Die Hard Trilogy (Sega Saturn)

by PaulEMoz

Oh, man. It's been too long since I last switched on a Saturn. The joy I felt at hearing that start-up again was great. I've always had a lot of love for the Saturn.

That being the case, I've already played a lot of the games I own for it, many times. And as I'm trying to use this blog primarily (but not exclusively) to play games I haven't previously played, I might have been presented with a problem. But a quick peek through the pile brought forward Die Hard Trilogy, which is a game I haven't played before.

It's actually almost three games I haven't played before. With the game being Die Hard Trilogy, the developer made the choice to incorporate a completely different game type for each film (this, of course, was made long before Die Hard 4.0, or whatever it was called). This means you've got a very varied package, which is very welcome.

There's one thing I'll say before I mention how this plays - Die Hard Trilogy on the Saturn is one of the ugliest games I've ever seen. Seriously. I don't know how much of it is down to the 3D limitations of the hardware, but this is one ropey old slapper. But, like with many a rough-looking old boiler (so I've heard), you can still have a good night of entertainment as long as you know what you're playing with.

The first section, Die Hard, sees you starting at the bottom of a tower/office block, and having to make your way to the top. Naturally, a multitude of well-armed goons spill out of rooms and lifts, trying to make your progress difficult. There are also hostages that will need to be set free, and once each level has been cleared, you must find and disarm a bomb before you progress.

This section looks abysmal, with you stuttering and spinning around the environment and its semi-see-through walls, mowing down minions to your heart's content. Playing it reminds me of an ancient and little-known Mastertronic game called L.A. Swat. You and your enemies move really slowly, and shooting them sees them collapsing into a red pile of offal. It's quite amusing, in an old-fashioned before-the-world-went-mad-through-political-correctness way.

The second section, Die Harder, is a lightgun game without a lightgun. Apparently you can actually play this section with a lightgun, but I couldn't be arsed to dig mine out. The onscreen crosshairs work fine, anyway. It's a lot like the Virtua Cop games in terms of gameplay, but absolutely nowhere near as good. Again, like the first section, it moves really slowly and the graphics are atrocious, and yet it keeps you quite enthralled nonetheless.

The third section, Die Hard With A Vengeance, is kind of like a cross between Crazy Taxi (which wasn't released until a few years after this) and Carmageddon. It's not supposed to be... you're not meant to mow down pedestrians on your way to defusing the bombs. And yet, they explode across the streets and your car in such a satisfying manner, you can't help yourself. There's a guilty pleasure for you. Other than that, it's terrible.

You often hear about films that are so bad they're good. You rarely hear the same about a game, and yet Die Hard Trilogy on the Saturn falls squarely into that category. Each individual section is terrible in almost every way (I forgot to mention the horrendous voice acting), and yet each section will keep you entertained while you play, with the third being the weakest in that area. I suspect I won't load it up often in future, but at least I'll have a few laughs if I do.