Sonic Heroes (2003) (GC, PC, PS2, XBOX) Review

Happy New Year and to kick of 2016 we are going to be looking at another controversial 3D Sonic game

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Sonic Heroes released in 2003 and was Sega and Sonic Teams attempt at making a next generation Sonic game that uses Team based mechanics, just like Shadow the Hedgehog this game also has a reputation of either being a piece of crap or a pretty fun experience.

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Sonic Heroes is split into four main campaigns Team Sonic, Team Rose, Team Dark and Team Chaotix, each of these teams have unique story and for the most part a different objective which ties into the games main plot.

Team Sonic receive a threat from Dr Robotnik about some new scheme he is creating and so Sonic, Tails and Knuckles run off to find and defeat Robotnik.

Team Rose are on the hunt for Big the Cat’s Missing Frog and Cream the Rabbit’s Chao Chocola.

Team Chaotix work for a detective agency and they hunt down a new client who offers them a lot of money if they rescue them from where they are being kept prisoner.

Team Darks story begins with Rouge the Bat searching for a hidden treasure when she accidentally comes across Shadow the Hedgehog and Omega (a security bot built by Robotnik),  Omega is angry because Robotnik locked him away for so long and Shadow has forgotten everything about himself and his past, all three of them seek out Robotnik for revenge and answers to why Omega and Shadow were locked away.

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How you play the game is that you control three characters for each team one Speed Character, one Power Character and one Flight Character, In teams Sonic, Dark and Rose you will need to use all three characters to pass obstacles and defeat enemies while trying to get to the goal ring as fast as possible.

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Team Chaotix are personally my favorite team to play as they are the only team that offer new gameplay, while playing as Team Chaotix you will need to play through all the same stages as the other teams but each with a new objective for example in one stage you need to find and rescue a lot of Chao and in another you need to find and blow out a bunch of flames that are hidden through out the level.

A big problem with beating the game with all four teams is that you will literally be playing through the same stages over and over again, yes each team does use slightly different paths but most of the time its the exact same stage and its gets really boring and repetitive, this is why I enjoy Team Chaotix the most they offer a more unique gameplay and its a nice break from the action style gameplay of the other teams.

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While playing through each stage you will find small golden keys that you will lose if you take damage, these keys are very important because if you manage to survive a stage with a key you will be sent to a bonus level which will either allow you to earn lives or you can try and catch one of the seven Chaos Emeralds.

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The controls are some of the worst I have ever used in a Sonic game, the characters move way too fast which often causes players to hit unforeseen enemies, some areas in the game require rail grinding and these controls make these sections a lot more difficult than they need to be, far too often did I try to quickly switch rails and the game decided to fling me far into the distance making me fall to my death, the awful controls make the special stages almost impossible to play which is extremely annoying because you need to play these to get the Chaos Emeralds and just getting to the special stages isn’t that easy of task to complete in the first place.

Glitches are not uncommon in this game so be wary if you ever to pick this one up, my advice is to mostly use the power characters as they are strong enough to take out a lot of enemies as well as moving at a reasonable pace, flying characters are by far the most useful this is due to a glitch allowing you too quickly build up your Team Blast bar by quickly throwing  your team mates using the flying character, the speed characters move far too quickly and I recommend you never play as the speed characters unless you get to section where they are needed.

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Team Blasts are a new type of special attack where all three characters in your team will work together to destroy every enemy on screen.

The music in the game isn’t really anything special, I love the vocal tracks but the level themes are just basic and not very catchy which is a shame because for me the music is what I look forward to the most when I play Sonic games and especially when I play the 3D games as they have a reputation of not being some of the best games out there.

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The visuals are amazing in this game, Sonic Heroes looks like one of the old 2D sonic games brought into the 3D world, the level designs are perfect rail sections are only implemented when they need to be, surprisingly their isn’t too many loops, every area is unique and offers a new gameplay style for example in the jungle levels you will find frogs that can make platforms appear and disappear and the Casino levels offer pinball and bingo sections to help you earn a whole load of rings to help you on your adventure and its not too often that you will die due to bad game design.

