Review by ShengLong2005
"Half of my life just vanished... and I am in tears as to why."
I was born in 1979, and have known every gaming revolution and every up and down of gaming.
This afternoon, I spent 800 MSP on this game, expecting a lot from it. I failed, as I have done every other time I fought it, defeating the first boss of Claris' stage... I looked over the gallery, pottered about in the settings, then I clicked a option marked 'Credits'...
And I suddenly was half my age, a young teenager who was using every method possible to play the most games in the least time, using a modified Saturn that I'd got cheap to play NiGHTS... and when a dedication came up, I actually wept, as I realized they made this game for people like me.
NiGHTS, at the core of it, is a game you'll not solve the mystery behind it in a day, or even a week or month from now. You play as Claris or Elliot, and must find the enigmatic NiGHTS in order to collect blue shards of some form, in order to overload a device holding one of the four stolen parts of your chosen child's personality.
Once you have restored all five parts, you have a variable amount of time to defeat the creature which is infecting the dream with it's darkness. That's the story, and it's incredibly deep at it's core. Surprisingly, this story stands up to time, and it doesn't need several hours of cutscenes to tell it.
This game screamed years ago about how much it would be better with analogue controls, and now it's on a format that supports them natively, the game suddenly becomes a whole different game, as you smoothly fly through the air as NiGHTS, relearning skills that 15 years of increasingly dumbed down controls have made you forget.
This game rewards people who learn the skills and learns how to speed run the levels. This game is the kind of game that has been lost in recent times, where now you are rewarded for how much you beat down your peers.
Graphics [HD] -
You might wonder why I have two Graphics ratings for this game, but it's two different animals. The Hi-Def mode, known as 'Brand New Dreams', gives you a version where Claris and Elliot look like they've grown-up a few years, a deceptive look, but very appropriate, considering. Most notably, the character models are comparable in this version to the Wii version, and that makes it a massive plus in my book.
Graphics [SD] -
The Saturn version, or Standard Definition graphics are squashed and chibified, something that was a aspect of the game 15 years ago, so there's not much difference there. The option to have a wallpaper or to force it into widescreen does allow you to see how much worse they are compared to, well, itself, but they're old graphics, and they aged well enough.
This is the same, whatever version you play, and the dream-like music and sound effects are very good, and NiGHTS is blissfully silent, compared to the Wii version, that assumed NiGHTS talking improved the experience. Ten out of ten.
Play Time/Replayability -
This game is massive on replayability, with rankings beyond the leaderboards, plus the Christmas NiGHTS levels, which are also ranked. What you don't get is a full version of Christmas NiGHTS, but you get the parts people can enjoy.
Final Recommendation -
If you want a piece of nostalgia, go for it.
If you want something unique, try the demo first.
If you are a fan of the dumb games of now, go away.
Reviewer's Rating: 4.5 - Outstanding
Originally Posted: 10/05/12
Game Release: NiGHTS into Dreams... (EU, 10/05/12)
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