The license applies to MSDN text/images and to my levels

14th of November 2003

West Alien Train | Single | Author: Zaxtor | Download 99Kt

Description: Zaxtor keeps pumping brilliant new levels out almost every two weeks. 'West Alien Train' is a train level. Aliens are heading toward human population and you have to stop them.

Design: The level start not from a train but from a scene where your space ship lands and you'll continue from there. About 2/3 of the level occurs in the alien train. Design in the beginning - the landing site & nature next to it is a bit empty and too bright (it's supposed to be night). This is partly understandable since all resources (available sectors etc.) have been used (might explain the lack of shadows). The train itself looks very pretty. Includes also some brilliant spritework - take a look at the first picture at the bottom of this page. However I have no idea what those sprites are on the landing site or those spikes near the end of the first cave.

Textures: Train has been textured with organic hive textures which gives it the kind of originality & style it needs. The idea of an alien train is brilliant although I have no idea what aliens would do with one as long as they have ultra advanced space ships. First 1/3 of the level could use better texturing (or at least richer) when it comes to mountains etc.

Gameplay: Unlike Zaxtor's previous 'Alien Sanctuary' this one's pretty easy. Puzzles are simple and you'll be travelling more or less straight forward picking up keys & shooting bad guys. During the train you'll be jumping from one car to another all the time which is pretty enjoyable. Just make sure you won't be falling to the rails all the time. Monster/ammo balance is perfect.

Innovations: We have seen a moving train done before in Duke such as in 'The Final Confrontation' episode & 'Mars!4' and even in my own (& very old) episode 'Fight the Future' (a moving boat). So it's nothing new but it surely always looks great. There's a space ship landing sequence in the beginning which is very pretty. And in case you're lucky you might even spot Zaxtor's rolling 3d tapes;)

Conclusion: Mostly well designed level which uses one of our favorites themes - a moving train theme. It has some neat ideas and brilliant gameplay - Without a doubt a level you should play.

Rating: 93