Review - Payback (GBA)

Discussion in 'GBAtemp Reviews & Guides' started by decript, Oct 18, 2005.

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Oct 18, 2005

Review - Payback (GBA) by decript at 4:43 AM (2,801 Views / 0 Likes) 0 replies

  1. decript
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    Member decript A melon a day, keeps t3h monkey away

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    Payback (GBA)
    [​IMG]
    First off, this game is not available in the USA and Canada because DSI was unable to publish it due to trouble with the age rating; however it is released in Europe, mainly available from online sites.
    The other thing, this game I’m sure was inspired by the great Grand Theft Auto released for PC and then PSX. Payback was released a couple of years later for the Amiga. Comparing Payback to the original GTA, it is a bit like an imitation.

    Story 6/10 [​IMG]
    Just to start off, this has nothing to do with the movie of Payback. The story is really basic; you’re a criminal and you help a mob boss by completing errands for him. There are some twists like you go to jail and he helps bust you out or his girlfriend is kidnapped. Most of these twists, take the form of a mission, or a phone call if you will. Other than that, it’s just your usual jobs for mob bosses consisting of committing crimes

    Graphics 9/10 [​IMG]
    In aspects of the graphics, they are poor, I’ll admit that, but I give it a high score because I know the GBA hardware limitations and its up-to-par with other games released.

    The main graphical aspects that caught my attention were the effects: skid marks, bullets, fire, snow, dirt, water etc. These were beautiful, colourful and almost no pixilation.
    [​IMG]

    Of course, general textures, like buildings and cars, are a little blurred but decent enough to distinguish and make things out.
    There are also some graphical glitches, but they are most noticeable when your car is near a ledge or so, it gets a little jumpy and the shadow gets out of place. Though most of these things are expected when you play a full 3D GBA game.

    Sound 7/10 [​IMG]
    The music in this game, ranging from a couple of sound tracks, made up ones that is, are decent but do not really fit the game. It’s like you’re in a dark city smearing cops blood on the pavement with your car while some country music is playing in the background.

    The sound effects are good, such as skidding, death and blood sounds, bullets, fire, the sound of people screaming for their lives when you hijack a bus and do sharp turns and the sound of driving fast off a ramp with that speedy squealing sound. Of course, its GBA style sound, a little raspy but bearable.

    Gameplay 8/10 [​IMG]
    The gameplay is very enjoyable and very arcade based. There is the standard single player, a rampage mode and a multiplayer mode.

    In the single player, you start with the first city out of three; the first one is a simple city, the second is a snow and ice covered city and the third is at night full of street and traffic lights. For each city are two stages and each city and their respective sections need to be unlocked by completing the previous. Each time you complete a stage, with some exceptions, you unlock a new city for Rampage. Each stage has a different starting point and different missions. The missions are pay-phone based, with some exceptions of obligatory missions received from the boss and a mission where you have to break out of a heavily defended prison. As you wreck havoc and do missions, you gain cash and each stage has a certain cash requirement, once you reach it, press select and you have completed the stage. Each time you complete a mission, you get a cash multiplier, x1,x2 etc. allowing you to reach your goal faster, however, when you die, it resets, so basically, if your going for the best time and you die, you have to restart the level. Your overall performance is rated with a bronze, silver or gold trophy based on the best time taken to complete a stage and in order to unlock some extra levels, you must obtain gold trophies on all stages for all cities. So there are three cities + 8 more to unlock, well, you start off with two in the beginning plus the first city. In each city, the police AI increases, which involves more aggressiveness, more cops and your wanted level goes down slower and increases faster.

    In the Rampage mode, you get to choose any level you have and select one of the seven difficulty levels ranging from very low to very high. This is basically free-roam, to explore the levels and commit mass murder. There is a random phone booth with a random missions depending on the difficulty, but the structure of these missions is pretty limited like: grab a car and do a street race, kill x cops etc. This is also a great way to find all the hidden vehicles and secret areas.

    There are 7 weapons contained in crates scattered around, which are: pistol, shotgun, minigun, flamethrower, grenades, bazooka and C4. As you can see, there is a good variety. The c4 works by dropping this box and running to take cover, when you detonate, it basically blows the screen size away sending blood across the air and cars screeching away as they are blown up and blown away. The vehicles are also varied, such as a boat, a helicopter, a tank, racing cars, a freakin’ fast rocket car, an RC truck and then your average vehicles. Though flying the helicopter is a bit laggy and most explosions have a second delay or so, other than that, driving and basic action runs decently.

    The controls are quite unusual and in my opinion, impair some of the action. While all the buttons on the GBA are re-definable, it’s the same for while in a vehicle and on foot. Its works great for vehicles but is hard to fight with on foot. The default controls are:
    A-accelerate
    B-reverse
    L-enter/exit vehicle
    R-fire weapon/horn
    -turn left/turn right
    ^/v-select weapon
    No strafe! This is an absolute must. It’s hard to survive fire-fights because its almost one hit kill, that is some cops use shotguns which almost is one hit kill. That’s the main thing, the control isn’t appropriate for action on foot. What I did was run away to a certain distance, then turn around wave bullets at them, then turn around and dodge their bullets.

    Replay Value 8/10 [​IMG]
    Well, to complete the campaign, it doesn’t require that much time, but to get gold on everything is a bit more challenging. Also the rampage is a lot of fun, great to just pick up and play or great as a bathroom-time-waster-game. Its still fun to piss the cops off, collect loads of ammo, slaughter them with the RC and they cant reach you etc; also doing the random missions and exploring the mildly sized cities, there slots of time to waste on this.

    Overall 8/10
    (7.6 average) [​IMG]

    +nice special effects with good graphics
    +11 cities to slaughter wreck mayhem, with a decent variety and size
    +a range of vehicles to race and have fun with
    +a multiplayer mode with traffic and pedestrians
    +7 weapons, a good variety

    -not very good control when walking and fighting, lacking strafe
    -some graphical glitches
    -out of place music, well, most tracks that is
    -slowdowns when things heat up, or just for explosions and the helicopter
     
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