Review by Psycho Penguin

"Another classic SquareSoft game.. what is that, 29 of them now?"

Where can I start? From great graphics to classic shooter action, Einhander has it all. And with that SquareSoft logo on it, you know it won't be bad. Of course, SquareSoft is the king of RPGs but how can they fare in the shooter genre? Well, judging from this game, quite well. This may have been SquareSoft’s first, and quite possibly last, attempt at a shooter, but the game is really quite good. In fact, I will go as far as to say that Einhander for the Sony Playstation is my favorite shooter of all time! The game is really quite fun, and SquareSoft has, yet again, delivered a quality gaming experience that should be enjoyed by everyone! Even the non shooter fans out there will love Einhander for the Sony Playstation, because I am not that big of a shooter fan, and I am a huge fan of this game! Overall, Einhander for the Sony Playstation is definitely my favorite shooter of all time and is one of my all time favorite games from my all time favorite video game company, SquareSoft.

Graphics (9.6/10)
The graphics may appear to be 2D in screen shots (and I wish it was 2D) but the graphics are really 3D. No, they're not fully polygonal, they're just plain freaking cool looking. The explosions look cool and the stage scrolling is nice (suddenly it goes from vertical action to a top-bottom view, which doesn't detract from gameplay much at all). Einhander for the Sony Playstation is definitely one of the best looking shooters of all time. I also love the FMV scene in opening, too. Like I said, the game starts off in a vertical movement, and it looks a lot like 2D classics like Darius Twins and Super R Type. But soon the views start to shift, and the game takes a diagonal 3D mode that looks great! The enemy designs in Einhander for the Sony Playstation are incredible, in my opinion, as are some of the boss designs in the game. For instance, the first boss of the game is this dinosaur looking thing that really has a great design to it. I love the design of the enemies in the game, and the character designs of the game are also great, as well. For instance, some of the weapons look great, ranging from the missiles to the guns. The explosions also look quite nice, as well. I am not a huge fan of explosions in video games but I gotta admit the explosions in Einhander look quite nice. Overall, the graphics in Einhander for the Sony Playstation are great, and is definitely one of the best looking shooters of all time, at least it is in my opinion.

Music/Sound (9.7/10)
The music and sound effects in Einhander for the Sony Playstation are great, and the music and sound effects are definitely of Playstation, as well as SquareSoft, quality. First off the music. The music scores in this game are just wonderful. Definitely the best soundtrack I have ever heard in a shooter, and one of the best soundtracks in a game, period. Great job, SquareSoft!!! I just love the music in Einhander for the Sony Playstation, especially some of the boss themes in the game. I notice that there is a lot of guitar-based tunes in the game, and I am happy about this because as some of you may know, I play the guitar and like to hear guitar tunes in some games. Also, the music has a hip beat to it that sounds like some heavy metal music, which is cool because Einhander has this heavy metal beat to it in terms of gameplay, so the music of the game really blends in well with the type of game that Einhander is. Now, onto the sound effects. Sound effect wise, Einhander for the Sony Playstation is great! From the various sounds of the explosions, enemy fire, and gunfire, the sound effects in Einhander are simply awesome. I especially enjoy the crashing sounds that occur after defeating some of the bosses in the game. It really sounds like a huge monster has fallen. Overall, the music and sound effects in Einhander for the Sony Playstation are great!

Control (9.2/10)
You use the three buttons to shoot off different weapons, which is great. Overall outstanding control. The control also takes full advantage of the L1 and R1 buttons also, which is great, in my opinion. I did encounter some problems in switching weapons on the run, but this was no big deal because mostly the control was very smooth and responsive. However, SquareSoft make Einhander before the invention of the Dual Shock Controller for Playstation, so the game does not support analog control. Regardless, the digital pad of the Playstation controller is responsive enough that the exclusion of analog control is no big deal. Overall, the control in Einhahder for the Sony Playstation is about as good as its going to get for a Playstation shooter without analog control.

Gameplay (9.7/10)
Einhander is a classic shooter all the way, but it features many new innovations. After killing an enemy, sometimes the enemy will drop a weapon, which you can then use. Different weapons have certain strengths and weaknesses, for instance one weapon may be weak but fire fast, while it may be completely different for another weapon. The action is fast and furious and you'll never get bored. And it’s very challenging. Finally, there are lots of secrets to find. This increases the replay value of the game a lot. Also, there is an unique way to get points in the game. On the bottom right hand corner of the screen is a meter. The meter has next to it a x with a number next to it. The higher the number, the more points you get. For instance, lets say you kill an enemy that’s worth 500 points. If the number next to the meter is x4, then you get 2000 points, 4 times the amount that the enemy would originally be worth. How does this number increase? By killing more enemies! But of course, the number decreases very quickly so you have to constantly kill enemies to keep the meter high. This is definitely one of the most innovative ideas ever for a hooter, in my opinion. Overall, the gameplay in Einhander for the Sony Playstation is classic shooting action all the way, with the added SquareSoft touch.

Replay Value (High)
Einhander for the Sony Playstation has great replay value. The main point behind the replay value is the fact that you can go through the game with several different ships and weapons. These do not get you new endings, though, at least I do not believe that going through the game with the different ships would get you different weapons. A nice addition to the game would have been a multiplayer mode, where you and a friend could play and help each other out. That would have increased the already great replay value even higher. Regardless, the replay value in Einhander for the Sony Playstation is still great!

Challenge (Very High)
Einhander for the Sony Playstation is a very difficult game, despite the short length. Most of the shooters that I have ever played have provided a high difficulty, and this game is no exception.

Overall (9.7/10)
This is one of the best SquareSoft games yet, and that's saying a lot!!! Definetly one of my fave games of all time, and I am not that big fan of shooters!!

And thats the bottom line... because SMcFadden said so!!

Reviewer's Rating:   5.0 - Flawless

Originally Posted: 05/22/00, Updated 07/16/01

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