There are many reviews that I personally disagree with on the VGC. The first one I decided to investigate what went wrong was Star Wars: Bounty Hunter for the PS2.
I remember playing this game and contributing what I found out inside it to the Star Wars Wiki known as "Wookieepedia". I do remember playing it quite some time ago and enjoying it.
I have been playing the game, just recently, and in all honesty I can't say this game has aged well in the end:
Original thinking grade a few years ago when I bought it and finished it: B+ (I think, hard to remember).
Final Grade now: C
The Story: I'm sure everyone watched the film Star Wars Episode II: Attack of the Clones. Among the games released as part of the franchise was Star Wars: Bounty Hunter. The game explains how and why Jango Fett was chosen as a template for the Clone Army of the Republic. He is invited to a Hunt for the deranged leader of the Bando Gora for 5 million Republic Credits. Thats as far as I will go to avoid spoilers.
Gameplay: The game consists of 6 chapters, each of which have 3 levels. The levels involve moving from point A to Point B, while shooting at multiple targets and fighting against multiple defenses. Each level gives you 5 extra lives, when you die you can either continue where you left of or restart the level. If you run out of continues you have to restart the level from scratch. You will need to find blue Mandalorian Dagger icons as these act as a checkpoint.
The enemies at the start will often arm themselves with blasters but are pretty easy to kill. Others will arm with Melee weapons but if you are on a ledge you can easily pick them of since they don't climb up at all. In later levels however they can get even more dangerous ranging from Heavy Blasters to Rocket launchers.
Additional objectives include Secondary Bounties. To capture a bounty you need scan the character with your ID Scanner, then mark it with the Square button. You can either capture them Dead or Alive. The bounties are all located in specific spots which will require a bit of Trial and Error and Memorisation to find them. They aren't truely difficult to find, but it can be a bit frustrating because of not knowing where they are. You can't scan a dead enemy with your ID Scanner, the victim needs to be alive. If all else fails there are Official Strategy Guides for sale on this game, and I happen to have one.
The final level of each chapter involves fighting a boss. Bosses range from fighting a large multi-componant vehicle to even a Krayt Dragon.
The graphics aren't really anything spectacular. If I am honest, I usually don't care for graphics that much, and I have set standards for what are ugly games, this game wasn't good looking for its time but I don't think it was ugly.
The VGC was right on the money with the gripes I have:
This game can get a quite repetitive as what you do pretty much happens in practically every level in the game.
There are occasions where enemies will respawn and can do so frequently, enemies sometimes drop medical pickups to replenish your health, this happens more frequently when you are low on your health bar. What this does mean in the end, however, is to push through the enemy defense, not just kill everyone, you could be there forever doing that.
Perhaps what would've made the game better is adding some sort of Stealth mechanic for hunting bounties. Sure, you can mark your bounties at a safe distance but trying to get to the bounty without attracting too much attention to the other bad guys or even losing the best value of the bounty can be a tall order. E.g. on the first level of Chapter 4 on Malastare the first Bounty will be attacked by a Nexu and will be killed unless you stop it. If you fail to prevent that bounty from dieing without even marking it that would mean you lost it and it can only be reclaimed by restarting the level.
The Enemy A.I. can be stupid enough to fall of ledges and die and this is especially irritating when the enemies in question are bounties. Most importantly, even if the target is wanted dead, if he has fallen of a ledge into an abyss he is impossible to claim, and that means restarting the level again! This is most prominant in Chapter 4, level 3.
The loading times do take up to 25 seconds to load up a level and about 20 to restart a level, even when you have just started the said level.
Death animations of sentient enemies can sometimes take up to an exaggerated long time of up to 3-5 seconds to finish. 3-5 seconds just to die?!? Come on. This does feel quite irritating when the bad guys can sometimes drop health pickups.
Finally the jumping and platforming part is the most likely bit that feels like a real frustrating chore: One seriously wrong move and you can end up falling to your death. The camera doesn't always help either. Jumping, even with your Jetpack can be quite frustrating, because you can't tell where you can land and that can lead to a particular amount of frustration. Its much easier jumping from ledge to ledge.
However: I did have fun killing a lot of enemies ranging from blasting them with rockets to scorching them with the flamethrower. The story was very good and I did like the cutscenes which featured excellent voice talent from Temuera Morrison for Jango Fett and Leeanna Walsman for Zam Wesell.
Overall: I really wanted this game to be great like it was when I first got it. Unfortunately it didn't age well in the end and instead has become a mediocre game, a case of either love it or hate it. In the end, unless you are a devoted Star Wars Fan, this game may be best avoided or perhaps it should be found at a bargain bin price tag, there is some fun to be had if you are willing to forgive any problems you have with this game.
I still think that The Video Game Critic should give this game another chance. I did some research on the Gamecube version, it was said that it has better graphics, a better framerate and shorter load times. Maybe he should review that.
Any thoughts, comments etc. about this review is welcome.
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