Review by Gammaknight
"Is it Xeno enough? Possibly..."
Xenosaga: Der Willie Zur Macht (The will for power) is in fact a prequel to the fantastic PSX RPG Xenogears by Squaresoft. Now being published by Monolith soft, I’m proud to say that the series has surprisingly and thankfully lost none of its original greatness. The Xeno name is as great as ever!
From what I can tell its one heck of a story heavy game (duh, its bloody Xeno. Like its predecessor, it features cutscene after cutscene (after cutscene) which weaves an intricate and painstakingly long tale to say the least. The mindbending Sci-Fi plot, which is now a Xeno game staple is back of course and more convoluted and utterly fulfilling than ever. The plot is insanely complex, and a definite trip around the psychological block. and if thought about enough can be a terrifying esoteric Sci-Fi social and historical warning. The voiceovers in the game are decently executed and don’t detract from the story, but they don’t seem to add a lot from my point of view and if they weren’t there I really wouldn’t mind. One thing to note: If you aren’t into philosophy then you wont enjoy this game on about 10,000,000 different levels as people that are because that is pretty much what the story is.
Wow what a beautiful game. I mean in one word that’s it, beautiful. I don’t even think I can find a PS2 game currently out that can match this puppy. The animation and presentation of cutscenes make me want to drive to Monolith soft, dance around in the development room until I tire and fall down dreaming about how good Xenosaga looks. There’s a definite Anime influence in the artistry of the game and gives the game a surreal touch while maintaining the truly unreal aspects of Xenosaga. The environments are fitting to the setting and the
Like Chrono Trigger or Earthbound you have the ability to see your enemies in the area before a battle occurs and given your agility with the DualShock you can either avoid or engage particular enemies. Like Xenogears, Xenosaga’s fighting is a turn based combat system that relies on gaining action points during battle to build up to certain combo button presses to complete different attacks. Your gears in this game are AGWS’s, which in this chapter unfortunately play a distant second fiddle to the combo system. Well it isn’t Xenogears 2 after all.
Sadly only one score is included for in battle music, and it just does not work for boss battles. Why this was overlooked is beyond me, because I know I’m not the only one that doesn’t want the same howdy doody folk music for boss music as well as regular battles. What amazes me actually is the lack of actual music in general. In some places I can understand it, but there’s an under abundance all though the game that makes the magic of music significantly less than the aesthetics or story.
Sound effects (10/10)
The sound effects, unlike the music tracks are freaking great and everywhere in crystal freaking clarity. It’s like watching the matrix while epped up on pixy stix and I am not joking. I wish there were an old-fashioned sound test mode just to listen to the gazillions of tunes put into the thing.
Definitely one of the great RPG’s of the generation. The story is grand is scope and presentation, the combat is entertaining and engrossing and the artistic style is jaw-dropping. A must buy for PS2 owners and RPG connoisseurs alike. Buy it, rent it, make it. Just get it somehow.
Reviewer's Score: 8/10 | Originally Posted: 02/25/03, Updated 02/25/03
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