STAFF REVIEW of Wreckless: The Yakuza Mission (Xbox)

Wednesday, September 18, 2002.
by Tony Ingrassia

Wreckless: The Yakuza Mission Box art Wreckless is like jumping into a pool of cold water.......Your initial reaction is "WOW" but then the cold wears off and your back to "eh....." Wreckless surrvives on a few things, Originality & Technology. This is the reason i can't completly blast this title. At release i questioned mostly 2 things, replay value, and is it worth $50, to both my conclusions were negative. The game is alot of fun, has a definate learning curve, which unfortunatly may drive some people away, and visually will knock your socks off. Definatly worth renting for a couple of days, a possible purchase at the price i picked it up for.(see above)

This is tough, as i stated above the game can be frustrating until you get the hang of the controls. Once you get that down it's more tollerable and you will start to have fun with it. Missions are pretty much all time based in one sense or another. The objectives vary from a "Tag" of sorts, obsticle course, and just flat out destruction. There are 2 scenarios available which include unlockable vehicles as you progress. The phiysics of the game are pretty !&%$@#* impressive, and speed and destruction are what Wreckless is all about. I can't lie, it is a ton of fun to just sit there in awe of what you can destroy in this game, but unfortuantly it does prove one of the all time gamer rules......Graphics don't make the game great, the gameplay does. Wreckless would have benefited by the addition of a few things, Multi-player would have been huge. Free-roam would have definatly added some replay value without multi-player. Which brings us to the real killer of alot of games, replay value.....Wreckless has none, when you complete it your done, you may pop it in to impress your friends or take a quick spin through your favorite level, but the 5 hour marathons are long gone.

10 hands down, this game is a great example of waht is possible on the XBOX. For that reason alone, and the $19.90 price tag, i wanted to add it to my collection. The in-game distruction, particle effects, explosions, shadows, and heat blur no less are nothing short of amazing. The replays can be saved, and you may want to save the cool ones, they also use different filter effects on the replay which adds a little "umph" to them. Call it eye-candy if you want, i call it a peak at whats to come.

As they say everything has an opposite, were Wreckless has unbeatable graphics, it has mediocre sound at best. The dialougue is corny and the muffled dispatch voice is hard to understand at times. The"mahem" you cause with crashes and such is above average, but again, if you close your eyes your really not gonna notice anything that hasn't been done before.

Multi-player, Free Roam. One would have been great, both would have been fantastic. The game is a Graphical marvel, now you need to tweak the game play to match the graphics level.

Overall: 9.0 / 10
Gameplay: 8.0 / 10
Visuals: 10.0 / 10
Sound: 7.0 / 10


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