PS2 REVIEW: 24: INUYASHA: FEUDAL COMBAT

Don't expect to get your ya-yas out with InuYasha in.

InuYasha: Feudal Combat always seems in danger of falling apart - but before it ever does, it's over. I'm not suggesting that the game is flawed mechanically, it's just that the gameplay is too simple and redundant. It stagnates after the first bout and goes downhill from there. In other words the game fails to evolve. It never sustains any momentum that it generates - which isn't all that much to begin with.

For a fighter, Feudal Combat is so basic as to be laughable. The moves are limited and the combos, even when activated, aren't all that satisfying. Button mashing is the only technique that you require to play this game and I don't have to tell you that that gets pretty dull after a while.

There are a cast of some 12 characters which are culled from the TV series. Each claims to have a different battle system but they only differ in the special move (demon) attacks. Unlocking new characters may at first add some suspense and anticipation to the gameplay but after you come to terms with the fact that each character is as lame as the last one, the novelty comes to a screeching halt.

For a slightly different flavor, the Mission mode offers some variety above and beyond fighting, not that this mode is any more exciting. Regardless of what mode you play each level or match seems so short that there's no time to develop any technique. Just get in there and mash them buttons. This approach to pick-up-and-play control mechanics may be fine for an arcade game but it's got very little replay value if you want to spend hours trying to master it.

More than two characters can be thrown into battle at one time although the game only accommodates two human players. The other fighters will be AI controlled. You can assign commands to your fighter but they basically just flail away like blind, ham-fisted drunks. They have no technique at all and just get in the way.

Having the game in 3D is a step in the right direction and while some of the environment is interactive, which can sometimes be used to your advantage, there isn't a lot of detail. In fact these backgrounds are just plain ugly. They feel very confining, more so than the 2D backgrounds in games like the SNK vs series.

The animation is choppy and the control response isn't very smooth. There are some collision detection problems where some hits don't register even though you can clearly see them connect on the screen. The characters do look great and with cel-shaded graphics they look better than their televised counterparts. The game uses voiceovers from the American version but they repeat the same phrases over and over. From an aural perspective it's very annoying and cheapens the production values.

About the only people that will have any kind of fun with this game will be fans of the TV series that have little experience with the fighting genre - in other words: People that don't know any better. That doesn't include you, now that you've read this review, you know better.

System: PS2
Dev: Eighting
Pub: Bandai
Release: Aug 2005
Players: 1 - 2
Review By Fenix
RATING (OUT OF 5)
OVERALL
2.0
GRAPHICS
2.5
CONTROL
2.5
MUSIC/FX
2.0
VALUE
2.0