As I’ve stated previously in this series, the Sega CD suffered no shortage of games from the UK, especially from Core Design. While all of that support was nice to have on a system that didn’t exactly set the world on fire, it also resulted in Core porting just about anything it had.
In my opinion, Heimdall is a great example of that. Originally released for various computer platforms in the early 90s, this adventure game takes place in ancient Norway and concerns Loki’s attempt to overthrow the gods during the time of Ragnarok. You play as the titular Heimdall, the hero who volunteered to come to Earth and return the gods’ weapons to them in the hopes of defeating Loki.
Unfortunately this port doesn’t make the leap from the computer with any style or grace. For the most part, Heimdall is a slow, awkward adventure game that does not fit the Genesis controller. Furthermore, the general design just isn’t all that good. Game play consists of travelling from island to island and are usually greeted immediately with a puzzle which is either ridiculously easy or extremely confusing. It almost seems as though the developers made the game for the express purpose of selling a hint book.
Outside of the title screen music, the game’s sole redeeming factor seems to be a collection of three minigames. The first has you drunkenly throwing axes, trying to cut the braids off a barmaid while your fellow norsemen cheer you on. The second is a pig-catching contest in a muddy pen. The final is a sword fight on a boat against an invading horde.
But as far as I can tell, these three games only appear at the beginning of the game. You can actually access them directly from the title screen any time you want. If they appear again within the actual quest, I haven’t seen them. Of course, I didn’t get very far in the main quest.
I loved the fact that Core supported the Sega CD so completely back in the day, but looking back on it the publisher definitely used it as a clearing house for just about whatever was lying around near the end of the system’s life.