Lost Eden

Review by Orb
August 2002

Lost Eden is one of the earlier games in the Cryo catalogue and, together with Dragon Lore, represents the company's shift away from action titles such as Commander Blood and Megarace to what would become its trademark genre for the next seven years.

The game itself is an adventure title, but the design really has elements of other genres, such as other characters that form a party to help in forwarding the gameplay and an overhead mapping system that allows the player to jump from one location to another.

Playing as Adam, son of King Gregor of Mo, you must enlist the aid of some very educated dinosaurs to rebuild citadels that were destroyed by your grandfather. You are halted in your task by a villain by the name of Moorkus Rex, a Tyrannian who intends to conquer the world using an army of deadly Tyrannosaurs. Your goal is to stop Moorkus Rex, building citadels along the way that serve to fend off his hordes.

Adam must travel to a number of different valleys, contact and win over the inhabitants, both human and dinosaur, and convince them to build a citadel to waylay the Tyrannosaurs and Velociraptors in each valley and prevent them from taking over.

Rendered using the at-the-time-cutting-edge 3D Studio, there is great attention to graphic detail in the drawing of the dinosaurs, and they are really brought forth as the monumental, elegant creatures they must have been. It's an interesting design choice to use accurate representations of dinosaurs based on science's current understanding of how they appeared, melded with a fanciful, series of imaginary civilizations with which they coexist.

Music in the game is lilting and soothing and, despite repeated loops, fails to become tiresome. Each valley has its own musical theme, and all are entertaining. Animations are also really enjoyable and nicely done.

There is an in-game hint system that operates in hits and misses as far as effectiveness. The companions of Adam can also be spoken to, and they will on occasion provide direction as well.

Lost Eden has a really nice, effective dual mapping system that really locks out any redundancy in exploring each of the valleys. You are allowed an overview of each valley, and when running the cursor over each section, you can follow exactly where you are in a small map in the upper right corner of the screen. This map also shows which section you're in when moving from screen to screen within the valleys and additionally plots locations that you will need to return to once found.

A weakness of the game is the redundancy of gameplay from one area to the next. You must visit a number of different valleys, but in doing so you find the same tasks needing to be completed in each, so after the second or third valley you develop a technique for rolling though all the steps. This decreases the fun of exploration and the amount of time playing the game, as once this is figured out, it's a pretty short leap to roll though each one in the shortest amount of time possible.

Overall, this is a fun and entertaining game that is not overly long. Not as well-known as some of Cryo's later games, it is certainly different and amusing and worth picking up if you see an inexpensive copy available. The End

The Verdict

The Lowdown

Developer: Cryo
Publisher: Virgin Interactive
Release Date: March 1995

Available for: DOS Macintosh

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System Requirements

486 or higher
DOS 4.0 or higher
2X CD-ROM drive
Soundblaster or compatible

68030 processor
2X CD ROM drive
256 colors

Where to Find It

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