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Seaman

Score: 80%
ESRB: Teen
Publisher: Sega
Developer: Sega
Media: GC/1
Players: 1
Genre: Miscellaneous

Graphics & Sound:

To be honest, the graphics are not all that spectacular; however, they do exactly fit the game. Seaman is not a game that is supposed to be visually impressive. It's not that the graphics are bad; they aren't. They're just somewhat plain. But that's what they have to be. Think about it - it's a fish with a human head in an aquarium. How detailed can it get? I promise you one thing, the game has the best graphics it can for this game. Although not knockout gorgeous, the looks fit the game. The detail is plenty, but the colors are a bit dark. All in all, the graphics fit the game, and they look fine.

Some of the sounds could have been better, but over all, it was okay. The Seaman's voice is a bit monotone and melodramatic, but it kinda adds to the mood. Some of the generic sound effects could be improved, but it's nothing major. [Ed. note: One interesting thing to note is the fact that Leonard Nimoy does the narration for this game. To me, it's almost worth the price of admission to hear Mr. Spock say


Gameplay:

Seaman is an interactive virtual pet (with an attitude) for your Dreamcast. Perhaps the best thing about the game is the voice interaction. Included with the game, you can use the microphone to communicate with your Seaman, in conversation or in instructions.

You start the game by setting up your habitat and adding some eggs. In a few days, the eggs will hatch. Once that happens, you have a baby fish(s) (with a human head). The fish grows up and eventually grows legs. Now this frog/man will eventually . well, I don't want to give it away. Let's just say you should never cross mate with seafood (as if I have to tell you that).

To have a successful Seaman (i.e. one who stays alive), you must feed him, talk to him, play with him, and regulate the oxygen, heat, and moisture.

The cool thing about Seaman is that he interacts with you. Be careful what you tell him, it may come back to haunt you. If you mistreat your Seaman, he will let you know. By asking questions, Seaman gets to know you. It remembers everything you say, and builds its own personality around that. If you get too bossy with your fish, he'll tell you just what he thinks about it. It really is a neat little game.


Difficulty:

Difficulty really doesn't apply here. If you play it everyday, you won't have a problem. If you neglect your Seaman for a few days, well he might be difficult to interact with unless you believe in talking to spirits. If you don't like to play the waiting game and want your Seaman to grow up fast, you could always cheat and play with the internal clock. I don't recommend it, but some people will do it anyway. The game is very easy to navigate. Its interface facilitates easy gameplay.

Game Mechanics:

Not too much here either. Basically, you have a few functions - zooming, manipulating, moving, and talking. The microphone is nice. It's not perfect, but it will capture correctly about 80% of the time. On the down side, the game requires the use of an entire VMU. Overall, Seaman is a fun little game that put an interesting voice recognition technology into a neat game. Seaman is fun for the whole family.

-Storm, GameVortex Communications
AKA Jeremy Kelso

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Game Vortex :: PSIllustrated