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Gaming Evolution
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Gaming Evolution
Gaming Evolution
Published by: Game Factory
Developed by: Neko Entertainment
Genre: Fighting
Players: 1-2
Rated: T (Teen)
Release Date: May 1, 2007
Screenshots: Link
Amazon: Buy Now!
Written By: Matthew Prunty

Since the Wiiís introduction to the gaming community back in November 2006, there have been several developers creating fighting titles that made use of the unique control scheme of the Nintendo Wii-mote and Nunchuk. Titles like Dragon Ball Z: Budokai Tenkaichi 2 and Mortal Kombat: Armageddon have brought great fan-fare to the console, with a moderate use of the Wiiís control scheme. With the latest venture within the fighting genre, Neko Entertainment and The Game Factory look to create yet another immersive fighting phenomenon for the console, but can they live up to the expectations?

What makes Legend of the Dragon known to millions around the world is its childrenís cartoon counterpart, which shares the same name. The story finds martial artist Ang Lueng accepting his role as the Golden Dragon of the Dragon Dojo and entering himself within the epic battle between light and darkness. For those who have played Bloody Roar will feel right at home with the human-to-creature transformations found throughout this title. With a cast of 18 fighters, gamers will do battle with one another in hand-to-hand combat, reserving energy to transform into mythical warriors.

When it comes to character depth, there isnít much to look into. The entire rosters of fighters are broken down into three categories: all-around, strong and slow, or quick and weak. So in order to create memorable battles, your object would be to kick and punch until you have the ability to transform, and then let off devastating combos on your opponents.

After playing for a few hours, Legend of the Dragon seems to loose flare. The fighters all seem identical to you in many ways, including the special moves, for which there are only three total within the whole game. Once you have made the transformation, you have your choice of three different special abilities that you can use within the game. Holding the Z and C buttons allows you to power up your fighter, while holding the same buttons and pressing a direction on the D-pad will allow you let of your special attacks. Once you have initiated the special ability, its as simple as making specific maneuvers with either the wii-mote or the nunchuk to pull off the three moves.

The visual direction for this title is kept to the likes of the cartoon, which leaves this title lacking depth and an immersive atmosphere. There are very few differences between each battle level with the exception of the varying backdrops and the few destructible items within each level. But one of the saving graces to this title will have to be the various modes of gameplay to choose from. Gamers will have the opportunity to play within Quick-Play, Time Trial, and Survival modes. For the multiplayer gamers out there, there is also the inclusion of Team Battle and Vs. modes. Last, but certainly not the least, is the Quest Mode. This particular mode is for those gamers who like to do battle within situational circumstances by traveling across a map full of different lands and territories.

When it comes to the visual aspects of this title, I feel that Neko Entertainment could have spent a bit more time to polish up the title. I will be honest; this game reminds me of an early Gamecube title. The backdrops and character models are comprised of low-resolution cel-shading techniques and lack the 16:9 widescreen resolution feature seen in other Wii titles. Most of the visual effects you have come to welcome in fighting games, are seen primarily when you are using the special abilities and when you transform. When it comes to the audio portion of the title, you can help but feel the game is very one-dimensional. Each character utilizes a few grunts and shouts during battle. The musical score is interesting, but not enough to keep your attention within the fights.

When it comes to spending money on a Wii title, the $39.99 price tag for this title seems a bit much considering the lack-luster gameplay and depth. There are several promising areas of the game, but lacks enough time and attention by the developer to make this an experience worthy of the Wii console. For those who enjoy fighting games, itís worth a few plays, but I donít recommend this title to gamers unless they like the cartoon. At a price mark of $19.99 - $24.99, this game would be worth the time and money.


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