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Army Men 3D

Army Men 3D Army Men 3D
by The 3DO Company

Platform: PlayStation
ESRB Rating: Teen

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• Play as green plastic soldier
• Wage war against Tan army
• Mission-based gameplay
• Large arsenal of weapons include flamethrowers, machine guns, and grenades
• Head-to-head 2-player mode

GameSpot Review: Army Men 3D is a three-dimensional war game wherein you act as a commando-like soldier in a world gone completely Saving Private Ryan, plastic, and lilliputian. It's a world with some narrative behind it, so a history lesson is necessary before we proceed. After shifting solely to software development awhile back, 3DO introduced a lighthearted real-time strategy game to the PC revolving around little plastic army men named... Army Men, and since it sold well, the company developed the concept into a franchise. To date, another PC strategy game as well as this one (a third-person shooter) has been released, while a third-person N64 adventure game (Army Men: Sarge's Heroes) and a PlayStation helicopter game (Army Men: Air Attack) have been announced.

Army Men 3D places you as Sarge, a lone soldier whose missions involve rescuing captured troops and returning them across a minefield, taking on an enemy fortress unaided, retrieving sensitive documents from spies in the field, sabotaging bridges and radar dishes, and the like. You're in the Green army, which is at war with the Tan, and you've got an arsenal ranging from machine guns and bazookas to flame throwers and grenades - all of which you use to fight the good fight. There are even jeeps and tanks for you to drive around and over people.

Sound like a good concept? It is. There are a few really neat things about the game. Sneaking around as a commando and ducking behind rocks to avoid enemy fire can be very fun, and a number of the missions present some enjoyable challenges. Likewise, the mechanics behind the grenades and mortars is great. When you press the fire button, a square-shaped target moves away from you to the maximum distance the mortar or grenade can be shot or thrown and continues back and forth until you let go of the button to launch the shot. However, there are a number of factors that pile up and drag Army Men 3D way down.

The graphics are the main offender here; they are muddy beyond even those in Sega's House of the Dead on the Saturn. This is less an aesthetic complaint than a practical one, because you'll often not be able to distinguish an enemy soldier from a cactus or brush, and the terrain often has inexplicable sticky spots, both of which can get you shot. The later levels in the bayou look better than the desert stages (where pop-up runs rampant) and save the game from getting an even lower graphical score. There are some control and gameplay problems at work, as well. The control set-up feels somewhat incomplete because of the lack of a gun sight in the look mode and no strafe button at all. The gun sight is substituted by a computer-controlled intelligent aiming function that hones in on foes in the area toward which you've pointed your muzzle, but sometimes it gets confused when enemies are clustered together. If an enemy is farther away and not shooting at you, you might choose to ignore him for a moment, but the aiming function won't always let you. The prerequisite strafe button is replaced by the ability to roll left and right, which is probably a bit more realistic, but the need for more precise control becomes apparent the first time you get caught in a crossfire.

As it might sound, it's very easy to get killed in Army Men 3D. You can be right near the end of a level, walk around a corner, and get eaten right up by a machine gunner. It actually happens a lot, so it makes you start wishing for less powerful bullets or mid-level save spots. The way it stands, there are a lot of instances when you'll quit the game out of frustration, only to continue later out of stubbornness - meaning that the game is often maddening, but at least it does provide compelling enough reasons to continue.

Other items worth mentioning: The music and sound aren't very strong, and the game is a little bit on the short side. The game camera is near perfect in the single-player mode because it sticks right behind your back, but since it's trimmed back toward the horizon in the two-play capture-the-flag game, it's too hard to see around. Beyond all that, the only thing left uncovered is probably the enemy AI, which alternately seems either too smart or not smart enough.

It's obvious that there is a good game buried under all this, but it just seems to be down a little too deep to get any sort of recommendation. With some major spit and polish, plus several more months of development time, Army Men 3D could've turned out a lot better. Still, we haven't seen enough commando-type war games like this, and it leaves me wanting more. Let's hope a superior sequel will come along or that another company will build upon what we've seen here. --Joe Fielder

Customer Reviews:
Reviewer: A gamer from United States

Pretty un Game, February 26, 2002
Reviewer: bill rogers from Houston, TEXAS
This will be short, the game is fun but I think personally if you don't have any cheats codes or a game shark the game would be extremly hard and frustrating.

