reviews\ Jan 20, 2003 at 7:00 pm

Guilty Gear X2 - PS2 - Review

Last year, Sammy developed a game for the PlayStation 2 entitled: Guilty Gear X. This game proved to be one of the best 2D fighting games for the system at the time. It has tons of characters, special moves, stages, and a very nice presentation. This year Sammy has unleashed a sequel named: Guilty Gear X2 upon the gaming world. Will this game top its predecessor, with better characters, smoother frame rate, and more modes? Read on to find out!

The story is a continuation of the previous games: "The last international fighting tournament was held in 2180, and Justice, the worlds most powerful Gear, was finally defeated. Since the gears leader was destroyed, the other Gears were easy to hunt down and eliminate. The world was finally free of the obliteration that the Gears brought, or so they thought. Several months later, there were numerous reports of new Gears that are operational. People were frightened about another ferocious Gear on the loose. Soon, an announcement was given out "whoever brings about the demise of this dreadful Gear shall be rewarded with the lofty sum of 5,000,000 World Dollars!" Now that the time has passed since the last tournament, what new obstacles will each of the characters face?

There are several modes of play in the game: Story, Arcade, Survival, Metal of Millionaires (M.O.M.), VS, Training, and Mission Mode. Story mode gives players an actual plot to the entire game. Players will get all the information on the relationships and the origins of all the characters. This is a really good idea to implement this in the game since many fighters are sparse on an actual plot. Arcade mode lets players control a character through the game, fighting until they face the end boss. In survival mode, gamers play a king of the hill type game, each time they beat a character, and the next one will be even stronger. The game ends when gamers defeat all the enemies or they get terminated.

Metal of Millionaires is similar to survival mode, but there is another gauge at the bottom of the screen, a Medal Gauge. The gauge moves up and down depending on how many combos players can perform on their opponents, the higher the gauge is the more points players receive at the end of the round. VS mode is where two humans can fight to see who the best player is. In training mode, gamers will be able to learn all of the characters deadly combos to become the most effective fighter.
Mission mode is the hardest mode I have ever come across in a fighting game, players are given a character to fight with, along with the enemy that they are going to fight, but your character will have a huge handicap. Here is an example of one of the challenges: players take control of Ky who has to fight an evil mirror image of himself. The players will have half of their health available to them and they are poisoned, while the CPU has full health and their health regenerates. That is just the tip of the iceberg on how hard these missions are, but it is a welcome mode that helps players become better at the game for when they fight their friends.

The game plays like a dream, since the controls are very responsive. There are many different characters in this game, and each of them has a different fighting style, which is great to see in these games. In addition to all of the fighting moves from the previous game, new ones have been implemented such as the Psych Burst. The Psych Burst renders your character invincible for a short amount of time, and can turn the tides of a battle very quickly. This move can only be performed when the Burst gauge is full. There are many other moves that have been added to this game, to make it more balanced, and more fun to play!

The graphics are nothing short of breathtaking. The game has a very anime sort of feel to it, from the characters to the environments they fight in. Each of the characters has been modeled to perfection. Each character is thoroughly detailed, and has a large set of animations. Combine that with the fact that each level has an extraordinary amount of detail.
For example, in one level, there are characters in the background cheering the two fighters; they are also moving around, and doing many other things.  Guilty Gear X2 has a lot of explosions in them, and they are beautifully rendered as well.

Guilty Gear X2 has a wonderful soundtrack. When players hear the music that is used while playing the games they will wish that it came with the soundtrack, it is that good. The effects are also well used, from all the clashes to the explosions; players will feel like they are in the middle of a giant battlefield.

As accustom with all fighting games, Guilty Gear X2 offers an assortment of bonus items to be unlocked. These can come in the form of movies, drawings, and even extra characters. This helps extend the replay value of the game, because now players will have more reasons to continue to play this highly addictive game.

Guilty Gear X2 is rated T for Teen for violence, blood, and mature sexual themes. It requires 72kb on your memory card. 

Reviewer's Scoring Details

Gameplay: 9.3
Guilty Gear X2 plays like a dream! The controls are very responsive and act according to what you press. Another thing that is great about this game is that each character fights differently, which is extremely good. I never liked it when fighting games had a huge roster of characters, yet half of them fought the exact same way. Bear in mind that this game does have a learning curve and you will not be able to perform super moves if this is your first time playing, but if you are a fighting veteran, than you will not have any problems. There is so much action oozing from this game; you will not want to quit!

Graphics: 9.2
The game looks exceptionally well! The characters are highly detailed, have a nice set of animations, and are nicely modeled. The backgrounds are also nicely detailed and have a lot of background animations to make each level feel more alive. The best thing about this game is even though there is a lot of action, flashes, and other things going on at the same time, the frame rate never drops.

Sound: 9.2
They left the original Japanese voice actors in the game! This makes the game all the more authentic, and gives it a "cooler aura." The sound effects are really great from the loud explosions to the music heard in the background!

Difficulty: Medium
The game offers a few difficulty modes, and each of them proves to be a challenge! The game takes you back to "old-school" fighting, where you have to work for the wins, even in the easiest settings. Plus the mission mode is an extreme challenge, but in the end, it proves to be worth all the effort you put in the game.

Concept: 8.5
Guilty Gear X2 is an anime inspired fighting game, which is a good thing. The game takes a lot of different items from action anime series, and places them in this game. Plus the inclusion of new types of modes, gives this game astounding replay value.

Multiplayer: 9.3
Q: What is a fighting game without a VS mode?
A: A bad fighting game!

Thankfully Guilty Gear X2 has a wonderful VS mode for you to take on your friends, and anyone else who thinks they can play. Players will spend hours playing in this mode, since playing another human is better than playing against the AI.

Overall: 9.2
Once this game is released, go to your nearest retailer and pick up a copy of Guilty Gear X2 immediately! The game really is this good, with better graphics, smoother animation, and myriads of other things. If you love fighting games or a fan of games that are worth your time and money, than pick this game up; you will not regret it!


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