The Eidolon was the 4th game released by Lucasfilm Games based on the Fractal Engine. The first one was 'Rescue On Fractalus' but the release was delayed for quite some time as crackers stole the source codes and spread them in advance. In between 'Ballblazer' and 'Koronis Rift' made nice use of the fractals to produce immersing environments. However, in the large caves The Eidolon takes you into, the code seems to produce the most convincing results.
As explained in one of the best manuals I've ever read (comparable maybe to 'Elite' or the Infocom stuff) you discover a machine that was desgined by Dr. Agon (!) which is capable of transporting you into the cavernous spaces of your own mind. All of the seven caves are inhabited by strange beings and a great dragon that protects the entrance to the deeper levels.
Level 1 has the coolest looking dragon!
To break the energy barrier that protects the dragon you got to collect a combination of diamonds which are guarded by stonelike statues who come to life as you approach them. These guardians have to be overcome by shooting them with energy balls. You can shoot 4 different kinds of which the red ones are the most effective. To replenish your energy you can collect energy balls that are floating in the caves in midair. Depending on the kind of creature you encounter you need to place several hits till it is vanquished.
The Grep: he's looking at you, kid!
Emerging sparks upon hitting a dragon indicate that you've chosen the right kind of energy ball and a few more hits of that kind will open the way to the next deeper level. However, don't forget to keep pressing Spacebar to collect the energy balls the dragon keeps shooting at you. Use the technique explained in the manual to collect red balls. Note, don't ever let yourself run out of time, if you do the game ends and you got to replay the levels you've come so far. Instead let any creature drain off your energy so you can replay the same level within the time limit you had when you first entered it.
A hit with the right energy ball comes with sparks.
By going deeper and deeper into the maze-like caves you encounter stranger creatures and deadlier dragons. The levels are really immersing and it's lots of fun to explore them.
A short glance at the mysteries of level 8!
You've got to go a long way to see this level (and even more to finally see what lies beyond). Following are some tips that will you help make it (attention spoilers!):
you can carry more than one diamond of the same colour at the same time thus you should collect all diamonds of levels 1-4; by then you'll have enough to break any dragon's energy barrier and can rush through the higher levels ignoring the other creatures
the closer you get to a dragon the more red fireballs you'll encounter in the tunnels
collect blue balls to freeze time and even red fireballs, now they can easily be converted into golden fireballs
don't attack creatures (except dragons) while time is halted, you'll only waste energy but you won't hurt them
|Defeating the Dragons |
|Level ||Diamonds ||Fireballs |
|1 ||red ||3 x red |
|2 ||green ||4 x gold |
|3 ||blue ||5 x green |
|4 ||green ||6 x blue |
|5 ||green ||7 x red |
|6 ||2 x red ||8 x blue |
|7 ||red, green, blue ||9 x red |
Count the heads of the final dragon in level 8 to know which fireballs to use in which order! Note, that you'll have to switch to red fireballs very often so that you can convert the incoming ones to refuel your energy. Good luck!
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|GRAPHICS - 9/10|
|Nice and very realistic, the atmosphere built up is really peculiar. |
|SOUND - 4/10|
|Well, this one's really dull though it fits. The coolest sound however is a tune done by 3 creatures in level 5, remember 'Mr. Sandman' from the 50's?|
|PLAYABILITY - 9/10|
|Very original and hugely playable. It takes quite some time to find out which kind of energy ball to use in which situation. Exploring the caves and getting to know each creature and dragon is intriguing. The later dragons are getting really strong and make for hours of fun.|
|OVERALL - 9/10|
|A classic, absorbing Lucasfilm Game. Really close to a movie that you can walk around in. The atmosphere built up by the manual rises the deeper you get into your own mind to look for the Doctor.|