BuckMasters Top Bow
Manufacturer: Sunstorm / Wizard Works (1999)
Price: $19.99
Genre: Tournament Archery Simulation
System Requirements: Pentium 200 or faster, Windows 95 or above, 16 MB RAM (32 recommended), 100 MB HDD space (for minimum install), CD-ROM, PCI or AGP 3D accelerated video card highly recommended, DirectX compatible soundcard.  

  ... DESCRIPTION: 3D tournament archery has become a fast growing and popular sport, one reason for its huge popularity I believe, is that it is a sport which the entire family can and do enjoy together. BuckMasters Top Bow held yearly is the "big daddy" of this sport, qualification rounds are held in different sections of the country with the best of these moving on to the world championship. In the championships each archer shoots in three rounds getting four shots at several 3D targets, these are deer, bear, wolves etc. The archer has three "stand" positions in which to shoot from, normally one is elevated and the other two being from the ground. The yardage to each target, ranges from ten out to seventy yards, the targets are mechanical and pop up at intervals and some even move.

Well the good folks at SunStorm Interactive have attempted to recreate this in their outdoor title, "BuckMasters Top Bow," and they did do a pretty good job at it with just a few minor problems.

    THE GOOD: The game loads and plays very smoothly, the graphics are really great and believable, it contains a lot of advertising from various hunting related manufacturers. Some folks may think this is very annoying as you shoot at the targets in the game, but this is another thing that makes this game very realistic.

You can set up and compete with your friends or setup a computer rival which lets you pick its skill level, you also can save a tournament to play at a later time. You have the choice of three compound bow draw weights, sixty, seventy and eighty pounds, and then a choice of four different arrow sizes.

The target range is setup well and I highly recommend any player to use it before starting any game, the pin sights are rather tricky and must be tweaked to make those long shots count.

The sound voice overs from BuckMasters founder, Jackie Bushman are great ranging from kidding insults like, "Look out Jennifer Jo! This guys terrible" to "Did you see the look in his eyes?, It was me or him Bob" this was very entertaining.

... .THE BAD: There are a few minor things in the game that really bugged me:

1. The sound that plays continuously during the game is very short and annoying, after about one minute you can pick up on this guy saying, "He said he was gonna bring......"

2. You see two stands on poles but all shooting is done from the ground??

3. In the championship round a wolf image covers the target area of one of the 3D targets?? This makes it impossible to get a twelve for twelve round.

4. Some tournaments award the win to the actual loser??

    THE VERDICT: All in all if you enjoy 3D archery and target shooting games and are a fan of BuckMasters, I think you will enjoy the game.

Reviewed by Arrowslinger