Review by nerr

"Not too great of a way to end such a good series."

Okay, this is it. The final game of the .hack series. After beating Outbreak I immediately tried to find this game, but it came to me in the form of a Christmas Present, so I decided I would play it and beat it and see how the story was resolved. I didn't. When I started playing this one, soon after starting I was able to go to the Omega Server, but then something happened, the server was being infected by the Dreaded Wave, and it was being destroyed. Helba then appeared and told me to get out of the server, then suddenly the server crashed, but Helba teleported me to Net Slum. There, the team figured out that Helba had used Net Slum as a mirror server, meaning it had the same layout as the Omega, but not the same looks. Basically, it works the same, just looks different. So I decided I would start by entering the Chaos Gate again. Big mistake there. REALLY big mistake. The enemies in the Omega Server are brutal, and will take 1/2 of your HP out with one attack. I was shocked at how surprisingly strong the enemies were! So I decided I would try and continue with the story. But, I needed enough Virus Cores to hack the gate, so I went to find some. The only problem was, that the cores I was looking for were only obtainable by Data-Draining the incredibly powerful monsters of the Omega Server. Ouch. That really REALLY hurt. If you want to consider playing this game, I would suggest you level up A LOT before you start playing. If you're reading this review, you should know the story already, but I'll tell it again, for all you people who feel like reading a review about the fourth game when you haven't even started the first. :P Here it is. You start the game by being invited by your friend Orca, as Kite, the Twin Blade. Orca takes you through a portal called the Chaos Gate, which leads to keyword-generated areas. When you get to the area, they make their way to the dungeon, after a short tutorial on how to kill Goblins. Well anyway, they reach the dungeon and they see a girl floating down a hallway, being chased by an unknown figure known later as Skeith. When they reach the end of the dungeon, they are sent to a strange place. There, the mysterious figure, Skeith, attacks them. Suddenly, Skeith pulls out a large red rod, and attaches Orca to it. He then performs a move called "Data Drain" which sends Orca in the real world, into a coma. Kite narrowly escapes, but as he does, the little girl, known as Aura, gives him a magical bracelet called the "Twilight Bracelet", saying he alone must help stop this virus and save The World. (The game of course, but probably the real world too if people keep going into comas @_@) The Twilight Bracelet allows Kite to use a technique called "Data Drain" which greatly weakens the power of monsters, and is the only way to defeat infected "Data Bug" monsters. However, you gain less experience when you hack monsters, and also, if you hack too much and your infection level gets to 100% it's an instant game over, so don't use it too much. Okay? So then starts the adventure of the DOT hack series. Before I start to ramble, let's move on.

Story: 6/10
Not good at all. They've been using the same story for the last three games. Run around, find the Dreaded Wave, beat a boss, and repeat. Not very creative, are we?

The Battle, I hate to say it, but this has also been messed up too. If you've read my first section, you've heard me rambling on about how insanely strong these things are. This is no joke. If you thought the Outbreak monsters were bad, you'll really, REALLY hate the monsters in this one. The battle system and everything is still the same, so they haven't tampered with that, but these monsters just stink. Do you know how hard it is to even kill a BASIC enemy in the Omega Server?!? If those are bad, what about the bosses? Ugghh... I don't even want to say anything there. If you EVER want to survive this game, you must ALWAYS have a healer, ALWAYS have plenty of items, and ALWAYS use your strongest characters. I'm not saying it's impossible or anything, but its still incredibly hard. They gave us a real kick in the behind when they created these monsters. Bad CC2, bad!

Battle: 6.5/10
Just bad. The battle system is still good, but the monsters are too hard! I hated trying to level up in this game because of this one reason!

Finally! Something they haven't completely obliterated! The sound is as good as it was in Outbreak, but you usually can't focus on it because a monster is kicking your assets if you do. I like to listen to the music sometimes, and there's even more desktop music in this game, but if you're in the middle of a battle, you probably won't have the time! Well, this and the graphics might save this game from a horrible rating, but still...

Sound: 10/10
Something nice to listen to, and there are plenty of tracks. Just don't try and listen to it if you see monsters sneaking up on you.

Thankfully, the graphics are good too! The cutscenes, and the characters in general look good, and make it seem real too! You'd swear this was a real MMORPG if the characters didn't look so similar and they didn't say the same things. But, they still haven't fixed the major flaw with the environments. They still look just okay. The monsters look good too, but I wouldn't try and stare at them while they're beating you up. This, and the Sound are the most redeeming qualities of this game. Hopefully, they'll continue to make graphics like this!

Graphics: 9.5/10

Sharp and Clear. Great to look at, and it all seems so real!

Time to rate the final section! The Replay Value. For this game, and all 4 of them, I'd say, not so great. You beat it, and you want to be done with it. This one, you might want to keep playing though, since you just might unlock some things IF you manage to survive it. This game probably has more Replay Value than the others, if you feel like endlessly beating up those monsters that used to pick on you. As for me, I'm done with it. Good series, but some major flaws with it. I hope PS2 owners will be able to get better RPG's than this one.

Replay Value: 8/10
Time for the overall score! I'll just average these together real quick, and get the overall!

Story: 6/10
Battle: 6.5/10
Sound: 10/10
Graphics: 9.5/10
Replay Value: 8/10

OVERALL RATING: 8/10
I liked the other three much better, but that's my opinion, and you are entitled to yours. I hope that PS2 Owners will be able to get better games than this.


Reviewer's Score: 8/10 | Originally Posted: 12/20/05


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