Review by danwheeler

Reviewed: 10/19/02 | Updated: 10/19/02

Well worth returning to at bargain basement prices

For $15 how could you go wrong? Well you could go out and buy yourself a copy of Flintstones Bedrock Bowling but I chose for fork over three Abraham Lincolns for Legacy of Kain: Soul Reaver and I certainly got my money's worth.

Graphically it's beautiful ... for a PSone game. It easily outshines most other PSone games with careful attention to detail that serves to underscore and emphasize the truly spooky atmosphere (the color palette and architecture are especially noteworthy.) I'd be remiss if I neglected to mention some of the textures get repetitive and the cut off distance's a bitch.

Puzzles play a crucial role in Soul Reaver and they start off a little block-happy (flip blocks to line up with empty spaces in the pictures on wall, then throw switch to drop more blocks) but get a shot in the arm near the end with the addition of the constrict ability for a nice amount of variety. The final level which consists primarily of puzzle is well balanced enough to keep you scratching your head but not pulling out your hair.

One major fault I'd have to bring attention to is the combat system. Opportunities for combat are fewer and further between than you might expect (Final Fight or even Resident Evil this is not, it’s paced more like Silent Hill without the tension) and mostly it’s just easier to jump over your adversaries than to actually engage them. There is a certain amount of technique to learn and finesse to use to keep enemy encounters interesting but hey, if I can just jump over them, why bother?

I have to bring special attention to voice acting. When we're still enduring top shelf games with dubious quality voice overs, I'd have to put Soul Reaver right up there with MediEvil as examples of how to do it right. (Did you find the Elder's voice strangely familiar? That was Tony Jay, who plays Megabyte on Reboot.)

Last and unfortunately least is the ending. Legendary are the screams of frustration of countless gamers crying to heaven for justice. To be continued?! What a cop out. I didn't want to ruin the ending for you but, oh wait ... there's no ending to ruin. That didn't mar this otherwise fun gaming experience for me but others might find it profoundly unsatisfying after hours of play to be abruptly presented with ''to be continued.''

Rating:   4.0 - Great

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