ESWAT review - Sega Master System
The city is under siege and only a heroic cop can save the day! Six ruthless crime bosses have clubbed together in order to bring a reign of chaos to the city. Violent crime is common place - no-one feels safe. The police are over-powered by the sheer enormity of the new crime wave. Enter the ESWAT (Enhanced Special Weapons and Tactics) team, a bunch of hardened cops with the greatest weaponry and armour that the city can provide.
You start the game as a lowly police officer aspiring to be a part of the elite ESWAT team. You need to prove your policing worth in order to qualify, and must first kill one of the crime bosses and his associated cronies to prove you're worth your stripes (and presumably, your armour).
Once you're in possession of the necessary armament, it's time to clean up the rest of the streets. There's five levels' worth of ESWAT excitement, and each level has four smaller scenes packed with felons to despatch to their graves. It's a one-on-one shoot-out at the end of each level, and success means one less member of the crime boss cartel. Failure isn't even worth contemplating...
What the Mean Machines staff thought
ESWAT isn't bad, but it bears very little resemblance to the arcade original - looking for all the world like an arcade Robocop variant. The backgrounds are gaudy and completely unatmospheric and where's the groovy afterburners of the Megadrive game? The playability's the thing though, and ESWAT is quite entertaining - for a while. The game is pretty easy to complete, and won't really keep you at the Sega for long.
After the rather nifty arcade game, this is a bit of a disappointment. The original coin-op features a variety of mean 'n' meaty weapons, but the ones in this version are wimpy by comparison. Even the graphics are feeble compared to their arcade counterpart, with gaudy backdrops and small, poorly animated sprites. When you get down to playing it, once again the game is a let-down. It's great fun at first, but there are only five levels and they're very easy to get through. None of the end-of-level baddies offer much resistance, and anyone who's a half-decent player should be able to finish the game pretty quickly.
Sega's policy towards converting their arcade classics was often a little confusing in the early 90's. ESWAT is a prime example. Both the Megadrive and Master System versions have very little to do with the arcade original aside from the basic plot. The levels (and much of the gameplay) are different in all three versions. Bonkers!
Mike Smith - 29 Mar 2008, 02:21 GMT
Is this the game where you can call the police if you're in trouble and they come and kill all the bad guys??? Thanks, Mike
Dazza - 29 Mar 2008, 08:45 GMT
Sounds like you are describing the special move in Streets of Rage 1 to me :-)
Dan - 19 Feb 2009, 10:40 GMT
Damo's comments are spot on, it was the worst of the 3 by far, but still not awful by any means.