Xenogears – PlayStation
Developer: Square Product Development Division
Publisher: Square EA
Release Date NA: October, 20, 1998
Ranking: Paragon of Perfection
Review by: Juuchi Yosamu
A riddle wrapped in an enigma…. hands down, one the top 3 games of all time. Every aspect of this game went above and beyond all my expectations and to this day, nothing can compare to it. I get a bit defensive about this game. There are people who claim to be Role-Playing-Game fanatics and they have never played this. In case you were wondering, this game has nothing to do with that piece of crap imitation, Xenosaga…..
The protagonist, Fei Fong Wong, was gravely wounded when a mysterious masked man brought him to the small village of Lahan. Addled with retrograde amnesia, Fei lives his a peaceful life surrounded by his new found family but an ominous shadow looms over this peaceful village. On a joyous day, the wedding of two close friends, Fei goes to help out the village with the preparations and makes his way to the village doctor and a close personal friend, Citan. This joyous occasion will soon take a turn for the worse; as Fei makes his way back from Citan’s mountain home he can see flames in the distance. To his horror, his home town is being destroyed before his eyes. His home has been turned into a battle zone between two warring factions, Aveh and Kislev. Fei can no longer stand to watch his beloved village burn to ash, in a moment of desperation, Fei makes his way to an empty gear, a black box mech named Weltall. After witnessing his friend be gunned down, Fei loses control and decimates all in his wake. Fei awakens with no recollection of what had transpired while he went berserk and the village decides to banish him. Who is Fei really? What is the secret behind this mysterious gear? Did I get your attention yet? Are you grabbing your wallets and purses, ready to storm the nearest store? Well, my meager words can never hope to portray this games true worth but it won’t stop me from trying.
HO -LY-CRAP! Until I played Xenogears, I’ve always expected Role-Playing-Games to have practically the same basic commands, with of course,, slight variations. Click attack and you punch the guy in the face, click it again, what do you know? you punched the guy in the face. In Xenogears, attack opens up an action prompt which lets you insert combo commands. Triangle is weak (1 point) square medium (2 points) and X is strong (3 points) and when you insert the the correct commands you use powerful deathblows. Hands down, the deathblows are probably some of the coolest animations I have ever seen for any PlayStation game. If it wasn’t enough that the characters are all so damn AWESOME, they all have cool gears with moves as cool as their masters! Like Final Fantasy? Do you go nuts every time your, limit breaks, trance, overdrive, etc. is up? Imagine having your limit break up at all time. Of course each deathblow is single target so it’s not like you can wipe out a group of people with one combo.
That’s right, ROBOTS! Once you receive your gear you will be able to summon it. (assuming the area you’re in is large enough to sustain it) Make sure to do regular maintenance on your gears, you can purchase just as much for your gear as you can for your character. Whenever you do an action in your gear it consumes fuel, make sure you plan ahead and don’t run out when your out exploring. It is always a good idea to upgrade your gears fuel capacity to make sure don’t spend more time at the pump…. you know how these gas prices are getting. My favorite part about gears…… torture…… you ever get tired of certain enemies? Beating your down when you were a low level noobie? Well…. get in your gear and smash them like an ant! Blahahahahahaha! Die! Die! Die!!!!! …. Don’t judge me….
My brothers and sisters, oh how you will be rewarded for our compulsive ways. Yeah, getting a cool sword or a new skill is awesome but it goes even deeper than that. The story in Xenogears is ridiculously good and it keeps you guessing, every time you think you’ve figured it out new evidence comes to light. Well if you look hard enough you will find out much more to the story than you would if you just ran through it and, believe me, it is worth it.
I love mini games, they serve as a nice cool down from punching people in the face or smashing them in your gear. I got a little addicted to this card game… I won’t lie and I spent a while in the arena, what can I say? I like punching things.
You can jump…. In a Role-Playing-Game…. AMAZING RIGHT?!!!
God, I love world maps, what happened to exploring huh? All these new games with their linear stories. Finding the points on the map is the fun part! Secret areas, disguised a rock or maybe you randomly zone while walking through a forest, that’s what I think of when I hear Role-Playing-Game.
Graphics & Audio
Graphics, for their time, were great but, at times, there is way too much going on. It was very difficult taking a good screen shot since most attacks are… it’s like the sun, it’s beautiful but taking a picture of it, head on, would show nothing but a blinding light. The music is awesome, the world map theme is, and will always be, stuck in my head. Pains me to leave towns sometimes, the music is so tranquil.
If you enjoy Role-Playing-Games, Xenogears is a must have. As previously stated, I could never hope to portray the story as it was intended, nor will I try, in fear of tarnishing it. The replay value, like all Role-Playing-Games, is slim but, like all good games, all it takes is your boyfriend/girlfriend leaving you, being laid off or…. the internet being out. Sooner or later a song might stick in your head, it may take a while to remember where it’s from but it’s always the world map song that gets you. 5 Rockstars, an ocean of tears and 3 Micheal Bolton albums later and you’re hooked again. “Tell me… how am I supposed to liiiiiive without you! After I been loving you soooooo loooong!” Come back to me! Level up…. screw it.
Share This Post