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Lander (Windows)

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65
MobyRank
100 point score based on reviews from various critics.
3.6
MobyScore
5 point score based on user ratings.
Written by  :  CyberAngel (3)
Written on  :  Jul 09, 2008
Rating  :  3.83 Stars3.83 Stars3.83 Stars3.83 Stars3.83 Stars

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Summary

Difficult to master but greatly enjoyable when mastered.

The Good

I was made aware of the existence of this game by a computer magazine back then in 1999 when it came out and I could say that wasn't it for the magazine, I would likely not get to know this game at all. The reviewer described how Lander made him angry and how he struggled with the controls the few first days, but when he learned to control it he was delighted in everything Lander has to offer past the controls. After all, it's like controlling a helicopter and personally for me it was a couple of hours until I became one with the controls. The controls will seem like simulator at first, but in time you will realize it's an arcade game requiring a little more (well, more than little, in fact :)) care in handling. For anyone that puts a little effort into learning it first, Lander will reward you with very nice 3D accelerated graphics, which were really state-of-the-art in 1999, good sound, superb soundtrack and most of all great gameplay while navigating the diverse and original levels with one of the number of landing machines to choose from. I liked the physics, which were far and between to find in games at the time and they made the pillar of gameplay and the game never got repetitive, which is for me personally very important in computer games.

The Bad

Lander also has a few drawbacks, such as your lander having tendency to stick to obstacles when you hit them, sometimes resulting in "hanging" or in any way staying "connected" to the object, being unable to separate or damaging the lander in the process of "tearing apart". One must be very careful not to hit anything around him close to corners or other sharp objects and sometimes one struggles with the camera controls to find such an angle to view exactly where you need to fly.

The Bottom Line

Difficult to master but greatly enjoyable when mastered, Lander offers a visually impressive experience, with good sound and superb soundtrack, but most of all great gameplay while controlling a fragile landing craft in interesting and challenging 3D environment on the series of missions on the planets in our solar system. One of the greatest underdogs out there and one of my most favorite games of all times.