GBAtemp Recommends #102: Ape Escape

Discussion in 'GBAtemp & Scene News' started by chavosaur, Aug 30, 2015.


    Welcome to the 83rd issue of the GBAtemp Recommends Revival Project! This project is a revival of our once-weekly feature where we share our favorite games and applications with you. The titles we recommend may be "old school" games, a piece of Homebrew, an ROM hack, sleeper hits, an application, etc, but one thing's for certain, we think they are fantastic and deserve your attention!

    On today's entry, we're going to get into some monkey business. With some clunky but unforgettable game-play, a really neat little story, and some very charismatic apes, this game is something worth going bananas over. This is:
    Ape Escape


    ape-escape-ntsc-u-scus-94423 (1).png Apeescape_790screen008.jpg apeescape1.jpg

    Ape Escape is a 3D adventure title developed by SCEI and published by Sony Computer Entertainment, and was the first game to ever require the use of a Dualshock controller!

    Ape Escape follows the antics of an albino ape named specter, who obtains hyper intelligence from an experimental testing helmet. Utilizing his new found abilities, and stealing hundreds of prototypes, Specter creates an army of apes in order to take over the world. Utilizing a time machine created by a professor, he sends the apes back in time to alter the course of history and have apes rule the planet. However, as luck would have it, our young protagonist Spike and his best friend Buzz happen to stop by the lab and witness the events take place. Now it’s up to Spike to use the time machine to travel to various points in history to capture the apes and save the future from utter monkey domination!

    Apeescape_790screen001.jpg 36510-Ape_Escape_[U]-8.jpg apeescape2.jpg

    The various points in history obviously serve as the levels for the game, and each level is unique and full of life and creativity. The object of Ape Escape is to use various gadgets to capture all of the super intelligent apes across the levels. Using the dual analogue sticks of the PlayStation controller, players move with the left stick, and use the right stick to control a specific gadget. The net for example, is swung and rotated using the right stick. Other gadgets can be obtained later in the game as they become available, including a get propelled swimming device, a slingshot, an R.C Car, and more.

    Using the gadgets requires speed and stealth elements at times. The monkey’s helmets represent caution levels based on lights. The Blue light means the apes are currently unaware of your presence, the yellow light indicates caution, and the red lights mean they're ready to do everything in their power to stop you from catching them. With some apes it’s as simple as chasing them and being quick enough to stun and catch them. But others won’t be so kind, and will utilize everything from UFO’S, to Tyrannosaurus Rex’s in order to stop you! The world of Ape Escape is incredibly comedic, colorful, and full of life.

    ape-escape-ntsc-u-scus-94423.png fallingoff.jpg images.jpg

    I will say that one of the biggest problems Ape Escape faces is its camera controls. Since the right stick is used for control of the various gadgets, your camera is controlled using the L1/R1 buttons. This tends to lead to the camera facing crappy directions or just makes it a pain to focus on what you actually want to focus on. It takes some getting used to, but with 25 levels with multiple sub missions and plenty of things to do, you’ll most likely catch on pretty quick and grow used to it.

    Of course, like any 3D adventure title, backtracking with new gadgets and searching for other collectibles is a main factor of the game. The collectibles of the game, Specter Coins, are used to purchase mini games and prizes. Ape Escape also has a fantastic soundtrack. Every song for every level is fun and energetic, and bustles with life.

    Ape Escape is easily one of the most memorable platforming experiences the PlayStation had to offer, alongside Crash Bandicoot and Spyro. It was innovative for its time, and is still incredibly fun to play today.

    While the game is not available as a PlayStation Classic, it was recreated for the PSP with a new control scheme, and is playable on PSP, PSVITA, and PSTV.

    Genre: Platformer, Adventure
    Release Year: 1998
    Developer: SCEI
    Published by: Sony Computer Entertainment
    Directed By: Masamichi Seki
    Released For: PlayStation 1

    If you enjoyed this week's edition of GBAtemp Recommends! Please leave a comment in the thread. This helps us monitor feedback and ensures we keep posting these articles in the future.

    If you would like to see the original archive of our previous entries, you can look at our archived content here.

    IMPORTANT: I will now be accepting submissions for GBATemp Recommends features! If you would like to submit your own Recommends article to possibly be featured on our front page, please send a word document to Submissions need to follow the format of previous recommends articles. If you have any questions, feel free to contact me. Submissions can be of any title, however try to be unique with your picks. Don't expect to be the only person to send an article of Pokemon Blue or Super Mario 64 :lol:
    Discussion (11 replies)
  1. breaktemp

    breaktemp D-Sun who was called D-Moon

    Mar 17, 2008
    United States in tha hood
    This is a very good idea, and I support bring this back !!

    I would love to see the site recommend "Star Ocean: the 2nd story"

    * back in the PS1 days *
  2. Bladexdsl

    Bladexdsl ZOMG my's over 9000!!!

    Nov 17, 2008
    before i played this i never even knew there were buttons in the analog controller :lol:
  3. Vanth88

    Vanth88 Private

    Oct 1, 2007
    United States
    I remember this being the first game where an analog stick was required. You couldn't play this game on the first gen controller. I had a PSONE though so of course I was able to play it, and I loved it! . I highly recommend everyone go out and play this game. If you have a chance you should also play AE2 and 3 while you're at it.
  4. Blaze163

    Blaze163 The White Phoenix's purifying flame.

    Nov 19, 2008
    Coventry, UK
    Yeah, that freaked me out as a kid. Swimming tutorial told me to press the L3 button and I was like
  5. Lycanroc

    Lycanroc Woof

    May 11, 2014
    Wait, there are ACTUALLY games that use L3 and R3? :wacko:
  6. Bladexdsl

    Bladexdsl ZOMG my's over 9000!!!

    Nov 17, 2008
    ape escape pretty much uses every button and stick on the controller :P
  7. sarkwalvein

    sarkwalvein There's hope for a Xenosaga port.

    GBAtemp Patron
    sarkwalvein is a Patron of GBAtemp and is helping us stay independent!

    Our Patreon
    Jun 29, 2007
    Oh, that would be nice.
    I missed the Star Ocean series back in the day, and I would be glad to know what have I been missing according to GBAtemp.
    breaktemp likes this.
  8. Bioshiit

    Bioshiit Member

    Feb 26, 2014
    I remember playing this, such a great game
  9. potato3334

    potato3334 GBAtemp Regular

    Sep 14, 2009
    United States
    Yes, there are quite a bit. Especially first person shooters, which use L3 to initiate sprinting
    Lycanroc likes this.
  10. paulie

    paulie Advanced Member

    Oct 29, 2007
    United States
    Nice review.
    I never played this game back in the days, but do remember reading positive reviews about it.
    Trying to find the PSP version for some play time with PPSSPP:yaysp:

    EDIT: I always liked the gbatemp recommends, so this revival is greatly appreciated
  11. Metoroid0

    Metoroid0 GBAtemp Advanced Maniac

    Nov 2, 2012
    YES! i also recommend this game. Great fun and very nice game.

    If someone don't know, there is remake of Ape Escape for PSP...check it out if you got PSP and played original PSX version or if you want to play PSP version first..but i kinda prefer PSX version because of controls only...and voices...
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