Guilty Gear XX / Guilty Gear X2

STORY:  In the time following Dizzy's disappearance, the mysterious Post War Administration Bureau began secretly investigating the Gears and fighters from previous tournaments for their own needs and ambitions. Various powers were working in the shadows to gain control of the world, one being the very creator of the Gears, a mysterious figure known only as "That Man". Fighters find themselves in a reality beyond their control, most notably in the manipulative hands of the villainess I-No, who is revealed to be a servant of That Man for reasons yet unknown.

Guilty Gear XX character selection screen.

Guilty Gear XX (also known as Guilty Gear X2) is the first update to the original Guilty Gear X engine. The game debuts 3 new playable characters: I-no, Slayer and Bridget. Gameplay mechanics, stages, music, and character abilities have also been tweaked (for the better). 

New to the gameplay is "Burst," enabling players to escape from combos. This idea of "escaping combos" is a controversial one, since very few other fighting games offer such a thing. On one hand, it gives you a second chance if your caught in a combo... but Burst can also become a bit tedious and even annoying if you're the one with the combo advantage. At the end of the day, I suppose its personal preference whether or not you approve of this gameplay element. (But in retrospect, the Burst system has stayed with the series since this installment). Also added is the "False Roman Cancel," used for offensive pressure or mix-up. It requires 25% tension, and can even be performed if the move doesn't hit. Finally, a fifth button was added for sweep, which feels much more natural than the 2-button sweep from the prequel.


Chipp Zanuff versus Testament on a sick-looking stage.


Even though GGXX is merely an "update" to Guilty Gear X, the new installment presented a brand new (and rather badass) anime intro, along with slick new character artwork. If you ask me, a great intro and sexy character artwork can go a long way for a fighting game's "presentation". The PS2 version is packed with some cool modes, including an intricate Story Mode featuring tons of fully-voiced dialogue (for every character in the game)! Character voice acting is in Japanese (as it should be), and is fantastic for the most part. There are also several different paths you can take during story mode which activate alternate character confrontations, slightly altering each character's story.

Guilty Gear's trademark metal-themed soundtrack is a "bit much" in some cases, as many stage BGMs end up sounding very similar to one another... but as always, the guitar-thrashing insanity gives GGXX its unique sound. Graphically, GGXX still impresses and is nothing short of a work of art in motion. The 3 new character designs and their ultra cool animations really add that extra "wow factor". The characters of Guilty Gear have some of the wildest moves ever seen in a fighting game, period. Whether or not it suits your individual fighting game tastes, the game is worth trying out for sure.







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Page Updated: July 18th, 2024
Developer(s): Arc System Works
Publisher(s): Sammy Corporation
Designer(s): Daisuke Ishiwatari
Artwork by: Daisuke Ishiwatari, Emiko Iwasaki
Platform(s): Arcade, PlayStation 2
Release Date(s): 2002                                     Arcade
Dec. 12th, 2002
Feb. 3rd, 2003
Characters Sol Badguy, Ky Kiske, Millia Rage, Chipp Zanuff, May, Jam, Johnny, Baiken, Potemkin, Faust, Axl Low, Anji Mito, Venom, Dizzy, Testament, Zato-1, Justice, Kliff Undersn, Slayer, Bridget, I-no, Zappa, Robo Ky

Featured Video:

Related Games: Guilty Gear XX #Reload, Guilty Gear XX Slash, Guilty Gear X, Guilty Gear XX Accent Core, Guilty Gear XX Accent Core Plus R, Guilty Gear, Guilty Gear X Advance, Guilty Gear Isuka, Guilty Gear Judgment, Guilty Gear Xrd -SIGN-, Guilty Gear Xrd -REVELATOR-, GGXrd REV 2, Guilty Gear -STRIVE-, BlazBlue: Calamity Trigger, Hokuto No Ken, Sengoku Basara X , Street Fighter III: 3rd Strike, Marvel Vs. Capcom 2

Gameplay Engine

 9.0 / 10

Story / Theme

 9.5 / 10

Overall Graphics

 9.5 / 10


 8.0 / 10

Music / Sound Effects

 8.5 / 10


 9.0 / 10

Art Direction

 9.5 / 10


 8.5 / 10

Options / Extras

 9.0 / 10

Intro / Presentation

 10 / 10

Replayability / Fun

 7.5 / 10

"Ouch" Factor

 7.5 / 10


 8.5 / 10


 8.9 / 10

 Review based on PS2 version      


Final Words:

The mainstream media rated GGXX incredibly well, most reviewers going completely GAGA over the graphics & large character sprites. Some reviewers even went all out, calling GGXX "The best 2D fighting game ever"... or claimed it has "the best 2D animation ever in a fighting game!"..... I like GGXX and all, but I wouldn't go that far.

In my book... "Best Animation" and "Best 2D Fighting Game" still goes to Street Fighter III: 3rd Strike. MVC2 is also a contender for the latter. Of course, it's personal preference when judging how good a fighting game's gameplay engine is... and I prefer the smoother, sturdier, more traditional feel of SFIII: 3rd Strike. I can also play MVC2 for hours upon hours (upon years) on end... but never could getting into playing GGXX for even close to as long.

As far as "animation" goes, 3rd Strike is still ahead of Guilty Gear by miles. In fact, GGXX has its fair share of awkward & stiff moments in terms of animation. Some attacks just look off, and still don't really say "ouch" when they connect either. There's also not a whole lot of impact shown when fighters hit the ground, which in my book is an important part of a fighting game's animation grade.

Apart from being a bit overrated by the mainstream (especially when considering some of the other great fighting games of the time), Guilty Gear XX was a milestone for the series and a classy fighting game all around.
~TFG Webmaster | @Fighters_Gen  

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