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Review Maximus XV trashed at Gamers Hell

Vault Dweller

Commissar, Red Star Studio
Developer
Joined
Jan 7, 2003
Messages
28,023
Tags: Rebelmind; Space Hack

<a href=http://www.gamershell.com>Gamers Hell</a> has posted a very negative <a href=http://www.gamershell.com/pc/maximus_xv_abraham_strong_space_mercenary/review.html>review</a> of <a href=http://www.rebelmind.com/spacehack>Maximus XV Abraham Strong</a>, a game with the most <s>idiotic</s> innovative and liked by some people name, giving it <b>2.2</b> and trashing every aspect of the game.
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<blockquote>If RPG’s are your thing, this game just won’t do it for you. The RPG elements are minor and limited to the choosing of your heroes’ weaponry and accessories. There is a skills system but it’s made up of only four areas, strength, dexterity, knowledge and endurance; the impact of these, from my experience anyway, doesn’t really amount to much. You can choose obviously to focus on developing you strength and dexterity and thereby becoming a more effective melee combat character or instead you can focus on knowledge which permits you access to better technology and therefore weaponry or you could do what I did and raise all your stats evenly and do what you please. The skills system like so many RPG’s has no real tangible effect on the game. As with every futuristic RPG there is the inclusion of biochip upgrades but these aren’t nearly as exciting as they may at first sound. All we are talking about here is your most basic RPG spells, such as slow time, freeze or mind control. Abraham Strong or ‘MXVASSM’ as I like to call it is not for the RPG enthusiasts amongst you.</blockquote>
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Hmm, MXV<b>ASS</b>M definitely sounds like a fitting name
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Spotted at: <A HREF="http://www.rpgdot.com">RPG Dot</A>
 

Andyman Messiah

Mr. Ed-ucated
Joined
Jan 27, 2004
Messages
9,933
Location
Narnia
Oh noes! I was going to buy this game!

Once again, there has been proof that you can indeed judge a game by it's name. :)
 
Self-Ejected

dojoteef

Self-Ejected
Joined
Oct 26, 2004
Messages
970
I don't know about the rest of you, but I certainly have to say that the review is bullshit. It doesn't really describe why the dislike, he just says it seems dated. That had it been released in the mid-90's it would be alright.

Let's look at the break down the reviewer had for the game:

Graphics: 2.0
Sound : 2.5
Gameplay : 2.0
Overall : 2.2
The graphics got a 2.0! You've got to be fucking shitting me. By looking at the screenshots the graphics are no worse than Dungeon Siege (in fact they look damn near exactly the same to me), and I sure as hell didn't see anyone bitching about that games graphics. In fact the graphics were highly lauded for that game; in fact Gamers Hell gave Dungeon Siege a 9 for graphics.

The sound got a 2.5? That's basically like saying they got some pots and pans together, started clanging them and used that as sound for the guns. I can't imagine the sound being that bad, especially compared to other reviewed games.

And gameplay? Once again, I don't see how the reviewer gives such a score. It might truly be worth the 2.0, but if that's the case, then why did they give Dungeon Siege an 8.0 for gameplay. It was nothing more than in interactive screensaver. The gameplay the reviewer described sounded more involved than Dungeon Siege's gameplay.

Don't get me wrong, the game might truly be deserving of the score, but then a lot of other games they've given high review scores to would also be worthy of such low scores. I don't mind that the score is so low, I do mind the complete inconsistency in reviewing the game compared to other reviews they've done. It makes no sense whatsoever. If they can give Dungeon Siege an overall score of 9/10 I don't see why this game gets a 2.2/10. That's just me.

EDIT: Oh, and just for a side by side comparison of graphics here goes.

Dungeon Siege CLICK ME

Maximus XV Abraham Strong - Space Mercenary
CLICK ME
 
Self-Ejected

dojoteef

Self-Ejected
Joined
Oct 26, 2004
Messages
970
The game might very well be crap. Like I said, I have no problem with the score, I do have a problem with the inconsistency.
 

Vault Dweller

Commissar, Red Star Studio
Developer
Joined
Jan 7, 2003
Messages
28,023
You did click on the link, right? :) I agree with you, for the record.
 

