Review by AvengingAngel

Reviewed: 01/28/04

The Sleeper Hit of 2003

Imagine taking Rayman 3, Splinter Cell, Star Fox Adventures, and Pokemon Snap and rolling them all together into one game. That’s what you get with Beyond Good and Evil. It’s too bad that this game never got much hype or even advertising, because it has to be one of the absolute best of the year. It combines so many elements and does it all seamlessly with a serious amount of style.

Story: 9/10

An evil alien force is invading a peaceful and defenseless planet; you’ve heard it all before, right? Wrong. BG&E is about conspiracy and propaganda. You don’t actually fight the alien threat; you undermine it through some daring photojournalism. The characters are vivid, and each one has a distinct personality. Overall, the plot simply keeps you wondering what happens next.

Gameplay: 7/10

BG&E can’t be easily defined under any one genre because there’s so many ways to play the game. It plays mostly like an adventure game, but in the dungeon areas you must also employ stealth tactics similar to Splinter Cell to get ahead. You’re also going to be taking quite a bit of pictures, the game requires it. The camera is your main tool, and it’s very easy to use. Your main mode of transportation is a squirrelly hovercraft that’s really fun to drive. You’ll also be doing some combat.

Now, the combat system is one of the few lesser points of the game. Control while fighting is difficult and confusing at times. There’s a combo system, but it is never really defined. It’s also unclear sometimes on whether or not you hit the enemy. I’m not saying that the hit detection is off, but that you never really feel as though you’re doing real damage until it dies. The fighting eventually just boils down to hitting the A button as fast as you can until all the enemies are dead.

Music/Sound: 8/10

Both are great. The audio is always appropriate and really succeeds in conveying the atmosphere of the area you are in. The voice acting is full of character and is actually believable.

Graphics: 8/10

The visuals of this game are simply gorgeous. The natural environments truly look like they’re from an alien planet. The water effects look amazing; you can actually be fooled into thinking you’re looking at a real picture at some points in the game. The graphics fit the game well. It combines so many elements and does it all seamlessly with a serious amount of style. The animations look realistic, and the lighting effects are spot-on. There’s this cool blurry effect that is used certain alien areas and adds an extra touch of surrealism to the game.

Innovation: 10/10

This game has so much stuff never seen in gaming before. The world that it creates is so original and intriguing. There’s a really cool sense of espionage as you play the game. The game also manages to be funny without being crude (well, except for the fart powered boots). Yes, there’s fart powered boots. And your sidekick, Pey’j, is a pig.

Replay/ Length: 4/10

One downfall of the game: it is way too short. 10 hours easy for an experienced gamer. However, it is a LOT of game in a small amount of time; there’s never really a dull moment, so I guess the shortness of the game can be overlooked, but the ending still felt, well, unfinished. You’ll definitely be playing this game through more than once just to catch stuff that you’ve missed before. The game may grow old after awhile, but it is well worth it for an outstanding title and a huge amount of fun.


Rating:   4.0 - Great

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