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Yu-Gi-Oh! World Championship 2007 Reviews
NDS Goodness: Yu-Gi-Oh! World Championship 2007
Reviewed by Yogizilla on May 13th, 2007
From the start, even the most casual Yu-Gi-Oh! fans may notice that this game is totally about the new wave of Yu-Gi-Oh! cards - the GX Series! While this is very much true, the beauty of this game is that, with over 1600 cards to collect, it is the most complete Yu-Gi-Oh! game to date, hence why it is the platform of choice for the World Championship coming up in June 2007! Duelists of all types can find something that appeals to them in this installment. I admit that there have been some lousy, lackluster installments in the series but this game returns to the grass roots of the game: a focus on dueling, strategizing, and deck building. No worrying about exploring areas, going through drawn-out cinematics, and having many “gimme” battles - Yu-Gi-Oh! World Championship 2007 is a challenge from start to finish, packed with lots of dueling action!
Now, before I proceed, I will let you in on a little secret: I am a very picky gamer. As a game designer and writer, I tend to analyze games and judge them on a different scale. For me, a great game has to have high replay value, fluid gameplay, variety, and, wherever possible, a strong human element (even good AI gets boring and predictable after a while). Both the latest Pokemon and Yu-Gi-Oh! games for the Nintendo DS meet this criteria.
In the tradition of previous Yu-Gi-Oh! World Championship game packs, you get three Limited Edition Yu-Gi-Oh! cards to add to your offline card stash. If you do not play the game offline or “in real life” as people like to say, they have a good resale value. I believe it is because of this that Yugioh-Land.com is able to offer the game at well under the usual $29.99-34.99 price that we are seeing out there in the US market. If you want the “new car smell” and the little bonuses, buy the unopened pack; otherwise, you can get the game used, often in “like new” condition, from many people - just get your hands on a copy!
Key Features - Brought to you by Yu-Gi-Oh! World:
If you own previous versions (the Game Boy Advance games, that is), you may notice that the game plays very differently. The core mechanics are still there but there are all sorts of new filters, analytics, play modes, tutorials, and more. They really are trying to open Yu-Gi-Oh! up to the masses and the game aligns well with the Yu-Gi-Oh! Online game for the PC (big fan of it, BTW - can you tell??) - kudos to Konami for planning things out properly!
I played both the original and 7 Trials to Glory versions of Yu-Gi-Oh! World Championship heavily. The original was a little more story-driven and had things for the cartoon fanboys as well, whereas from 2004 and onward, we started to see less story and more action, with a few exceptions here in there. By the time Ultimate Masters Edition came out in 2006, the game’s UI (User Interface) was very polished and the DP system was balanced out perfectly. Yu-Gi-Oh! World Championship 2007 took the winning formula and built upon it, making a very true-to-the-series, hardcore version of the game!
Now, I can say many good things about the game so, first, allow me to share some of my gripes… The 3D graphics are annoying at first if you are used to a more simple, clean interface. Yu-Gi-Oh! Nightmare Troubadour had similar issues. It could have been a great game had it not been for some of the weird mechanics and cumbersome components. Fortunately, in this case, you get used to it quickly. The beautiful thing is that you do not have to use the touch screen if you do not want to but, if you do, it may make life much easier since it is more intuitive and user-friendly.
As some reviews have stated, this game is definitely aimed at more hardcore fans. Fortunately, the tutorial system here is the most complete we’ve seen on the DS platform since Yu-Gi-Oh: NT (an otherwise mediocre title). I found myself having to actually try against what should have been free wins at the first difficulty level. There’s definitely one heck of a learning curve in this game and the challenge cannot be denied. The elitists of the dueling world will say that the challenge level is “average” but don’t be fooled: AI players or not, this is one challenging game!
If you are new to the series, Tutorial Mode is a must! I think the hardcore difficulty level to boot can be a turn-off to new and returning players alike but, again, you do get a good deck so you stand a chance. That leads me to another gripe: it’d be nice to be able to choose a Starter Deck like in some of the other games. I dislike cookie-cutter duelists and hate being made into a one-trick dog. To me, the fun in dueling is being adaptable, which is what the themed duels and duel challenges train you to do.
