Developer: Red Entertainment
|FIMP: Gungrave: Overdose [PS2]|
Gungrave: Overdose is pretty much chaos on a disc. Based on my experience and what I've heard of the first title, I'd make an educated guess that Red Entertainment likes making you shoot stuff sometimes. They also like you using long range weapons to pierce enemies from afar. Oh, and they also make you shoot a lot. My positive/negatives list I wrote up to help me with the FIMP looks like this:
+ balls out shooting
+ stylish visuals
+ balls out shooting
+ kick their a$$!
+ manages to not be repetitive... yet
- really annoying camera
- somewhat finnicky targeting
And that basically sums my first half hour's worth of experience with Gungrave OD in a nutshell. There's just lots, and lots, and lots of balls out shooting. That's all there is to it. And honestly, it hasn't gotten reptitive yet. It's like Max Payne -- there are a variety of obstacles and environment objects that enemies and you can hide behind. Sometimes big enemies will come at you, sometimes small, sometimes a combo of both. Sometimes they shoot rockets, sometimes guns, sometimes they come up to you with swords. The action gets too feisty for it to get overly repetitive. Remember though that I've only been playing for thirty or so minutes -- I hope this doesn't change.
Gungrave: Overdose is a shooter, but like Max Payne it's in 3D. Unlike Max Payne, it's not controlled like a first person shooter. Left and right don't strafe, they actually make Grave, your main character, run and face left and right. The camera doesn't really catch up fast enough for my tastes, and the right analog stick camera control is absolutely horrid. It seems to swing too wildly and doesn't go where you want it to in the heat of battle. It doesn't help that the lock-on-targeting is a bit finnicky. When you lock-on, you can cycle through enemies much like in Dead to Rights. But for some reason my targeting reticule doesn't always want to switch when I press the button. Luckily there are so many damn enemies onscreen oftentimes such that you can't turn without finding something to shoot, so the bad camera work and misbehaving targeting reticule sometimes aren't that detrimental. Now, that's a good thing.
The visuals continue the cel-shaded style that was employed in the first game, and while they can get rather jaggy thanks to the PS2's ultimate graphical prowess (yes, sarcasm), they're colorful and fun. I suspect this is done to remain faithful to the anime, which I have never seen, but may just think about it now that I've tasted some of the universe. The sound is a lot LOT LOT LOT of explosions and gunfire and screaming and... chaos. Tasty mayhem would be the best way to describe this game's aesthetics and gameplay.
I actually lent my copy of this game to The Truth in exchange for the first game, because I haven't played it yet. I'd imagine it largely to be the same, but if not, I'll write a FIMP on it. Then I'll review it. Then I'll finish this. And review it. Because it tastes good.
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