Never ending fun, December 30, 2001
Reviewer: Marc W. Svartoien from Freeman, SD United States
This game is a get game if you like army games with guns and action. The fun goes on and on, I personaly prefer muti-player prefence but 1 player is still awesome. It is a good game for kids and a fun one too as i have said before. It is action pack and full of adventers.

This is a awesone game, February 8, 2001
Reviewer: Ben from Merritt Island, FL USA
This game is a total BLAST!! Shoot some Tan's, lay some mines, squish 'em with your tank, chuck a few gernades, play sevaral differnt terrains, and just have fun. Army Men 3D has great animation. You have a awesome 3rd person view with great grahics and lot of weapons. Mutiplayer is so much fun. I don't think that there is a downside to any part of the game. If you have Playsation this sould be the first game you buy!! Have fun.

NOT THE BEST GAME, January 18, 2001
Reviewer: A gamer from Marysville, Ca USA
This game could be a lot better. For one, the game play is terible. You can barly control the guy. And something else that bothers me is that you can't aim with the guns. When you finaly do hit the guy you have no amo left. I have had this game for a while and it is my least favorite. I've seen better games from 3DO. Trust me, DO NOT WAIST THE CASH!

What a waste....., August 24, 2000
Reviewer: Matt Thompson from Seattle, WA United States
I bought this game with high expectations. I love a good shoot 'em up, but most of these kinds of games take themselves so seriously. So this one had such promise. I especially looked forward to melting the enemy with the flamethrower (and being melted a time or two myself...).

But this game quickly grew extremely frustrating. To start with, the graphics were flat, with no depth perception at all. It's very tough to see enemies off on the horizon, and even tougher to be sure what/where you're aiming. The controls are next to impossible to use. After what I thought was a more than reasonable several hours of play, by which time I've usually got the 'feel' of a game down, I was still cursing at the screen and tossing the controller down. Moving is a challenge - it seemed like I was always tumbling into a minefield or into the path of machine gun fire that I knew, from experience, was coming, but I *still* couldn't get the game to let me move where I wanted to.

I eventually finished (never let a machine beat you.....), but grudgingly, and by the end I couldn't believe that so many sequels to this thing have come out. I certainly won't be buying any of them.

INCREDIBLE, July 4, 2000
Reviewer: A gamer from Midland, MI United States
Army Men 3D has to be the best game I own. As soon as I bought it I was instantly absessed! It has over 15 missions which are all cool and interesting. Whether its rescueing men or blowing up towers, some times just plain out wiping out armies, its all out fun. fire rifles, mortars, bazookas, or throw grenades. Sometimes when feeling frustrated you can always lay down some explosives! Drive 4 different vehicles including jeeps or tanks!

The only downside to this game is the graphics. they sure aint perfect but they are not as bad as some people would say. You can always easily make out your charachter but some times the tean enemy can camoflauge with the terrain.

This shouldnt be enough to keep you from buying this nearly perfect game!

INCREDIBLE, July 3, 2000
Reviewer: Tyler Matthews from Midland Mi, USA
I would have to say this was the best game I've EVER played! It has over 15 awesome missions where you save men or plain out DESTROY evil tan armies! In the game you are the sarge and your country relies on you to get the jobs done! Fire flamethrowers, bazookas, rifles or throw grenades or launch mortars. When the going gets tough you can always blow up a bridge with explosives! The only downside to the game is the graphics are not spectacular. Some time you only see a screen filled with green. But unlike a lot of reviewers will tell you, you can always make out the enemy or yourself! i would recomend this game to a first timer at Army men 3D. itis easy to figure out and a hacke of a lot of fun

BANG, May 13, 2000
Reviewer: A gamer from Denver
This game is awsome.I think this is the best game 3DO has made.The graphics are great.I think this is the best game I have.If your looking for a good game get this one.

Nowhere near my expectations, May 10, 2000
Reviewer: A gamer from Beaverton, OR
Army Men 3D is just no good. It's fun at first, but the graphics are nowhere near the Playstation's ability, the multiplayer is boring, and the controls are bad. This game needed more polishing. Steer clear, but if you've got an N64, Sarge's Heroes is great.

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