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Xenogears (PlayStation) artwork

Xenogears (PlayStation) review

"The gear battles are similar, and use the same system with weak, medium, and strong attacks. You can still do combos, but each turn you go without doing a combo, your attack level goes up... And the higher the attack level, the better combos you can do."


When I first heard about Xenogears--a new Square RPG with an anime visual style, large robots to fight in, and a deep storyline--I became interested! When I found out that it was going to reach U.S. shores, I was even more interested! In fact, I bought this game shortly after it came out, and now I'm incredibly glad I did...It's probably the best game I've ever played, and here's why...


+ The graphics in Xenogears were very stylish a year ago, with very unique character design, in a 3D world which was amazingly detailed! Add some sweet anime and CG cutscenes and excellent lighting and in-battle effects, and you get some very distinct anime-style graphics which are great to look at!

+ The sound in Xenogears continues the Square tradition that was started with the Final Fantasy series. Great music that sets the mood well, and voice acting that was actually quite good during the cutscenes! Xenogears' music is just as good as FF6's and FF7's.

+ Xenogears' storyline is remarkable! Dealing with complex religious issues, and plenty of myth and legend... Not to mention some great characters with *real* personalities, and lots of deep dark secrets Xenogears RULES!

+ A great innovative battle which can be compared to that of Chrono Cross, in a way. Three attacks are assigned to three of the buttons on the controller. There's a strong attack, a medium attack, and a weak attack. The weak attack is more likely to hit, and you can attack more times with it, but isn't as strong, while the strong attack is naturally stronger, but has a lower chance of hitting the enemy, and you cannot use it as many times in one turn. This is a great system on its own, but that's not all... When certain buttons are pressed in a certain order, your character will pull off a deathblow, which is much like a combo. Learn deathblow skills by using the attacks that are needed in it. Although this is not all either... That's just for the human fights. More or less, 50% of the battles in Xenogears are in giant robots called 'gears', while the other 50% are fought in human form. The system I just explained was for the human battles. Now for the gear battles..!.

The gear battles are similar, and use the same system with weak, medium, and strong attacks. You can still do combos, but each turn you go without doing a combo, your attack level goes up... And the higher the attack level, the better combos you can do. There is even a part in the game where you can acquire the attack level of infinity, and you can activate killer combos! Xenogears' battle system is probably the best I've seen so far in a game, and it's mainly because of its innovation.


- Xenogears is a long game. Although this is a good thing in many ways, towards later parts of the game, it can get unexpectedly boring, and I've heard many complaints about this. I personally found it to be great the whole way through, but I have heard many people say that certain areas--mainly the second disc--can get tedious and boring.


Xenogears is a wonderful game! With the most minor of flaws, and great graphics, storyline, gameplay, and even sound, it's definitely a winner. I'm not the only one who thinks Xenogears to be the best, or one of the best RPG's to date. If you are a Square fan and like the Final Fantasy series, you're bound to like this game... And my advice is that if you don't already have it, get it now, because the price seems to actually be going up!

ender's avatar
Staff review by James Gordon (Date unavailable)

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