Tuesday, April 30, 2002

Game Review: Zenosaga: Episode I: Der Wille zur Mact

Synopsis: Thousands ofyears into the future, mankind has abandoned Earth and exists only in deep space. Having used their advanced technologyto unlock the secets of the universe, humanity hopes to do the same with the Zohar, a powerful and mysterious artifact reputedly existing since the dawn of time. But a hostile alien life form, the Gnosis, brutally attack at every turn.Why? Unbeknownst to mankind, the race to unlock the final mystery, and to embrace an uncertain destiny, has begun.
Namco brings us the first of a six part saga with Zenosaga Episode I, more of a prequel to the evnts of Zenogears from Square soft on the PS1. This first episode does a fantastic job of introducing us to the main cast, KOS MOS the cyborg uber-weapon to fight off the Gnosis, Shion the chief engineer of the KOS MOS project, Ziggy the combat cyborg hired to retrieve MOMO, the prototype 100 series Observational Realian (synthetic human) created by Joachim Mizrahi, Jr the 12 year old looking person who is one of the directors of the Kukai Foundation, a special organization based on Second Miltia.Ok there's more characters but you get the point, Zenosaga is attempting to tell a much bigger story, touching on so many different philisophical discussions, such as the value of life, human and otherwise, God vs Science, etc..Zenosaga boasts some of the most beautiful cutscenes ever in an RPG, rivaling the Final Fantasy series! And this game has quite a bit of cinemas, over three hours, but they realy help flesh out the story and the many different characters.Unlike the Final Fantasy series Zenosaga has an ongoing story with the same cast ISO each episode being a completely new story and new characters with repeating themes and items. The story is gripping and the characters fascinating, and Namco did a masterful job not revealing everything in this first episode, which makes you want to discover what will happen next. Unlike some games (soul reaver) there is an individual story within this episode that propels the larger epic....and it is concluded within itself, or is it?My only real gripe with the game is the oragami looking monsters and the AGWS weren't really necessary. I finished the game never using my AGWS once! The mini games were fun ZenoCard IS Tetra Master in space, and gambling in space rocks!I can't wait for Episode II! Oh KOS MOS is a cyborg HOTY!