PennyAnte

Liturgist
Joined
Dec 10, 2004
Messages
769
Location
Here instead of playing an RPG.
I played the demo a bit and concluded the game was lousy. I see where you're coming from Dojo, and while a 2-range score might be a little low relative to other reviews, the game definitely needs a score at least below 5, if 5 is average. So in my opinion, the score is off by only a small degree at best.

On Graphics, the game and DS may look roughly equally good in any given screenshot. But what the reviewer noted about MXV-ASS-M's zoom and camera problems is crucial.

I was always spinning the camera right or left, to the point that it became a chore. That was in part due to all the view-obscuring obstacles the reviewer mentioned. Also, having no zoom was a pain, partly because of the obstacles.

The ability to zoom would have made combat more convenient sometimes as well, at least in terms of lining up attacks. I can barely remember DS but I don't think it had such a bad camera, and a camera is arguably part of the graphics, or at least the visuals. I suppose you could score it under gameplay, but that's a different issue.

The level design was incredibly claustrophobic and levels were individually pretty small. It was like fighting in a series of cluttered living rooms, at least in the demo.

On sound, the constant footstep noise was, in fact, about as bad as banging pots and pans together. It was one overly loud incredibly repetitive clip that reminded me of a sound someone would have used in the first days of PC gaming itself. The weapon sounds, IIRC, also were not varied and were incredibly repetitive.

Maybe the sound deserved a 3 or 4 instead of a 2, but again, it's a debate about a very small degree of difference. A very low score is justified, even relative to other reviews on the site. Things may have improved since the demo, but if it was any kind of yardstick the game was utter garbage.

EDITS: A couple tweaks to clarify points.
 

Sol Invictus

Erudite
Joined
Oct 19, 2002
Messages
9,614
Location
Pax Romana
It's an independent RPG. I don't understand how you guys can stoop to burying this game by comparing it to a multi-million dollar budget game. Weren't some of you knocking reviewers for giving the Avernum games low scores some time back?
 

Vault Dweller

Commissar, Red Star Studio
Developer
Joined
Jan 7, 2003
Messages
28,023
I think the point that dojo made was that mxvASSm has in fact better graphics than a "multi-million dollar budget game", but Gamers Hell unjustly gave the game a low graphcs score.

As for the game, I criticized it before (see the links), independant or not. We or at least I like independant games like Geneforge, Prelude, EVN because they are often way better and deeper, not because they are independant and cool by default.
 

Sol Invictus

Erudite
Joined
Oct 19, 2002
Messages
9,614
Location
Pax Romana
There's no doubt that Maximus is a poor, shallow game and it's certainly nowhere as fun as the game it tries to emulate (Diablo). I don't think it deserves a score so low, though. It doesn't cost 49.95, for starters. I think that the cost should also make up a part of the total score for 'Value'. If a game is going to sell for 19.95 nobody should expect 49.95 quality gameplay from it.

I think that's why I don't like scores - they're always inconsistent.
 

PennyAnte

Liturgist
Joined
Dec 10, 2004
Messages
769
Location
Here instead of playing an RPG.
Exitium said:
I think that's why I don't like scores - they're always inconsistent.

I agree this is often the case. But on your earlier point:

Exitium said:
I don't understand how you guys can stoop to burying this game by comparing it to a multi-million dollar budget game. Weren't some of you knocking reviewers for giving the Avernum games low scores some time back?

I would just say that (mxv) ASS Mercenary has nothing going for it, not even gameplay, unlike a Spiderweb game or EV Nova. I still play and enjoy EV:N, and I've played most of Jeff Vogel's games. For my part, I think it's fair to give Spiderweb games a very low score for graphics, a somewhat higher score for sound, high scores elsewhere, and high overall. I think a reviewer just needs to explain why.

For me, primitive sound and a lousy camera are big problems for (mxv) ASS Mercenary. Camera is a non-issue in Jeff Vogel's games. He also does a much better job with sound than the people behind (mxv) ASS Mercenary. His ambient sounds can be repetitive, but in the end, they manage to help the atmosphere and not get on my nerves too much, for example. They're also not too loud in-game, and (mxv) ASS Mercenary just doesn't do as well.

