Bad Mojo Review

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Graphics: 7.0
Sound : 8.5
Gameplay : 7.0
Multiplayer : N/A
Overall : 7.2
Review by
Bad Mojo (c) Pulse Entertainment

Genre: Bug Sim
Year: 1996
Get the demo at: ftp://ftp.zdnet.com/gs/adventure/badmojo/mojodemo.zip (3.9 mb)

What sometimes puzzles me in my somewhat ordinary computer centered life is: How do the game designers come up with totally new games? I mean, it's not like there's few first person shooters, point and click adventures and real time strategy games. In these games the story is most often what makes a game different from the other, of course along with new interface, weapons, characters etc etc. But my point is this, once in a while a company manages to think REALLY innovative and ends up making a game unlike anything before, this is something I for one admire. In 1996 the company Pulse Entertainment put out the game Bad Mojo, and at many places it got very positive reviews.

I suppose there's quite a few of you who haven't heard of this game before, and that's basicly why I'm writing these reviews; to make reviews of good games that are at least as old as from 96 (which is an absolute limit), then I will try my best to describe this 'bug sim'.

According to the introduction sequence the plot begins with a person who says that his whole life he's been the kind of guy that few people like, who never gets dates, gets dominated very easily and who has ended up in a literally crappy appartment, with a lousy job. You also see that in some probably illegal way he's gathered a briefcase filled to the brim with the 'green paper' often referred to as cash. He has planned to go to a pacific island to relax under a palm tree sipping drinks and looking at chicks (the latter one added by me as it's pretty much what I'd be doing).
Our character had his bags packed and even payed the 3 days late rent when he decides he wants to have a look at this necklace which he got from his mother a long time ago. But then the shit hits the fan, the necklace is haunted with bad mojo and because our guy just had to pick the piece of jewlery up at that exact time it decides to turn our somewhat psychotic friend into a cockroach.

You start off the game a little besides a sink (after what I've gathered) and start off buzzing around trying to figure out what to do, and as soon as you figure out the only sensable way to go is to the top left you see the first ingame video which features the voice of a woman who will help you throughout the way (by talking in forms of "puzzles") along with video of various "stuff". Soon you will run into your first enemy which by the way is a spider, but by acting fast and having a clear head you should have little problems making toast of your adversery.

One of the things that makes the game Bad Mojo as innovative as it is is the camera view. It's fairly seldom you control a bug climbing up a sink while seeing it all in an unusual camera view. In my opinion this is all very positive and gives a totally new experience to anyone who hasn't played it before, but I would not advice little children to play this game as fear is what the designers constantly try to manifest in us. There is a very good and scary (no, I was not afraid but I'm grown up enough to notice a game having a mood more scary than others. Why I'm writing about it here I do not know, but that's another story) mood, so I will definatly recommend this game to late nights when you've got just too little to do.

The Graphics:
Awfully lifelike at times, and looks really the way you'd expect a roach infected appartment would look. At times it is hard to see what certain things is, probably because roaches is not what my main concern in life has been, but hey, it's an experience. The movies are in quicktime format, and the overall quality is fair I suppose. The general quality of the movies are very good, but I do believe they could have picked a better format than quicktime, but I don't program windows games so I shouldn't speak too high, hehe.

The Sounds:
Everything sounds just as it does in real life, things like cigarettes, corks, coins etc etc etc. The creepy crawlings sound nasty, which gives depth to the game. There's not a whole lot more you could ask of sounds really, so that's at least good.

The Music:
Usually you don't have ingame music (which in my opinion is just fine as this is the kind of game where you need to think some) but for instance when you're getting attacked or whatever there is some music to build up your nerves. I don't know what this game would've been like with a bit silent scary music, perhaps better, perhaps not, who knows. There's not much to complain about, so you better make up your own mind if you try the game.

Gameplay:
Controlling your bug is normally easy. In the setup you can choose between the arrow keys, WASD and other combinations. Moving the bug is done by going forward with W, turning to the left with A, right with D and backwards with S, thats it.
Unfortunaly there are things that I feel could've been done better, an example is somewhat in the beginning where there is a roach trap in which you need to push this little piece of 'something' around to this other roach which is stuck in the glue but still being alive. It can be a real bitch moving the piece downwards, and the reason, obscure as it may be is that some places you can't move it, even though there isn't an obsticle in the way. In my eyes this is a bug, but who knows, perhaps they did it just to piss me off (yes, very likely indeed).