JoJo's Bizarre Adventure Time.......
Otaku Review posted by @hades_kitty who after this post will be joining the team for a more permanent role ^_^.
After a string of hit 2D fighting game hits such as Street Fighter, Darkstalkers, Capcom introduced its next (and final) generation of 2D arcade hardware in 1998. The team working on it included notable Obata Shinichiro as planner (since then worked on Marvel Vs Capcom 2) and Noritaka Funamizu ( Street Fighter). The manga author of Jojo, Hirohiko Araki, also worked closely with the team to bring out a fantastic arcade game then be released to Dreamcast and Playstation. I was fortunate to play the Playstation edition thought would love to get my hands on the Dreamcast one day.
Just by looking at the game the the vibrant and unique art style of Araki's work makes an impression which suits the big and bold characters. This was definitely not your conventional cast of characters each of the fighters' had different ‘Stands’ to ensure that every character is unique and instantly recognizable. Stand would be the astral projection of themselves fighting most would say PS4 Arena used the same style. Also based on part three of the manga in case you were wondering.
The fighting roster included a fighting dog, an ass-kicking old man, a belly dancer, and a serial killer whose weapon of choice is a talking dummy. With such a cast, JoJo instantly sets itself apart from the rogues' galleries of other fighting games of the time.
Looking at the dog -Iggy the Boston terrier, he appears as one of the six playable characters available to play from the start. Iggy highly relys on his stand -The Fool. Looking at his character from the manga the main difference is that he survives the battle against Vanilla Ice and fights along with the others against DIO. Looking at his fighting style when his stand is not active it makes for a great defense strategy due to his small hitbox. One of his best moves is 'Sand Dio' where Iggy creates a sand copy of Shadow Dio that does an overhead punch. But you also have realistic moves like 'Mad Dog' where he simple lunges forward and bites his opponent as dogs tend to do. Also a noteable thing about Iggy he is one of the few character who can use a move to simaltanously move alongside the stand in different directions 'Bad Doggie' The Fool slides forward a short distance. If the attack connects, Iggy leaps onto the foe and does uncertain things behind a snowed-out screen. This move is unblockable. It's a nice touch that upon playing Story Mode you can change his fate by defeating Vanilla Ice and eventually battle with DIO. This gives you the ending of him surviving triumphantly and returning to New York to become the "King of the Dogs".
Jotaro is actually the first JoJo introduced with a Stand, and among the most well-known characters of the series, also with the coolest name, not a fact but my opinion anyway. His Stand - Star Platinum possesses super human senses, strength, stamina, accuracy and speed. However his flaw is being Close-Range but when he hits you your half dead. As you can see I much prefer the dog for it's ability to dodge attacks and comical fighting style.
As with the change in story for Iggy, Capcom managed to pull off keeping with the manga but also bringing something fresh that made it worth buying for fans and beat em up fans. Looking at Capcom’s fighting game lineage –you know what to expect from this game: a fast paced 2D relying on speedy back circle motions. Lots of 'Shoto' characters using "Hadoken" movements so it was easy to pick up by SF and Darkstalker players.
Just to explain how useful the Stands are in battle they take less damage than the user and more importantly possess long range attacks. In some instances they can separately move simultaneously to the user. The game also has a roll button, attack clashes, guard cancels, custom combos, and button mashing sequences and the tandem attack that differ from the traditional fighting game. This was amazing because some of the stands like for Iggy, Jean Pierre Polnareff, Mohammed Avdol gave you long range, keeping your character out of danger unless the opposite stand was long range to then you'd have to rely on separate movement again.
One of the best parts of playing the Playstation version to the arcade was the addition of Super Story Mode, this was a single player campaign which follows each character as they face off against various opponents, with lots of story from the manga. Also from watching the new anime I straight away remembered bits from the game specifically Gramps coming to sort out his Grandson Jotoro in Jail causing havoc with his stand. In between certain matches, you would have the characters interacting, striking fabulous poses whilst talking. Also unique special stages may occur based on scenes from the manga, like a special battle against the Death 13 Stand. The mini games are a great break from the fast button bashes one makes to play to driving a car or playing games of chance.
This JoJo game was so fun and stylish they re released it in HD collection xbox 360 and PSN with jazzed up graphics and online mode but no super story mode (the best part of the game in my opinion). Now more recently Bandai Namco released in 2014 JoJo's Bizarre Adventure: All Star Battle. Capcom put an unconventional twist on the genre, I approve whole heartedly. Will still hold a special place in my heart as I’m not really SF fan *runs for cover*
The main downer for me were the graphics, comparing to that of the sleek Darkstalkers this game was a transition to something better as we see Marvel vs Capcom 2 after this. The movement was a bit clunky for me - I'm not a "Hadoken" master. Also the rounds in the Super Story mode matches varied from two to one which gave me no chance to prepare for the characters but hey don't let that deter fighting game experts out there.
The best way to describe JoJo's Bizarre Adventure: Heritage for the Future is an experiment using mechanics from past Capcom "D fighting games but adding a twist of the playable Stands to make things more interesting and fast paced. The graphics are less to be desired however awesome the character designs are. The soundtrack was average though the villain tracks were notable. The piece de resistance of this game for the Super Story mode following the story of the manga taking the player through fights as they get closer to DIO. This mode featured various random mini-games that gave variety which was used in one of the more recent Mortal Kombat games! In total playing time of 4.5 hours completing all the story modes, and arcade etc so making this a game of substance (at the time).
You expected a score but.....
(Not even sorry about the naff meme joke! -Andi)