'The Matrix: Path of Neo' (PS2)
(PS2 / ASIN: B0009PETYO / Rated: T / $49.99)
Features: Play as Neo for the first time. Story, path, results and responses written and directed by the Wachowski Brothers, creators of 'The Matrix' trilogy. Set in the 'Matrix' film universe with all the major characters. Now, YOU are the one.
Description: 'The Matrix: Path Of Neo' continues the story of 'The Matrix.' You become Neo and try to follow the path of The One - your choices will decide the fate of humanity. They may win where Neo failed or find another way to solve the problem - the path is now theirs to follow.
Verdict: 'Path of Neo' is certainly an interesting take on the 'Matrix' films, of which the third film is non-existent save for the "Battle of the Gods" scene, but then I'm not complaining about that. The fighting is by far and away the best part of 'Path of Neo,' it's some of the best fighting I've seen in a videogame. It's almost seamless the entire time. There is but one attack button, and a stun button which serves essentially as a modifier button. What that means is you can stun an enemy and then attack them with a specific eye watering combo, and you can can even initiate stun combos on more than one enemy. Fighting with melee weapons is also top notch, and opens up more moves, including an incredible jump move with a sword whereby you jump over an opponent throwing the sword into the air, only to then catch it mid fall and slice and dice the enemy from behind, all in "I'm walking in tar" style slow motion. Weapons include swords, staffs, lamposts, things that midly resemble knives and an enemy themself. The shooting here isn't as good as 'Enter the Matrix,' although it's functional. It's similair to Enter the Matrix but has lost some grace since. The voice acting is pretty decent too, which counts for a lot, and although they're not the actors from the films they are good soundalikes. As for the music, that's been completely reworked and sounds good if your feeling generous. However, the audio sometimes fades in and out when a lot is happening on screen, which is nie on 80% of the time.
The graphics is where 'Path of Neo' falls flat, especially after so much promise. It's like a beautiful female playing Mozart finishing and then throwing up on the piano. From afar, they look average at most, but when viewed up close charcters look like housebricks with sunglasses. It's low res taken to the max. Add to the mix possibly the worst frame rate ever and it makes you want to look away from the screen in embarassment. However, bullet time does look astounding. As for replay value, it doesn't last long, but you will keep coming back, like the videogame version of a brothel. In short, do get it, don't miss out. It feels great to be the one and it has some of the best fighting in ages.
Reviewed by Bill Routledge