January 19, 2002
Herdy Gerdy - Preview
Release Date Publisher Developer Rating Players Price
15/3/2002EidosCore Design1$99.95

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The game world has a natural look.
If I were to pick some of the most original games for 2002 then Herdy Gerdy would certainly make the short list. Herdy Gerdy is essentially a platform game with plenty of puzzle solving elements. What's so original about that you ask? Well while progressing through the levels you will also be performing another task; herding animals. Yes, you heard me correctly; this game is about herding animals into their pens. Core Design have been working on this game for well over two years now and although it suffered a delay from late 2001 to March 2002 this delay is due to the companies commitment to produce the best product available, rather then a sign of development problems. Herdy Gerdy is going to be a pretty strange sort of a game, and the storyline backs this up - it's just as strange.

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Are these mutated lemmings?
Herdy Gerdy is set on a magical island that was created with the power of the First Acorn. The keep of the Acorn is entrusted with the task of maintaining harmony across the land. In order to determine who is most worthy of the Acorn, a tournament is held every 5 years. The winner of the tournament is he who understands the balance of nature and is most capable of controlling the islands various species, thus ensuring peace reigns.

Unfortunately for the island, Sadorf, a fiend with little regard for fairness and honour has been repeatedly winning the tournament and abusing the Acorn's power to maintain a dark rule. Through his neglect the islands creatures are running riot and chaos presides.

Click To Enlarge Image
Are these mutated lemmings?
As the tournament approaches the islanders' have their fading hopes pinned on one man alone. This man, Gedryn, is one of the well-respected group of people known as Master Herders. He is the only chance they have to finally reclaim the Magic Acorn. But disaster strikes - having seen this threat to his reign the evil Sadorf casts a deadly spell upon Gedryn that plunges him into a dark sleep and prevents him from competing in the tournament.

Unknown to Sadorf, the shepherd has a son. Discovering the fate of his father the boy is soon to learn the responsibility of winning the tournament now rests upon his young and inexperience shoulders. The name of this boy: Gerdy!

Core Design are hoping to populate the lands with 20 or 30 different animals, each of which has a very different personality and ultimately require a different herding style. As well as the main animals the developers are planning on populating the levels with no interactive animals such as birds and butterflies as well as plenty of small special effects such as waterfalls.

Click To Enlarge Image
The game world has a natural look.
Graphically, Herdy Gerdy looks like it could come straight out of a Disney animation, and that's not surprising considering some of the artists used to work for Disney and Warner animation. The colours are very bold at times and the animation on the characters looks stunning. The game includes 30 different locations to explore, each of which is richly detailed and full of living creatures. Fortunately an equal amount of effort seems to have been put into the sound with plenty of wonderful effects and music to accompany the action on screen.

Herdy Gerdy is currently expected to hit the shelves on March 15, and it looks to be worth the wait. Core Design usually come up with some pretty amazing games, including the Tomb Raider series and more recently Project Eden, but Herdy Gerdy may well be the next step up the ladder for them.