Alter Echo

August 18, 2003

It’s rare that we see games take chances, so in that vein I have to give Outrage and THQ some credit with Alter Echo. They took some risks, especially in terms of game design, and while not flawless, it does sometimes work out for the best. Still, it all comes out of the wash as another action platformer in a sea of similar tiles. There are enough bells and whistles to make Alter Echo appeal to some, such as the title’s unique combo system that serves to make combat quite entertaining. Sadly, however, the game is far too short to be considered anything other than a weekend rental. Alter Echo takes place on a world where certain individuals, called Shapers, are able to use something called plast to shape and form nearly anything at will. The greatest of these individuals, Paavo, has managed to create a new, more powerful form of plast, called echoplast. Paavo quickly is enraptured with the newfound power afforded to him by the new substance. That is where you come in. As a young shaper named Nevin, you must seek out and prevent Paavo from using this power to destroy humanity.

Donning a suit made entirely of echoplast, Nevin begins the adventure to stop Paavo. This suit is sentient, and also quite powerful in its own right. While it begins as just a normal melee suit of armor and a sword, it soon gains the ability to change into two other completely different forms. The stealth form looks much like a lizard, and allows Nevin to become invisible, and attack with much more speed and agility at close range. This form can also walk up some walls ala-Gex, which is both useful and cool. The other form, the gun form, is a lumbering hulk with substantial firepower. This firepower is upgraded through the course of the game as well. The ability to attack from a distance comes in very handy, as you can no doubt imagine.

So what this all boils down to is the aforementioned combat. Alter Echo is an action/adventure title in name, but the action is what makes this title work. Through the game’s Time Dilation technology, players can slow time down so Nevin can attack the enemy without them being able to react. This allows Nevin to target multiple enemies at once, and to string together a combination of attacks. This is played out in a separate mode called TD mode. Players must string together attacks by pressing buttons within a A

Score: 2/5

Questions? Check out our review guide.