evo_search_eden_box.jpgWe live in an age where the subject of Evolution brings about heated debate. There are those who believe it to be the true orgin of man while others believe it to be part of an anti-religious conspiracy. Few forms of entertainment would dare touch upon subject matter this sensitive. In 1993 however, Enix (long before merging with Square) would release a game that would not only take on this subject matter, but also made it fun by incorporating it into the gameplay.

This game’s storyline spanned 4.6 billion years. Starting off as a fish, your goal was to make it through five different ages, evolve to become the dominant life form, and join the goddess Gaia as her partner. Throughout each of the game’s levels, you’ll discover that an external force is attempting to alter the course of evolution, so you’ll have to solve the mystery behind it. At it’s core, EVO is a simple platformer with RPG elements. However, leveling up and gaining evolution points allowed your character to evolve and take on whatever enhancements you wished. This feature made for some intresting gameplay dynamics to say the least. Do you want bigger muscles, wings, or a horn? Why not get all three of them? The combinations are nearly endless, and this adds to the replay value.

EVO is probably one of Enix’s more underrated and unique games. It took a controversial subject, and handled it without being heavy-handed. Those who played it sing praises of its unique gameplay. Hopefully Square-Enix will bring it to the virtual console sometime in the near future.