Gamecube Reviews
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Luigi's Mansion Review

At first glance, this game looks disappointing. Like the Mega Man series going Legends, Mario fans are all looking pale from a Nintendo launch without Mario. And even though we have Luigi, it's a different type of game than what we should normally expect from a Nintendo launch. Let me go ahead and say it; This Nintendo launch has been the worst Nintendo launch in history. Period. The lack of titles to keep you busy for more than a few hours is devastatingly low. Slim to none, in fact. But, is this game, even though it's obviously short, worth your hard earned buck?

Luigi's Mansion has a simple storyline; Luigi wins a Mansion in a contest he didn't even enter. Mario, being the jackass that he is, decides to check the Mansion out before Luigi. Little does he know that the Mansion is haunted. Ghosts capture Mario, which Luigi finds out from E. Gadd, a mad scientist that collects ghosts to put them into painted portraits. Only one thing, Boo ghosts have unleashed all of E. Gadd's ghosts in the pictures! Luigi agrees to help out E. Gadd, and in the process, learns where Mario is.

Luigi's Mansion is a really simple game. The control system, at first glance, seems impossible. Thankfully, I caught on around twenty minutes after I first practiced, but other people that I know were not so lucky. The game is a beauty; a gem in any sense that you want to put it in. And the control system, while messed up at times, is very unique in its own fashion. But ''unique'' is not really always ''perfection,'' at least it is not in many cases in the past few years alone.

Luigi's Mansion title screen

Another amazing thing I found out about this game within the matter of minutes, is how interactive the entire thing is. Suck up curtains, towels, cobwebs, table cloths, rugs, dust, and basically anything you can find on the screen. Everything, and I mean EVERYTHING, Is interactive. So have fun just messing around with this one, as it is around half of the fun that you will experience during the game's progress. But that isn't always a bad thing, if you catch my drift.

The game's graphics are uncanny. Imagine video game bliss. Ta-da! There ya go. That simple. You should buy this one just for the eye candy alone. The shadows are as detailed as the characters, which is saying a lot. One thing that tends to impress me about a game, graphically, is the renderings and lack of glitches. This game is almost glitch free, and the renderings are Amazing. With that said, let's move on to the next paragraph, shall we?

Keep in mind that the game is pure eye candy. The game is not about depth, So don't go into this one expecting a gripping storyline, or a huge diverse section of gameplay. This one was meant to show off the system's early graphics. I used to think to myself: ''If this is a launch title, I want to wet myself with anticipation when thinking of future titles on this puppy.'' Unfortunately, the GameCube has yet to really take advantage of its graphical power here.

The gameplay, you ask? Well, it's nothing revolutionary. It's simple, but addictive (or repetitive, whichever way you take a gander at it). You suck up ghosts in a vacuum, which will either sound extremely stupid and annoying, or it will sound thought provoking and/or innovative. Sadly, it bounces back and forth throughout the game while you play it, which is sort of a huge let down.

Luigi being harassed by lots of ghosts and boos

When I play a flagship game, I prefer to wake up every day, inching towards the excitement as turn on the game and dive straight into it. I did not feel this way while playing Luigi's Mansion, sadly. Call me shallow for enjoying this probably more than I should have; because I did. The game is short... Longer than Onimusha, but shorter than the Resident Evil Remake on the GameCube. Unfortunately, it is not as enjoyable as either of those games, either.

The basics of the game is to go from room to room, searching for keys, money, Boo ghosts, Portrait ghosts, Boss ghosts, and the like, all while listening to Luigi's shaky voice call out his Brother's name, or hum/whistle the music from the rooms. Collect the ghosts and beat the game. Is it a hard game? No. Is it an original game? Yes.

But, the question often pops up; Is the game very redundant or boring? The answer? To some, I can imagine so. To me? No! It's a very fun game that makes you use your head a bit. And there are a few sidequests, too, like capturing 50 Boos with funny names like ''Booilicious.'' The other sidequests are just a way of showing off the system's graphical capabilities, and the interaction between the characters and environments.

So, should you buy Luigi's Mansion with your GameCube system? I say ''Yes,'' but keep in mind that while it is fairly fun, it does become a little dull after a little while, and the game is short. But, the same thing applies with Onimusha, and people still loved it. It's not a blockbuster title, like Mario 64, but it's a good game, nonetheless, and in my opinion, the best launch title out of the bunch. Then again, that would not really be saying much, given the lack of huge titles at the launch. Oh well.

Sound: 8.0
The sounds will echo throughout the mansion on a grand scale, which is always a pleasant sound. The music is sort of faded in with the sound effects in the background of the environments and such. Not too shabby, however, one of my main complaints has to do with Luigi's constant whistling, which takes a turn towards ''highly redundant'' at around one hour into the game. Not very good there, but a solid ''8'' pretty much does it justice.

Graphics: 9.5
For a launch title, it brought innovation to adding elements of wit and surprise to the table, much like your casual, classic Miyamoto style of gameplay interaction with the actual game. Plus, the backgrounds aren't backgrounds. Everything you see, you can interact with. Pure eye candy in this department, and I'm loving every minute of it.

Gameplay: 8.0
Basic, very simple stuff. The controls of sucking the ghosts into the vacuum are both repetitive, and annoying. GhostBusters on the Sega Genesis did a hell of a better job at the whole ''suck ghosts into vacuum-like objects'' gameplay element, as the controls for this game's similar element is overdone within the game itself, and (not to mention) entirely too tough to perform at first. But the involvement of the graphics inside of the gameplay blows this one through the roof.

Enjoyment: 8.0 Luigi running in terror
A swell game that leaves a lasting impression on you long after you get through with it, regardless of the length of the title. As always with a Miyamoto flagship title, the wit and charm will suck you in and keep you there for hours. Sadly, it only takes a few hours to destroy the game at 100% and move onto something more important; but hey, the charm lasts throughout, so there is no complaints coming from me on the subject at hand.

Overall (not an average): 8.0
It's a bit short. It's not a classic to the point that you will remember, but it deserves to be in your library. This was the absolute best launch title available at the time of the GameCube's birth, in my opinion. No new GameCube owner should be without Luigi's Mansion, even if a simple rental will have to hold you over. For a beginner's game, nothing compares to this, or Wario World.

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