Ice and Fire Review
By Roxanne Distefano |
Challenge your patience as well as your ability to wander around a virtual world for long periods of time. You are the final reviewer. Review a game which sends you on a hopeless mission into tedium and annoyance. Equipped only with an unresponsive control system, explore the increasingly complex mazes while battling the same life forms over and over. Irritated. Bored. Unlock the mystery inside the crystals, then use the passwords contained therein to assure that you never have to face the shell maze ever again.
Promoted as the thinking person's Doom clone, Ice and Fire thrusts you into one maze world after another, forcing you to battle alien enemies as you explore each level, looking to free your cryogenically frozen compatriots. Unfortunately, the result, as it is with so many maze games, is that you finish all the action and are left looking around for that one last key that will get you to the next level--which you can't seem to find. Level access is controlled by passwords found on earlier levels, so, until you find them, you are stuck.
All of these maze levels are contained in the larger framework of...another maze! This maze, ostensibly on the outer surface of an asteroid, forces you to make split-second directional choices while flying and battling enemies. Thankfully, a map can be transposed over the screen (in all levels) to give you some idea of where you are. Regretfully, the controls in the larger maze are so unresponsive that, even when you know where you want to go, it's a real challenge to get there.
The graphics are strong, most notably in the insert sequences where you reload and power-up your ship. The game is incredibly challenging, and puzzle/maze buffs will be in absolute heaven. If you are looking for action, though, you will likely find the enemies more repetitive than challenging. This game tests patience and logic, and Doom fans will find the only similarities here are the first-person perspective and the letter "D" in the name. A tedious puzzle game in action game's clothing.