Review by TVthePunisher
A Favorite of my childhood, and a favorite to me now.
When I first picked this up long ago I was very excited, since I adored the first game playing another one seemed like an absolute YES! The game expands from the first game, introducing us to several more main characters, a variety of enemies other than the Gnorks from the first game and so much more.
Ah yes, first I'd like to talk about the improvement there. In the first game there were 6 homeworlds, and within each of these homeworlds there was a handful of various levels where as you'd run into the occasional Gnork enemy, usually clad in an outfit relating to the current setting. There were no other characters to interact with aside from the dragons you freed and the Hot Air Balloon driver. Now with the sequel, it changes. Though there are only 3 Homeworlds, each of the several mini-worlds per homeworld are spectacular...spanning their own specific storyline involving the inhabitants, usually fending off a particular foe that also lives in that one particular world. Spyro interacts and helps out in each world, collecting mystical objects called "Talismans" in the first two Homeworlds, where they work as keys to get into the boss chambers.
Another thing I like is that each character has their own personality now, aside from just Spyro...not to say Gnasty Gnork or the Dragons in the first game were lifeless drones, but everyone character has something. Even the two sidekicks to Ripto, Crush and Gulp, have a well..."dee dee dee" personality and even though Crush is an idiot, he's loyal as is Gulp.
Finally, the improvement on moves. Spyro can finally swim! That's right, no more working about sinking in water (well, except for this one level called Shady Oasis...you can sink there). Though you actually have to learn it first, which follows a somewhat interesting concept. You have to pay the gems you collect to a greedy bear known as Moneybags, sometimes he'll teach you a new move, open a portal or magically cause a bridge or something to appear..to aide you in your question. Though you could always use the little code ;>> *whisper* Start...Circle, Circle, Circle, Square *done whispering* and you will have learned all the moves, and if used correctly...you can avoid paying a toll bridge or two (such as in Glimmer, just climb up the ladder and glide over the canyon instead of paying Moneybags to make a bridge). Also, you won't have to pay for moves now...I ended up with 8,100 Gems in my possession at the end of my most recent game (there's 10,000 Gems total) because I bypassed a few times where you pay. Of course I played the game normally beforehand ^_^;
Anyhoo, let's get to the score thing.
Graphics - 9/10, for a PS1 game this is pretty good...the thing between N64 games and PS1 games is that those graphics are a bit more colorful...whilst PS1 graphics have a more realistic, though blocky look to it. Spyro is not as colorful as Banjo Kazooie or Donkey Kong 64, but that's great in my book. I love his look...and I love how most of the PS1 games look.
Story - 7/10, it's nothing too special...you have a bad guy who shows up through a portal (thanks to Hunter entering is birthday as a coordinate for the Superportal x.x ), he wants to take over the whole place...you end up fighting his lackies, traveling through worlds helping people out. However it does pull somewhat of a twist...to make you think it's the end...(sorta), then well...then it's not! X_X; Eventually you win, you save the day...it's pretty much a standard formula.
Music - 7/10, now the beats are catchy though the main problem I've found with every copy of Ripto's Rage that I have played is that during various worlds the music either skips, sounds like it's scratching up, stops out of nowhere and doesn't play up again or even freezes the game! (That happened just once during the final boss battle when I had the game long ago). Another thing that should be pointed out is Gulp's Boss music, it's not an original boss theme. I have heard that music in everything, from Jackie Chan's First Strike to a scene in Buffy the Vampire Slayer. And it's also in the TAG commercials, when the girls are attacking certain guys.
Voice Acting - 9/10, it's a pretty good job of voice acting though the only thing that ranks it down is Alora's voice acting at certain points. There are certain points in her voice that sound a bit like nails scratching on a chalkboard. Also during one of the scenes with Ripto, when he says "I persuaded that fat bear moneybags to sell me a few Bomb", the S is either cut off or he didn't say it.
Gameplay - 10/10, pretty good...a major improvement over the first game, with all the new moves and powerups it makes the game very enjoyable.
Replay Value - 7/10, probably not a game that once you beat it 100% that you would then again play through a full time. Picking it up every so often and playing it is great fun though.
Overall, to anyone who hasn't gotten this game you definitely should check it out...especially if you liked the first game. When I rebought mine recently, I got it as cheap as 10 bucks...though I'm sure there are places where you can get it for under $5.
Rating: 4.5 - Outstanding
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