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Yu Yu Hakusho: Tournament Tactics - GBA - Review


Posted by: jkdmedia

Review Rating 4.6 Below Average

For the past few years, the popularity of anime has grown in the United States, thanks to the help of the Cartoon Network. They have shown the American audiences such programs as Dragon Ball Z, Tenchi Muyo, various Gundam series, and even Yu Yu Hakusho. Since the TV shows have proven to be extremely popular, various developers have decided to make games based off them. Atari has created another game in the Yu Yu Hakusho series entitled Yu Yu Hakusho: Tournament Tactics. Read on to find out more!

This game takes place during the Dark Tournament saga of the TV series. Here is some background information for the game. Yusuke is a teenage boy who has the reputation of being the toughest kid in town. One day, as he is skipping school, he sees a young boy trying to get his ball out of the middle of a street and there is a car speeding towards him. Yusuke rushes out to save the boy but is killed in the process. Yusuke finds himself in the realm of Spirit World with Botan, a grim reaper, and Koenma, the ruler. Koenma gives Yusuke a series of tasks to complete, and if he is successful then Koenma will give Yusuke back his life. Once Yusuke completes all of these tasks and is back to life, he finds out that he is now a Spirit detective, entrusted with making sure that nothing bad happens to the people of Earth.

A nice kick to the shin will work!

One of biggest problems with the story is that it assumes that players know what is going on. Unless you have been keeping up with the cartoon series, many players might not know what is going on and why there is so much attention given to certain characters. The cutscenes provide some information but it really doesn’t help much. This is sad because if you haven’t seen anything in the anime you will be lost, which will make you lose any interest you might have had in this game.

Before you can get into any fights, players will move around the map on predefined “rail.” Once they get to a spot they hit the button to start the fight. All combat in the game is done by turn-based strategy. All of the battles are done on a stage/grid similar to other strategy games. Players will move to a spot where they can attack, and then do so and try to take out all of the enemies before they attack the player-controlled characters. Once that is done, and the characters level up they will get to distribute the experience points into different skills, such as offense, spirit energy, movement, and power.

The Rose Whip in action

One of the worst things is that in the beginning of the game you have a very small movement radius, so it takes ages to get to your enemies to defeat them. Later on, after you give more points to the movement, it gets better, but still in the early stages when you want to increase other more-important things, such as spirit energy and power, it is annoying to spend points on that. Also the enemy AI is not the sharpest tool in the shed; the enemies will run away from you or just do really stupid things with their turns.

While playing through the game, players will have access to 10 different characters to play as, but they can only use five at any given time. The roster is: Yusuke, Kurama, Kuwabara, Hiei, Masked Fighter, Rinku, Chu, Yukina, Touya, and Jin. Each character has a different set of skills that can be purchased after they acquire enough points. With Yusuke you can unlock his famous Spirit Gun, Shotgun, and the Mega Gun. Kurama has the Death Seed, Whip Slash, and Yoko Death Plant. Kuwabara has the Super Sword, Double Sword, and the Long Sword Strike. Hiei has the Darkness Sword, Darkness Flam, and Dragon Summon. Masked Fighter has Air Shotgun, Blast Gun, and Rapid Punch. Rinku has the Yo Yo Shot, Serpent Calling, and Poison Strike. Chu has Power Shot, Spirit Ball, and Crusher Kick. Yukina has the Frozen Tears, Hero Healing, and Frozen Wind. Touya has Ice Sword, Ice Drive, and Shards of Ice Blast. Jin has Wicked Tornado, Tornado Fist, and Fly by Kick.

A nice Spirit Gun shot!

All of those powers will become very useful in the battles that the team will face later on. Players will have to use them strategically as some will be better suited for different situations. For instance, some characters are better suited at close combat while others excel at ranged. Players will have to realize this before the start of every battle so that they can choose the best set of fighters in the situation.

The graphics for the game are plausible, but there have been better-looking tactics games released on this platform. Everything here is not very detailed in the environments or characters. One of the better things is the few animations the characters do possess, but after you have seen the same thing over and over again for several hours it will get old quick.

The sound for the game is mediocre at best. The sound effects are nicely done but it is nothing special. The musical score for this game gets repetitive really quickly. Pretty soon players will find themselves muting the game.

Yu Yu Hakusho: Tournament Tactics is rated E for Everyone!

Review Scoring Details for Yu Yu Hakusho: Tournament Tactics

Gameplay: 4.5
Very basic and simple.

Graphics: 5.5
The game is very simplistic looking and is not very detailed.

Sound: 4.0
Pretty dull and mundane.

Difficulty: Easy
This game is on the easy side; if you have ever played any other tactics game in the past, it should be a breeze for you.

Concept: 4.5
This game does not add anything new to the Tactics genre.

Overall: 4.6
Unless you are a huge Yu Yu Hakusho fan, I would avoid this game.


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