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Hail fellow, well met! Our Guild seeks
to catalog genres Fantasy, Strategy,
& Role-Playing. From swordplay to
tactics, the Guild shall be your
mighty castlegrounds. Stay awhile.

JVC * SEGA-CD * CD * Now Available


Loki, the Norse God of Mischief, has snuck into the halls of Valhalla and took it upon himself to pilfer the weapons of the gods! It is your duty to lead the Vikings to reclaim these artifacts and take down Loki! Heimdall is a unique role-playing game originally developed by Core Design for DOS, the Atari ST, and Amiga systems. JVC has graciously released a port of this title for SEGA-CD, so SEGA players will also be able to enjoy the magic and mysticism of Norse mythology. Once booted up, you have the option to try your hand at a small assortment of throwaway "Sub Games" including pig chasing and axe throwing, or to begin the real adventure of restoring Valhalla and Odin's pride to its former glory.

Select your party members from a varied pool of 15 characters, all with different strengths and weaknesses, and the Heimdall challenge will have begun. Your party will be thrust into an isometric world with no guidance to speak of. Explore away! There are plenty of secrets to uncover in these rooms. Battles play out on a static screen with minimal animation and are a bit tricky to get the hang of. This disc's graphics may be divisive among certain players, as they exhibit a cartoonish feel reminiscent of the old Dragon's Lair arcade cab, but we've found that the style grows on you after a stretch of gameplay. Prepare for some grueling loading time between screens, though. The Vikings must have had some serious patience!

Printed in Issue #13, May 1994
Young Merlin
Virgin Games * SNES * 16 MB * Now Available


The name alone invokes the very essence of fantasy storytelling and Arthurian adventure, but Young Merlin may not be doing justice to that concept. Developed by Westwood Studios and published by Virgin Games, this Super NES cart centers on a young boy tasked with defeating the dreadful Shadow King before he destroys all things of beauty. Join with the Lady of the Lake to quell this evil! The most striking thing about Young Merlin is, without a doubt, its presentation and art direction. Merlin is a huge contrast to the bulk of the SNES library in terms of style, utilizing simple color shading and a, somewhat jarring, darker palette (Sounds like a host of lesser Genesis games I've seen -Jet).

Young Merlin is a mixed bag. Its story is comfortable and familiar, and the developers added plenty of puzzles to solve. On the flip side, this title was weighed down by some unforgivable flaws. Combat is dull and unintuitive, it is overly tedious to cycle through your items on the pause menu, and, worst of all, nearly every quest involves fetching lost items for mediocre rewards. We were left wishing the team behind this cart took more inspiration from gems like Soul Blazer that managed to make this formula jive much better. With Merlin perhaps needing a few more years to mature into the famous wizard we all know, players yearning for an Arthurian tale should look to Capcom's Knights of the Round.

Printed in Issue #13, May 1994