Wrath of Earth

Moby ID: 2937

Description official descriptions

A distress signal was sent from the Aragon mining colony on a planet called Thermadax, taking five years to arrive to the Earth. A cybernetically enhanced fighter protected by an exoskeleton with mounted weaponry is sent to deal with the situation. A few of the colonists are still alive; the rest have mutated horribly, unable to resist the invasion of robotic enemies. The lone hero is the only one who can put an end to this dreadful situation.

Wrath of Earth is a first-person shooter that incorporates traditional action-oriented mechanics with tactical decisions and interaction with the environment. The protagonist is often underpowered, and running for cover to gain advantage over the foes is sometimes the only way to survive. The player character's exoskeleton can recharge its power and repair itself using energy from a light source, effectively healing the protagonist. Stepping out of the darkness to recharge becomes therefore another tactical alternative.

The futuristic weapons include plasma cannons, warhead launchers, and others; some of them use the exoskeleton's power, while others require ammunition. Beside using these weapons to advance in the game, the player also must interact with the environment, collecting items and completing other tasks to bypass security. It is also possible to interact with the human survivors, who can provide weapons, energy packs, and important information.

Ambient temperature and radioactivity are present in the game, affecting the protagonist's movement and the effectiveness of his weapons. Damaging the exoskeleton's shields will not only make the protagonist more vulnerable, but also decrease his ability to aim and the rate of weapon fire. The exoskeleton can also be activated in different modes: in search mode, it displays a small map of the area, a compass, and a radar screen that indicates the presence of enemies. The attack mode is reserved for combat, while the inventory mode allows the player to access items such as mines, keycards, etc.

Screenshots

Promos

Credits (DOS version)

10 People

Programmed by
Publisher
Assistant Programmer
Music & Sound FX by
Storyboard by
Animation by
Level Design
Artwork by
Translation to German
  • Redaktionsbüro Typemania

Reviews

Players

Average score: 4.3 out of 5 (based on 8 ratings with 2 reviews)

A forgotten gem.

The Good
Wrath of Earth is a very (undeservedly) obscure FPS released in 1995 which not only provides solid gameplay and excellent graphics, it also incorporated many innovations for it's time such as talkable NPCs, environmental dangers and lock-on targeting. Not to mention the “solar-energy”-concept which allowed for a decidedly more tactical gameplay than the average gung-ho “let's blast, em” approach common for most shooters around this time. A skilled player may well make it through most levels without ever needing to pick up a single health-pack. Likewise a veteran player can make it through most encounters with only the battery-fed machine-gun like “rapid ionic particle gun”.

But less skilled players need not fear as the game scatters plenty of ammo and medkits at strategic positions. Many of them are well-guarded though and hidden which motivates players to search through levels carefully. Yes, WOE is a level-progressed game and not an open-ended game-world. But each level is fairly non-linear and gives players many choices where to go and what to do next. Levels also have varied and detailed environments such as industrial buildings, caves and forests and are accompanied by memorable and mood-setting music tracks . Voice acting is top-notch too and somehow you never grow tired listening to the computer-voice saying “auto-map”, “weapon-systems”, “search-mode” etc.

The Bad
Inventory-items are picked up by a special command but ammo and health-packs are picked up by simply walking over them which causes some problems. If for example your supply of plasma is nearly, but not quite full, it's possible to waste almost an entire plasma-unit if you accidentally walk over it, especially if a fallen enemy drops the unit in such a place that it's impossible not to walk over it. Also, remembering the various locations of supplies can be tricky. While you can mark locations of interest on your automap you can't actually write on it so it can be quite hard to remember what is what. Very minor problems, yes, but still.....

The Bottom Line
WOE is an original and very entertaining shooter which to this day manages to feel fresh. Had only this game gotten proper attention it could well have ranked among classics such as System-Shock and DOOM. If you are an FPS-fan and can get hold of this title I strongly recommend you to try it!

