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Bloody Roar 3

Developer: Eighting/Raizing | Publisher: Activision
Players: 1 to 2 Player Game | Release Date: 06/25/01 | Genre: Fighting

The first thing I noticed about Bloody Roar 3 is how much fun it is to play. I started the game, and immediately I was having a blast. However, after playing it several times over I began to see that it had serious problems.

I would like to begin by saying that the concept of turning into a vicious beast in the middle of a fight is awesome. Or at least it could be if executed properly. The developers of this game have a lot of potential on their hands, but so far that potential has not been realized. Think about it, the Bloody Roar series could be just what the fighting genre needs right now. It definitely possesses one of the most unique concepts in the genre, and if done right, it could push fighting games to a new level.

Well, I guess some things were not meant to be (not yet anyway). Bloody Roar 3 is a fairly standard fighter but with the cool bonus of being able to turn into an animal warrior. Unfortunately, the only thing that really got an upgrade was the graphics engine. Make no mistake about it, Bloody Roar 3 looks pretty darn good and there are a lot of cool special moves that light up the screen with an explosion of graphical glory. Characters are well defined, and for the ladies, Hudson Soft decided to take a hint from the DOA girls, giving you plenty of bounce for your buck.

Also worthy of mention is the game's sound. While the sound effects of the fighters may be a little flat, the background music is sure to keep you pumped and ready for action. Character voices are well done, but they are a little on the quiet side, so you may want to turn up the volume to hear what they have to say.

Despite how much fun the game is, it does have problems. One of the biggest disappointments of the game was its combat system. Somewhat similar to Killer Instinct, humongous combos can be thrown together to completely destroy an opponent. Unfortunately, the counter attack system is extremely limited. That means if you're on the receiving end of one of those combos, you're basically done for. Another major drawback of the game was its AI. When will people learn that making enemies smarter does not mean making them cheaper? The AI fluctuates greatly, apparently depending on what kind of mood the game is in. On the default difficulty level, I finished the game in 26 minutes. Then I cruised through in under 10 minutes on its easiest setting. However, another play through the easiest setting took me over half an hour! Needless to say it was a humbling experience, but also a mind boggling one. To further add to my bewilderment, I kicked the difficulty up a few notches and finished the game in about 15 minutes. Sometimes enemies attacked like there was no tomorrow, and other times they just stood there while I beat their brains out. What does all this mean? Well, the enemy AI is pretty inconsistent and winning may depend just as much on pure luck as it does on strategy.

Bloody Roar 3 does have a few hidden goodies to unlock; and honestly, I would have liked to give this game a better score, but when comparing it to other games in the genre, it is obviously a step behind. For now, DOA 2 should remain the fighter of choice.

By Ryan Schaefer - 08/10/01
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Screenshots for Bloody Roar 3

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