Wednesday, 20 June 2007

X Men: Children Of The Atom!



There are few Saturn games that are really stunning to behold in 2007. Sure, with rose coloured spectacles and the nostalgic affection of recollection, some Saturn games can really still bowl you over. But in terms of looks, the graphical presentation of most Saturn games seems somewhat pixellated and blocky.

Fortunately, 2D fighters produced for the Saturn by Capcom and SNK, still look as fresh today as they did in 1996. Be it the Street Fighter series, or case in point X Men: Children Of The Atom, the choice of animation, and the classic animated background, 2D characters and bright vibrant colours, have stopped them from looking as ancient as say, Virtua Fighter or Virtua Fighter 2.




The 2D beat 'em up still has many fans today, myself included. Be it SNK's King Of Fighters franchise for the PS2, or the Marvel vs. Capcom franchise for the Dreamcast, the games were pretty much formulaic and similar in appearance. The Saturn's six button control pad, allowed for the maximum combination of special moves for the game's fighters, reminiscent of the six button/joystick format of the arcade original.

And talking about special moves, what turbo charged stunners those moves are! Characters 'power up' and unleash a torrent of damage to their opponents, which is one of the most satisfying elements of the game.

But what about plot and storyline... Well it's X Men, so you'd be right in thinking the ultimate goal is to beat Magneto. But you've got to get through an army of foes before you get to the old spoon bending evil mutant! Let's compile a list of 'good guys' and 'bad guys' shall we?




Batting for 'Team Good' are... Cyclops, Psylocke, Wolverine, Storm, Colossus and Iceman.

Batting for 'Team Bad' are Omega Red, the mutant hunting android Sentinel, Spiral (lackey of Mojo), and Silver Samurai as well as Juggernaut.

What's nice for all you evil types out there, is that rather than just playing as the X Men, you can play as the villains. I don't of course... It would be wrong for a 'man of the cloth' like myself to side with the forces of darkness... LOL! :)




I'd be a liar if I said I was any good at this game, however. I just mash buttons and hope for the best! But what I do enjoy, time after time, is how luscious the graphics and animations are; even in the 21st century with the graphic spleandour of the 360 and PS3...

Remember people, this game is based on the original Marvel Comics 'X Men', not the Halle Berry Hollywood film crossover... Therefore the characters look very different from the current perception of the black-suited 'beautiful people'...



In order to keep the title close to its roots, the game features voice acting from the actors in the original animated series, which appeared on American TV.

As usual, one of the best features about this game for me, was it's price! I picked it up for the paltry sum of £1.50! (from Gamestation) Sure the box is falling apart and the manual is missing, but hey! It's got immense pick 'up and play' potential and if you like 2D fighters, then its a reson in its own right to go out and buy a Saturn!


For a fantastic review of other Saturn games that still have the WOW! factor today, look here. For a much better review of this game look here. For the definitive history of this game look here, and for a much under appreciated review of an X Men title for the DS, look here.

On a side note, my youngest 'Ginger', Ted (9), has decided he wants to follow in his Father's footsteps and have his own gaming blog... Its called 'Ted's DS Page' and if you'd be kind enough to nip over and leave a comment on his launch post, (a review of Pokemon Diamond & Pearl), I'd really appreciate it...




Cheers! FK

9 comments:

NebachadnezzaR said...

This is one of the games i've been after since i was a kid, but the opportunity never came...yet!

Lately i've been messing around with virtua racing (i intend to write my opinion of it soon, but theres a couple of articles in the queue already ) but i'm gettind somewhat tired of it so maybe i'll look for this one to play next.

The Elderly said...

cool, clear ..crisp... stunning indeed....

...following in his daddies fingertips....

The Elderly said...

ALERT! TEd DS Page link, needs to be change father methinks

J said...

This was one of my fave games on the Saturn and the one game that made me want one. I loved the X-Men and after years of having to ensure crappy games the licence finally went to a company who could deliver a game that looked and played the part. Brilliant game. But bloody difficult! Even on the easiest setting it's a bitch. Juggernaut was near impossible to kill with a character without a projectile and you couldn't do f**k all to Magneto. But the game still rocked.

Marvel super heroes tightened the combo system and reduced the cheap factor. But it wasn't as bold as Children of the atom and the characters weren't as fun to play as.

J said...

Oh! And I have to agree about SNK beat 'em ups looking as fresh now as they did before. Their games in my opinion have always look terribly dated. Capcom's Alpha and VS. series haven't aged that badly in the graphics department, but SNK games definitely have.

fatherkrishna said...

Nebacha, I'll look out for it for you and if I see one I'll buy it and mail you!

Elderly! Thanks for the heads up...

J Fabulously enlightening comment from a true appreciator of the game!

NebachadnezzaR said...

Why, thank you so much Father. Really, i appreciate it a lot. It really means a lot to me when people make such kind offers, but, fortunately for your wallet, there's no need to.

I found out that the a cousin of a friend of mine had the game, so i talked to him and he lended it to me.

I plan on writing my opinion soon :)
(oh my gawd, i have so many articles waiting to be posted right now...)

fatherkrishna said...

Well post 'em as soon as possible!

The Junkyard needs your (very valued) input...

Cheers FK!

Anonymous said...

You forgot Andrew Jackson’s Big Block of Cheese with nary a macaroni in sight.