Review by Whole Damn Show

"Fan of the show will love this, but casual fans will feel unsatisfied"

James Cameron's Dark Angel is based on the Fox TV show, which ran 2 seasons. It was directed (obviously) by James Cameron, who (if you've been living under a rock with your eyes shut and fingers in your ears the past 10 years) won a small truckload of Oscars for directing Titanic.

The basic storyline is that terrorists set off an electromagnetic pulse over America, causing society to crumble overnight, and turning America into a third-world country, and is described to be a ''modern day wild west''. During this post-apocalyptic America, the military genetically created their own ''super soldiers''. They kept them under close surveillance, until Max - out heroin - escapes. She has been on the run for close to 10 years now, and is currently seeking refuge in Seattle. In my opinion, it is an excellent storyline. Unfortunately, this is the only aspect of the game that stands out.

The game is just very...bland. There is nothing you haven't seen before in a 3rd-person Streets Of Rage kind of game.

Graphics - 4/10
These do not push the Xbox's power in any way, shape, or form. They look like slightly advanced N64 graphics. The environments are samey, with little variation between levels. Fires, wrecks, mess...all that caper. You often get the feeling you have been in locations again...and again...and again.

Sounds - 2/10
Quite possibly the most annoying, repetitive music I've ever heard. Its like the combination of every failed Rap artists ''best'' record combined, and pumped with a techno beat and broken sirens. DJ's roll over in their grave when it is played.

Gameplay - 7/10
Being a fan of side-scrolling beat-'em-ups, I enjoyed this game. But my major concern was, again, repetitiveness. Large portions of the game seem to be spent button bashing, just to get the job done. Gets very tiring after a while. The game digs it own grave, essentially, by (literally) showing us what to do, and where to go at the start of the stage. Even then, it is nothing particular special. Its similar to ''take item A to point B to get to point C''. Which, of course, gets boring after a while. The game tries to variate things by giving us ''defeat all the enemies in a time limit''! This, of course, gets frustrating after a time, seeing as you have to defeat 10 enemies in 1 minute. And it takes longer that 6 seconds to defeat an enemy without the use of a weapon. Which you only get to use briefly. Watch the blood pressure rise!

Replay Value - 1/10
Nothing to keep you coming back once you've completed it, save for the bonus material (photo gallery, and interviews with Jessica Alba, and alumni.). Once you've watched it though...it will be left to gather dust on the shelf.

Overall
Fans of beat-'em-ups (such as myself) or of the series will enjoy this. I'd recommend just weekend renting for everyone else.


Reviewer's Score: 5/10 | Originally Posted: 01/02/04


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