"An incredible game"

In all honesty there are some points about the game that disappoint. These points are worth nothing if weighed against the game's good points. So when the good outweighs the bad, what do you have? Love.

That's all there is to this game. Love. It is a like-or-dislike game that most people will enjoy. There are some bad points, as stated above, but they aren't that bad.

First of all, the graphics are clear, crisp and clean as they were in the DC game Virtua Fighter 3. They may not be up to par with, say, Dead or Alive, but they are great as they are. The attention paid to the details shows and shines really well. From the little movements in the characters' hair to the smallest details in the background, the game's graphics shine like gold.

But really, the great part of the graphics lie in the environments. In one of the stages, the characters stand knee-deep in water, and when one of them kicks or falls, the almost-lifelike spashes fill the screen with magnificent motion. In another stage the snow makes it seem like you're right there. In yet another stage, every time a character falls, the ground breaks, adding a bit of novelty to the stages.

The character graphics are solid and fluid. The movements are great, they flow naturally, without any choppiness. There are sometimes slowdowns in certain movements, which, quite frankly, I can't tell if they're really like that or if the action as a whole slows down, but it is very minor. For the most part, the actions are crisp, and work well.

The control is amazing, and almost instant. Some games have slowdowns in these areas, but in VF4, the action is so quick and fluid that even if there were slowdowns, it does not show. I would have preffered it if the analog control was usable, or if arcade-style controlers were cheaper, but well... neither is true. That leaves something to be desired, but the game still is good without those.

The gameplay, unlike the previous VFs, is incredibly deep. Some characters are easily usable, but difficult to master. It is just 1 notch beneath Tekken in this respect. Some characters still use qautercircles and halfcircles, but not as frequently as in 2D games. One thing is that there are really only 3 working buttons; the guard, the punch and the kick. That limits the choices of moves a bit, but it makes up for that in other ways.

Something that will catch your eye even at the beggining is the 'Kumite' system or whatnot. It's that you can create a player user file and gain rankings and fight battles and those kinds of things. You can do things such as change color, gain acessories and such. You can also 'train an A.I.' file and make something that you can compete with your friends with. Ingenuity, thy name is Yu Suzuki.

Overall, the game is great. In sheer fun, it's better and easier to pick up than DoA or some other 3D fighting games. It may not be as complex as those Namco games or as pretty as DoA, but it's still a great game. Highly underrated.


Reviewer's Score: 8/10 | Originally Posted: 03/21/02, Updated 03/21/02


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