Anuj Agrawal

Rayman 3, the sequel to one of the greatest games ever…Rayman 2. There was Rayman 2, a fantastic game, then in between there were a few terrible Rayman games, and now finally a sequel that wasn’t put together in a night. A really deserving sequel, a game that even Ubi Soft decided to fully credit being a sequel and not a piece of crap. Rayman has always been about fast action platform fun. Rayman 3 is a good game but it still has it’s shortcomings in some areas.

[heading]Graphics – 9.0[/heading]
The graphics of the game are very good. The FMV cut scenes are really nice and quite well done. The levels just shine in terms of beauty. They look like fully pre-rendered levels, but clearly they are not. Smooth frame rate and not even a hint of slowdown. Great simple clear colors, brilliant effects and amusing animations sum it up.

[floatright][/floatright][heading]Sound – 9.0[/heading]
The game sound is really good. The music in some areas is really good, and in other areas it is okay, but overall it is good. The voice cast is great, and the voice acting is superb. The people really act it out well and overall put a lot of effect into this funny game. Yes, the game is very funny, and it may not have been as funny had the parts not been acted out so well. The only downfall would be that the music in some areas is not as good and can very rarely be even irritating; but as a downfall, that is a very small one.

[heading]Control – 8.5[/heading]
The controls are just fine. They are standard for any platform. The camera control with the C-Stick just isn’t enough though sometimes. There are some pre-set camera angles in some areas and sometimes they just don’t work, and the camera with the C-Stick just doesn’t move around fast enough sometimes. The R button works as an A


April 21, 2003

[floatleft][/floatleft]Well, I will begin with a brief history of the game. The game was originally released for the Sega Dreamcast in Japan but never brought to the US, till now. On April 16th, 2003, Ikaruga was released for the Nintendo GameCube; a very popular game in Japan that US audiences were very happy to finally have. In a world of 3D games and immersive worlds and many dynamic modes of gameplay, it is a great change of pace to have a two dimensional fast paced shooter that all of us old school gamers can sit down with and have a great time with. We’ve all played and cursed at the screen playing our Gradius and our Galaga and all of it. Now we can experience that all over again with this wonderful new game.

[heading]Graphics – 8.0[/heading]
There really isn’t much to say about the graphics. It’s a 2D overhead shooter with very nice background visuals and many effects on the screen with not a bit of slowdown or anything. The game is as graphically impressive as you could hope for from a game like this. Although it is nice, it is not perfect. It does the vertical line of travel, and many of us who have previously fallen in love with Gradius and other such titles, really do prefer the horizontal mode of movement. Well, the game does come with an option to play horizontally instead of vertically, but unfortunately it doesn’t accommodate the controls for this change. Up on the analog stick is still forward and so it becomes impossible to play unless you lay down while playing the game. That being said, most people will probably stick with the normal vertical modes of gameplay. The graphics are as good as one could hope for, but not perfect.

[floatright][/floatright][heading]Sound – 8.0[/heading]
There isn’t much to be said about the sound either. The background sound fits the game well and can make the game fun and action packed, but the music isn’t anything truly memorable or something that sticks in your mind even after you are done playing. The sound effects of shooting and explosions and everything are also just fine.

[heading]Control – 8.0[/heading]
The controls are “standard”. The only issue with the controls are when you try to play in horizontal mode. That is all. I will use this portion then to also talk about the innovative ship control modes. You can play as either “Light” or “Dark” ship mode. You can simply change the polarity or your ship and this innovative mechanism allows many different ways of gameplay. The enemies you encounter also have a polarity that fire energy as the polarity of their ship. The polarity that your ship is changes or effects that the rest of the enemies and fire does to you. It will start upon the firepower from you hitting an enemy. If you shoot a ship that is opposite polarity as yourself, you inflict double damage, but if you shoot a ship with the same polarity, if fires back at you with firepower of the same polarity. Now, the polarity of your ship and how it takes firepower. If you get hit by energy of the same polarity, you absorb it, and charge up your missile or power shot bar. You can fire these out at any time but the more it is charged up, them more missiles it fires. So using this ability on similarly charged enemies to charge up is a very clever mechanic. You can either burn through enemies faster with double damage, or charge up your energy bar to inflict major damage later. Now, if you get hit by a shot of the opposite polarity, you die. These clever game mechanics allow for you to play the games in many different ways, and also have you keep track of a lot of things in the game all at once, making it a lot of fun, and very challenging.

[heading]Challenge – 10[/heading]
Speaking of challenge, this game is challenging. There are options to play it that can make it harder. There is a mode called bullet-eater mode where you can try to play the whole stage without firing a single shot yourself. If you pass the stage without dying or firing a single shot, then you will be rewarded with ample points. That is all on top of the fact that there are three modes of difficulty, easy, normal, and hard, and hard is very hard, and a lot of fun. It will be difficult and it will take most people a while to beat the game, no matter how or what difficulty they play it on. The game is designed so that you can get good enough to eventually beat it, but then after that, you can also keep playing to get a really high score. These scores can then be entered via a code online on the Ikaruga Net Ranking website. This does allow a lot of replay value with incentive, not to mention that it’s a helluva lot of fun.

[floatleft][/floatleft][heading]Fun Factor – 9.0[/heading]
The game is a lot of fun. The many different ways to play and the difficulty settings allow a lot of unique games. On top of all of the fun that can be had playing it alone and getting better just to beat it, there is a very good score keeper so you can hone your skills and try to get the perfect score. Then on top of all that, you can do it with a friend. There is a two player mode where you and a friend share the screen and share the action.

[heading]Conclusion – 9.0[/heading]
This great game gives something that you can always play. Bored? Pop in Ikaruga and play for half an hour or so. Grab a friend and play 2 or 3 games, see how far you can get. This fast paced fun shooter is something you can always come back to and play for a bit. Is it worth the 50 bucks? In my opinion, yes, but lucky for you it only costs 40.

Well, I will begin with a brief history of the game. The game was originally released for the Sega Dreamcast in November of 2000. The game was hailed by many to be one of the best games for the system, not to mention one of the greatest RPG adventures on console to date. It was released for the GameCube on January 29, 2003. With its release comes the release of the GCs first really epic RPG experience. With that I will get to the review!

[heading]Graphics – 8.0[/heading]
The graphics of the game are some of the most amazing RPG graphical elements seen in any RPG, unfortunately with RPGs that can get to a visual achievement of games such as Morrowind or Dark Cloud 2, this game seems a bit out of date. If you are very big into getting eye candy, this game still has its moments, but in today’s day, they are few and far between. Everything runs in real time, and as such there are no rendered FMVs or anything, but with the quality it has, there is no need for having pre-rendered animations. Fortunately the game still looks great in comparison to some of the A