PlayStation 2
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Developed by: Zoom
Published by: Eidos Interactive
Players: 1
Platform: PlayStation 2
ESRB Rating: Teen (13+) for Comic Mischief, Mild Violence

It’s summertime; time for mosquitoes to store up as much blood as they can before the winter cold. Unfortunately, summer also seems to be driving the Yamada family mad. This is going to make things difficult for Mr. Mosquito as he hunts for blood in their home.

Game Play

The first thing about Mister Mosquito that caught my attention was its sheer originality. How many other games put you in the role of a mosquito, flying around the house, sucking blood, and driving everyone crazy? None come to my mind; but that’s exactly the kind of thing you’ll be doing in Mister Mosquito. Each level puts you against a certain member of the Yamada family. The goal is to suck as much blood as possible. This is not as easy as it sounds, however. At the side of the screen, you’ll see the number of tanks you must fill with blood in order to pass the level. Often you will need to search for extra tanks throughout the room, since you don’t always start out carrying as many as you need. Once you have your tanks, it’s time to start the blood sucking. You can’t just suck blood from any part of the body, however. Weak points on the body must be targeted for landing. Once you land on the target spot, you’ll rotate the thumbstick to suck blood. The speed at which you rotate the thumbstick effects how much blood you suck, as well as how irritated your host is getting. If you make them too mad, they’ll swat you. Game over, man. If you manage to drive someone mad without being swatted, that person will engage you in a battle. As soon as this starts, a time limit will appear at the top of the screen. You’ll have to attack the person in the weak points, often repeatedly, until the person falls down. If you win within the allotted time, you’ll unlock a new costume for Mister Mosquito. It might sound shallow or boring, but I assure you it’s not. There is plenty of variety in each level to keep things feeling new. I’ll admit that it’s a pretty simple game, but it is also quite challenging - yes, even frustrating at times. It’s hard to explain the addictive nature of the game. You just have to play it. The biggest letdown in Mister Mosquito is that it is over far too quickly. I beat the game in about 5 hours. It is fun enough that you might want to go back and try to collect all the hidden tanks though. If you manage this, you’ll unlock a harder version of the game, with some changes in level design and story. There are also a couple of multi-player minigames that can be accessed by inputting certain codes at the main menu. These codes can be found on the Internet.

Graphics

Graphically speaking, the game looks pretty average. It gets the job done, and does it with a certain flair. Humor can be found everywhere, even in the visuals. You just might see a housewife do a back flip, or a fat guy shoot you with an energy beam. The game is just plain crazy.

Sound

Speaking of humor, sound is no exception. This game is home to some of the worst voice acting I’ve heard in some time. It can be deafeningly annoying, but is sometimes hilarious. I laugh every time I hear \'Shower Attack!\' exclaimed in the bathroom. People seem to repeat the same lines over and over again. Though repetitive, this actually helps with the game play. For instance, if you hear a person say, \'I can’t see anything’, it’s your queue to fly in and stick them.

Controls/Interface

For the most part, the controls work fine. There are certain times where things feel a bit sluggish though. I couldn’t always turn as sharply as I would have liked, and perhaps the thumbsticks could have been better implemented. Still, the game has such a unique concept that it’s probably difficult to come up with the perfect control scheme. The one they came up with works.

Appropriateness

With a cute, colorful little critter on the cover, you might be thinking this game is aimed at small children. Never judge a game by its cover. Granted, there isn’t a whole lot to be offended by here, there is one thing that needs to be noted - that is the bathroom level. Here we find the daughter of the family taking a bath. No details are shown, making it not much worse than shampoo commercials these days. Still, I would be embarrassed to play that level in front of other people. Aside from that, there may be a little bit of innuendo in the dialog, but nothing really stood out to me. I don’t know if it was intended, or if it was just my imagination.

Overall Conclusion

Mister Mosquito is a very addictive and innovative game. It’s a shame that most people have probably never heard of it. If you’re the kind of gamer who likes weird Japanese games like this, you should definitely check it out. However, due to its length, and lack of broad appeal, you might be better off renting it first or looking in the bargain bin.

Final Score

Game Play: 15/20 Graphics: 7/10 Sound: 6/10 Stability: 5/5 Controls/Interface: 4/5 Appropriateness: 41/50

Total: 78%

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Christ Centered Gamer looks at video games from two view points. We analyze games on a secular level which will break down a game based on its graphics, sound, stability and overall gaming experience. If you’re concerned about the family friendliness of a game, we have a separate moral score which looks at violence, language, sexual content, occult references and other ethical issues.

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