Review by PinoyGenius

Reviewed: 06/11/07

A fun little game to pass a couple of hours

I have not played Dirge of Cerberus on PS2, so I do not know where in the FF7 continuity this game lies in relation to the PS2 game. Also, this is the only mobile phone game that I have downloaded, so I do not have any other mobile games that I can compare it to. Finally, I played this game on a Motorola E815 phone. This phone is almost two years old, so I don’t know if the game looks and/or performs better on the newer phones out there. I was a big fan of FF7 when it came out, so I was definitely curious to see what the game would be like.

GAMEPLAY (7/10)

This game is almost exclusively about shooting and killing bad guys. Occasionally you’ll have to flip switches and climb up and down ladders, but you’ll mostly be going through the game with your guns blazing. The controls are really simple in this game. The arrow keys move you in 4 different directions, the center “OK” key makes you go into aiming mode and shoot, keys 1, 2, and 3 bring out Cerberus (default handgun), Griffon (machine gun), and Hydra (sniper rifle), respectively, and your soft menu keys bring up the in game menu. You can also double tap an arrow to do a rolling dodge in that direction. This move will bring you out of aiming mode if you are in it.

Another neat feature is the Galian Beast. There are certain points in the game where a circle of light will appear, allowing you to transform into the Beast as well as fully healing you. The Galian Beast controls the exact same way as normal Vincent, except that it only shoots several very powerful fireballs. Unfortunately, this only lasts for a short amount of time.

Finally, there are a few items and accessories that you can collect in this game. You have your standard healing potions as well as a few items that make Vincent do more damage to the enemy. The accessories allow you to do things like move faster, hold more ammo, and take more damage. Those who played the original FF7 on PS1 will most likely recognized the accessory names in this game.

Overall, the controls in this game are kinda clunky, but manageable. Switching to aiming mode is disorienting at first since you can’t move. On the flip side, there are some times you have to switch to aiming mode in order to see where you’re going since the camera view is somewhat difficult to control otherwise. This game is short and simple. I think that I literally didn’t die at all and you will start finding more ammo and healing items than you can possibly need towards the end of the game. Speaking of ammo, your default handgun, Cerberus, has unlimited ammo and there are very few situations where you will NEED to use another gun. The game doesn’t play terribly, but it is far from perfect.

STORY (6/10)

As Vincent Valentine, you are trying to make your way to Shinra Manor for some reason. Along they way, your fight bad guys from the Deepground organization, the people trying to destroy everything in a post-Sephiroth world. You will traipse through several different locations, some of which you may remember from the original FF7, get chased by people who are after you for unexplained reason, and even run into a few familiar faces. A lot of the events in this game are not explained and I don’t know if playing the PS2 game would help someone understand what is going on. You do get to see some glimpses into Vincent’s past, though, that help to explain what he is all about.

GRAPHICS (7/10)

The background graphics do suffer from pixilation when you get up close to objects (walls, boxes, etc.), but they are otherwise decent. The character sprites are much nicer and are fairly smooth with minimal blockiness. Even on a mobile phone, the characters are much more realistic and proportional than they would have been back on the PS1.

SOUND (5/10)

There are very few sounds in this game. You can hear Vincent’s footsteps when he is running, you can him grunt when he gets shot, and you can hear the different guns fire (all of which sound the same). These sounds get very monotonous after a while and you will most likely be turning your volume down. You will definitely want to turn you volume down when navigating the menu as moving the cursor produces the most grating sound of them all.

The music in this game is even sparser. Most of the tunes occur during cutscenes, but you also get a few tracks during boss fights. When the music does come in, it is nice, but none of the tunes are memorable. I don’t remember any familiar tracks from the original FF7 game being here either, which may be a letdown for the more nostalgic types.

PLAY/TIME REPLAYABILITY (5/10)

I beat this game in about 5 hours of playtime, and that’s probably an overestimate. There doesn’t seem to be any extra features that can be unlocked when you beat the game, so one playthrough is all you need unless you are really bored. Also, the complete linearity makes it unlikely that you’ll find something through replays that you missed the first time.

FINAL RECOMMENDATION

I think I got this game for $14.99 to play it an unlimited number of times. While you can probably beat it in one sitting, it’s definitely a fun little game that to pass the time, especially if you’re a Final Fantasy VII fan.

Rating:   3.0 - Fair

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