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Feb 9, 2014

Out Of This World Review

Gallic games generally get a rough ride outside their native France - the spectacular Cinematique adventures of Delphine being something of an exception. Originally on the Amiga as Another World (the name it'll eventually come to the UK under), it's now available for the PC on import and looks sure to win a whole new set of fans...


1. Clinging to a submerged piano(!), Les
must reach the surface before the tentacles close in!
2. Made it! You've escaped the squid,
but it's a bit of a case of out of the
frying pan into the fire...
3. Ick! These giant leeches are disgusting -
and deadly! Kill them by kicking them before
they reach you. 
4. Down boy! Local dogs are prowling,
and it'll take more than a bowl of
Bonios to keep this one happy...
1. Out of This World is all about this chap, one Lester Knight Chaykin, a
young (and rather dashing) nuclear scientist. Little does he know, he's on the
verge of a big discovery...

2. Here's how it happens. One stormy night our hero arrives at the labrotory in his
flash motor to process the recults of his latest experimentals or something
(it dosen't really matter...)

3 & 4. Les enters the top secret security code to let himself in. He sits
down at his computer, but lightning strikes the building, something goes horribly
wrong and... whammo!

5. Another dimension, here we come...!

1. Caught by the aliens, Les has been
stuck in a swinging cage along with a
local crim of some type
2. Your cell-mate wakes you from your
troubled sleep - straight into a
real-life nightmare!
3. Time for a bit of a team up! Biding
their time, Les and his new buddy make
their  bid for freedom!
4. There's a special gun to be grabbed
here - you can't overestimate how useful
it's going to be!
1. This electricity in this chamberd charges more
than just your hair - and Les just can't get enough of it!
2. Tahoo! Now holding down fire for a few
seconds will shoot out this powerful
R-Type-style blast!
3. These soldiers marching past you in the
foreground show some of what Cinematique can do.
Good, innit?
4. Don't worry you're not too likely to get lost.
The game is, by necessity, fairly linear in
1. Whoops! Flood ahoy! Les is about to go
swimming, unless he looks sharpish.
Your best bet is to turn 'round here and run like hell!
2. Phew! Looks like our hero was just nimble
enough to avoid the torrent of water - this time.
Next tricky situation coming up...
3. Getting past these falling rocks is first.
Practise (and frequent death) makes perfect.
4. Right, that's all sorted. Time to wander off and see
what other trouble we can get into, I guess...
1. Think you'll be able to hold your breath long enough
to get through this underwater passage...?
2. Oops! Les plunges to this death for the 123rd time.
By now you'll be getting used to this short of thing!
3. 'Hey, don't leave me!' Don't worry - this
Seeming desertion is only part of a cunning plan...
4. Much later on: Les is now in control
of a tank-like thing, driving 'round some
sort of Roman arena!


It's difficult to classify Out Of This World - nothing quite like it has appeared on the PC (or, indeed, any other console) before. The recent Prince of Persia (see Player's Guide this issue) is perhaps it closest cousin, but only because both games feature brilliant life like animation, and main characters that take a fair amount of getting used to to control. It's not just working out how to get our hero to do something that's tricky here, but when: it's a limitation of this graphics system that it leaves a slight time lag between you telling the guy to do something and him actually doing it. This isn't always a problem, but there are points in the game (the bit where you're trying to dodge falling rocks, say) where you'll need to know his reaction times well enough to compensate, or things will start getting very annoying indeed.

Still, that aside this is gread fun. Out Of This World is playable, enjoyable, very more-ish, and I prefer it to the original Amiga game - mainly because the superior PC Soundtrack really helps build up the atmosphere. Music is used very effectively here, changing pace to suit what's happening on screen, and conveying the feeling of tension brilliantly. Sound used to complement story so well is something of a rarity. True, this version is slower in places (the Amiga is simply a faster machine at handling polygons), but not so much so that it becomes unworkable. Otherwise this is very similar game to the Amiga one, with few graphical changes.

A nicely presented, involving cart, then, but (you guessed it) there's one big problem, and that's the lack of long-term playability. This game simply isn't going to last you a long time. To complete each section, a repetitive trial and error approach has to be adopted - there's no other way to do it - and to make this sort of mucking around acceptable, frequent passwords are given out. The problem this creates, of course, is that with only 14 sections to get through, and so much user-friendliness, you'll finish it in no time. Whether you buy or not depends upon your priorities - it's a lovely game, and a delight to own, but good value it ain't.
Verdict: 81/100


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