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Release Date: ???
Publisher: Square EA
Developer: Squaresoft
Genre: Fighting
Console: PlayStation2
Author: Tidus

The Bouncer is Squaresoft's second game on the Playstation 2 console and is a semi-sequel to Ehrgeiz. There has been a lot of negative publicity for the Bouncer from reviews of the Japanese version, which is almost identical to the US one, but I find a lot of the negative feedback unjust and I think the Bouncer is a worthwhile purchase.

Story is not exactly The Bouncer's strong point. Since the game is so short, there cannot be a whole lot of story. The bits of story, they do reveal are interesting and leave room for a sequel. You have to play through the game with each of the game's three characters to fully comprehend and understand the story. This game is a fighting game and story is obviously not one of the most important elements.

The gameplay in the Bouncer is fairly simple and there are three types of attack, high, mid and low. By getting Bouncer Points after defeating an enemy, you can build up your power, defense and life. You can also get new special moves that can be executed by pressing L1 and one of the three attack buttons. R1 is used to block and R2 can be used to execute a special Trinity attack. The Bouncer also makes use of the DualShock 2's analog capabilities as the attack you do depends on how hard you press on the analog buttons. The gameplay is simple enough and is fairly easy to learn. The only problem with the gameplay is it is somewhat repetitive and once you learn certain combos, you can use them over and over again on all the enemies even bosses.

The graphics in The Bouncer are the best ever on the PS2. They are simply mind blowing and are top-notch. The cut scenes are rendered using the same engine as the in-game engine and you can't even notice a difference since the in-game engine's graphics are already amazing. The motions of the characters are fluid and everything you see in the game is simply amazing.

Sound and music are very crucial to a game and The Bouncer does a good job in both areas. The voice acting is very good and the one vocal piece in the whole game is one of my favorite vocal pieces of any game. It is unfortunate that they only play it during the credits. The sound consists of the usual fighting game noises and does what it there to do.

The Bouncer is an average game, but it is definitely a lot of fun. It is fun playing through with each of the three characters and if they had elaborated on the back stories of each character, the game would have been even better.

The game is short. Yes, if you only play through the game once, it is extremely short. However, the Bouncer is one of those games that you play through again and again. So considering that, the game isn't that short, but it is still relatively short. There are multiple characters and costumes to unlock and 6 different variations on the ending to be seen. The game also lets you have tag team or battle royals either against the computer or human opponents. This is pretty fun, but it gets tedious after awhile since the gameplay is not very deep. One big multiplayer component the Bouncer is missing is a co-op mode, which would have been a big plus.

The Bouncer is an average fighting game. I enjoyed it more than the usual fighting game since the single player mode was at least interesting for awhile. The story and gameplay isn't too shabby and overall, I think that the Bouncer is definitely worth a rent, if not a purchase.

Gameplay: 7.0
Graphics: 10.0
Sound: 8.0
Fun Factor: 8.0
Replay Value: 6.0
Overall: 8.0

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