Review by Tragrox
"Fans of the anime will buy this, but most people should just rent it"
I have seen both .hack anime series (Sign, Dusk, plus some Liminality(OVA)), so I was pretty hyped up about the games myself. I had played the first game and I felt it was good, but still an incredibly short game. Unfortunately for anyone expecting something different, the second game does nothing to change anything. Obviously if you're going to try to get into the .hack games you are really going to want to play Infection first, otherwise you'd just be wasting your own time.
GRAPHICS - 6/10
Sure the characters designs are pretty cool(Familiar to anyone who has seen the anime's), but the game just looks awful at times considering the dungeons are all ''Randomly'' generated.(They actually aren't, they stay the same every time you go to each individual one, but they all keep the same random look, like a pieced together jigsaw puzzle). There's not much really to say about the graphics though, they're average at best, and at other times downright ugly. They do their job though, so no huge complaints.
GAMEPLAY - 4/10
Here's a problem... the simple fact is, if you've played .hack//infection, then you've played .hack//mutation(Along with the last 2 games). There is nothing to separate these games except for what story there is. The fact that all the stuff from Infection is on the Mutation game really proves that .hack could have been split into at least 2 games(Maybe even one). That and the game is only 10-15 hours(About how long it took me to get all the stuff in the books). I rented them, I guess it's up to you to decide whether a 10 hour game is worth $50. There's really no replay value at all to the game once you have beat it also. People will argue that it comes with a DVD, but Liminality really isn't that good, so I consider that invalid in my opinion. :/
SOUND - 7/10
There's something really cool here I'll admit. You can choose whether you want Japanese of English voiceover's quickly in the menu. This is definitely a cool feature to have considering how many people don't like dubs(The dub is pretty average). The only complaint I really have here is that in some scenes if you have Japanese voiceover's on don't appear to have English subtitles, which made me reset and turn on the English voiceover's. (Kind of lame) The battle sounds all do their thing, and some of the music is actually pretty good, but a lot of it is pretty bad.
STORY - 4/10
What's there of a story is pretty cool, but unfortunately there's not that much, so that's why it gets such a low mark. The story obviously continues from Infection, so really you should be playing Infection if you want to know about the story. Basically it centers around The World(mmorpg) and the player Kite(Twin Blade class), who is trying to find his friend who has gone into a coma while playing. The story definitely fits into the .hack universe.
OVERALL - 5/10
While the game definitely has it's shining moments, and it really is a first(An offline mmorpg), it just can't hide the fact that this is one game split into four parts just to milk people of what money they have. I can't really recommend buying this game to anyone(Even the anime fans). Don't get me wrong, I love the .hack universe, I just don't love the .hack games. There are just many other rpgs out there that are worth your money, .hack isn't one of them.
Reviewer's Rating: 2.5 - Playable
Originally Posted: 05/30/03, Updated 05/30/03
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