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Murakumo (XB)

Murakumo is bad. Really bad. damn near awful, no, it is aweful. Murakumo's story expells itself over 17 missions. You play as one of five mech pilots whose job as a member of the Murakumo squadron is to catch robots who decide to run amok. The game's story is told through a mixture of craptacular in-game dialogue and FMV sequences. The FMV's are nothing to special.

Murakumo's gameplay is by far the worst thing it has going to it. Every level you yourself chasing after a single robot, plane, or robot plane and you have to shoot it down using your mech's two weapons. That following it and holding down the fire buttons. Whoopity-doo.

While you'll usually only be tasked with shooting down one craft, there are numerous of bad robo-drones that'll distract you, they appear to be there simply for annoyance's sake. As far as I can tell the only reason these things exist is to confuse your mech's godawful lock-on system.

In order to have even the slightest chance of hitting something you're shooting at you're going to need a lock-on. The games automatic and random lock-on system fails to understand this concept. It's just as likely to lock onto some pedestrian on the street as it is to let you target the what you want. If there are a bunch of things on screen the lock will jump around from one enemy to another. Add into this that most of the mechs' secondary weapons take a bit to fire that you really don't know what you will end up shooting at.

That's not even the biggest problem. The absolute worst thing about this game is its sheer repetitiveness. Virtually every level has you chasing one is one of three locations.

You can choose from five mechs, period. (there is a sixth if you beat the game) Each mech has a primary and secondary fire, jets are used to move forward and for braking. No new weapons, no improving of stats, no nothing.

The FMV's are passable. The HUD displays for the mechs are each it's own lovely color. Hmm...what else... Only your mech is given the slightest bit of detail. It's got some reflection effects and a couple moving joints.

The sound effects throughout the game are pretty decent, although nothing spectacular. The game's guitar heavy soundtrack gets a bit repetitive and a tad annoying but I guess that fits in with the rest of the game.

The voice actors are horrid. Before and often during missions you'll hear your "buddies" who speak with urgency and words of great import, such as "shoot down the enemy." and "Oh...no. They have...killed...her."

Closing Comments
I wanted to like this game. It's just awful. Murakumo is easily the one of the worst games on Xbox ever.

Added: September 1st 2004
Reviewer: Andromaton
Hits: 1198


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