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A.P.I Review: Gex 3: Deep Cover Gecko
Developer: Crystal Dynamics OPTIONS: S.SHOT
No.1   No.2   No.3
Distributor: Eidos 1 Player
Game Type: 3D Platform Memory Card
Review Date: April 1999 Dual Shock/Analog Compatible

Setting the Scene

After completing his last assignment, Gex decided to take a nice yearlong break and soak up some rays on a nice quiet deserted island. After finally getting enough sun and surf, Gex returns to his secret headquarters only to find that his secret agent girlfriend Agent Xtra, played by the babalicious Baywatch actress Marliece Andrada, has been captured by the evil Rez.

Obviously Gex is upset about the prospect of missing all of those "before mission quickies", so he sets off to find the secret lair of Rez and rescue his companion.

Of course getting there is not going to be all that easy as Gex must fight and wise-crack his way through multiple levels of bizarre TV movie style scenarios before getting a crack at Rez. So once again, dear gamers…"It's tail time"!

Sound & Vision

Dana Gould is back as the wisecracking voice of Gex and he couldn't be better. Of the 1,000 or so quips that he dishes out some are extremely outrageous, while other just hit the mark, but rarely are any of his impressions boring. I particularly liked the Austin Powers bits that get thrown into the mix every now and then…yeah baby, yeah!

The sound effects are every bit as good as the last Gex adventure and with all of the action constantly going on around you there are a lot of sounds to hear indeed. Some of the more subtle sounds include the splashing of water from a waterfall, various footstep sounds depending on the terrain or strange creatures lurking just off your screen…waiting to pounce on the poor unsuspecting gecko.

The music is done well too, with a nice blend of different types of tunes…some haunting, some mysterious, some upbeat and some truly goofy scores that mix in well with the various environments that you will encounter. The music in this game does what it is supposed to do and that is add to the overall experience of the game and not overwhelm it.

On the visual side, I must say that Crystal Dynamics certainly seem to be quite knowledgeable with the Playstation hardware capabilities, as the graphics in DCG are some of the best you'll find for the console. There are all sorts of nice little special effects touches laced throughout the game that will leave you smiling with delight.

As in the last Gex game, this one seems to be running a nice little software anti-alaising routine to smooth out the edges and make everything blend together better. I also really loved the water effects and the little splashes that Gex makes as he jumps and swims.

The entire world is truly colorful and alive with animation. There is stuff happening virtually everywhere you look on the screen and of course there is also all of that famous graffiti making a return visit.

Pop-up is well disguised and happens only occasionally and there was no slowdown to be concerned with. Looks like the Gex2 engine was nicely tweaked this time around and it really shines!


The last Gex game, Enter the Gecko, was a true milestone at the time for a Playstation 3D platform game. The graphics were superb, the gameplay funny and unique and the overall theme of the game was amusing and alluring. Without deviating much from the last Gex title, Crystal Dynamics has managed to keep Deep Cover Gecko (DCG) hilariously silly, yet still provide a nice challenge for platform gaming fans.

The game is all about navigating Gex, a wisecracking lizard, through a series of adventures based on various themes from TV shows. While trying to find his girlfriend, Gex's various disguises has him taking on the role of an Egyptian, Army Soldier, sleuth, fire fighter and a ton of other highly recognizable characters from our culture. You never really know what to expect next from our fearless lizard except to say that his outfits always suit the environment that he is in style perfectly, after all secret agents shouldn't stand out like a sore thumb.

Getting from place to place requires stepping through TV sets and a good deal of investigation. You need to find and collect TV remotes to continue progressing through the TV's, as each requires a certain number of remote to pass into them. Remotes are collected in a number of ways, most common of which is completing certain key parts of a level that are identified prior to entering. As you collect remotes, other TV sets will display images and allows you to pass through them. The game features many levels (TV's) within levels, so it's always a good idea to look everywhere so you don't miss anything.

Control of Gex is accomplished by either using the analog thumb pad or the digital pad. I highly recommend using the analog controller for this game, as control is greatly enhanced. With the exception of certain jumps, the control is very good and never left me thinking that I was getting ripped off by the game, instead of me just making a simple error in judgement. Some of the jumps become a bit tiresome though, as they must be made at precisely the proper time or you will miss the mark. I suppose it's not much different from other platformers though, so pros will probably not see this as an issue.

The camera tracking is tightened up a bit from the last Gecko game and does a surprisingly good job of keeping Gex in all the right places most of the time…but it's not without a few problems. First of all, if you are zipping through a level, especially one that has a lot of platform jumps, the camera has a tendency to float all around you…not a good thing. Of course you can always slow down and give the camera a moment to readjust or just spank the triangle button to get the camera to scope in behind you, but it could be a bit quicker. Also, when you have your back against a wall, you cannot always adjust the camera to look out in front of you. This causes some unnecessary blind spots in the game, but luckily these are few and far between. You can also use the shoulder buttons to swing the camera right or left. Overall the camera is pretty good, but I have yet to see a camera control system that beats Spyro for the Playstation.

Of course no Gex game would be complete without all of those devious little puzzles and hidden items and DCG has 'em up the wahzoo. On each level there are all sorts of things for you to find and collect, the first being Fly Coins. Each level has 100 of 'em and if you find all 100 you get the secret remote for that level.

You also have Paw Coins. Each level contains 10 of them, and when you collect 25 you add an additional "Hit Paw" to Gex's health counter. Next up are the Bonus Coins that enable you to open up the many bonus levels that are to found in the game. There are also lists of objectives that need to be accomplished to successfully complete each level. Some are ingenious like using a magnifying glass to find clues that allow you to participate in mini games.

Overall, Gex: DCG is a wonderful follow-up to Enter The Gecko and well worth a look see. I believe that while it sticks pretty close to its sibling, it still offers enough new challenges to warrant a purchase. It's a great playing game!

GRAPHICS: 18/20 Gex: Deep Cover Gecko is a superb follow-up to the last Gecko title. It features a wonderfully crafted 3D environment that just begs to be played and investigated.

Graphics and sound effects are among some of the best to be found on the Playstation. They will keep you riveted throughout the game.

The gameplay and camera control is nice and tight for the most part and the general rule of "always expect the unexpected" will keep you coming back for more.

With the exception of Spyro and Crash, you will be hard pressed to find a better looking, better playing platform style game for the Playstation.
SOUND: 8/10
VALUE: 18/20


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