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Review: Ninety-Nine Nights
by Lewis O'Brien
When I heard that Tetsuya Mizuguchi (of Sega Rally Championship Space Channel 5 and Rez fame) was producing a new game I couldn’t wait to get my hands on it. Whilst on the surface Ninety-Nine Nights seems impressive, I was disappointed with this generic hack n’ slash game’s lack of depth and overall character.

The world has been thrown into chaos with the forces of darkness: goblins, orcs, trolls, (you know the type) fighting the forces of light: humans and elves. The first character is Imphyy, a young, female Temple Knight who has been given the “Protection of the Light”, which basically just makes her a bit more kick-ass. She is driven by a need to avenge her father’s death at the hands of the darkness (not the glam rock band).

Imphyy is given command of an army early in the game after duelling for the title of commander with her brother. She is then sent to…well that’s just the main problem, narration is poor and you’re often left wondering why it is necessary to have to go and attack settlement X or rally to position Y. On a good note Mizuguchi’s game boasts good utilisation of the 360’s power with a large amount of baddies on the screen with little or no slowdown.

Ninety-nine Nights’ use of many main characters is its supposed selling-point. After unlocking the second character you systematically unlock more characters as you beat the game again and again. Sounds like a deep game right? On the contrary, after finishing the first few levels the combat becomes boring, repetitive and so similar to games like Dynasty Warriors. The concept of “Hey look, I can kill hundreds of enemies in five seconds” is used to such an extent that I’m surprised there hasn’t been a lawsuit over it.

You don’t need this game. Whatever any ‘hack ‘n slash’ veteran says about the game it still does not touch the depth found in other titles of this genre. The only person I could imagine would enjoy this game would be a pre-teen that just wants to kill people. However, flaws withstanding, I’d give this game a Ninety-nine out of a hundred. Only joking.



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- Lewis O'Brien

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