LOST & FOUND volume 2| Players: 1-3 | Release: 2007 | Publisher: Oldergames


The game doesn't look good on small screenshots, I'm aware

Let's start this review with an apology. Waaay back in April I would've reviewed Milestone's Crows. There's a couple of reasons this review fell through. One of them was the general lack of time I had, another was the tiring nature of the 'Dreamcast 2D shooter review' process. I didn't really enjoy Crows much, even while it was better than Radirgy. Should you be looking for quality 2D blasts on the Dreamcast make sure to pick up games like Ikaruga, Zero Gunner 2 or Under Defeat. If you're incredibly desperate for more 2D blasting action you might want to look at Castle of Shikigami 2, Psyvariar or Border Down. If your hunger for 2D shoot 'em ups still isn't satisfied after that..well fine, go and pick up Crows. It's not terrible, just kinda mediocre, keep that in mind.

Right, now we got that out of the way, we're taking a look at..Lost and Found volume 2, a Saturn release by Oldergames. Better still..it's not a 2D shooter! Now we're talking! Oldergames is a company that actively looks for unpublished software and new developments and releases them on classic platforms like the Sega-CD, 3DO and in this case the Saturn. Lost and Found volume 1 was released back in 2004 and only saw a run of 25 copies! It featured an early version of an FMV adventure 'Rebellion' and a disc containing some uknown FMV footage. Not exactly the most shocking release ever, especially because you needed a modded system to run them. Still, that didn't stop people looking and paying loads of money for them after the sale ended.

Select one of the 3 different ships and one of 3 styles
The first boss

Recently Oldergames announced a L.A.F. vol 2 and I was one of the fifty lucky people to be able to obtain it (at $29.95, not too bad a price) If it turned out to be rubbish, I'd be able to sell it to some lunatic for a tenfold! (just kidding there).
When L.A.F. 2 came in last week I was impressed with the overall package. Sure it's just a DVD case with some labeled discs and stuff, but overall it's a quality job by Oldergames. The package -once again- contains two discs. One of them holds an early development prototype of Three Dirty Dwarves, the other contains the same Rebellion proto that featured on volume one (as another chance for people to see it).

Three Dirty Dwarves: Early development prototype

Three Dirty Dwarves was a scrolling beam 'em up released on the all Saturn markets (1996 USA & PAL, 1997 JPN). And boy did it get a hard time from the gaming press. It was deemed 'unfunny', 'frustrating' and 'poorly designed'. Now, to be honest, most of the criticisms pointed at TDD were justified and most of them could be re-used in this review. You see, as early as this prototype might be (or not, but we'll come to that) most annoyances already made it in. TDD features three characters running along city themed surroundings beating up freaks, rats, spiked balls (?!) and mostly more freaks. One of the 'dwarves runs around with a baseball bat and set of balls, the second wears a football helmet and tosses bowling balls and the third dwarf simply uses a pump-action shotgun to dispose of enemies.

The dwarves themselves look funky and I most say I love the way Segasoft and Appaloosa used all the Saturn's fancy sprite effects like scaling and rotation on the backgrounds. It gives TDD a fresh look and I still think it looks really rather cool in places. The enemies in TDD are definitely on the weird side, as said before most of the enemies you'll bashing a green freaks, rats (and mutations of them) and incredibly annoying spiked balls. The bosses certainly aren't any different, ranging from a freak packing in aggressive dogs to a full-blown gym-building walking around on loads of tiny feet (don't ask me).

So why is TDD such a let-down?

'He's a bubble boy! He lives in a bubble!'

Now I got the niggles out of the way, let's talk about the actual game. Radirgy features a selection of 3 ships, all with three different weapon classes, effectively supplying you with a choice of nine different ships. Not bad. The story of Radirgy is a bit of a mystery to me, but the most important thing you should know is that it basicly revolves around a guy playing a (or the) game on his cell-phone. Every once in a while he received messages from various persons with either interesting level information, chit chat or -don't you just hate it- spam!

The interface is very nicely done with 'battery power' as your life supply, the 'signal' strenght your weapon strenght and a special 'BBS' (are they referring to bulletin board service?) mode in which you'll gain special powers for a short while. It's all a bit confusing at first but after playing the game for a fair while, you should have no problems.

As for the rest of the graphics; they look fine, sir. Naturally, they don't look very realistic but that's the whole appeal. If you want realistic graphics Under Defeat will be more up your alley. Note that the screenshots on this page don't do the game justice. Most sprites are very tiny and just don't look good on small screenshots such as these. The animation on these sprites isn't too bad either. Especially the player ship is animated in way that gives it a very cool 3D-ish look. The bullets that fly your way are a little disappointing, perhaps. Most enemies use the same kind of bullets and the bullets themselves are a little plain. The bosses are done brilliantly though, with some original themes. The fourth boss is a flying car garage and launches cars in your direction!

The levels are somewhat varied but mostly consist of cityscapes; a little more variation wouldn't have hurt. Thankfully, the backdrops are pretty nicely done with loads of small details such as lots of little parked cars, bridges and buildings in form of calculators(!). The 2D graphics are enhanced with some clever 3D touches (see the control tower in the second movie for an idea) which makes everything look just that little more interesting.

Some nice animation there

The gameplay in Radirgy is -to be honest- not very original. It's standard bullet dodging most of the time, with the occasional 'sword' swing to dodge even more bullets. Bullets that come in the usual patterns we must have seen a million times before. The power-ups aren't too inspired either, with things such as a 'shield/smart bomb' and a load of flying objects (bananas, leafs, rice balls) of which their use is still unclear to me.

The difficulty of the game is a bit hit and miss in my opinion. The first two stages are pretty easy and can be completed without even being hit once. The third stage is a lot harder (but still fair), but after that the game becomes just a little too hard too quick for my liking. (yeah, yeah, I know I'm rubbish at 2D shooters, but still). A couple of scenes in the fourth and fifth stages are just screaming 'over the top' with the entire screen filled with LOADS of firepower. It's a case of 'dodge or die' instead of killing.

Other things of note? Well, the soundtrack of the game is pretty good and goes well with the game. I don't like it as much as the Chaos Field one but that's because I'm an electronica freak. The sound effects are pretty good as well with excellent explosion sounds and loads of cool cartoonish sounds that go with some of the little 'scenes'. The only effect I didn't like was the sound of the 'bubble' weapon, which gets on your nerves rather quickly.

After playing Radirgy for a good while I've came to the conclusion that it was enjoyable but not much more than that. Like said, all the little mistakes Mile Stone made in Chaos Field were made again in Radirgy. Apart from the graphics and sound the games are a lot alike (even the credit system is the same) in the aspect that they are just too basic a game to be worth the price asked. Hopefully Mile-stone will learn from its mistakes and will make sure their next console game is a little more complete..this just isn't worth the $60 price asked.

The fifth boss pulls a magic resurrection trick, d'oh!


Stylish graphics, plenty of detail on the ships but enemies
(and bullets) are a little plain and are used too often.
A special mention goes to the bosses, which are very original.

Not too many bits 'n bobs and overall a little uninspired.
It's not broken, though.

Just one mode (not even a multiplayer mode) but it does have
a good selection of ships.

Packaging 8
Gameplay 6
Value 6
Overall 65




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