Home Forums Current Game: M.D.K. Opinions

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  • Pix

    I’ve played my way through again for the first time in a good number of years. It’s still a fun enough game but it doesn’t have the wow factor it did at the time. The graphics were amazing then, they look a little rough these days. I do feel the technical aspects were the main appeal and it’s these sorts of games that tend to suffer in hindsight.

    Despite that it’s still not bad looking and the gameplay is solid, just less novel than it used to be. It’s very short too. I’m surprised the levels don’t give a bit more time to breath with the sniper rifle occasionally, given just how impressive that was back then. You are pretty much always being shot at and I end up using the chain gun most of the time. With this being so short, I may have a look at the sequel as well. I’m far less familiar with that.


    I’m not through, yet, but I’m actually surprised how well it looks and plays. Some weird gameplay aspects that show the console roots at a time before our modern dual analog stick input scheme.

    I thought my memory might have been rose tinted, but it holds up pretty well, tbh.


    DOS version was too janky for me and much worse than I remember, though perhaps that’s due to DOSBox-X or my machine? GOG copy works better IME.

    Feels like it needs quick-save and load with all the platforming and the frenetic play. From what little I’ve played it does feel like they want you to back up often to snipe, even then there is nearly constant incoming fire.

    Graphics are too dark and ill-defined sometimes. When games do that I just crank the brightness until it’s slightly washed out, so that edges are visible. Things look worse yet are more playable. With ‘proper’ brightness I feel like I’m never sure where the boundaries are. This game in particular makes that feeling worse with its — otherwise welcome — verticality.

    It’s still fun today. Just a bit harder to get working well and adjust to the quirks from the era.


    I finished the DOS version under DOSBox and it worked great for me, but I’d never played the game before so I couldn’t say.

    I didn’t use the F2 save patch, which created an interesting play pattern. Most of the time, the actual shooting mechanics are just a waste of time. The way through an arena is movement-based or sometimes one specific enemy or piece of the scenery to shoot. Everything else you can parachute or turbo past. I really felt that on a second full run of the level.

    So as a shooter, I didn’t like it much. The chain gun was slow to kill enemies, and the sniper rifle seemed too slow to use most of the time. Too many arenas would just infinitely spawn enemies until you leave. As a sort-of puzzle platformer with mild humor it was pretty smooth and enjoyable.


    It’s interesting! Reminds me a little of Superman 64 but hopefully won’t turn out to be as horrible. Soundtrack is very movie-like and adds suspense. I’m still puzzling my way through the practice room. Might have to cheat a bit and check Youtube…half the time I don’t understand the instructions.

    I vaguely remember one version of MDK (or maybe it was a demo) that refuses to run if it doesn’t detect a Pentium chip. DOS version runs ok if configured properly. The performance test in options allows you to time Dosbox cycles just right. For example, on my machine about 58000 matches Pentium 90 speed, at least for this game.


    The DOS version runs beautifully for me – smooth as butter, and gameplay feels slick, responsive and smooth. (Once I mapped the keys the way I like them)
    This is despite the game warning me I should load a VESA driver (playing on a Pentium I 166, with bog standard S3 VGA card, no 3D patch) or I would have performance issues. (I haven’t bothered with the driver)

    I’ve never cared too much about framerates, but if I had to guess, I’d say it’s staying somewhere between 40 and 50 fps most of the time.

    I like it. I like the humour and the breezy gameplay I can’t really find any serious criticisms of it, beyond the small, but frustrating and baffling, choices that seemed to plague so many games of this era.

    But it probably won’t make it into my top 10 list any time soon.

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