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PC Reviews: Robin Hood: The Legend of Sherwood

 

Robin Hood: The Legend of Sherwood Screenshots

The Final Say!

Gameplay
9.4
Graphics
8.5
Sound
9.0
Value
9.2

Robin Hood: The Legend of Sherwood - reviewed by Andrew B
Review Date: 5 January 2002
Review Score: 9.2/10
Distributed by Take Two Interactive

From the creators of the highly successful Commandos and Desperados: Wanted dead or alive games comes Spellbound's latest instalment of action and real time-time strategy games that is set in merry old England called Robin Hood: The Legend of Sherwood. 

The story revolves around the original tale of Robin Hood that sees Robin returning home after spending many years fighting for the crusades in the east. Unfortunately for Robin and his countrymen, England is now without a king and the ruthless and malevolent Prince John has taken over the throne by ensuring that King Richard remains imprisoned in the dungeons of Austria. By leading a group of rogues, Robin plans to free England from Prince John's vile grasp and raise enough money to free King Richard and return him to his rightful place. 

Robin Hood: The Legend of Sherwood is very similar to previous games by developers Spellbound, Commandos and Desperados and the main emphasis of the game is to use your men to solve a variety of puzzles and to defeat the evil minions of Prince John. Every character you control in the game, whether it's Robin Hood or Friar Tuck has a unique ability and must be used in conjunction with other members of your group to successfully complete the mission. 

Unlike the other games, Robin Hood contains a non-linear storyline that actually gives players the choice of what missions they wish to complete. Instead of just telling the player what to do, the game gives you a variety of missions that each has rewards and benefits. This game could almost be considered a resource game because between missions, you can train your characters in the forests of Sherwood to increase their skills such as melee or bow attacks. There are also a variety of items you can build between missions such as arrows and healing herbs. This resource management is heavily focused upon during the game because your characters do not have an unlimited supply of equipment. For example, when you are away on a mission, you can get your other characters to perform these resource management tasks so that when you return, you will have a freshly created stack of equipment or more proficient characters.

Robin Hood: The Legend of Sherwood is much more lenient when it comes to combat and you can actually succeed a few missions by using brute force instead of stealth and tactics. Unfortunately there is a downside to this system as you will lose reputation among the peasants of England and their support. Although, I must emphasis that this game is more of a real-time strategy then a hard-core action game. 

The control system of the game does take some time getting use and you must use a variety of mouse and keyboard movements to control your characters. The game also supports macro buttons that are setup during the game to allow your characters to perform special operations without the need to perform a variety of complex manoeuvres. This is ideal when you are encountering enemy units as you don't have to worry about characters getting killed as you can focus on the problem at hand. Another feature of the game is that you can turn the game to your advantage by confusing enemy units, that is, some characters have the ability to make enemy units fight or squabble among themselves. For instance, if Robin throws a coin between a group of soldiers, they will fight for that coin between them and you can safely sneak past them without the need for a fight. 

Graphically, Robin Hood: The Legend of Sherwood is a beautiful and richly created world of yesteryear and features huge cities, forests and various locales of the original tale such as Nottingham and Leicester. The backgrounds of the game remind me of the Baldur's Gate series that are extremely well detailed and colourful. Although the game is using a 2D gaming environment, it really suits the atmosphere of the game and it has allowedthe developers to add a plethora of details into the game. The characters in the game are extremely well animated but unfortunately get a little pixelated when you zoom in on your characters. 

Musically, Robin Hood: The Legend of Sherwood is beautiful orchestrated and sounds straight out of a Hollywood Robin Hood movie. The voice acting of the game is extremely over the top but actually suits the game and reminds me of the old Robin Hood movies that starred Errol Flynn and then later, Sean Connery. The game also supports a variety of background sounds such as the sounds of Sherwood or the battles that Robin Hood and his merry men have with the armies of Prince John.

In conclusion, Robin Hood: The Legend of Sherwood is the perfect game for those that love a good real-time strategy and features enough action to keep even the most hardened gamer entertained. Check it out!

- Andrew B

Copyright 2002 www.impulsegamer.com