Review by Harvest Monster

"Great, but not exactly perfect."

Shenmue is a really great game. I looked forward to the day I would actually play it ever since I heard about it. All the people saying that this the single greatest gaming experience you'll ever have(ODCM), I really wanted the game badly. All that hype was too much. I finally went to the local EB and got the game. I was content. Read on.

Story 10/10
Whoa, someone spent a long time think this up! It involves a boy named Ryo who is avenging his fathers death. The story actually goes back to ancient times but I won't explain right now.

Graphics 10/10
All I can say is WOW. Look at that! I really liked the graphics! I thought it would be jaggy, but alas, I was wrong. The graphics are the best! Even my friends were impressed, and they don't like video games that much. They really got into detail in this one.

Game play 8/10
I liked the side-quests, but it seems that Ryo runs too much. 80% of the game is just running around, looking for something and talking. Talking is definitely what you do most often in this game. I liked the fighting sequences a lot. they were really fun. The QTE were so sudden, sometimes too fast. The QTE chases were fun!

Music 9/10
The soundtrack is totally awesome. Really great feel to it. The music adds a lot of feel to the game. I like the Sha Hua music a lot. Especially in some parts of the game. Some of the music is jumpy, some of it is sad. What I don't like is the creepy music in Dobuita. What's up with that? It didn't feel right.

Sound 8/10
It was good. The effects of some things like the car horns and the bus pulling up, just makes it all feel so natural, like you're really there. The voices of the people were good. They did a good job on the subbing. Sometimes the voices get annoying, especially the children. The sound of you walking is natural. But the ocean seems to be awfully quiet!

Game engine 7/10
It isn't F.R.E.E.! You can't do a lot of things, like walk on some streets or kick whatever you want. The ''F.R.E.E.'' engine won't let you do that. You also can't buy food from any restaurant you want. I think Ryo lives off potato chips, chocolate, caramel and Jet Cola. You can't take days off from work too. Also, it's weird how people suddenly appear and disappear out of no where. So far I've been bashing the engine when it's quite good. Fighting is great! It lets you relax from all the walking. I like QTE's too. Sharpen your skills at the QTE games first.

Conclusion 9/10
This a great game, although not perfect. Some people may not like it. I love it. It has a remarkable story, stupendous graphics, great game play, wonderful soundtrack and lasting appeal. This game is truly a masterpiece. Yu Suzuki spent a long time(and a lot of cash) creating this game and it shows, it really shows.

Reviewer's Rating:   4.5 - Outstanding

Originally Posted: 11/25/00, Updated 11/25/00

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