Title: El Dorado   Developer: Revolution   Type: Strategy Adventure
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El Dorado
"Yet another movie tie-in hits the PlayStation console. This time it's an action adventure adaptation of the comic Dreamworks animated feature, The Road to El Dorado. "
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PSone REVIEW:
 
In case you haven\'t heard anything about the big screen production on which this game is based upon, it is a humorous feature length cartoon set in the tradition of the classic buddy movies, hence \'The Road to…\' in the title. The story involves two Spanish con men, Tulio and Miguel, who flee from an angry crowd straight into the brig of a ship bound for the New World. Their journey eventually leads them to El Dorado, a legendary City of Gold.

To get some idea of the game format it is possibly worth mentioning that the development team\'s most recent titles include the million selling hit adventures Broken Sword 1 and 2. This time Revolution Software have moved slightly away from the traditional \'point and click\' style of play and opted for characters that can be digitally controlled around the lavish sets. The problem is I don\'t know whether this was a brave advancement into the 21st Century or a foolish move that will sadly backfire into their faces. I\'ll try to explain…

Intermingled between lavish animated sequences cut directly from the movie you are faced with real-time 3D characters set against pre-rendered backgrounds. You cannot fail to be impressed by the highly detailed background scenery immaculately replicating several scenes from the movie. Bright coloring, intelligent lighting, superb artistry. Tulio and Miguel are interchangeable with each having their own scene stealing moments and a witty, likeable couple of lads they are. They take turns in speaking, with audible text also appearing on screen. They may not have the speaking skills of Kevin Kline and Kenneth Branagh (who provide the voices in the movie), but a fair amount of humor manages to come across.

All seems well and good… until motioning the character across the screen. The handling feels so awkward it very quickly became a chore just playing the game. First you must line up your character in the general desired direction and then virtually push him around the clustered set. Every action feels so painfully slow to perform because it must be regularly readjusted. There is a run button, but it is barely usable as the screen areas are so small. Furthermore, each change of camera angle freezes the game for a second or so while the next view is being loaded in. I also regularly found that my character snagged onto an interactive piece of scenery (guiding him through an open doorway was a nightmare), which hardly improved my mood.

Maybe the game flows more smoothly on the PC and handles better with a mouse. I sincerely hope so. I\'m sure that some gamers will put in the effort to plough through The Road to El Dorado and get a certain amount of satisfaction from succeeding. I couldn\'t. Overall, it\'s nice to look at… but a bit of a chore to play.

FEATURES:
 
Based on the world of El Dorado, inspired by the Dreamworks movie

Captivating story that progresses the film plot in a unique way

Play the 2 main characters: Tulio and Miguel, each with their own special abilities

Explore 5 different worlds with over 40 locations

Overcome many obstacles and solve action-oriented puzzles

Adventure gameplay with action elements

Amazing animated sequences

OPTIONS:
 
• 1 Disk(s)
• CD Media
• 1 Block required on Memory card per save (min)
• Up to 1 Players (without Multi-tap)
• Uses Dual Shock Pad Buttons

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Review SUMMARY and SCORE
Martin  "It\'s such a shame because I was getting quite involved with the plot and the puzzle element seemed fairly logical.

Why, oh why, didn\'t the developers stick with what they were good at… a point and click adventure."
Graphics  18/20
Playability  28/50
Sound  8/10
Lastability  15/20
69%
This game is little more than average and we advise renting or play-testing before considering a purchase.
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REVIEW SCORE GUIDE:

OUR PLEDGE:

We promise that we have fully played 'El Dorado' before writing this review. The scores given above are our honest opinion and were not influenced in any way by the manufacturer or distributor of the game.

SUMMARY OF FINAL RATING (%)

00 - 59 This makes your console seem like an older machine. It utilises little or none of the PSone power.

60 - 69 This game is little more than average and we advise renting or play-testing before considering a purchase.

70 - 79 This is a good solid title that should still appeal to those who like this type of game.

80 - 89 This is a fantastic game that we think you will enjoy playing for quite some time.

90 - 100 This game either pushes the boundaries of it's genre further than ever before on this system, or creates a completely new gaming experience. Either way, it should not be missed and is an essential purchase in our opinion.

IMPORTANT - PLEASE READ:

It is very important that you are aware that the criteria we use to obtain review scores on the PS2 is very different to that used for games on the original Playstation (PSone). The Processing and Graphical power of the two consoles are vastly different and as our reviews are graded against what we estimate is the achievable potential of each system, it does not mean in any way that a game scoring 80 percent on PS2 is worse than a Playstation (PSone) equivalent which scores 95.

A more detailed breakdown of this guide can be read here.


READERS REVIEWS:


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