|System: PS3||Review Rating Legend|
|Dev: SONY Japan||1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid||4.0 - 4.4 = Great|
|Pub: SONY||2.0 - 2.4 = Poor||4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy|
|Release: Oct. 23, 2007||2.5 - 2.9 = Average||5.0 = The Best|
|Players: 1-2||3.0 - 3.4 = Fair|
|ESRB Rating: Teen||3.5 - 3.9 = Good|
The strong game mechanics are complemented by the on-screen action. The visuals and animations are top-notch; lighting, shadowing, and particle effects have all been given the attention that a more traditional next-gen title would receive. Whether your Beguiling Fog is engulfing your opponent in a thick mist or your sexy Elven Berserker Maiden is pummeling him to the brink of death, you'll experience the same visual splendor you'd attain from a dedicated fantasy action title. Sadly, the same can't be said for the audio, as repetitive, grating rock tracks play almost continuously. Thankfully, this type of experience is not made or broken by its sound component so a quick tweak to the volume fixes this gripe.
We found Eye most satisfying when played with a live, in-your-living-room opponent. Online matches are a blast too, but there's something about playing face-to-face that really brings the most to this experience; you're getting the same competition and comradery vibe you'd get with a traditional card game, plus the added bonus of on-screen ass-kicking. Solo play is fun for a short time, but most players will tire of it quickly as they begin to thirst for real blood on the battlefield. A career or campaign mode would have been a nice feature to keep solo play interesting.
For the most part Eye of Judgment has delivered the gaming goods. From its solid game-based mechanics to its impressive cards-come-to-life visuals, there's lots to like here. Now, the real hurdle is finding a solid audience; serious card collectors might not be ready to make the financial leap a PS3 requires, and may find the game fails to meet their hardcore standards, where seasoned video gamers may be too busy saving the girl or the galaxy in any number of more traditional games. On top of this, the game needs to receive continuous support through additional card releases (booster packs are already available); a good CCG is only as good as its cards. Curious PS3 owners ready to take the plunge can get the whole starter set-up, camera and all, for just 70 bucks; not bad considering most stand-alone titles go for $60. It's a bit early to determine whether or not Eye of Judgment will catch on or end up residing next to your dusty Virtual Boy in the basement. It definitely deserves a chance, and we hope it gets one. Besides, it wouldn't be the first time a non-traditional gaming idea took off; who ever thought we'd all be rocking-out in front of our TVs with little plastic guitars?
CCC Freelance Writer