I wouldn't classify Giga Wing 2 as an exquisite gem by any stretch of the imagination, but I don't think its a waste of the CD-ROM that it was burned on either. The game does try a few interesting things conceptually and while the overall success of the title is debatable, I still give Giga Wing 2 credit for the effort and I appreciated it more than Brad did.

The problem with Brad's opinion of Giga Wing 2 is that it's based on his determination that "shooters" should mostly be about precision and dexterity. Holding the game to such a standard isn't fair and that isn't what the developers of the game were gunning for. Giga Wing 2 is all about pandemonium and excess.

I'm not sure if the developers were intentionally trying to parody the genre, but it doesn't matter because I was literally and figuratively "blown away" regardless. My eyeballs popped out of their sockets at the insane amount of kinetic frenzy and I grinned with fiendish joy at the unreal display of color, firepower, and action. How can anyone take this game all that seriously when the score totals ridiculously exceed gazillions! Many games claim to be "extreme," but very few actually live up to the profile. Giga Wing 2 on the other hand, genuinely oozes "extreme." In fact, you can even throw in words like "chaotic" and "gonzo," and they're still not enough to describe the experience.

Does the excess render the game unplayable as Brad states in his review? I don't think so. Again, the game isn't meant to be handled with precision. The game is played with broad strokes and Brad discounts the two features that compliment that quality and are crucial to the gameplay: the "Reflect Barrier/Laser" (which acts a temporary shield) and the 4-player co-operative play.

There's no doubt that Giga Wing 2 is a tough game to manage, but with proper use of the "Reflect Barrier/Laser" and good teamwork between two or more players, it is negotiable and even fun at times. One can question the effectiveness of the two features, but I still found them both to be unique and interesting contributions to the genre. There's also a noteworthy attempt to interject character and story to a usually generic formula as well.

For me, Giga Wing 2's fatal flaw isn't its gratuitous gameplay, but its lack of pacing and rhythm. While I enjoyed the spectacle of the sights and sounds, the game is has no sense of progression and tension. The first stage could have just as well been the last and vice versa. The game, which is too short as Brad indicated, ends on a rather hollow note because there's no climatic build up. The game sets itself to an ear-shattering and mind-numbing full-blast from start to finish.

Like I alluded to earlier, Giga Wing 2 isn't fine cuisine. Its junk food for the senses; a temporary adrenaline rush with a couple of interesting twists. Give the publishers credit for recognizing this title for what it is and adjusting the price accordingly. I only wish more publishers did the same. Id save more money and my expectations would be set properly. With Giga Wing 2, I got what I paid for and there's no crime in that. Rating: 6 out of 10

Chi Kong Lui

Chi Kong Lui

In the 1980s, Chi grew up in small town on the outskirts of New York City called Jackson Heights. Latino actor, John Leguizamo referred to the town as the "melting pot of the world," and while living there, Chi was exposed to many diverse cultures, as well as a bevy of arcade classics such as Pac-Man, Space Ace, Space Harrier and Double Dragon. Chi's love of videogames only seemed to grow as his parents finally caved and bought him an 8-bit Nintendo Entertainment System (after being the only kid in the block without one). In the 1990s, Chi finagled his way into the prestigious Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School for the Performing Arts.

Somewhere between all the gaming, Chi some how managed to finish high school and get into the New York Institute of Technology. At the same time, Chi also interned at Virtual Frontiers, an Internet software consultancy where he learned the ways of HTML. Soon after acquiring his BFA, Chi went on to become the lead Web designer of the Anti-Defamation League. During his tenure there, Chi was instrumental in redesigning and relaunching the non-profit organization's Web site.

Today, Chi is the webmaster of the American Red Cross in Greater New York and somehow managed to work through the tragic events of September 11th without losing his sanity. Chi considers GameCritics.com his life's work and continues to be amazed that the web site is still standing after the recent dotcom fallout. It is his dream that GameCritics.com will accomplish two things: 1) Redefine the grammar of videogames much the same way French film critic Andre Bazin did for the art of cinema and 2) bring game criticism to the forefront of mainstream culture much the same way Siskel & Ebert did for film criticism.
Chi Kong Lui

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