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Ecco the Dolphin is widely regarded as one of the best Megadrive games of all time. It's originality, and fluid gameplay was refined to the point of excellence and many years passed before the game was updated for the Dreamcast. Ecco made the 128-bit leap, seeing his world turn from 2D to 3D. Now one of the best Dreamcast games comes to the PlayStation 2.
Delving into the underwater world is similar to flying a jet, but being a dolphin is a more relaxed and pleasurable experience. The same sort of control method and freedom of movement applies.
Ecco is essentially an exploration and puzzle game. One of the earliest levels sees a baby whale trapped under falling rocks. The mother is naturally distressed and Ecco cannot free the baby by himself. He needs to make use of his sonar to communicate with other dolphins to enlist their help. Then it's possible to move the rocks and save the day. Other puzzles include simple things like working out your air supply in underwater caves or outfoxing dangerous sharks. Stealth tactics come into play in the later levels, and while it's hardly Metal Gear Dolphin, it does add variety to the gameplay.
From a graphical point of view Ecco doesn't disappoint. Visually identical to the DC version, Ecco has impressive and stylish visuals, especially when you time travel to the future and witness the columns of water suspended high above the cities.
Ecco will challenge you. It's a difficult game, but that makes it all the more rewarding when you finally complete that level that has been holding you back. Ecco the Dolphin is one of those 'must-play' titles.