My other gripes are very tiny things. I didn’t find the interface as fluid as previous ones. Nintendo World Report hit the nail on the head when they said this is a very in-depth game, perhaps too much so. It can be overwhelming for even hardcore fans. My advice: stick it through and play in small doses; eventually, you get addicted if you really get the strategy down. I’m all about strategic gaming so, needless to say, I am hooked!
My other big gripe is that, unlike Yu-Gi-Oh! Online Duel Evolution, the DS Game makes it easy to get any card you want by using codes/passwords. When you play online, you’re likely to get owned by someone that plays the game 24/7, has “cheated” to get all the cards, and has a very cheesy deck. Such duelists would probably lost badly if they were forced to play with certain rules and, fortunately, you can set such rules; even so, it can be very humiliating, as the folks at Nintendo World Report pointed out. Personally, I am not a very competitive person so I don’t mind crushing defeats; I just learn and move on, but not everyone is like that!
The key to online play is to make some friends. Find people that are good sports as they will make the game more fun, win or lose. Personally, I always adjust my decks and try new things out, so I give people a chance to win, even if I have previously demolished them. I don’t have a specific style so I keep both myself and my opponents on our toes! If you are a one-trick dog, you may want to learn some new tricks before going online.
As I mentioned before, the game has the same core mechanics as other WC installments but it is definitely a unique game on it’s own. The basic premise is as follows: you battle duelists and, by employing Spell, Trap, and Monster cards, you win battles and DP (Duel Points) which you can then use to buy more cards. As you win more duels, your deck evolves, allowing you to take on tougher duelists. In 2007, Yu-Gi-Oh! World Championship has dropped most of the RPG elements and made it more of a pure TCG (Tradeable Card Game) than before. The Free Duel system is all about taking on differnt types of decks and developing counters. As you win more battles, you unlock more modes and challenges, including a Recipe Duel mode that allows you to battle against your own deck builds and see how well you can counter them. This feature is a brilliant way to see the flaws and weaknesses of your own decks on both sides of the fence, so to speak!
…And now for my personal cheers-and-jeers game analysis…
The game was just released worldwide on May 20th of this year and already there is downloadable content for it. New puzzles, deck recipes, and more are available via wireless - Nintendo WFC FTW! I am sure I missed some other key features but those are the ones that have really struck me. Mind you, I just got the game a few days ago and, though I played it upon release, there is so much to it that it is not possible to capture it all in one review (this game is BEEFY); I need more time to dig deeper and become a Yu-Gi-Oh! zombie warrior all over again. O_O
As a seasoned duelist, I find the various new deck filters and queries very convenient and brilliant. Now you can easily identify which cards are related and sort cards out by Type, Attribute, Level, Attack, Defense, Phrase/String (i.e. Gravekeeper, Elemental Hero, etc.), and so much more. This definitely has more deep card management than any other Yu-Gi-Oh! game I have played heavily. With 120 recipe/deck save slots, you have plenty of room to experiment with various builds and strategies, allowing you to become a much more well-rounded duelist.
After my first few duels, I noticed a trend in how DP was rewarded. Apparently, this game favors old-school duelists (ah, I remember the days when you didn’t have all these five-round cheese decks and unstoppable/invincible monsters). If you win battles using straight beat-down strategies, you are awarded heavy bonuses. Here are some of the bonuses in the game and how much DP you can get from them:
Please note that the amount of DP you get also depends on how challenging the battle is. As you progress in challenge levels, you’ll notice more DP is awarded. Most of the bonuses are pretty self-explanatory but some of them are a bit elusive so try different strategies and see what triggers what. One trend to note: those duelists that can come from behind and win in a pinch are awarded big points, especially if they end up doing massive damage. Try winning duels without Special Summons, restricting cards, Limited Cards, and things of the sort - it’s really tough!
All things considered, I give this game a 9 out of a possible 10 - meaning it is worth the purchase. The hidden fanboy in me wants to give it a 10 or at least a 9.5 but, to me, the password system makes for some really imbalanced duels online. Fortunately, you can automatically search for duelists based on their ratings and region, which makes it a little less intimidating for people with non-cheesy decks. I know that this is a game that will grow onto me the more I play it so I look forward to getting some real grind sessions going. Game on - w00t!!!
Originaly posted on http://duelpassonline.wordpress.com/
More coming soon!
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