Review by Samurai Tigger

"It's kinda like "Last Action Hero", but it don't stink."

This tagline was used by a game mag, but it's so true I had to use it. In the movie, ''Last Action Hero'' a kid is taken from his ''real world'' to the world of movies. Then some action happens and bad guys die.

Similar to that movie is the new gaming sensation, Viewtiful Joe! In which a fan of old Japanese action flicks, Joe is sucked in to the movie to replace his hero Captain Blue and get his girl back.

Truly one of the most original games to come out this year (and in a long time) VJ is a return to old-school ethics, mixed with new-school graphics and effects. The closest thing I can think of to describe this game without playing it is Megaman mixed with Final Fight crossed with Jet Set Radio.

Graphics 10/10
The graphics in this game are simply.... beautiful. (What? You expect me to say that?) Most people look at games and think of realism a the true power of a system. But when so-called ''cartoony'' come along, it's instantly called ugly. Not so. This game really pushes the power of Gamecube. Not only do you have beautiful cel-shaded characters, you have comic-style art for backgrounds, and 3 special ''Vfx'' which not only effect gameplay but graphics as well. Slow makes every thing slow down (obviously) But it makes the level look like it's slowed down to. Bright colors darken and blur. Opposite of Slow is Mach Speed, which makes every thing whiz by like lightning. The backgrounds get speed lines and get a little brighter. Zoom has little effects on graphics like the other 2 powers, but it's still looks cool. A cool little effect that happens during zoom is little lines around the edges of the screen that make it look more dramatic than normal.

Sound 8.5/10
The sound on the game is probably my low point of this game. The background music is okay, but forgettable. It's standard techno, action movie stuff. Voices are actually a high point though, as voice acting this time around isn't just some people they pulled off the street. Capcom really put some money into hiring voice actors this time around and it shows. The whole game is in English, so no ''otaku'' complaining about no Japanese voices this time. Yep, even in the homeland this game was in English. Some say it was a way to parody Japanese action films that were poorly translated into English. Like those old Kung-Fu flicks.
My only problem with the VAs is that Joe gets annoying after a while. I mean how many time can I hear, ''You're too slow'' or the Mario-like ''Hoo-Hoo'' when he double jumps? I dunno, but it's wearing thin...

Gameplay 10/10
Perfection is all I can say. Really..... Okay you dragged it outta me. Gameplay is all this game is about. Like I said earlier, it's like Megaman met Final Fight, and had an orgy with all the Power Rangers. Unlike Megaman though, you don't have a chargeable gun-arm thingy. You have the most deadly weapon in the game from the start... your hands and feet of outstanding power~! Controlling punches and kicks is as simple as pressing the X & Y buttons on the controller. A Jumps and B Zooms in. Oh and L & R Control your time altering abilities. Once you learn the ins and outs of the fighting engine, you'll be tossing the enemies around like rag dolls, chaining combos up to and beyond X5~! Any of the fights between the grunts (that look VERY similar to the Putties of Power Ranger fame) follow the same path. Wait until they start to swing, dodge, they attack. But because of your time altering VFX, you can form combos to your own style of play. Slow down to duck under a punch then Uppercut him to the sky, then kick another foe (while in slow still) and then do a No-Look punch to the putty behind you (still in slow mind you) and then jump to the sky and Zoom in to rocket straight to the ground like a torpedo to smash the ground and any remaining enemies. That is just ONE of the many, MANY combos you can perform through the course of the game.

Story 10/10
Simple to the point and entertaining. That's the story in this game. It all begins when Joe takes Sylvia to one of his favorite action hero's classic films. In the film the hero Captain Blue actually dies and the villains win! Sylvia comments on having seen the film before, but when she saw it before, Capin' Blue didn't die. The from outta nowhere, a giant robot's hand grabs Sylvia, and Joe is left puzzled. Then Blue's robot comes crashing through the screen into the theater and grabs Joe and jumps back into the movie. Joe is dropped outside a mansion, and is approached by Blue, who gives him a V Watch which holds the Power to change into a superhero. After fighting for a while Joe turns into Viewtiful Joe and begins his quest to win back Sylvia.

Entertainment 10/10
Not only is this game a fun and challenging affair, it holds TONS of replay value. You'll wanna get huge combos and big moves to get the most V-Points to buy new moves and items for Joe. I also was entertained by the games great sense of humor, as it makes fun of almost everything, including itself! You'll see tons of old-school Capcom and Nintendo references throughout, Like a R.O.B. in the manual. Or when Hulk Davidson calls you Megaman. LOL! Oh don't forget Secret Characters with their own moves, stories and cutscenes. Oh and a strange impossible to understand language during secret character games.

Overall 10/10
Truly the best game out now to buy. Great Gameplay, Graphics, Challenge, and overall value. This is really one of those games you'll still play just in case the sequel don't live up to the original(DMC & DMC2). This game is a beauti... wait, I'll say it now. This game is a Viewtiful experience that no one should miss out on.

Reviewer's Rating:   5.0 - Flawless

Originally Posted: 10/09/03

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