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Title:E.V.O.: The Theory of Evolution (PC-98) Playthrough [English] - NintendoComplete

A playthrough of Enix's 1990 JRPG for the NEC PC-9801, 46 Okunen Monogatari: The Shinkaron (46億年物語 -THE 進化論). The game was only ever officially released in Japanese. In this video I am using a (very high quality) fan-made English translation patch that rechristens the game E.V.O.: The Theory of Evolution. If you're interested in checking it out yourself, you can find all the info you need to get started here: The Theory of Evolution is the precursor to Enix's cult-favorite 1993 SNES action-RPG, E.V.O.: The Search for Eden. You can see my playthrough of that game at While the the two games are conceptually similar, the approaches they took to gameplay were not. Whereas the SNES game was largely a platform-action game with plot driving vignettes bookending each section, this PC game features a heavier emphasis on story and a turn-based battle system. The Theory of Evolution starts you off as a lone fish who is found unconscious and taken in by a group of friendly and concerned Thelodus kids. However, shortly after you wake, disaster strikes. Creatures become hostile and the once welcoming community, now angry and paranoid, casts you back out on your own. Fortunately, you soon encounter Gaia, a mysterious but kind force that promises to guide you down the right evolutionary path. Once out in the open sea, you'll speak with various creatures, explore the terrain, and of course, engage in mortal combat. Darwinism forms the backbone of the gameplay here: either eat the other guy and become stronger, or be eaten... and forgotten. As you battle, you gain EVO genes (experience points, in essence) that can be applied to your creature to increase your health, resilience, strength, or intelligence, and the forms you evolve into will reflect whichever attributes you invested EVO genes in. Sometimes you'll become better equipped for survival, and sometimes you'll get yourself caught in an evolutionary dead-end (many of which can be quite funny - I loved getting turned into a slime from DQ), but the game is forgiving when you make a poor choice and lets you try again. The various communities you come across in the different eras are far more interesting than your typical RPG towns tend to be, and the story is thoughtful without making itself a slave to science or religious doctrine. It's certainly a fantasy work, and its playful tone makes it a real joy to play. The last two chapters in particular might surprise anyone that has only played the SNES game before. Gaia takes on a much more prominent role in this story, and at the end of Chapter 4 we are introduced to the villain, and it's not global warming or humanity's ambition. Oh no. It turns out to be a hot but completely mental blonde woman named Lucifer. Since the game never concerns itself much with specific religious beliefs, she's not "the devil" per se, but she is instead embodiment of chaos and destruction. She is, quite fittingly, everything that Gaia is not. I loved EVO on SNES, but I enjoyed this experience far more. It is slower paced on the PC98, but the graphics are fantastically detailed, the menu-based combat lacks the sloppy controls of the SNES game's action sequences, and the diversity in both the creatures and the environments kept me hooked throughout. It's a game that's fun to replay to experiment with the evolution paths, and that Koichi Sugiyama (of Dragon Quest fame) soundtrack is excellent. If you loved the SNES game (or at least loved the idea, if not the execution), you'll find a lot to enjoy here. It's an amazing bit of game design, and I can't recommend it highly enough! If you're looking for a specific part of the game: 3:04 Prologue Creation, "Life Awakens" 5:00 Chapter 1 Aquatic Paradise Era, "Set Sail for Evolution" 47:23 Chapter 2 Coal Forest Era, "The Green Hymn" 1:35:58 Chapter 3 Death Star Era, "The Light and Dark of Space" 2:33:54 Chapter 4 Terrible Lizard Era, "The Coming Devastation" 3:40:58 Chapter 5 Lost Continent Era, "The Forgotten Period" 5:33:02 Chapter 6 Holy War Era, "The Final Confrontation" _____________ No cheats were used during the recording of this video. NintendoComplete ( punches you in the face with in-depth reviews, screenshot archives, and music from classic 8-bit NES games!


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