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Tenchu
Review By: Jesse Mason
Developer:   Sony Music
Publisher:   Activision
# of Players:   1
Genre:   Action
ESRB:   Teen
 

Tenchu is a game with its head in the right place, but its body is chopped to pieces. Results like this happen when you get everything down, but forget to polish to game to a playable state. Nearly everything about the game seems rushed.

The AI is the best example of how the game is just not done right. The enemies are supposed to be guards, but seem like blind and deaf beggars with swords. Nowhere else could you jump off a rooftop 20 feet high right behind a guy and still be able to sneak up on him without him noticing. Or how about how simply hiding behind a wall is enough for the guard to give up searching for you. It's also strange how the bad guys never seem to alert other guys to help. But the weirdest of all is how the bad guys just stand there when you fall to the ground.

When you do get into a fight, the control shows its ugly face. The control is horrible, and fights are lost mainly because of it. The camera is quite good until the fights, where it seems to flail everywhere. Polygon breakup rears its ugly head, especially when some people seem to just walk through walls.

But the fights aren't really the point. The game is a stealth action game. Meaning you walk around trying to go unnoticed by guards and innocent people (which consists of women who wear sticks in their hair). The point of the game is to assassinate certain folks in each level. For some reason, you spend your time walking through the levels slitting throats and so forth unnoticed, but when you reach your target you make a big fuss and spend time saying things like "I'm here to avenge all the innocent people you've hurt." If you're an unnoticed assassin ,wouldn't it make sense to just silently kill him instead of engaging in conversation? Worse, the voice acting is akin to Resident Evil. Activision must've used its own employees to save money. If they did, that would explain why everyone has an American voice.

At least the game has nicely made levels. And the graphics are nice, when not being muddled by breakup. The guards have two responses to seeing you "hey" and "hey you." And they conveniently say "Where are you" when they give up finding you. The sound effects are just plain bad. At least the game has a few catchy tunes.

Hopefully people will stealthfully sneak around Tenchu and pick up another game to buy.

Overall: 5.7


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