Review by sakuracream

".hack Outbreak. Good or bad? Average."

Story 7/10
Continuing from the previous two (Infection and Mutation), .hack Outbreak can be related as the 'climax' part of the story. You played as a twin blade player named Kite. You was first introduced to this game called ''The World'' by your best friend. Later in the event, your best friend got into a coma and you will need to unravel the mysteries within to save him. And the only clue to solve the mystery is the bracelet given to you by a beautiful girl called Aura. I would have to put up some spoilers if I tell you more. But basically for .hack outbreak, Kite is still looking for the cure but finally got closer to the 'truth' of the World.

Gameplay 6/10
It will definitely score higher for .hack infection. Sure, the game is very creative, but there are painfully little updates on the game system as you goes on. The battles get very boring and keeps repeating. The only change compared with mutation is the addition of the Grunty abilities. (They are meant as transport in a dungeon field) But still, the game can tabulate thousands of special dungeon fields for you to play, that alone can make you sit and play for the whole day. (Perhaps months or more?)

In order to gain party members, you will still need to get their member addresses, by participating in side quests or going through events.

The difficulty compared to the previous two is definitely harder. The enemies are getting faster, hits harder with much stronger spells, and comes in big groups. They are definitely smarter than the ''old'' enemies. Instead of hitting your party members separately, they will all concentrate on one in particular, kills him/her before moving on to the next one.

Graphics 6/10
The graphics are decent, but as more new titles are coming up, this won't score much as time goes on. The graphics aren't really smooth, but it lives up to the PS2 standard.

Sound 7/10
The background music are okay, but as some people might say, it can be very repeative and boring. However, I'm very impressed to how the music change from non-battle mode to battle mode. It blends in perfectly and when you find that the music is changing into something fast and gloomy, you know some enemies are heading onto your way. The bonus tracks that you unlock are all very funny and interesting.

The dungeon background music are a little different from various episodes, but I guess it worth to mention. (I bet nobody notice it)

Replayability 10/10
If you mean replayability by starting the game again, it's zero. But if you mean after completing the story and its aftermath, yes, it scores a 10. After completing the final story battle, you will still be able to continue the game, and take part in any side quests or perhaps just visit the dungeons.

Overall 7/10
.hack Outbreak can lived up to its previous episodes, the story keeps getting you and you always want to find out more about the World. .hack alone is a very big gigantic story, while the .hack game only covers part of it. I'm just wondering why didn't they get it online?

For people who didn't play the previous 2, you should definitely start off with those first. Firstly, the story at this point is very hard to catch and nearly impossible to understand unless you play the first two. Secondly, you can start off with your deck of items and money. If you play part 3 first, you will need to do a lot of catching up.

Reviewer's Rating:   3.5 - Good

Originally Posted: 11/18/03

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