Wednesday, 23 December 2015

Maze Hunter 3D (Master System review)

Developer: Sega
Publisher: Sega
Released: 1988

Maze Hunter 3D is an action game that requires the Sega 3D Glasses.

It consists of 20 stages (split between five worlds) and your mission is to escape the deadly maze known as Labyrinth. Each stage challenges you to locate the key, eliminate enemies that kill you with one hit and make it to the exit. You jump with Button 2 while Button 1 uses an Iron Bar weapon; however, you can gain power-ups such as a 2-Way Shot by jumping and hitting balloons that float by. Question mark boxes are also scattered around that grant you items like an Absorb Suit so you can take extra hits. The gameplay reminds me of Gauntlet (1985, Arcades) as you're constantly hunting around while in survival mode. The controls take a while to get used to but once you've mastered them they work great. New enemies are slowly introduced to stop things getting stale and it's enjoyable learning their patterns and memorising how to battle them most effectively. The toughest is the Lightning Bolt as it's invincible and fires out four projectiles so you must plan your route and hide behind walls before proceeding. The game is pretty tough and if you die it takes you back to the start of the level where you must locate your Iron Bar again before you can attack. However, the play areas are condensed and there's no sprawling map layouts to get you overly frustrated. The level design is good but it could have been more inspired as each world doesn't really cater to its theme gameplay wise. The 3D effect is mind-blowing and the scenery really pops out of the screen; the jumping mechanic and varying platform heights provide amazing depth and none of it feels shoehorned in or gimmicky.
Maze Hunter 3D is an awesome adventure and in my opinion it's worth owning the Sega 3D Glasses just for this game. If it was 2D it would still be fun but the stereoscopic effect makes a huge difference by immersing you in the game world and Sega did a great job getting the best out of the technology.
Random trivia: Although some 3D Master System games allowed you to play in 2D if you wished this title has no such option.

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