 

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The game has three types of Boss battles within the four campaigns you will either fight Dr Robotnik in one of his aircraft’s, another Team you meet while on your adventure or a barrage of Robotniks robots, for the aircraft’s just use the speed character because you can glitch the game by spamming homing attacks on the boss killing it almost instantly and for the other two I recommend a fully powered flight character as you hover in the air avoiding enemy attacks and due to the flight character being very over powered by using this character you will beat the level very quickly.

If you collect all seven Chaos Emeralds and manage to beat each Team’s campaign you will unlock Final Story which is the games real final boss and its eventual conclusion.

I wont go into too much detail here due to spoilers but I will say that this boss is a blast to fight, if 3D sonic games have one good thing about them it is almost always the final boss, the real enemy of the game is not Dr Robotnik but is a returning villain from past Sonic games that long time fans will surely enjoy fighting once again.

In conclusion Sonic Heroes is a really fun game with a lot of really big problems, it looks amazing but it plays and feels horrible, the soundtrack is not very interesting and the whole game feels rather repetitive, its not quite as bad as Shadow the Hedgehog but that doesn’t mean it’s a good experience.

Sonic Heroes is ok at best, its a shame because if all of these issues didn’t exist it would of been a classic 4.0/10

I still want a sequel though, come on Sonic Team its been almost 13 years and we want a Sonic Heroes 2 just make this one not so broken please.

I hope you enjoyed this review of  Sonic Heroes

If you respect my opinion, I will respect yours

By Padawan

Want me to review a specific game/movie/product or do you have a general question you would like me to answer? if so please email me at ragglefragglereviews@gmail.com

 

 

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Halo: Combat Evolved (XBOX) (2001) Review

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The Halo series is one of the most beloved video game franchises of all time, the series is often said to be revolutionary and a marvel to modern gaming.

I played the original Halo when it first got released and my 8 year old mind was blown away at how amazing the experience was, but does it still hold up today 14 years later compared to the newer entries of the series?

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Halo’s plot is very heavily story driven, so I am going to explain the basic plot with as very little spoilers as possible.

A UNSC Space Craft called the Pillar of Autumn is heading home after the effects of the battle of Reach (A game I will get too some other day).

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During the lengthy journey home a very large ring called a Halo is discovered, shortly after the discovery the Pillar of Autumn is attacked by a religious Alien Race known as the Covenent, when the ship is about to be taken over Captain Keyes (Commander of the Pillar of Autumn) orders the games protagonist the Master Chief to protect Cortana who is some very realistic Artificial Intelligence that holds information on the UNSC and the location of many hidden planets including Earth.

The Master Chief and Cortana escape the Pillar of Autumn but unfortunately Captain Keyes gets kidnapped by the Covenant, this changes Master Chiefs escape plan  to a search and rescue which sparks the rest of the events in the game.

Halo is a first person shooter which for me is usually when I realise that  I wont like the game as I have never really been a huge fan of this game play style.

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Don’t get me wrong the game play is fantastic as it controls and feels really good but there really isn’t much that makes the game play feel any different too most other first person shooters with the only major differences being that it takes place in space and you are killing Aliens.

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You spend the majority of the game on foot blasting the Covenant with an array of weapons including the famous Pulse Rifle which has been a staple to the series from the very beginning, personally as much as I love this weapon I would say switch for a shotgun as soon as you can because trust me later on you will meet another form of enemy which are very vulnerable to the shotgun bullets, for your secondary weapon I recommend that you find your self a Sniper Rifle so that you can take out most enemies from a distance before getting into a real battle (This is mostly for those play on the higher difficulty settings) the sniper is also in my opinion the best weapon to use on the more powerful and better protected enemies such as Elites and Hunters, you will also be armed with some frag grenades and some plasma grenades (Sticky grenades).

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When your not on foot you will either be riding, driving, or shooting from some sort of vehicle, Halo offers a wide range of vehicles that you can use to your advantage, the most common you will see in this game will be Warthogs which are the main transport used for the Marines of the UNSC, another UNSC vehicle is the Tank which I highly recommend if you are lucky enough to find one.

