Review by chickmcjr
"Shadow can turn SHINY! What's NOT to like?"
Imagine, if you will, Sonic painted black, given rocket sneakers and a bad-ass attitude. Oh, and he doesn't know his past. What do we have? Why, Shadow the Hedgehog of course! Shadow is a pretty awesome character and it's good to see him finally getting his share of the limelight in this enjoyable game that fleshes out his past.
The CG scenes are amazing but the normal scenes are pretty choppy. It does a decent enough job though. The characters look different to how they did in Sonic Heroes though which didn't really make much sense to me.
Music and Sound 7/10
The music is mostly heavy metal to fit in with the killing and anger Shadow feels. Or something like that. I didn't really like the voice acting as Vector, Charmy, Knuckles and Amy sound really annoying. ESPECIALLY Vector. What I found most annoying about the voice acting was that Shadow talks to quietly that most of the time you won't be able to hear what he's saying.
I loved hearing about how Shadow's life played out. In all the other Sonic games it left a lot to be desired about how Shadow came into being and what his purpose is. It was never really decided if he was a good or bad guy. This story clears everything up though and is told well. If you leave the game half-way through a playthrough then when you continue your game it will give you a recap on what has happened in Shadow's life so far. (Basically what levels and things you've completed) Very handy if you're away for a long time.
The gameplay was okay. I won't give it a high score because, mainly, of the camera. It is honestly one of the dumbest cameras I've ever had to deal with in my life. You control it with the right analog stick and if you rotate it left it pans to the right. It makes no sense and irritates the heck out of you.
Camera issues aside let's talk about the game. The game by itself it pretty bland. Pick up guns, kill enemies run through levels and grab a Chaos Emerald. The developers have tried to spice things up a bit by adding Good and Bad options that normally require special requirements to succeed in that area. For instance, in the first level to win as a good guy you need to wipe out all of the aliens while if you want to be a bad guy you have to wipe out all of the soldiers fighting the aliens. It's an interesting system but gets annoying as a lot of them are obscenely hard to complete.
Using weapons adds an interesting layer of strategy to the game. The automatic rifle can be fired faster then a rocket launcher but the rocket launcher packs more firepower and a larger blast radius. You'll have to learn what gun is best for what situation if you're to survive the hoards of enemies coming your way.
Weapons are scattered around levels, normally dropped by enemies or in boxes and can be stacked on top of one another (if they're the same kind) to increase the amount of ammo available. In another attempt to make things interesting there are several special weapons that can only be accessed by completing the game using different paths.
Play Time/Replayability 10/10
Lots of replayability here as you have to replay the whole game time and time again taking different paths each time in order to unlock the game's full potential. You'll be slugging through this one for a long time.
As much as I like this game I realise that it might not be for everyone. I suggest that you rent it before you buy the game as it might not be your cup of tea. If you like it, go out and buy it. You won't be disappointed with what you get. It is a very deep game for those who put the effort into it.
Reviewer's Score: 8/10 | Originally Posted: 07/21/06
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