Parasite Eve - Review

With thoughts on the food chain

By: Mistress Nightshadow

Review Breakdown
   Battle System 8
   Interface 8
   Music/Sound 9
   Originality 9
   Plot 10
   Localization 4
   Replay Value 9
   Visuals 10
   Difficulty Very Easy io Normal
   Time to Complete

15-30 hours

thumbs up!

Title Screen

    Have you ever thought about if humans are really the pinnacle of evolution on Earth? That we're really the top of the evolution chain? If you'd thought about it, or if you don't want to and want someone to giveyou an idea about it... pick up a copy of Parasite Eve. I warn you though, it might not be the answer you want to hear.

   The first thing you will notice about Parasite Eve is the highly detailed FMV sequences and graphics generally. They certainly outmatched everything in its day, and even two years on, they couldn't be seen as shabby compared to the Square standards today... and that's quite a good thing as well, because the storyline is greatly enhanced by the use of the high end graphics. For all those who appreciate the graphics, this is something you'll not want to pass up. Some of the graphic representations might be a little disturbing, but they're some of the best you'll ever see.

   The combat system within Parasite Eve is somewhat a cross between Chrono Trigger and Secret of Mana. You control one person in the entire game, Aya Brea and you can move around freely within the battle area,

Silly Little Comment on Screen
Face your partner, do-see-do!  
but you can't attack with your gun or batton, use items, change equipment, or use special abilities which require Parasite Energy [or PE] until your battle meter fills up, where you can put in your commands. The system is fairly simple, easy to use, and you're not going to end up killing yourself because of awkward controls or setups.

   Then again, it's not likely that you would die that often. It's not very hard for anyone who's played an RPG before, although there might be a few difficult spots, but it's not so hard that powering up for hours on end really needs to be done. Once you grasp the controls, it shouldn't prove to be a problem. You'll breeze through it in maybe 20 hours, 30 hours if there's any major difficulty... it might sound like a bad thing, but the game any longer could seriously weaken it.

   Parasite Eve presents a very novel concept... the ability to customise your weapons and armour. You can, given some tools and some other equipment which has the properties you want, can transfer any given weapon or armour some special abilities. With this, you can create a pistol which shoots heated bullets, armour which can boost your attack power, a machine gun which uses shotgun bullets, or many other combinations of weapons, which allows you to construct the weapon or armour you desire.

Cutesy or Realistic Name
Dark and Dreary, anyone?  

   The effects and music for Parasite Eve are simply outstanding. They might not be the absolute best orchistration in the universe, but they certainly fit the scenes they were designed for. The boss theme will have you ready for battle in next to no time, the NYPD station theme will have you feeling like you really walked into a police station, going to the Opera sounds like you're really there. And the sound effects are done well, with attention to detail. What you walk across will determine what sounds Aya makes when she starts walking or running, a pistol will sound different to a rocket launcher, and some of the monsters sound out cries and snarls.

   As for the Plot? It, for all it's shortness, would be one of the best storylines for a si-fi based game. It will draw you in, with all the plot twists and events, it will drive you to finish it, and it will leave you breathless once you complete the game. The presentation of this short but very thought out plot is probably one of the game's strong points. You will see in full detail of how Eve manages to kill people, you will see all the dramatic moments in FMV... you will come to understand why Aya can stand up to Eve where no one else can, and you will see humanity's efforts to stop Eve. The presentation of the plot goes all the way down to the wire, even the font used during the game adds to the game's atmosphere, using a font we would normally associate with a police typewriter.

   There aren't any very noticable translation errors or flubs, and the game itself will probably involve you so much that any mistakes would be skipped over without a second thought.

You know the deal-title it.
She's got a gun - and she's not afraid to use it.  

   For all those seeking a long, fantasy based RPG, you're definitely not going to see that here. Anyone who has any science fiction interests will find this a thrill to play, and everyone else should at least have some fun playing this. Maybe a little short, but six days of terror, suspense and action will be worth the trip. It is certainly a unique one many will have never experienced before.

   I'll warn you right now though... Parasite Eve isn't for the faint of heart, and I wouldn't recommend playing it with little kids around. It might just give them nightmares... hell, it just might make you think differently about a few things yourself...

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