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Release Date: 10/20/98
Publisher: Square EA
Developer: Squaresoft
Genre: RPG
Console: PlayStation
Author: Tidus

Xenogears is Squaresoft's first attempt at an anime type RPG. It excels excellently in portraying a great storyline worthy of any anime, but falls a bit short in the gameplay category.
The storyline of Xenogears is epic dealing with many issues such as human existence and religion. I won't go into many specifics, as the storyline is simply too complicated that it can only be truly understood by experiencing it. That's not saying the storyline is bad because it is the best story ever written for any game or movie I've seen or played.
I will only reveal the back-story since telling any more would ruin the experience. You play as Fei who is guy who has lost all memories of his past and is now living peacefully now in the village of Lahan, until one day something happens that will forever change his life. The story takes awhile to develop and that is one of the reasons that this game requires patience. It is the longest RPG I've ever played and it is well worth every hour.
The gameplay in Xenogears is original, but it not all that great. Since you either fight in Gear or Human form, there are two battle systems that are almost identical. You use up fuel for Gears and in both forms you try to use weaker attacks to build up your levels to do powerful Deathblow attacks, which can be learned by fighting enemies and pressing combos of the three attack buttons. Xenogears uses the ATB (Active Time Gauge) like the Final Fantasy series and you can also use magic.
Xenogears's graphics are average at best. The anime cut scenes are done nicely, but the true backbone of Xenogears is its story.
Okay, let's get this out right now. The dubbing of English voices in Xenogears is well…horrible. The lips don't move at all together with the voices and this can sometimes detract your attention from what the characters are actually saying. Luckily voice acting is used sparingly, but the horrible dubbing can especially be seen in the ending. However, the music in Xenogears is amazing. It has one of the best video game soundtracks with great pieces composed by famous game composer Yasunori Mitsuda.
In the end, it is obvious that Xenogears is a very good game with an excellent story that makes up for almost all the other negative factors in the game. Even though the graphics and gameplay are average, Xenogears is all about the story and it tells a beautiful and complex story, which is why this game is truly a masterpiece.

Sound- 9.0
Controls- 9.0
Overall- 9.4

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