reviews\ Jul 16, 2000 at 8:00 pm

Beach Head 2000 - PC - Review - PC - Review

As the landing craft approaches the beachhead, you take careful aim. As soon as that gate swings down, you will be pumping the inside full of lead. Pity the poor fools who thought so little of life that they would rush your installation.

Beachhead 2000, from WizardWorks, is a mindless little arcade-style game that is meant for fun. There is a disclaimer at the front, which may be a tongue-in-cheek approach, which states it does not depict real events and is intended only for fun. Ok, so the cover shot shows a soldier with a maniacal look on his face as he plows the beach with his twin machine guns. It is only a cover shot.

But for this title, please check your mind at the door.

The game has limited options, limited ammo and limited strategy. Kill anything that comes your way, save a few shells for the cargo plane drops for resupply – don’t hit the cargo plane or it won’t come back – and wipe out anything moving toward and shooting at you in the quickest time possible.

You can use the mouse or a joystick to aim, but the controls are extremely tight and seemed a little backwards. Usually when you push up on a joystick, the object you apply that to goes down – an opposite reaction thing. In this game, you push up on either joystick or mouse and the guns rise. Pulling back and they drop. It takes a few turns to get used to that. (And pity the plane you climb behind in the next flight sim after playing this program for a while.)

There are hotkeys, which will allow you to launch a missile at the incoming planes and choppers, as well as an artillery barrage. You get three weapons to aim and fire, including the twin-machine gun placement and your .45 handguns. This is a basic point-and-shoot game.

There are some drawbacks. If you fire at the landing craft before they beach, you don’t do any damage. You cannot blow them out before landing, nor can you start counting kills until the ramp drops. But if you are lined up, the moment that ramp drops, you can blaze away and prevent any of those soldiers from storming the beach. Sort of like shooting fish in a barrel.

And don’t count on your machine gun to bring down a jet. You’ll have to line up and launch missiles to do that.

There are no difficulty levels. The game gets tougher as you progress. You can save a game in progress, in order to save your level, and you do score points on each level. You can resupply by shooting the cargo drops. The medicine package restores your health points, or shield, and you can get ammo. Targeting the enemy is tough, because there are no crosshairs. But you can bracket fairly well.

Beachhead 2000 is rated Teen for animated blood and animated violence, and does not support Internet play.

There is a place in the world for mindless shooter games, and Beachhead 2000 should fit into that niche very nicely.


Install: Quick and easy.

Gameplay: 7. The gameplay is non-stop arcade-style action.

Graphics: 7. The program looks pretty good, though the graphics are a little flat and each attacking soldier tends to ‘blow up’ in the same manner.

Sound: 6. This program features the same death cry, the same sounds of the gun, the same plane noise and the same sound of the surf – over and over. Though not terribly done, it does get to be a little redundant.

Difficulty: 7. This is a shooter-arcade game where you level up as you eliminate all attacking soldiers on the level you are on. Each level does get progressively harder, and the controls are a little touchy so you must maintain a steady hand.

Concept: 6.5. This crosses the bridge between war games and arcade shooters. Not entirely original.

Overall: 6.5. This is a mindless little distraction that requires reflexes, not brains.

Above Average

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