Review by Mr. RPG

"Dedicated to Samson & Adon, Two all around buff studs."

When I heard this game was coming out I was actually looking forward to playing it more than FFX (Which I was also very stoked about at the time.) as strange as that might sound. And it didn’t have anything to do with the fact that it was supposed to be the next game in the Ghosts N Goblins series. It just sounded like a cool game to me.
Of course I didn’t actually have a PS2 until very recently.
And so for my first PS2 game I chose Maximo!!

Gameplay:9 Playing Maximo reminded me a lot of when I was playing MDK2 for the DC. If you have ever played it you probably wonder why I would make such a comparison. It’s because Maximo just like MDK2 is insanely difficult, yet it still manages to be fun in the process.

As Maximo you must make your way through the games 5 worlds fighting off hoardes of undead, such as Skeletons Frozen in Ice blocks, Ones which have a sword & shield (Which I hate.), & Zombies that rise from the ground, as well as many others.
Along with fighting off the undead you will find yourself doing a whole lot of platforming. And that means there’s lot of pits for you to fall in. And you’ll no doubt scream in frustration from falling in them. I fell in my fair share, but never was it because of the camera. While the camera is sometimes unresponsive I never fell in any pits because of it.
Once you have cleared all of the levels in one of the 5 main areas you will open up the way to the boss. The bosses are one of the bests things about Maximo because each boss will require some thinking in order to beat them. The toughest boss fight for me was probably the battle against Achille.

The thing that’s the coolest about Maximo is it’s power up system. Sometimes when you kill enemies you will pick up Medals. And these can give you some very spiffy powers. Like allowing you to do an extra attack or being able to throw your shield. In fact most of my favorite Medals revolve around your shield. The only problem with the shield ones is that your shield has a limited durability so after you’ve used it enough it will shatter And you’ll have to hope you get another one from an enemy.
And not only that, but you can also find elemental power ups for you sword. There are 4 different types which are as follows: Fire, Light, Ice, & Dark. Light is my favorite. But just like with your shield, these only have a limited amount of uses before they run out.

One last thing I need to mention is saving & continuing. You can not save in the middle of a level on this. You can only save in the one save spot in each of the 5 main areas. And in order to save the game you need to pay 100 Koins for it. So you may sometimes have to spend your Koins very wisely.
When you start out the game you will have just one continue, but when you pick up enough spirits you will gain a Death Medallion to use for more continues. At first it will only take you one of them to continue, but for every two continues you use, the amount will go up by one.

I would say that this game probably took me around 20 hours to beat.

Story:7 For a game that really doesn’t rely heavily on plot it’s surprisingly decent.
Maximo returns to his kingdom only to find out that his once trusted councilor Achille has betrayed him & married his girlfriend. Not wanting you in his way, he kills you & you then appear before Death who will give you another chance at life if you help return the souls of the dead for him. Maximo agrees and sets out to find the 4 sorceresses to help him fight Achille.

Graphics:9 The graphics in both normal play & during cut scenes are all very good. All of the areas in the game have an excellent atmosphere. The thing that impressed me the most though, was the final boss fight. The atmosphere was really creepy there, because you’re in a pitch black room that occasionally lights up from flashes of Thunder & Lightening, while a huge monster is stalking you! If I had been playing it alone late at night it probably would of scared the Hell out of me.

Sound:9 All of the music this game really fits its atmosphere. And if you have played any of the old GNG games, them some of the tunes will sound familiar to you. My favorite tune is one that it makes in the underworld.
The voice acting is fairly decent & as for sound effects they range from Maximo striking enemies with his sword, to bones shattering.

Difficulty:10 Oh baby is this game hard!! Due to the many pits, & some very strong enemies you will no doubt be dying a lot. So if you aren’t looking for a game that challenges you, then you had better stay away from this one.

Replay:8 Once you’ve beaten this game it still gives you a reason to play through it again. Because if you can find every single secret in the game, you will able to unlock an extra stage.

Rent or Buy: If you are looking for a fun challenging game to play, then buy it. Otherwise you should probably just rent it.

Reviewer's Rating:   4.5 - Outstanding

Originally Posted: 07/25/02, Updated 12/26/03

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