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Spyro Fusion Game Boy Advance

Published by Vivendi Universal Games
Developed by Vicarious Visions
Released - Out Now
Price : £29.99

Very recently we looked at Crash Bandicoot Fusion and mentioned how the game was intertwined with Spyro Fusion. Well here we have Spyro Fusion which possesses the same story as Crash Bandicoot Fusion but it's told from Spyro's perspective instead of Crash's. If you've read our review of Crash Bandicoot Fusion you'll know pretty much what to expect with Spyro Fusion as both games are very similar in their design and are identical in terms of game modes. Let's take a look at Spyro's side of the story then.

Poor old Spyro instead of having to deal with one maniac he's now got to deal with two. Ripto has teamed up with Dr. Neo Cortex in an effort to increase his chances of taking over the universe. The main focus of their plan though is to destroy both Spyro and Crash Bandicoot. In order to do this they have unleashed their minions into each others worlds and Spyro's world has been flooded with evil Orange Bandicoots. Spyro must find Crash and together they can prevent Ripto and Cortex from taking over the universe.

As in Crash Bandicoot Fusion the game modes on offer are Story mode, Party mode and Trading Cards mode. Again the game comes with three save slots so up to three players can enjoy the game. The Story mode is where you'll begin though and in exactly the same way as in Crash Bandicoot (yes I've said that frequently but it's true for most elements of the game) it's a mix of 2D platforming action and mini-games. To gain access to another area, Spyro will have to collect the various shaped gems in order to unlock the portals. These gems can be gained by winning the mini-games that are placed around the level. Spyro will encounter numerous enemies and he can jump, double jump and use his fire breath in order to defeat them. Spyro also has the ability to hover by pressing the A button repeatedly. He'll also find trading cards on his travels (he can purchase them from shops too) and one of the side goals of the game is to try and collect them all. However you'll need to trade with someone (using the Trading Cards mode) who owns Crash Bandicoot Fusion in order to be able to do this. Party mode allows you to play the mini-games you've unlocked in Story mode either on your own or against friends.

There's no getting away from the mini-games in Spyro Fusion and essentially they are just as much a mixed bag as they are in Crash Bandicoot Fusion. What I did find though was that those you'll come across earlier in Spyro Fusion seem more difficult than those that you encounter in the early stages of Crash Bandicoot Fusion. Several of them had to be replayed over and over again whereas I sailed through the first half dozen on Crash Bandicoot Fusion without any problems. Of course in Party mode you'll get to play against your friends and this can make the party games more enjoyable to a certain degree but overall they could have been better. If you press the L & R buttons down as you turn the GBA on you'll load up a game called Crash Party which requires you to press the buttons in the correct sequence. The game is actually quite enjoyable and it's a nice bonus to have.

Whilst the game is also graphically very similar to Crash Bandicoot Fusion the backgrounds, aren't quite as detailed. As you'd expect the game has a bright colour palette as it's aimed at the younger gamers out there and like all Spyro games, it has a cheerful look to it. The character animations have been nicely done with Spyro looking particularly impressive. Some mini-games look more detailed than others and whilst some also look rather basic, on the whole the game looks good.

In terms of the game's suitability for deaf gamers, Spyro Fusion is exactly the same as Crash Bandicoot Fusion. The game story is told exclusively via text so you'll have no problems in following what's going on. Each mini-game has it's own rules and sets of controls and these are all displayed in text before the game starts so again you'll know exactly what to do. The manual contains only 18 pages of English text but it manages to include everything you could wish to know about the game so there's no complaints here either.

Having now looked at both Crash Bandicoot Fusion and Spyro Fusion I'd have to say that I prefer Crash Bandicoot Fusion but there's not much in it to be honest. The initial mini-games you'll come across in Spyro's story mode are more challenging, which doesn't allow you to become comfortable too quickly but otherwise it's a very similar experience. Is it worth owning the two versions? Well to be honest the similarity is perhaps too great for one gamer to buy both games. The mini-games don't really differ enough to make the purchase of both games essential. If the mini-games had been completely different and the trading cards had more purpose (such as having a trading card game you can play) then it would have been a different story.

Overall Game Rating: 6.9/10
Spyro's version of events is almost identical to Crash's and in many ways this doesn't make the purchase of both games essential but nevertheless it's a good game in it's own right.

Deaf Gamers comment:
No problems at all for deaf gamers as all information is shown in text.