Review #1 by Cristobal Soto
This is a well-developed anime-style fighting game. It features 8 female characters, most of them are anime-based (some of them are done in 3D rendered sprites, ala Donkey Kong Country). Like most other fighting games, Angel Eyes has the typical modes: arcade, vs, story, training and option. Among these modes, arcade, vs and training are ok, but the story mode is one of the weakest parts in the entire game. It gives you no options, and all you see are some speeches between each fight. Ah and almost forgot, everything is in Japanese (which I can't read). However, you are able to see the "hidden characters" which seem to be there are 11 of them all together.
Regarding to the gameplay, Angel Eyes is a fast paced game. The control is responsive and it gives you an adequate feeling. Each girl has a couple of special moves. When filling up the energy bar, they can release some kind of super moves. The game also includes combo systems, super jumps, air combos and launcher attacks...pretty basic stuff here though, so don't expect to see some spectacular moves. By the way, the super moves are pretty lame, and personally I'd stick to create combos (or guess them, it seems to have pre-programmed combos :P ). It has an unique feature called super dash. It lets you to execute an uppercut to the opponent, then do a dash attack (pressing R1, kick) for a juggling combo. In this case, the game will point you with an "attack chance" message on screen. Also, there are some unique characters as well. For example, a little girl holding a mechanic teddy bear with nasty attacks.
Graphically, the character designs are cute and some of them look pretty sexy, at least the hand-drawn sprites (some of them are 3D pre-rendered sprites). During the character select screen, it shows the girls in SD (Super Deformed) shapes. When you high-light one, it will make a pose (2 or 3 frames of animation), pretty cute. Unlike many current fighting games, the introduction uses the traditional 2D animation instead of CG (computer graphics), and it still looks great.
As I mentioned earlier, there are some characters done with 3D pre-rendered sprites. However, the detailed level isn't very high due to the lack of colors in the palette. In the game itself, character animation is okay for the 2D hand-drawn anime characters, but the 3D pre-rendered ones are somewhat choppy. My guessing is that, though the frame-rate is equal to the hand-drawn characters, they didn't use any motion-data like many current fighting games (ex: Tekken), so the moves "are" choppy. Needless to say, these plastic-like characters don't add any appeal to the game (and you know how you like these sexy and cute anime girls). Regarding to the backgrounds, they are alright, but not a big deal at all.
How about the sound? It is fine. Some tracks are pretty nice, while others...you won't even notice them their existences. The music is kind of "midi" style, I'd say very average. The sound effects and voices are well sampled, and adequate. Nothing memorable at all though.
You can probably compare this game with another anime fighting title called Asuka 120% Excellent Burning Fest . If you enjoy Asuka120%, you may well enjoy this title too. Please take note I *love* this game, and I've played it a lot more than any PSX title (excluding RPGs). So my opinion may be somewhat partial. Graphics-wise, AE is way better (although I think Asuka120% has a lot more attractive characters, such as Asuka, Karina, Megumi, Shinobu). Sound-wise, AE is too different to be compared. It has "real" music, while Asuka120% has synthetic tunes (very Megaman-ish). Gameplay-wise, I think they are very similar (although in Asuka120%, you can set the speed you like).
Overall, if you like Asuka120%, you may well like this game, the graphics are superior. Just the story mode is worse: all you see are speeches in Japanese (unless you know the language well). While in Asuka120%, you can choose where to go and "do" some things (buying items and the like). As a last word, I'd say AE is a standard fighting game nowadays. I'd give it a 7 out of 10, and two of these points are just for the anime characters, they are certainly cute.