On a similar note, WoW doesn't look as good as other MMOs in terms of poly count and so forth. Some character features are blocky and there are lots of same-height characters. I think it is fair for a reviewer to deduct for that if they want, or on the flip side, to not deduct for that because the overall art design is so strong. So I think Wow could justifiably have a graphics score anywhere between 7 and 10, as long as the reviewer tells me why they were choosing the given score.

EDIT: Fixes grammar.
 

Saint_Proverbius

Administrator
Staff Member
Joined
Jun 16, 2002
Messages
11,449
Location
Behind you.
I don't think they should use scores, really. Scores are often more popularity contests. For example, Diablo 2 often got high scores for graphics when it was using a 640x480 resolution screen with 8bit color(16bit with 3D modes).
 

Fez

Erudite
Joined
May 18, 2004
Messages
7,954
Exitium said:
I think that's why I don't like scores - they're always inconsistent.

Yes, same here. They were a poor idea to start with and they've clung on horribly over time. I think it is an indicator of how young the format is yet perhaps. Can you imagine someone giving percentage marks to paintings or music? I'm glad the Codex shines in this aspect.

Oh and scorings which include extra marks for graphics, sound and so on separately as well as a final score are exponentially worse and only lead to confusion or arguments. Utterly pointless.
 

Sol Invictus

Erudite
Joined
Oct 19, 2002
Messages
9,614
Location
Pax Romana
I'd give Leonardo Da Vinci's Madonna on the Rocks a 92% for being generally weird.
CLICK ME
Notice how Mary's making an apprehensive gesture at an invisible head above baby John, while Uriel (the chick in the red garb next to Mary) makes a throatcutting motion on the invisible baby? Yeah, Leo deserves props for that one.
 

Greenskin13

Erudite
Joined
Dec 5, 2002
Messages
1,109
Location
Chicago
I'm da biggest Ork.

That's some nice foreshadowing. Yeah, there's quite a bit of little biblical nods in that painting. Very chouette.
 

Fresh

Erudite
Joined
Dec 2, 2004
Messages
1,057
Location
Vault boy's secret hideout
Different titles of the game (Dec 14, 2004)
Space Hack has been already published in a few countries. Different titles of the game have caused some confusion. :lol: Below is the list of the countries where Space Hack has been already published:

Germany - Novasphere 13
France - Space hack
UK - Maximus XV Abraham Strong Space Mercenary
Spain - Space Hack La Ultima Biosfera
Taiwan - Space Hack

The game will be soon published I Russia and titled Mercury 8.
 

Lady Armageddona

Liturgist
Joined
Dec 7, 2004
Messages
180
Location
in the middle of hell
Exitium said:
I'd give Leonardo Da Vinci's Madonna on the Rocks a 92% for being generally weird.

Notice how Mary's making an apprehensive gesture at an invisible head above baby John, while Uriel (the chick in the red garb next to Mary) makes a throatcutting motion on the invisible baby? Yeah, Leo deserves props for that one.

You could have skipped quoting that largely overrated so called book the Da Vinci Code, Exitum.

As for Novasphere 13 (as I have chosen to call the game Maximus whatever, since that is the German title and by far - best) the game would have been quite nice, judging from about half an hour of play from the demo, if it had zoom options. And has definately far more RPG elements than that peace of crap Dungeon Siege who no sane person would call an RPG of any kind, unless he's a MGS representative trying to sale it for 49.99.
 

Sol Invictus

Erudite
Joined
Oct 19, 2002
Messages
9,614
Location
Pax Romana
I wouldn't call it overrated. It has a lot of insight about the Rennes-les-Chateau and DaVinci topics that weren't in the Holy Blood, Holy Grail book a couple of decades ago.
 

PennyAnte

Liturgist
Joined
Dec 10, 2004
Messages
769
Location
Here instead of playing an RPG.
Lady Armageddona said:
Penny, you largely misunderstood my post.

I'm sorry about that. I think I was just overly eager for the chance to once again say that (mxv) ASS Mercenary is this game's best possible title.

Which of course, it is, if you just look at it from my perspective. :wink:

I mean, (mxv) ASS Mercenary just fits this game to a "T."
 

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