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Stack Columns - November 11, '00 by Dorsola
Game:Stack ColumnsCompany:Sega
Type:PuzzlePlayers:1/2

As if Columns II wasn't enough, Sega released yet another game in 1994 called Stack Columns. (Currently the only version available in MAME is the Japanese release.) This game, while better than the sequel to the original Columns, still doesn't offer much new in the way of gameplay - the new game is entirely competitive (a la Puzzle Fighter), with a gambling tournament theme. The objective? Simply defeat your opponent by adding lines to their playfield through combination moves.
For a game that came out around the same time period as the second-generation Virtua Fighter and Racing games, this re-release of Columns leaves a lot to be desired. The graphics are passible, but very limited for the time period, the sound effects are ... well, not all that great. And they provided some rather cheap music - the first theme you hear anywhere in the game is incredibly boring, and the second theme is hard to listen to. (It's the first in-game music I've heard that could bottom-out my subwoofer, though!)
You face an apparently pre-set sequence of characters in a series of 3-stage tournaments. The game gets progressively harder as you go along, and it usually takes several tries to figure out how best to beat a particular opponent - though there doesn't really seem to be any major strategy involved. As a result, the game tends to be pretty repetitive, and once again there's no emphasis on scoring points like there was in the original Columns. It left me wondering why I downloaded it in the first place. At least the controls are the same as before - still relatively easy to play the game, just hard to win.
This was just 6 years ago (as of 2000), and in Japan, no less. Sega, did you need to just offload some old gameboards or something? This game is way behind the times!
And for all you emulation fans out there... I give this game the rating of "Try it once and see how you like it." It's not pathetic... but in my opinion it's pretty darned close. =P
Graphics
5
4
Sound
Play Control
8
8
Challenge
Replay Value
6
10
Performance

Screen Shots

Screen Shot 1
2000 EmuViews