Where Brad and I wholeheartedly agree is in Banjo-Tooie's visuals. These worlds cover serious real estate, and it's no more evident than when standing on a cliff or after taking flight and surveying all that is around you.
So does the final release of Shenmue live up to all the hype of being the most expensive game ever made and deliver Dreamcast owners onto the promised land of gaming bliss? The answer is yes and no. Shenmue is the Bill Clinton of videogames; extremely ambitious, arguably successful, and yet undoubtedly flawed.
Sega seems to have a theme going lately consisting of games which are extremely original and challenging on many levels, yet strangely, they aren't very much fun to play. Seaman was the first game in the recent trend, and Shenmue is definitely another.
With Rare's first 3D attempt at the genre on the Nintendo 64, that was exactly the case. Banjo-Kazooie was released to huge fanfare as Rare successfully produced a game that not only did everything the groundbreaking Super Mario 64 did, but did it better. Heaven achieved.
After more than a year of Nintendo's persistent Pokémon marketing blitz, the fact that Pokémon Gold/Silver had me glued to my Game Boy Color's LCD to the extent that it did is quite amazing. As Chi said in his review, the game is not that much different from Pokémon Red/Blue, but it is such a solid overall game that it picks up where its predecessor left off without much of a hitch.
According to ESRB, this game contains: Mild Language, Violence
The main reason why Pokémon flourished—single-handedly elevating portable gaming to a new plateau in the process—was that it was simply a great game. It's still hard to believe that with all the catchy "gotta catch 'em all" jingles, feature films, Saturday morning cartoons, collectible toys and trading cards flooding the market, at the end of the day, innovative design and addictive gameplay prevailed above all else.
According to ESRB, this game contains: Animated Violence, Mild Language
For all you see and hear, Jet Grind Radio is possibly the coolest game ever made. The art direction for the game is amazing and hits that narrow target of hip that other games miss—almost everything you see and hear melts your heart with an effortless style.
Jet Grind Radio is like the love child of Crazy Taxi and Space Channel 5. Take Crazy Taxi's gameplay, Channel 5's visual flair, and the music from both games, and you basically have Jet Grind Radio. Though the game can get repetitive, and the frustration factor is higher than it should be, Jet Grind Radio fares much better in the long run than its would-be parents.