Requirements: MacOS version 7.1 or higher
33Mhz 68040 or higher, PowerPC recommended
Publisher: Lucas Arts
Double Speed CD-ROM drive or faster
8MB of RAM, 5 MB free; 16MB recommended
256 color 13" or larger display required
8MB hard disk space
Hello, hello, hello! This time I'm getting straight to the review. I've decided not to babble on about meaningless things that you as a reader, really don't care about. Of course, this will make the review about a page and a half shorter, but if it means you can get to bed earlier tonight, and have a good nights sleep, then my job is done. Well, so much for saying that. I've already started. Anyway...
Do you all remember SimCity 2000? That was a stupid question. Who doesn't know about probably the most popular city simulator of the 90's? Anyway, 3 years later from SimCity 200, LucasArts (I can't help it if they make great games) came up with their sim counterpart, titled: Afterlife.
In Afterlife, you play the role of Demiruge, ruler of the land, controlling two planes, Heaven and Hell. To avoid religious conflicts, the game is set on an alien world, with some of the beliefs in the game like the ones here on Earth, but others radically different. Your job is to keep the inhabitants happy.
Before the intro, the game loads up. This process only takes a few seconds, but the progress bar not only list how much has loaded already, but it does this in a funny way, with phrases using the percent that has loaded. Confused? No longer—Here's an example:
The game starts out with an intro of an alien undergoing cardiac arrest, while the doctor is putting as many volts possible into him,trying to save him, but the patient is lost, and passes on, to the Afterlife. To help you in the game are two helpers, Jasper Wormsworth, a Demon, and Aria Goodhalo, an Angel.
They alert you of problems in your afterlife, such as not enough space for the souls, if your roads are not connected well, among many other problems. They are always available, and also provide an excellent online, spoken, and graphically aided tutorial of the games many features, many of which I could not even begin to explain. Another amusing part of the game is the funny things they say to each other.
The Powers That Be, are your superiors, and they control weather or not you should be rewarded or punished.
The game itself never ends, unless you aren't doing so well. When you have lost too many souls, or are not keeping a well managed afterlife, then the Four Surfers from Apocalypso pay a visit. Your game ends, and you start over after that. The first 1 or 2 thousand years are the roughest. build small and slow. I on the other hand, can't seem to do that for any game. I have to end up using some cheat code. Luckily this game has one. After that, the game was smooth cruising. (For those of you who don't know what the code is, type $@! for a lot of money). Along the line of codes, there is a rather pointless, yet humorous code. Type SAMNMAX three times. Make sure you're holding the shift key down when you're typing. Don't worry about it bring up the gift menu. If all goes correctly, you should have lots of little bunnies (Maxes) hopping around, destroying your afterlife.
To start the game, you need to place a gate in the two planes (Heaven and Hell). This should be followed by a road leading to the zoned fates, and other structures. They are zoned according color which in turn is according to the 7 fates or sins. In SimCity, this is like Industrial, Commercial, and Residential. You have to supply the work force of the afterlife, by training and housing Angels and Demons. Just about everything build able is accessible through the game's " Remote Control", which also tells you your account balance, the year, and your population.
There are about 250 artistically rendered structures throughout the game. They really are quite comical. Sound effects are played throughout the game, and are quite good. I wouldn't exactly say the game has music in it, but rather short tunes played in parts of the game.
The disasters of the game are some of the funniest parts. There are 6 that you can control (meaning activate), and others that just randomly pop up, like a plague. The ones that you can control include: Birds of paradise and Bats of Hell, My Blue Heaven and Hell Freezes Over, Heaven Nose and Hell in a Hand basket, and finally paradise Pair of Dice, and Disco Inferno. All of them are incredible annoying, especially the Heaven Nose and Hell in a Hand basket, which go around picking up structured, and depositing them in the opposite plane. The Disco Inferno is just plain amusing. He'll brighten your day, and destroy your afterlife.
The window and menu design fit the "dead" motif. In other words, this isn't your typical Mac menu graphically speaking. It is pretty much just a brow colored font changed Mac menu.
If you ever get bored of the game, there are some scenarios for you to try out, and in general, there are 3 difficulty options to choose from.
There are no waterfalls, or hills to work around. You don't need a power plant, or a fire station. Afterlife is a very complex sim, and I admit it does get boring at times. If I had to say something bad about it, it would be the fact that it is hard to get info on some structures (via a magnifying glass), because others are blocking it. This is quickly fixed be pressing the key that makes everything tiny, or to "flatten" it. You can also rotate the Afterlife 90 at a time, and zoom in and out.
There is one structure that is available only when you reach 1 billion, that's right—billion inhabitants. It can be done, be most of us have lives. Anyway, I can't even to begin to describe many of the features in the sim. There are so many, and they all perform a special task. Listing them all would prove incredibly boring to you (And me! I don't have that kind of time!). Anyway, I can tell you this:
If you liked SimCity 2000, There is a pretty good chance you'll take a liking to Afterlife.
Afterlife sells for about $50 bucks from LucasArts. You can probably get it retail for about $45 though. There is also a book about Afterlife, titled Afterlife Official Players Guide. I didn't get it because I heard it wasn't worth it. If you want black and white pictures of all the structures, and the code mentioned here, feel free to lay down the $20 bucks for it.
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