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The covenant also use vehicles which you can high-jack, the most common Covenant vehicle you will find is the Ghost which is a small hover craft type vehicle which is armed with a fairly powerful laser cannon, you will also see Banshees from time to time these are the same as ghosts but they have the advantage of flight so they can prove to be very useful, Wraiths are another type of vehicle you will come across every now and again, Wraiths are the Covenant’s version of the Tank.

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Graphically the game is a bit disappointing, now before anyone comes to murder me please hear me out !!, the graphical design of the game is absolutely mind blowing and for the time not many games could compete with the efforts of game design that Bungie (Game Devs) put into this game, but generally for a game that got released in 2001 everything looks a little bit pix-elated which is not a massive issue but it is quite disappointing when comparing it to other games that got released the same year such as Fusion Frenzy and 007 Agent under fire.

on the other hand the soundtrack is absolutely amazing, at this point I gather that most of you are familiar with the main theme song for Halo, if you are you will be pleased to know that the theme song plays a hell of a lot in this game.

Halo Theme Song – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z5yVOFokLVY

The rest of the music is still very good, its very orchestral and really is a wonderful experience for players to enjoy, it holds fantastic artistic values and is perfectly conducted to suit the games premise.

Overall Halo: Combat Evolved is a fantastic game that I highly recommend to any fans of First Person Shooters or fans of SCI-FI in general, it’s the beginning of a fantastic story, the game control smoothly and plays at a fun and fluent pace, the only complaint I have is the not so great graphics for a game that came out in 2001, I highly recommend playing the 360 remake Combat Evolved Anniversary because of this.

9.7/10

I hope you enjoyed my review of Halo: Combat Evolved for the Xbox

If you respect my opinion, I will respect yours

By Padawan

Want me to review a specific game/movie/product or do you have a general question you would like me to answer? if so please email me at ragglefragglereviews@gmail.com

You can find me on Miiverse by searching for draskafer

Shadow the Hedgehog (PS2,GC,XBOX) Review

Shadow the Hedgehog is one of the most hated games in the entire Sonic franchise, almost everyone I spoke to told me to avoid it like the plague, but very few people said that the game was a fun experience and that they think the game is underrated, so I had no idea what to expect when playing this game, a Sonic game with guns? This is either going to be awesome or its going to be extremely stupid. Now that I have played through the entire game I am ready to share my opinion with all of you in the style of a review. Could it really be that bad?

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There are 22 levels in Shadow the Hedgehog Unlike traditional 3D Sonic games which have individual character stories, Shadow the Hedgehog uses a path system allowing the player to create their own story. Depending on what path you take you will either end up being a Hero or a villain at end of the game.

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Almost every stage in the game will give the players three objectives one dark objective, one neutral objective and one hero objective depending on which objective the player finishes will determine which stage they will get to next. If the player finishes a dark mission they will move up on the path system, if they finish a neutral mission they will move forward on path system and if they finish a hero mission they will move down on the path system.

During one play through of the story mode, the player will play six stages depending on whether they do the dark or hero mission on stage six they will have to fight one of two final boss fights for the path they are on, earning the player one of ten endings.

The path system could have worked out really well if Sega didn’t mess it up, the problem with the path system and my biggest issue with game is that in order to unlock the final story you need to get each ending, which means playing through the majority of stages a number of times and yes you need to beat the game TEN TIMES!!!!. I didn’t mind the first few runs of the game but after a while I got sick of seeing the same stages over and over again especially Westopolis because with it being stage one I had to play this stage during every single play through of the game.

On a lighter note the game controls were perfect I didn’t have a problem with game once even when Shadow was moving really fast I was still able to have really smooth control over him, this is something that I don’t often find in 3D sonic games so it was nice to play a game that when I died it was my fault and not game glitches or bad controls.

Let’s talk about guns

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For some reason Sega thought that giving Shadow the ability to use guns to kill his enemies would help the game appeal to the older demographic, but it just looks really silly and ridiculous, seriously no one wants to run around shooting aliens with an AK-47 in a Sonic the Hedgehog game. As silly as the guns are, they are not my issue with this gameplay style, the problem is that the game auto aims once Shadow gets close enough to an enemy which is great but it becomes an issue when you get surronded by enemies and you cant shoot them all usually resulting in your death. If Sega gave the player the ability to aim they could take out enemies using clever strategy and skill and in my opinion the use of guns would have been a lot more constructive and would work a lot better to the players advantage. 

