| paleface [sys=PS2; cat=Beat_em_up; loc=NA] |
|Follow-up to the PS1's "Brave Fencer Musashi" in which you again run around slashing things with a pubescent samurai. The action is quite simple and mostly you just jump and pump the slash button. If you're feeling creative you can do a special attack, at the cost of mana points, or you can try "learning" a move from an opponent by charging your block meter, then counter-attacking just as you're hit. I'm not too sure I like that little mechanic much, it just doesn't feel very intuitive yet. Anyway, Musashi can learn combos and new specials and stuff like that.|
You'd think developers, especially Square, would get tired of the hero-who-drops-out-of-blue-must-rescue-maiden-by-getting-x-elemental-items thing, but apparently it's still going strong in some offices over there at Squeenix, because you do more of it here. And there's a town thing in which you can run around and buy stuff and so forth, whoop-tee-doop. Oh, and save points seem very limited (ie, you save in town between adventures), bleh.
In terms of AV, the game rocks the house. The thickly-lined cel-shaded effect looks super, especially in conjunction with the sumptuous color palette, and everything has a lovely rainbow gradient appearance. Music is a kind of ambient almost technoish thing, and it sounds nice.
Voices and dialog are what I would think would be insultingly stereotypical "Asian people who can't speak English well" things, but here it is in a local Japanese game, so I'm not sure what to make of that. But certainly the main character must be trying to sound doofy. Weird.
So, I don't know. The beginning action has been underwhelmingly simplish, although I didn't really get how to avoid getting hit by most of the boss' attacks in the one boss fight I've seen so far. Huh. And why are the enemies all robots? Aside from the graphics and music, I'm sorta underwhelmed, and I can only hope that the action picks up as the game progresses.
|Download added: boss.gif (103449 bytes)|
"Swinging away at the boss. Most of the time I couldn't figure out how to avoid him hitting me."
Oh yeah, I forgot: the camera stinks. You have the usual 3D game "lock on" shoulder button control, but I've hardly ever seen a more useless lock on: it won't lock unless you're facing the enemy at a very close distance, and the lock drops if you then move a little farther away. Crappy. But if you aren't locked on then the camera won't keep the enemy in view as you run around. You can try rotating the camera with the right stick, but this isn't really practical in a busy fight (and besides it rotates the wrong frickin' way).
|Download added: loot.gif (85721 bytes)|
"Wow! Just what I always wanted!"
There are a lot of load times between the tiny little areas, and they aren't the quickest loads ever. I guess this is the down side of an unusually (for PS2) sharp-looking game.
|Download added: shop.gif (110387 bytes)|
"Uh, do they come in stainless steel maybe?"
Oh yeah, and the game doesn't run all that fast. Heck, you can feel some slowdown just panning the camera around in the little training area.