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Buffy the Vampire Slayer (2000)

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Buffy the Vampire Slayer
382423-buffy-the-vampire-slayer-game-boy-color-front-cover.jpg
Buffy would like to beat up vampires more than playing this game, and that other vampire game released the same year.
Genre(s): Action
Beat'em-up
Platform(s): Game Boy Color
Release: September 30, 2000
Developer(s): GameBrains
Publisher(s): THQ
Country: Malaysia
Series: Buffy the Vampire Slayer
"If you are looking for one of the most repetitive, boring game experiences of your life look no further than this game. If you are looking for a great adventure game, go looking somewhere else. This game could have been good if…what am I saying? This game couldn’t have ever been any good. Take your 30 dollars and spend it on an electric nose-hair trimmer rather than sorry excuse for a game."
Gaming Target's review of the game, [1]

Buffy the Vampire Slayer is a beat'em up game developed by GameBrains and published by THQ for the Game Boy Color in 2000. It is based on the drama television series of the same name.

Its gameplay involves fighting opponents that vary in types for each level, and platforming sections after defeating each opponent.

Why It Sucks

  1. You only get to fight one enemy at a time, instead of usually beating up more opponents in other games of this genre, and after defeating an opponent, all you do is continue walking further in a level until you encounter one more enemy to fight, and so on. Even worse is that you only get to fight one same enemy per level, appearing in different colors but also have the exact same moveset, making the gameplay absolutely miserable and lame.
    • Rather than decreasing the enemy's lifebar, hitting them only makes their stamina meter decreases. Once it becomes empty, the enemy falls over, they won't be able to get up again for a few seconds until their stamina is full again, and you have yet to hit them once again to kill them. The problem is that this gimmick does not have any point whatsoever, and just consumes the player's time even more while playing a level.
  2. Even though there are multiple types of enemies to fight throughout the whole game, they can all be beaten using the same strategy, which is extremely easy to perform. The easiest way to defeat one, even the final boss, is to use crouch kicks to knock them into the corner, then stake them using the same move. The whole point of fighting games is that the strategy to beat an opponent needs to vary for each fighter that the latter is; however, Buffy: The Vampire Slayer does not have that. Also, this strategy looks pretty familiar...
  3. While the player also has a stamina bar like all enemies, and even a health bar too, it can get up very quickly by mashing all buttons before its opponent even drains its health while the player is grounded. Even though the final boss drains the player's health way quicker than every other enemies in the game, the player can still get up fast before the boss drains its health.
  4. Having to walk through each part of every level to fight another opponent serves no point whatsoever. There aren't any hazards, bottomless pits, not even any damaging part in all levels of the game at all. What you also get is an arrow on the top of the screen that is supposedly indicating the location of the next enemy to fight during the platforming sections, it tends to be disoriented and unreliable, especially on levels that scroll vertically and horizontally.
  5. Objects that can be picked up on the floor and used as projectiles are useless. The only type of attack they do is hit the enemy exactly like attacking it without projectiles after the player throws them at it, and it is much simpler to attack with the body itself.
  6. To perform a high jump, the player has to crouch down for a second before jumping, similarly to Super Mario Bros. 2, which had implemented the same control way better. The problem is that, just like walking through platform sections before fighting another enemy, performing high jumps wastes a lot of time, and what's worse is that there are sections that require the player to use this move, consuming even more time along with pointless platforming.
  7. The music sounds so atrocious that it even gives Action 52's soundtrack a run for its money. The soundtrack is really poorly composed, especially for the music in the tomb level, which is mostly consisted of incredibly high-pitched notes. There are also ugly and repetitive sound effects, which are also really quiet, due to the loudness of the music.
  8. The graphics are also pretty poorly drawn. The backgrounds are full of ugly and lacking colors and soulless sprites on them, and the main protagonist that the player controls has barely visible eyes on her sprites.

The Only Redeeming Quality

  1. Despite the bad graphics, the game still has fluid animations, even for a Game Boy game. While not the best, it's nice to find good animation on a game that has received such a negative reception, and it's also well implemented on low-quality sprites.

Reception

Critics gave the game very negative reviews. AllGameGuide, scoring it with 1.5 stars, told players to "watch the show; skip the game".[1] Gamekult gave it the worst score listed on MobyGames, at 1/10,[2] stating: "Ugly and boring, Buffy the Vampire Slayer on Game Boy is a crude license exploitation without the slightest interest. It must be avoided, especially for the fans of the series of the same name. Let's hope that 3D games inspired by Buffy, to be released on PC and console, won't be of the same kind".[3]

whoisthisgit called it "a new worst game ever", criticizing the bad music, lame gameplay and its overpowered strategy to beat the game. He even compared the game's music to Action 52's The Cheetahmen's soundtrack, stating that the latter is better than the whole soundtrack of Buffy.

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