Guilty Gear X2

Review

posted 2/16/2003 by Charlie Sinhaseni
other articles by Charlie Sinhaseni
One Page Platforms: PS2
Guilty Gear is a survivor. It’s one of the few fighting franchises that have decided that making the leap to 3D isn’t the only means of survival. Instead it stays in two planes and in the process exudes an aura of old-schoolish-ness, that feeling of nostalgia that brings you back to the time with Street Fighter, King of Fighters, Fatal Fury, Samurai Showdown, and Darkstalkers ruled the day. But it does more than just mimic those classic titles, instead it adds its own distinct flair to the genre and while it seems wholly familiar, it also feels entirely unique.

As you browse through the manual you’ll probably experience a mild case of déjà vu. Everything in the game, the characters, the controls, the move sets, the gameplay, looks and feels vaguely memorable. While this could easily turn into a disadvantage in a heartbeat, Sammy manages to turn this into a heavy positive for anyone looking to familiarize themselves with the game and trust us, if you’re a fan of 2D fighters you’ll want to get nice and cozy with this one.

Think of Guilty Gear X2 as the measuring stick of 2D fighters. Everything you could ever ask for in a fighting game has been included here: great variety in modes, decent storylines and unique and interesting characters. In fact this game is so deep in the modes department that there are actually two different variants of the now common survival mode. In addition to the aforementioned, there’s a mode called M.O.M. which plays like survival but instead of just beating up enemies at random, you’ll earn medals based on your performance and while it’s nothing major, it’s a nice deviation from the norm.


We don't care what the manual says, the thing on the right is not a boy

Of course you’ll have the usual arcade and Vs. modes at your disposal but what’s this, a story mode? That’s right, you’ll be able to select your character and learn even more about them via a nice little dossier and some entertaining, albeit cheesy, cutscenes. After you’re done beating the hell out of your opponents you can take a breather and head into the game’s gallery where you can view artwork and all of the game’s endings. Sure it bides into the Japanese reasoning that collecting items is in fact an integral aspect of a game but hey, it works.

In order to do combat you’ll have four attacks at your disposal, a punch, a kick, a slash and a heavy slash. As their namesakes would imply you attack with the designated object. Each character is armed with a weapon of some sort, a sword, a giant anchor, a guitar and of course, the all elusive yo-yo. As you could probably deduce, the game is very unique in its execution, refusing to bow down to convention and taking the fighting genre into a direction of its own.
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