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SummaryLives up to the name: Viewtiful
The GoodThe side-scrolling genre (at least on home consoles) has been becoming more and more endangered. But every once in a while a game comes along and shows that no matter how long the genre's been floating around, it's still definitely viable. AND entertaining.
Viewtiful Joe is a beautiful title, taking full advantage of the cel-shaded style that was so popular for too short a time. The animation is smooth, the enemies and attacks flowing like water (even when the speed and slow capabilities are turned on, which actually help showcase the detail of the characters and animation). The controls are bang-on, though slightly hampered by the Gamecube's slightly odd control scheme... with some practice, however, the button placement becomes second-nature (which is also surprising because of the large number of buttons used to control Joe).
Even the story is unique,
The BadEarly on the game is incredibly easy. Except for the few scattered puzzles the enemies are easily beaten by just button-mashing (as are many of the enemies throughout the game; punching and kicking are basically interchangeable for attacking). Also, when it comes to the game's puzzles, many are trial and error... with little or no instruction as to even where to start. I spent a significant number of time on the first few puzzles just trying to figure out where to begin.