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Video game reviews

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© St. Petersburg Times, published August 14, 2000


Legend of Mana

SYSTEM: PlayStation

PRICE: $39.99

MAKER: Squaresoft

Nostalgic players expecting Secret of Mana with better looks are in for a completely different role-playing game. Mana employs a novel concept that lets gamers arrange the world map and participate in several short adventures in lieu of one epic quest. The thin battle system is the only disappointment.

Grade: A-

Evolution 2: Far-Off Promise

SYSTEM: Dreamcast

PRICE: $49.99

MAKER: Ubisoft

As far as role-playing games go, Evolution 2 is about as youth-oriented as you can get. The characters are cute, and the battles are funny, but the game's repetitive nature is a bit mind-numbing for older players.

Grade: C

Rampage Through Time

SYSTEM: PlayStation

PRICE: $39.99

MAKER: Midway

Midway went all out packing this game with levels and options and giving players a choice of eight monsters, which they can use to crush locations throughout time. Mini-games akin to Asteroids help, but this still is the same basic Rampage we saw years ago.

Grade: C-

Action Bass

SYSTEM: PlayStation

PRICE: $9.99

MAKER: Take 2 Interactive

For 10 bucks, here's what you get with this fishing game: six lakes, a wide choice of lures and game play that consists of casting, catching and reeling in bass. There's only one fisherman, whose boat doesn't move, but it's close enough to Sega Bass Fishing to occupy anglers for a while.

Grade: C+

Mortal Kombat: Special Forces

SYSTEM: PlayStation

PRICE: $39.99

MAKER: Midway

The first of this series, starring Sub-Zero, was so bad I couldn't possibly imagine Midway continuing the series. But sure enough, Special Forces has arrived, featuring military man Jax, who kicks, punches and blasts his way through level after tiresome level. The addition of fighting combinations and minor mission objectives are the only redeeming aspects.

Grade: C

Midway's Greatest Hits: Volume 1

SYSTEM: Dreamcast

PRICE: $29.99

MAKER: Midway

Someday, they'll make a Nintendo or Super Nintendo greatest hits game and people will actually care, but as far as compiling Defender, Joust and other dust balls on one disk, Midway risks destroying its legacy rather than promoting it. Only respect for the dead saves this game from an even lower mark.

Grade: D

- Robb Guido is an avid gamer who lives in Tampa.

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