Review by Mister_T

"Never have I felt so empty after playing a game"

I remember back when games were challenging. I would go to my friend's house and he'd put in Super Mario Bros. or Super Contra on his Nintendo. Those were challenging games. You could spend hours upon hours just playing one game and never feel that you wasted your time. When you finally beat the game (if you did) you felt a great feeling of accomplishment inside.

Unfortunately, games today no longer seem to be deemed good games if they are challenging. These games are called "hard" and don't seem to sell as well as their cousins who are based on graphical capability. Yes, these days looks alone do sell games. This is one of those games. All show, no go. But enough griping on my part, on to the review.

Storyline 4/10

Well, the story starts out okay enough. You are to become the next big Urb. The cool guy. Posters of you everywhere. Too bad it's easily attainable.

You begin the game at your new apartment, which has nothing in it. You are given several items at the beginning of the game to furnish your apartment with, namely a refrigerator. However, you really don't even need any of these things, as it is a waste of time to come back to your apartment unless you are leveling up your creativity, body, or what have you because there are places to eat and sleep and even "bathe" in nearly every part of the city.

So you leave to go out to your first unlocked part of the city, which is whatever part of the city you chose to start out with. After you get enough "Rep" you can enter the club in this area, which is the main quest of every area you unlock. Basically, all you're trying to do in every area is to get enough rep to enter a club.

Besides getting enough rep, you also have to change your clothes in every single district that you enter in order to get into the aforementioned clubs. So you have to get enough money in your jobs to get new clothes (which becomes no problem soon enough) and get enough rep to enter the club. And that's basically the whole game there. Talk about lame.

Graphics 8/10

Here is where the game shines. The new graphics for this game really make it that much more fun to watch. But as I said in the beginning, graphics can only carry a game so far. Goofy camera angles make for a major hastle. These new angles are intended to show off new animations and so forth, but are really very annoying.

It is also the graphics that make for horrendous loading times. You'd think that for the small areas that make up each part of the city, that loading would take no time at all. Au contraire. Because posters of you in your current clothes are eventually put up, it has to reload how you look each and every time you enter an area or leave a clothes shop. It really makes the game unbearable.

Music and Sounds 6/10

What keeps this score so high is the amount of different genres of music and the many different songs within each, some of which are actually enjoyable.

Sounds are extremely limited and are basically whatever you are doing at your certain job, people talking or reacting to certain things you are doing to them, and cars going by. That's about it.

Challenge Factor 2/10

This is what really kills it. After you get out of your first area, you know pretty much exactly what you need to do in every area following it. One thing that really takes the fun out of the game is the fact that the game actually tells you which actions which people will like.

Jobs consist of you pushing A, X, and Y in random order that the game spits out in groups of four that you have to push in time. If the letters start moving to fast, all you have to do is press B and you can stop for a couple seconds and then start up again with the letters moving at the slowest pace, without any penalty of any kind on your part.

The most "challenging" (and also most annoying) part of the game is waiting for the area's villain to come in. Once you get into the area's club at night, you get a special social action. When the villain comes in, you use this special action on them and they run away, never to return. Sounds easy, right? Wrong. You can wait up to an hour real time and never even see the villain. It frustrated me muchly and really killed the overall feel of the game.

Replay Value 2/10

The only reason this part doesn't get a 1 is the fact that you can play through the game as a someone of the opposite sex and get to see their clothes, but you can see their clothes without being them anyway, since everyone in that section of the city is wearing what you can where.

Pros and Cons

Pros:

> Cool, new graphics (which really don't make a game)
> New social interactions
> Many cool-looking areas to unlock and see

Cons:

> Goofy camera angles get annoying
> Redundant goals
> Villains that never show up
> Dumb storyline
> No reason to replay
> Pointless Rep and clothing system

Rent or Buy?

I would recommend that you do neither, but if you have to do one, do what I did. Rent. Don't spend $50 on a game that will only last you several hours.

Overall (Not an average) 3/10

A horrible, horrible game that I would not wish anyone to have the unfortunate mistake of playing. The cons of this game far outweigh the pros, as you can easily see. Once you get the hang of the game down (which should be fairly quickly) it's really, really easy. Clearly, graphics really do not make a good game. Good graphics and great game play make for a good game.

You want a challenge? Dust off that NES and break out Super Mario.


Reviewer's Score: 3/10 | Originally Posted: 12/28/04


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