Yu-Gi-Oh the Dawn of Destiny for the Xbox is based on the popular anime series where Yugi and his friends use their supernatural decks of cards to summon creatures for duels against other players. The game features the card-dueling aspect of the popular TV series, but turns up being a rather dull and tedious chore more than anything else.
First of all, if you are new to this type of card battling game (as I am) it will take a good many games before you even remotely begin to understand the confusing and sometimes pointless rules of the game. Since I am new to this type of game I’m going to try and overlook the steep learning curve and review it based on other aspects such as playability, entertainment value and just whether it’s enjoyable or not.
Yu-Gi-Oh the Dawn of Destiny starts you off with a random deck of cards. You will have spell cards, monster cards, trap cards and summon cards. If your opponent plays a monster card you can counter-attack it with a monster card of your own. The spell and trap cards are used for various offensive and defensive maneuvers. There are countless combinations that you can use and hundreds of monsters to attack your opponents with. Since I’m on the subject of opponents, I need to mention that the only way to play against a friend is via system linking two Xboxes together. That’s right, there is no Xbox Live support or even split-screen option. So let’s say you and your brother want to have a card duel, all you will need is two Xboxes, a system link cable, two TV’s and two copies of Yu-Gi-Oh. Why not just buy a deck of cards and make life a little easier? This game could’ve been just a bit exciting if you could have played against human opponents via Xbox Live.
The visuals in Yu-Gi-Oh are based on Egyption themes, which means there’s plenty of sandy browns and shadowy backgrounds to be seen. The box claims that you can “witness your favorite monsters engage in spectacular 3D battles”. Well, what you get when you play a monster card is a 3D version of that monster on screen for a few seconds and a short attack animation. Not very “spectacular” in my book. Overall the visuals are bland and unimpressive. The music and sound effects are likewise very forgettable.
Unless you are Yu-Gi-Oh’s biggest fan or just a total card-dueling game geek, I can’t see any reason to even consider playing this game. So if you were to ask me if Yu-Gi-Oh the Dawn of Destiny is an awful game, I would have to answer yes, but it’s not as bad as being poked in the eye with a sharp stick.
To sum it all up, Yu-Gi-Oh just isn’t very much fun to play. If there had been Xbox Live support it would have at least given you some live players to compete against, but still would be a boring card-dueling game with too many confusing rules and a bland presentation. For the hardcore Yu-Gi-Oh fans out there who need a card game fix, I would advise you to go buy the real card game and play it with a friend.
- Gameplay: 4
- Graphics: 4
- Sound: 4
- Replay: 3
- Overall: 3
- A dull and tedious card dueling game.
— Buzz Kilgore