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Remember Dead or Alive 4? Well, this isn't it. Nor, for that matter, is it Dead or Alive 3, 2, or even the 16-bit graphics of 1. Shame, really, as those were all good games.
This is however something like Street Fighter Zero on a hallucinogenic. I invited my cousin over for the evening, with the intention of testing out this game, and I must confess it didn't take too long. The plotline was simply baffling, even for fighter game standards, and the footage was hardly enthralling. It's worth mentioning that my cousin works in Curry's Digital and had never even heard of the game. Shows just how well known this game is, and believe you me, it doesn't deserve to get well known.
The batteries in my controller died, so I nipped out to get some new ones, and came back in the room to find my cousin sniggering to himself, whilst holding the game manual. He presented me with a fantastic list of what each button did.
A = Attack; B = Attack; X = Attack; Y = Attack; RB = Attack; LB = Attack; RS = Attack; LS = Attack. This was gonna be one of them really, really, ridiculously complex games, clearly.
If nothing else, this game will make you smile.
Up comes the main menu, we flick straight to a verses match, and there appears to only be 12 characters, which is slightly archaic, and doesn't really make for a long gaming experience. The thing that does bode well however is that one of the characters is called Watson, and is a little magic rabbit with a bear trap, and another who is a pirate with a flipping' huge hook. If nothing else, this game will make you smile.
Of course, the whole beautiful and nostalgic feel was lost once in game play. It did look the part, but was just sort of … well … pants. The buttons are indeed all attack, and some of the characters could walk all over some of the other ones. There was quite a bit of depth to how the game worked, just not really in controlling it. The cat girl Coyori, for instance, can only use her regular special moves in small, linking combos, causing some degree of unpredictability for opponents, while the stark difference in height between bunny mage Watson and any opponent forces both players to figure out how to deal with his shrimp-like height problems.
Somehow it endeared itself to me and made me want to play.
However, the incredibly-easy-to-control factor, and the sheer innocence of this game, in a platform which is usually grossly violent, means that it is very approachable.
Thing is, even though this game is absolutely awful, I still for some reason love it! It reverts back to a simpler time, and the game looks simply gorgeous. I think it's called 2.5 D - it looks 2D but things can go behind each other, so it behaves like a 3D game.For me, it's not great, it's not technically accomplished, it's got so much wrong. But somehow it endeared itself to me and made me want to play.
With so many different perspectives it can be hard to know where to start - a little like walking into a crowded pub. Sorry about that.
But so far we've not found a way to streamline our review output - there's basically too much of it. So, rather than dilute things for newcomers we have decided to live with the hubbub while helping new readers find the columnists they will enjoy.
Our columnists each focus on a particular perspective and fall into one of the following types of gamers: