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Bizarre Adventure 5
distinctive designs of Japanese Manga are not an unfamiliar sight in
the videogame industry, having graced past titles such as Final
Fantasy 7 or Xenogears.
JoJo's Bizarre adventure appeals to the same visual style, its
sensibilities are beyond skin deep: JoJo's is based upon an actual
comic book series of the same name. Manga fans rejoice.
than using polygons, JoJo's mimics the look of Manga by adopting cel-shaded
graphics, a technique made popular by Jet Set Radio and the Klonoa
series. Developer Capcom utilises a technology called "Artistoon"
to translate the designs of cartoonist Hirohiko Araki into the digital
medium. Although other games have "cashed in" on the cel-shading
phenomenon, JoJo's endeavour seems less superficial since it orients
the game firmly in its comic-book roots.
bulk of gameplay involves pure action in the form of hand-to-hand
fighting. Different characters are available at certain levels of the
game, with each character displaying a distinct fighting style.
attacks are granted by the presence of "Stands", psychic
avatars that dwell within living creatures. Additionally, Stands allow
certain detection abilities, the power to transform inorganic matter
to organic matter. They can also be summoned in combat but if the
Stand dies, the Stand User also dies.
with puzzle-solving set pieces, cutscenes and you have a standard
action approach dressed in slick visuals. At a glance, the
action never ventures beyond its cel-shaded veneer.
popularity as a comic series and subsequent fan following serves it
well in Japan, but given its ordinary design, JoJo's success in other
parts of the world becomes questionable. For those unfamiliar with its
Manga heritage, a solid gameplay ethic, not comic-book homage will
become the order of the day. How many of us actually embark on this
bizarre adventure remains to be seen.