Zatch Bell!: Mamodo Fury review

  • Character selection in multiplayer
  • Music is decent
  • Voices aren't bad
  • Broken combat
  • Lack of story or direction
  • Bland visuals

Bizarre monsters encased in small balls? Nope. How about mythical beasts residing in playing cards? Not here. Intergalactic demons possessing a child's doll? Bingo! Welcome to Zatch Bell!: Mamodo Fury, a game that features wacky Japanese antics, large tuna fish, and an utterly busted fighting system. Excited yet?

Even though the anime's one of the nuttiest shows on the air, the game is as typical as can be. As the master of a mamodo (read: demon-possessed doll), it's up to you to send it into battle and destroy all other mamodos that wander into this world. Rather than jump into the fray yourself, you issue commands to the little demon doll from a relatively safe distance. Not a bad setup, but there are so few attacks you'll be bored within minutes. Actually hitting someone is practically a miracle, given how poorly the camera handles. Now take all these problems, throw in some uninteresting arenas and you've got yourself a bland-ass fighting game. It's you and your enemy mamodo dancing in circles trying to take each other out. Yay.

The game will attempt to burnish things up with in-battle objectives, but they're just as rubbish: running around the field and ignoring attacks until the time limit runs out is almost as humiliating as the regular fighting. The time limit is long, too - if we were able to run around the stage a few times, ignoring their attacks, why do we have to amble some more to prove it?

Multiplayer has the same problems. You're able to play as different characters (each with their own attack techniques), which might satisfy some fans of the series, but the combat is so dry and lousy, it's barely any better than suffering through things alone.

The still art is a decent transition from the show, but the actual graphics are pretty darn ugly. Barren visuals aside, the game does all right in providing some tolerable music that feels similar to the show, and the voice-overs aren't too bad either.

If you don't care how broken and rudimentary this game is as long as it's like the show, you're going to be in a fury in no time. Zatch Bell! tries to have an episodic story structure, but to do this it has to have some sort of story progression. There's none of that. Even if the show itself is a little chaotic and random, the game is so unclear about whom you're battling next and why the heck you are, we're scared to think just how much the developers knew about the show in the first place.

More Info

Release date: Dec 15 2006 - GameCube
Sep 19 2006 - PS2 (US)
Dec 15 2006 - GameCube
Sep 19 2006 - PS2 (UK)
Available Platforms: GameCube, PS2
Genre: Fighting
Published by: Namco Bandai
Developed by: Mechanic Arms, Namco Bandai
ESRB Rating:
Teen: Fantasy Violence, Language, Suggestive Themes

1 comment

  • jscriber100 - September 18, 2010 12:40 p.m.

    this game deserves the score of only 3 it got,it sucks!i'd have more fun staring at the wall then playing this crap!

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