New Releases: What upcoming games are you looking forward to?
Here's the original review I wrote of Golden Axe: Beast Rider, which "updates" and reworks the formula that claimed so many quarters in 1989 as the arcade (and later Genesis) game called Golden Axe: If you're hungry to revisit the classic side-scrolling beat-'em-up through the prism of current game design, please forget this stillborn runt and enjoy Castle Crashers instead. Thank you. Unsurprisingly, that terse estimation of the game's value isn't quite to spec. Allow me to elaborate. Beast Rider is a third-person, 3-D update of Sega's 2-D side-scroller. In the original, two players could choose between three characters before marching to screen right for 45 minutes, smashing more or less everything in sight. The game was fun, if not quite earth-shattering; most of the appeal came from pairing up with a friend (or, more often, a stranger) with whom you'd frantically alternate dropping quarters to buy another few minutes of evil-bashing. The Krommath is the best of the beasts available ...
What's Hot: The beasts aren't as un-fun as the rest of the game.
What's Not: Combat uses a terrible color-coded blocking system; Beasts are given no value at all; Experience is dreary and no fun at all.