continue to come at you. Remove limbs, take off heads. It’s all gory fun.

There are other modes of play in HOD, besides Arcade mode, there is also Saturn mode, in which you choose your character, and they all have different stats. Like bullet damage, and reload time. And boss mode, let’s you re-challenge any boss, and try and get the best time.

Speaking of the bosses, they are all huge and each offer, an unique challenge. As they all have their own attack patterns and weak spots. Taking advantage of these is the key to victory.

The graphics are not great, in HOD. But the sound and music is pretty much intact. And the game’s booklet is hilarious, with it’s silly notes from the mad Dr. Curian.

The Bad

The final boss, Magician, is insanely hard. Even if you know his weak point. It is still almost impossible to avoid his attacks. He will eat up a lot of your credits, and using unlimited credits is not a bad idea.

The graphics are not great. Unlike, Virtua Cop 2, which looks damn close to the original. Of course HOD, was a cutting edge game at the time.

There could have been more to the Saturn mode. But at least there are other modes unlike many arcade ports.

The Bottom Line

Overall, if you can look past the poor graphics, and have a Stunner, you could do worse than pick this game up. If you can get it at a reasonable price. The graphics may not match the arcade original, but the fun sure does.