One of the things that I seem to always hear from folks when the discussion turns toward import games, particularly Japanese ones, is how much better they are than the ones made here. I 'll be the first to admit to actually believing this for a good number of years. Fact is, there are a lot MORE games being made in Japan, so there is some truth to this- if you look at the sheer volume of software produced there. Well, let me be the first to inform those of you out there who still live by this outdated credo, that bad games live on everywhere, and the most powerful hardware on the planet can't cover that up. Case in point: Pulse Interactive's sad Undercover A.D. 2025: Kei, a game that definitely WON'T make you run out to get a Dreamcast, if you don't already own one. In fact, I can see a store somewhere that will have nothing but returned copies of this junker, and nothing else: Kei's Undercoverworld Closeout Center, or something like th
Graphically, it looks like they started this game on the Saturn, then ported the code whole to the DC, only adding smoother textures and some Dreamcast-style effects. The end result is backgrounds that look unfinished and empty, and characters that all have smooth faces, yet jagged edges all around their collars. The animation is simply awful, and it's hard to watch the in-game engine at work in the cutscenes- you'll see a group of stiff characters speak for long periods while only one is blinking, or characters walk through each other from time to time. This is bad enough, but the "action" sequences take the cake! Combine the aforementioned bad control with enemies that shoot you offscreen (when they're not accidentely blasting each other), or swing aimlessly while standing in one spot (they're pretty easy to deal with), and you end up spending more time holding your sides from laughter, rather than holding the controller!
My final analysis, and yours, should be this: Undercover A.D. 2025: Kei is just the sort of game that people will look at if the DC goes under, point their fingers at and say, "See, Sega DOES suck!!" That's the point where I get up, shrug my shoulders, and leave the room. Then go home and play Soul Calibur for a few hours, thinking of what could have been...
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