DOS · by ratpizza (75) · 2011

Excellent for its time and still a great play

The Good
First off - the graphics were wonderful. Everything from the walls of buildings to enemy units had detail that would put most other games in 1995 to shame.

The 'suit interface' seems horribly complicated at first. But speaking from experience you will need to know every last system and screen in order to survive for long; never mind complete your mission.

Occasionally your mothership, the scoutship Wrath, will chime in with helpful advice. A good part of this is on the first level. The 'advice' will consist of showing you what door control buttons and security card readers look like, as well as finding a 'hidden passage' that you should have found with sonar.

All the tools you are given range are all very useful. There are no flashy-but-useless gadgets in WOE! The weakest weapon even doubles to as an emergency lighting in dark places when battery power is low.

The environment can harm you in many ways; but your suit will warn you. Step near a lava pool and watch your temperature meter go into the red. Walk into a toxic waste storage and your radiation monitor will start glowing.

As the levels progress things get harder. Enemies are more powerful and start appearing with cloaking shields, rendering your radar useless in places. Colonists are now either scarce and scattered survivors or locked into the medical bays for horrible experiments by the aliens.

Speaking of NPC's, they are not just added props. Even in the first level a frightened colonist will give you a security card you need to continue.

The real 'props' make the game even more realistic. Some computer terminals are intact (yet unfortunately useless), others blown to pieces by reasons unknown. Video monitors in the medical wards display things...interesting things... Sparking wires from the ceilings complete with sound FX and panels leaking green goop all add to the illusion that you are in a dangerous environment.

As your mother used to say: Try it! You'll like it!

The Bad
The first problem was getting the game started at all - WOE requires the computer to be booted with no EMS memory allocated during startup. DOS and earlier windows users (not 2000/XP) will have to include the NOEMS parameter in their startup files in the line containing EMM386.EXE. For later windows and other OS's, run the game in Dosbox with ems=false in the memory section.

Because of the complex 3D graphics WOE uses, there were occasional problems with the game 'freezing' for no apparent reason. However, this only happened when played in pure DOS (not emulated) on my old laptop.

From what I can tell, this is the result of the low-level interface between the game's 3D engine and the video card. Commands are more or less sent straight to the video with little error handling.

This was rare, happening a dozen times during the three months it took me (playing on and off) to finish the game. When WOE was run in Dosbox, it never locked up at all.

The Bottom Line
First off, this isn't for kids. Highly un-recommended for early teens or younger for simulated blood and gore AND depictions of torture/ suffering.

That issue aside this is a game with the perfect mix of using your brain and your weapons. Crossing a 'solid' stream of lava requires a player who doesn't just think with their guns. Fighting enemies with cloaking shields took me some heavy brainwork as well as courage.

Because of the advanced nature of the game you need to keep your ears open. The impact of an energy weapon nearby should signal you to go for cover.

The background music posesses a...haunting...quality somehow. For some reason hearing any of the four 'songs' still gives me the shivers.

And one final thing - the gender selection screen does nothing to the gameplay. Just so you know.

DOS · by Dark-Star_1988 (7) · 2007

Discussion

Subject By Date
alien artifact puzzle Alex Gamebot Jun 25th, 2021
Walkthrough hint needed! Vladimir Lenin Jul 18th, 2009
Hello Dave Faller Dec 3rd, 2008
Author bb bb Jan 10th, 2008
For anyone who knows of this game. Dark-Star_1988 (7) Jun 18th, 2007

Trivia

The game was originally published by Transend Services Ltd, who founded Addix as a company, but as DOOM was released earlier, the game did not do so well and the rights were sold to SoftKey Multimedia Inc. According to Dave Faller no one eventually made money off the game.

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Identifiers +

  • MobyGames ID: 2937

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Contributors to this Entry

Game added by Zovni.

Additional contributors: Sciere.

Game added January 9th, 2001. Last modified February 22nd, 2023.