30 Days of Xbox: Buffy The Vampire Slayer

If it’s a Vampire Slayer video game, does that make it stake and chips?

Buffy The Vampire Slayer is one of those iconic TV series for people of a certain age… and I’m of a certain age, or probably just a little older than that, without giving too much away.

There’s actually two different games I could have played, this one and Buffy: Chaos Bleeds, but I decided on this one simply because it’s the core of the engine also used in Indiana Jones and the Emperor’s Tomb, but that game came much later. I wanted to check out where it all began, all too aware that it might be significantly less refined.

It’s been a while since I’ve engaged with Ms Summers on the Xbox, so I’d largely forgotten much of the game’s plot, but what’s impressive here is how the developers mixed brawling action (and unlike Indy, Buffy is very much a fighting game where puzzles are totally an afterthought) with the kind of humour and rich plot that made the series what it was.

It’s actively fun staking out vampires and other undead beasties, and while it’s a little rough and ready around the edges, everyone is still identifiable. I’m pretty sure that’s not Sarah Michelle Gellar voicing Buffy, but it’s a very game soundalike, and the rest of the cast is genuinely present and in fine voicing form. Although I do now have to stop and wonder if I’m hearing Giles or Mr Finch….


Maybe that’s just me

Buffy is indeed a little rougher and more glitchy around the edges than Indiana Jones was, but because it’s a more fighting-centric game, there’s really not much time to stop and ponder on that. I’m too busy using those wooden spiky thingies to take on those, like, undead guys with the icky faces.

Fat Duck Tech Retro Xbox Game Rankings

  1. Prince Of Persia: Sands Of Time
  2. Taito Legends 2
  3. Sid Meier’s Pirates!
  4. Panzer Dragoon Orta
  5. Outrun 2
  6. Ninja Gaiden
  7. Black
  8. Buffy The Vampire Slayer
  9. The Incredible Hulk: Ultimate Destruction
  10. Indiana Jones and the Emperor’s Tomb
  11. Godzilla: Save The Earth
  12. The Punisher
  13. The Hulk
  14. SSX Tricky
  15. NFL Street
  16. Disney Extreme Skate Adventure
  17. FIFA 2004
  18. NHL Rivals 2004
  19. Rocky
  20. Spy vs Spy
  21. Combat Elite: WWII Paratroopers
  22. Rugby League
  23. Judge Dredd: Dredd vs Death
  24. Dead or Alive Xtreme Beach Volleyball

Total bias call here; I’m more likely to come back to a simple pick-up-and-play brawler, and I rather do like Buffy anyway. This is a fine, fun game that could do with a bit more visual polish, although I can’t imagine anyone’s working on a remake, given what the complex rights situation would be anyway.

Next time: You can’t see me.

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