Thief, by Cascata
Games, First game is free, additional mission packs at
Reviewed January 2003
The first time I saw the Aaron Ardiri’s
Deity3D engine, it was short and sweet. I thought it would
be nice if someone could turn it into a large game environment.
It seems my prayers have been answered with the release of
Master Thief, developed by Cascata Games based on this incredible
game engine. What Cascata has done with the engine is beyond
Combining FPS (first person shooter) element
with stealth game play, Master Thief has opened a new world
of gaming for the Palm gamers. In contrast to existing FPS
titles like Serious Sam, Master
Thief is set in the modern age where industrial and military
intelligence is worth more than ancient monsters’ blood.
You play the game as a master thief whose trade includes
finding ways to sneak into a development plant, office building
or chemistry lab. Of course, these are heavily guarded locales,
which is why you are called upon. Departing from the traditional
FPS, Master Thief has more stealth elements than shooting
action. You might feel that you have just played No One Lives
Forever rather than Terminator after you complete a mission.
You can however go in guns ablaze, but you still have to
explore the entire environment for key cards or pass codes
because guns can’t shoot open the high tech security
Master Thief is mission-based game, built
to have full-blown add-on missions quickly. The first mission
is free and subsequence mission will cost you $12 each. As
a Master Thief, you are hired to steal some highly priced
intelligence items in locales that are littered with armed
guards, vicious dogs, enemy bots and hidden security cameras.
It will require you to explore, find key items, solve puzzles,
avoid cameras and distract guards in order to complete your
mission. The missions are quite long and will keep you busy
for a while.
The graphics in Master Thief are excellent
on hi-res devices and good on lower end devices. You can
see a lot of details and experience a very smooth and high
frame rate. Each mission has its unique theme in the environment,
and clues and hidden items are very well designed. You can
control the movement by using hardware buttons or combine
them with the stylus. I found that using the stylus to strafe
left and right while pushing the Up and Down buttons is the
most effective way to move. You can change button assignment
as well as sound volume.
The sound FX supports the Clie and Palm
OS 5 devices with a very nice collection. You will hear different
sound FX for different weapons. Although Master Thief supports
all Palm OS PDAs, the game has been optimized for the new
Palm devices running OS 5. The ULTRA quality mode (320x320)
is also available on any Palm OS 5.x device. Two resolutions
are available on Palm OS 3 and 4 handhelds (low & high
modes, both at 160 x 160 pixels) & two additional resolutions
are available for PalmOS5+ units (super & ultra modes).
If you are a FPS fan, you know that games
in this genre don’t come on Palm devices often. A special
game like Master Thief is even harder to come by. While we
are all wishing the games on Palm will look as good as the
ones on desktop or console one day, it seems that with the
release of more powerful devices and games like Master Thief,
we are stepping in that direction.
Playing Hint and Tips
Exploring the place is the most important
thing in this game. But make sure you look at all directions
for guards and security cameras. Some times you can’t
sneak by a room, create distractions to move them out of