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Review by Fidika

"A good game based upon an even better OVA"

If you're reading this, you probably already know what Blue Sub No. 6 is, and you've probably already seen (or own) the whole OVA series (it's only 4-episodes long). If you haven't already done that, I recommend you go out and do it right away, as Blue Sub No. 6 is an excellent OVA combining classic cel-animation with computer-animated CGI sequences.

And with every good anime comes a licensed video-game based upon it. The question is, is this game any good?

Blue Sub No. 6: Antarctica is a real-time strategy game where you control the various subs in the game piloted by familiar characters. Game-play consists mostly of moving your little curser here and there, selecting one character and telling them to move over here and attack an enemy. When you get within attack range, you can use various attacks, such as your needle-gun, torpedoes, or missiles. Unfortunately, you don't get to control the big old Blue Sub, you only get to control the smaller one or two person fighter ships that are in the OVA.

The graphics are very nice for a Playstation game. When you attack, it shows an animation of your craft flying in, shooting something, and then it hitting the enemy. What's so amazing is that the attack animations are all being generated by the game when you play, they're not FMV! The polygon models are quite smooth and detailed, especially considering this is running on the Playstation's modest hardware.

Even though the developers had plenty of animation from the OVA to put into the game, they also took the time to create plenty of animation of their own. I'd say the game has somewhere around 20+ minutes of animation. In addition to characters from the anime, they also added a few new characters (both good and bad) to add to the plot. The game also explains a few of the things a bit better which seemed rather vague when I was watching the anime originally.

In between missions you get to control Mayumi (although Hayami is the main character from the OVA) and do some classic Japanese-game-style-simulation. Which means you are given a map when some points on it (different people's rooms on the sub, usually). Then you go there, and talk to people in the usual Japanese-game style, an animated image of them appears, and their mouth moves a little as the text appears on the bottom of the screen. Every now and then you get to either respond with a positive or negative facial expression, or answer a series of questions. It's sort of hard to explain, but if you import a lot of games, you should know what I'm talking about...

Usually the missions are cake-walks, as the enemy is almost always vastly inferior to your own ships, and one of your guys can usually take 10 or so enemies by themselves. However, as you progress in the game you'll have to do stuff such as hold off the enemy for a certain amount of time. Each time you kill an enemy, another one generates at a random point on the level for example. And (this is where the game get's CRAZY HARD) then there are those darn missions where Blue Sub is moving from one point to another. You have to protect it as it moves, but all the enemies will go right after Blue Sub, and try to sink it. It really sucks when you have all your guys just beating one enemy, only for another enemy to regenerate right on-top of the Blue Sub! What sucks even more is that the Blue Sub refuses to shoot back at the enemy, and they move as slow as a snail! That's where the game gets REALLY frustrating. Just play the game, you'll find out what I mean soon enough...

If you liked the anime OVA (and who wouldn't?) then you'll probably really love this game. But even if you don't know what the heck Blue Sub No. 6 is, you might find this game a bit entertaining. I'd recommend picking this game up if you can, the trick is that it's a pretty rare game to find...

Reviewer's Rating:   4.0 - Great

Originally Posted: 03/18/02, Updated 07/19/02

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