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Review The Matrix: Path of Neo (XBOX, PS2): I am the one! It is fun being Neo.

genre: action, adventure

After reading several bad reviews I felt compelled to at least give a more positive view on "Path of Neo". 

First I will point that this game does what most players wanted from "Enter the Matrix". And that's to be Neo. You will play the adventures he experienced in the trilogy. But you will also play the training levels, they skipped in the first movie (only the fight between Morpheus and Neo was also in "The Matrix"). These training levels are great, since they are a homage to several Asian action movies in general (mostly Japanese and Hong Kong). If you look closely the first stage of the shooting level is a reference to "Hard Boiled". The sword training is a reference to several samurai movies. And the first fighting level is a reference to Bruce Lee in "Enter the dragon" So for fans of this genre this is a must play. Being Neo is really cool. Most of his moves he does in the movie you can do in the game (special mention: the round twist kick with his pole in "Burly Brawl" where he fights 100's of Smith's, really satisfying move to do in the game). Only you can not fly at will, you can jump high and very high but not fly like he does in the movie. I think this is a missed opportunity, but is not necessary to enjoy the game fully! 

The graphics in general are not that bad, but could have been much better. (The PS2 has even worse graphics than the XBOX (original) but it can be improved with a component cable and LCD TV.) There are some levels that are a little tedious and random and do feel like an attempt to prolong the game length which might just put some players off. In one level concerning The Frenchman you are forced to fight ants. Say what? Don't panic. Breathe and then assess the situation. Is it worth going through this agony. Yes, yes, yes, it surely is. After this level is the precursor to fight multiple Smiths. Any level where you can do that is awesome. Only remember to get a pole to enforce that awesomeness. Despite the action sometimes getting confusing and chaotic, the controls not always being intuitive, the game play is more than fantastic and satisfying. 

There is an alternative ending which is a reference to Japanese Monster movies. This game like The Matrix trilogy is pure entertainment. It is fun being Neo in this game and that is what it is about. Go play it! 

(Addendum Aug 2010: I am still enjoying the game even when it is full of flaws. The huge fun factor makes up for all of this).

Edit Monday 18-03-2013.
Between 2010 and now I have replayed this game a couple of times (on the XBOX and PS2) because it is simply awesome being the one! I know the graphics might put some people off. But Path of Neo is the perfect example of proof where gameplay wins it from the visuals.

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