A near perfect Unique RPG that takes itself so seriously, that you have to love it.

User Rating: 10 | Barkley, Shut Up and Jam: Gaiden, Chapter 1 of the Hoopz Barkley SaGa PC
Barkley, Shut up and Jam: Gaiden (BSUAJG) is a game like no other. It takes place in a post-cyberpocalyptic world called Neo New York, where Basketball has been outlawed due to the legendary Chaos Dunk that destroyed New York. Now, another Chaos Dunk has been executed by the nefarious terrorist organization: B.L.O.O.D.M.O.S.E.S. and Charles Barkley is mankind's last hope to save the world.

Just by reading the plot description, you can see how ridiculous this game may sound. But on the contrary, it is one of the deepest, immersive games I have ever played. The best part: It takes itself completely seriously.

The battles (or 'Slam Jams') in BSUAJG are very fun, because, though they look like basic Final Fantasy rip-off battles, each character has his own, unique fight style. For example, Barkley is able to do 'Freethrow", "Passing", and "Layup Shots" that you can only do by pressing certain buttons at certain times. This fight mechanic makes every battle interesting, because instead of just selecting attacks and letting the characters fight it out, you must manually fight the battles yourself, to some extent. All of this, plus a couple more unique features make the gameplay very memorable.

In a game about Basketball, it's easy to see why people not into sports would pick it up, but I assure you, sports is only a theme for the deep and immersive story BSUAJG has. It takes sharp twists and turns, shows detailed character development, and has probably the funniest dialogue I have seen in a long time. While it does make great jokes and seems ridiculous at times, not once does the game make a joke at it's own expense. It never breaches the "Fourth Wall", which makes it a complete winner in my book.

I'm not really into the repetitive, random encounter, level up style of JRPGs. But this game turns the basic formula on it's head and makes an incredibly enjoyable experience for anyone who picks it up.
Plus it's free, so what do you have to lose!?