Review by Rome_Leader
"Virtua Quest: Innovative Breakthrough or Slip Up by Sony?"
Overall: 6/10 I'm going to have to be tough but fair with this one. The gameplay was new and creative, but it just wasn't enough to captivate me. The Virtua Souls technique thing was nice, but it could've used more variety. Do you see where I'm going? For every pro in this game, there is an equal and opposite con. Yes I speak the truth. A bit of background info then! You are a aspiring boy, who is plugged into an Internet Battling System (Megaman Reference!) and has to save the world from these villains. Along the way, you gain special souls (Virtua Souls) that give you certain attacks/powers. There are many worlds to go to, and that is one of the finer points of the game... Let's get to my analysis then!
Graphics: 9/10 However, the graphics were amazing for what kind of game it was, and really kind of kept it at the average gaming level. No invisible walls, all fade away dead bodies happen for a reason (hello, virtual world!) and they don't looked patched at all. They were very futuristic, and fit well with the storyline. I saw virtually (Pardon the pun) no flaws in them. The enemies and characters looked amazing. True eye candy. Solid job there.
Combat System: 1/10 But what didn't impress me in the least was the combat system for the game. The moves were linear, the movements might've been more fluent and together. It kind of brought the game down as a whole by itself. There were not many options to what you could do, and it was hard to find a spot to interact with the environment. Tough to say, but ya, the combat system was poor indeed. There might have been a bit more action too. It kind of didn't do any justice to the graphics. Sad, really...
Sound Effects: 4/10 Another thing. The sound effects were a driving reason that the combat system failed. One can only stand so much "Hi -ya!" and "Hi-Tai-Un!" over and over. One of the good points on the sound, tied in with the cinematics too. It was loud enough, varied itself well and was proportionate to the mouth movements of the characters as well. If the entire sound system of the game were like that, I'd give it a much higher rating. Sadly, it wasn't. I could hear soundboard type stops and starts (?????????) and the vocal acting was short and choppy. They could've made a better effort. Not impressed.
Cinematics: 8/10 Wicked cutscenes! The graphics for these were amped up well, and it fit the storyline so well, I could've cried. It brought the sound effects together with a good, smooth flow and were just over all great. However, when the character pauses, I noted some delay times... No big issue, however! The cinematics flowed with the great graphics. So, I guess I'd have to not jokingly say, you'd get more of a pleasure out of watching the game then actually playing it.
Gameplay as a whole: 7/10 The gameplay was good, the idea was fair. I really can't say I didn't enjoy the gameplay. Through and excellent tutorial to keep the controls legible. Pretty good really. It is very much a shame that the combat was such a big part in game play, and did so poorly. I'd have no problem with a 9 except for that. The realism wasn't all that great, though it was enough to run the game on fumes, figuratively speaking.
Verdict: 1 Play, 2 Play Not a buy, maybe not even a rent. I'm not sure, it depends on your gaming tastes. Sci-fi fanatics might enjoy it, many may not. Try it, maybe use a demo, see what you think. Might have been better for Gamecube... The controls really didn't fit. The R Analog tap for release of Energy Wire, was not very smart... Explain all those un-used buttons, you crazy executives!
Reviewer's Rating: 3.0 - Fair
Originally Posted: 06/30/05
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