Shadow the hedgehog does have a pretty good sound track, it does lack in vocal tracks but some of the level themes are really catchy, my personal favourite level theme is Circus Park.

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All of the vocal tracks in the game are really good, I love All of me by Crush 40 (intro music), credits music for beating an ingame path is ok at best, but Never turn back by Crush 40 (the credits music for the final story) is by far the best track in the game and is one of my personal favourite vocal tracks in any game ever.

All of me by Crush 40

Never turn back by Crush 40

So we have determined that the game has good controls, an ok path system that gets repetative and boring after the first few play throughs,terrible gun mechanics and for the most part a pretty kickass sound track but how does it look?

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Wow this game is ugly, from looking at the pictures you wouldnt think that Shadow the Hedgehog was a PS2, Gamecube and Xbox game, The graphics are flat and blocky, the colours are ugly and bland, when characters talk the lips dont sync to what they are saying, the voice acting is cringeworthy, the enemy and level designs are very basic and not very interesting to look at and I am not kidding but I have played Dreamcast and ps1 games that look better.

Jet Set Radio (Dreamcast)

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Croc Legend of the Gobo’s  (PS1)

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Final Verdict

Shadow the Hedgehog was an ok game, it had really good controls for a 3D Sonic game and a really enjoyable Soundtrack but it fell short due to its bad game design, ugly graphics, and a lame path system which makes you beat the game ten times just to unlock the Final Story. The Final Story has Shadow saving the world in the end of the game and this essentially means that creating your own path was a waste of time making the entire game completely pointless. Shadow the Hedgehog had things going for it, but it wasnt enough to make it a good game

3.8/10 This game sucks.

I hope you enjoyed this review

If you repect my opinion I will respect yours

By Padawan

Why is the Sims Fun?

I’ve always wondered why people love The Sims Video games so much, all you do is control a virtual human through mindless everyday tasks like taking a Dump, reading the newspaper, going to work, taking a shower among other things.

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Why is this fun?, what about this game makes it so interesting?, What aspect keeps bringing us back game after game?

Well lets begin by discussing the general lifestyle of the average human being, most people live by a routine of how they do things and in what order, for example when I wake up I will use the toilet, have a shower, brush my teeth, get changed, walk my dog, make breakfast, wash the dishes, go to work, come home from work, use toilet again, watch TV, make Food, Play video games then I go to sleep and repeat everything again the next day. That is my routine and I use that routine almost every single day.

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As I stated most people have a routine which they use to help them get through life every single day. But here’s the problem life can be pretty depressing, we may live by a routine but what happens when things don’t go to plan one day and something terrible happens for example maybe you will go bankrupt or you may get fired from your job cutting off any income, meaning you cant pay your bills, water rates or rent. If things like this do happen you may need to change your routine to fit around your newer lifestyle and in some cases you can literally be doomed as you will be constantly in debt causing you to live a stressful and depressing life.

The Sims is literally everything I just said but in a video game, you take control of virtual human and you make them perform everyday tasks like go to work, have a shower etc. So why do we play these games? is it the funny language they speak or the fact that you can give them hilarious names and motivations.

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I think its because the Sims isn’t really a game , its more of a life simulator. Have you ever noticed that a lot of people who play the Sims create big mansions and buy loads of really cool sound systems, massive TV’s in every room, Arcade machines, a big swimming pool.

A lot of people have dream lives that they want to live and for the most part The Sims allows people to create a virtual reality allowing the player to create their own family, house and lifestyle and they can choose how they want to live it. the best part is that if anything goes wrong you can just start again something which is extremely rare in real life and that is why I think people get so addicted to The Sims, even if they may not realise that they return to the game just so they can live their virtual lives for just a few more hours each day.

The Sims = A virtual Lifestyle without any of the Bullshit !!

Thanks for reading my Theory to why the Sims is fun
Do you agree with my opinion or do you think i’m just a crazy mumbling madman?
By Padawan