Review by Estoy Loco
"An incredible game detrimented by some devastating glitches."
As sad as it is, the adventure genre seems to be dying off. Thankfully, there are companies out there like The Adventure Company who are willing to help out the cause and publish a lot of different adventure games. Sadly, 99% of the time the adventure games they publish are for PC only. Thankfully, Bam! decided to publish the original Broken Sword (which originally showed up on the PSX/PC quite a few years back) for the GBA. Always full of wit and an intriguing storyline, The Broken Sword series has been a fan-favorite. With Broken Sword 3 coming out in the fall, some of you might want to return to the roots of the series in this portable version.
The story in the original Broken Sword is a great one that starts out with our hero, George, leisurely enjoying his vacation on the sidewalk of one of the many Parisian café’s. Suddenly, he notices a paranoid man with a briefcase enter the café, and a man in a clown suit follow right after. The clown leaves right after entering, and then the café explodes. This blasts our hero George (pun intended) into an intriguing story filled with many twists and turns at every corner. You never feel like the story is moving along too slowly, and you never feel like that it’s ever getting boring. There’s always something new and something dramatic waiting for you which makes you want to keep on playing, even when proper lighting may be in short supply. Sadly, this amazing game is hampered by one thing which I will talk about later.
The game makes use of very little of the original game’s graphics. The original game on the Playstation and PC was animated to look like a cartoon of sorts, and the game uses very little of this. During some story-segments, still slides with graphics of the original games’ caliber are used. Otherwise, sprites are used for the characters and pre-renders are used for the backgrounds. George looks a little pixilated when he is moved up close to the camera, but it’s really not that big of a deal. The game uses a fixed camera, which is a good thing, since you can always see everything necessary. The backgrounds have tons of detail in them and you may find yourself simply examining the backgrounds because of all the things in them. Revolution really did a great job of making the backgrounds as beautiful and detailed as possible. Most of the character’s aren’t that detailed however, but that's not that big. Can't always ask for everything, especially when it's on the GBA hardware(Not saying it's bad or anything though. Just not as powerful as the original Playstation.).
All of the music in Broken Sword: TSotT is extremely well done, and definitely helps to add to the serious mood of the game. Even though there are a lot of great jokes and witty dialogue here, the main mood behind the game is actually very creepy and serious. All of the songs definatley fit in wherever they're placed as well. When you’ve done something that is necessary to move the story along, you’ll hear a distinctive short song alerting you that you did something important, which is really helpful. I don’t think I’ve heard much music on the GBA that sounded as good as this.
The sound effects are also very well done, although they seem to be few and far between. All of them are clear and sound like what they were meant for, which is really all that matters.
George controls very easily wherever he is. One thing that I didn’t notice until my second time through the game was that you can’t run. Since I was so submerged in the game, I didn’t really ever noticed that I was just walking everywhere and not trying to run. The game is put together so well you don’t ever really feel the need to rush between places. Heck, I might even go as far as saying that by walking everywhere instead of running, you can better absorb all of the things that are here for you in this game. The buttons are all very responsive and using items is easy.
Okay, now.. The one thing that stops this game from being a great port of a great game is that one evil, dastardly, horrible abomination of a word: glitch. Yes, there are some glitches in this game, some of them game devastating. Two of them will hamper you from progressing any farther in the game, thus making you start the game over. Remember when I said that this was my second time through? Well, that’s because I succumb to an evil glitch. I won’t explain it to you because that might spoil some of the story, but it would really do some good to look through one of the FAQs for this game to find out about these glitches.
Well, if you do fall victim to one of the glitches, it’ll give you a reason to play the game again! That counts for some replayability, right?? Just kidding. Unless you simply want to play through this extremely fun adventure again, you’re outta luck.
Besides those horrible ‘things’, Broken Sword: The Shadow of the Templars is an extremely fun and intriguing adventure that shouldn’t be passed up by anyone who likes adventure’s, RPG’s, and the like. Just be sure to read up on one of your local FAQs..
-A stellar storyline helps this game be one of the best games that you can buy for GBA.
-The graphics can’t really live up to the PSOne/PC versions, but they’re still good, nonetheless.
-Amazing music helps keep the dark, dramatic mood of the game intact, even with all of the intelligent humor and witty dialogue.
-George controls easily and all the buttons are responsive.
-Sadly.. This game is a victim of some horrible, game ruining glitches.
-The only replayability this game has to offer is if you want to enjoy all of the glorious things in this game.
-I would of easily given this game a 9 or a 10 if those glitches weren’t here. With them, however, I can only give it an 8.
Reviewer's Score: 8/10 | Originally Posted: 07/05/03, Updated 07/07/03
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