Review by wolverinefan

"A very pretty hack and slash title"

Welcome to the next gen of gaming. N3 is actually the third game I've played on my 360. It's the first that I really played a lot of and it's my first official 360 review titles. The game had some sweet trailers and I didn't want a first person shooter so this was the perfect rental for me. Sadly, this game made me realize that graphics aren't everything and my oh my, the 360 has some bad flaws going on...

I'm sure N3 has a good story. It just doesn't go anywhere. The plot is simple at first. A young girl becomes the leader of her nation's army. She then sets out to stop some evil dude. Okay, maybe it's too simple but it's funny because as you advance in the game a tiny bit more is explained but in the end nothing ends up happening. Each character has their own story, connecting everything but it just didn't do anything for me because there just wasn't a whole lot there.

This is the first 360 title that has wowed me with its visuals. The first two levels look amazing. The lighting, the grass, the water, the hordes of enemies. Actually, the fact that so many detailed enemies can appear on screen at once without a problem is amazing. By the final levels there are so many enemies on the screen that you can't tell what in the world is going on and sometimes the game will stutter to almost a stop because the frame rate has suddenly died. The CGI is pretty good in the game but it didn't seem like a huge leap from what the actual game looks like.

Sound wise the game is alright. Everyone has a fine voice actor except the main girl. Her voice is so high pitched and whiney that I thought my ears might bleed. Thankfully they didn't and she doesn't talk too often in the game. I found a few of the songs to be amazing. Mainly the opening theme and the main menu theme. Very good music pieces. The in game music isn't bad but it didn't do much for me. Sound effects are good but with so much going on it all equals noise in the end.

N3 has very simple controls. L is block, R is dash. A is jump, B is special, X is normal attack, and Y is hard attack. It really doesn't get deeper than that and I did find the control to be very smooth and pulling off combos was super easy. I just wish that there were more combos to do and perhaps a deeper control setup, two attacks in a button masher just doesn't do it for me.

If you've played Dynasty Warriors before than you will know how N3 plays. The game is split up into 5 or so characters. You only start with one and they all have their own stages, for the most part. When you beat the game with a character another one usually opens up. Some characters have 2 missions while others have 6. Seems a little unfair and it makes getting some of the achievements a little hard due to the fact that having a character reach level 9 and having to replay the same two stages over and over just isn't all that exciting.

The locations seem kind of varied and most of them are huge. Giant groups of enemies will attack you and to be honest as soon as you figure out a combo that works for you it's very simple to destroy everyone and everything quickly. Enemy's variety isn't very exciting and they are rather mindless but sometimes the archers will shoot you while you're in the air with a combo and ruin the combo. Just to make it obvious how easy the combo system is, I've had a 2000+ combo before. That's kind of silly.

The game is kind of short. 3 -4 hours on the characters that have 6 or so missions and much shorter for the others. The game also has you finding new items and winning them with high scores. These items can be equipped and the higher your level the more you can equip. Not all of them are good though. The game features no multiplayer or online features. The game also states online content for download on the back of the box but it hasn't had any released yet and it seems unlikely.

The game is a fun diversion. It's nice on the eyes and a great way to waste a weekend. The problem comes in with the fact that while the levels may end up being around 30 minutes or so long but there are no check points. It sucks big time to reach the last boss of a level and you can't find any health and he just beats you down. There go all of the items you found, the EXP and everything else. It's just lame to have a check point of any kind and when the game throws so many enemies at you that you can't figure out what is happening and accidentally die. What really annoyed me is that the troops you have, which you select before the mission, blend in too well with the enemies and are as dumb as rocks. This causes problems because you can't tell if an enemy is there among your guards. Let me restate it then, this is an amazing rental and I will be buying it, when it drops to under $20. My problem is that my rental copy just suddenly stopped working. I was leveling up, went to replay a stage so I can level up and use my new sword and now it won't load up any of the stages after I select my troops. Oh well....

Story - 5/10
Graphics - 10/10
Sound - 7/10
Control - 8/10
Game Play - 7/10
Replay value - 5/10

Final Score - 7/10


Reviewer's Score: 7/10 | Originally Posted: 10/02/06


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