SYSTEM
PSX

PRICE
$39.99

DEVELOPER
Bandai

PUBLISHER
Atlus

RELEASE
11/99

Tail Concerto Review

By: John Doe


You sure wouldn't find the cats in this game impersonating Molly Shannon (from SNL) and saying, "...and I like DOOGGS!" No sirree. This game is bizarre and yet oddly appealing at the same time. What kind of game is it? Good question. As a doggy police officer your job is to fly around in your doggy dirigible to different locations and pick up the evil kitties while wearing your mecha-doggy suit. If you can find a genre for that premise, go for it.


Highs:
Lows:

If you are a dog lover and a cat disliker, you'll dig this game, but if your affections run the opposite, don't expect to be charmed. Actually it's too cute to be offensive, unless you find "too cute" to be offensive... Okay, the premise of the game is strange but the execution is well done. The game plays from a third person - errr umm, canine perspective and takes place in a 3D environment. Your job is to stop those annoying cats. Of course, ripping open their jugular veins in a wild frenzy of primal instinct would be too good for these feline foes. You can teach them a real lesson by picking them up with your Inspector Gadget telescoping arms and throw in your backpack teleporter which will send their little subversive hides to prison. That'll learn 'em for pissing off the dog population. If you ignore the underlying racial implications of Tail Concerto's dogs versus cats, you might just enjoy yourself for awhile. I say "awhile" because this is as short game. It took me a little over 4-5 hours to complete.

Sure this game is aimed at the kiddies, but the gameplay harkens back to those great old arcade games of the past like Mappy and a billion other games I can't remember the titles of. Older gamers will find the easy control and the pace of the game a nice change from being chased around by that Nemesis S.O.B. and younger players will like the cartoon look, the ease of gameplay and the quirky music. Once you get the knack of exactly what you are supposed to do, then it is just a matter of going from place to place and following your "orders". Gest-dog-po anyone? Hmmm... Tail Concerto features some cool gameplay elements, like the jetpack level for instance. However these snippets of pure gaming euphoria are over quickly leaving you wishing for more.

Graphically the game is reminiscent of Mega Man Legends. The levels are stocked with simple colors and nice textures and the characters are anime-influenced, sporting a super-deformed look, which is understandable since this game originated in Japan. Musically the game is cheerful, which only adds to the overall "non-threatening" nature of the game. Younger children will need help with the reading in the game, but once they know what to do, you can leave them alone to play kitty-catcher for the day.

Complaint Dept. There really isn't all that much to complain about considering this game wasn't intended for an older audience, nor did we heap high expectations on it like RE3. This game came out of left field and can simply be viewed as one in the minority of games available for the PSX that are intended for the 12 and under crowd. As it is, it succeeds with flying colors.

If you are a parent who is at their wits end trying to come up with a suitable purchase for your young'un, then take a gander at Tail Concerto. They'll love the cartoony look and fun gameplay and let's face it, kids love dogs and cats. The premise of the game wears a little thin after awhile, but might be great for the kid who could watch the same Disney movie 5 times a day. Although it could be argued that if your kid is watching the same movie 5 times a day, perhaps a parenting course is in order. Highly recommended for the young kids and I'll bet even the older kids will dig this funky game. Give it a whirl, and if you ever figure out what 'Tail Concerto" actually means, drop me a line.

OVERALL
7.0

GRAPHICS
7.0

CONTROL
8.0

MUSIC/FX
7.0

FRUSTRATION
1.0

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