It was the dawn of the 2000's and it was the beginning of the PS2 era. The Bouncer was one of it's first games. I was 14 in 2009 when I got it. I think I saw a trailer for it on YouTube. I was quite impressed. Lets git into it.
The story is in cliched but in depth. So basically, you're 3 Bouncer that work at a bar called "Dog Street". The love Interest is a young girl named Domonique Cross. She decides to hang out and give the main protagonist Sion Bizzard a Cross for his birthday when suddenly an elite group of Ninjas capture her and take Domonique away. Now the 3 bouncers must unite and take back the young girl. Each character has their own in depth back story that branches out into long cutscenes.
Sion a short but wilfull protagonist. He is in love with Domonique.
Volt a powerful tough man who keeps to himself.
Kou the long Jokester ladies man.
The story is incredibly indepth for a beat em up. You find out that her capture was all a conspiracy. The story can lead to some tear jerk heart break moments. It's all magical but short lived and oddly enough forgettable.
The gameplay is a brawler/rpg hybrid. It's simple but works. Sadly though it's incredibly short and the fights are boiled down to nothing more than arenas. All you do is basically either beat up people, level up a character that you main, go down hallways, rarely do you ever explore, stealth missions, and that's really it. The cutscenes are woefully long. But it's still kinda fun. Some characters are more powerful than others.
Sion, can be quick
Volt is chunky but strong.
Kou is very limber and nimble
The bosses can be a big bitch.
There is survival mode and multiplayer but they aren't very fun. I don't need to explain why they just aren't. They have even less depth of the game itself.
Can we mention something for a second. The graphics in this game are absolute eye candy! They are
some of the best I have seen on the Sony Playstation 2. Talk about Toy Story quality! Square really delivered. Tetsuya Nomura has his nice signature art style on this game. Everyone is nice and shiney and look colorful and unique. Everyone is round. If more PS2 games looked like this no one would complain. The enviorments in most location are drab but overall the Bouncer for the PS2 is just is just truely gorgeous. The fashion design however is a little too complex for a normal human being to remember or comprehend. The fashion screams late 90's transitioning into early 2000's. The animation isn't half bad either. You will never see a real time game look as good as it's cutscenes and have an nice atmosphere. This must've been mind blowing for people evolving from the PS1 era!
The Bouncer is full of pumpin' techno songs that where a hallmark of the early 2000's and late 90's. Lot's of techno rock. It's pretty good. The VO is cool to. SFX in most areas in game aren't that good.
The Bouncer is nothing more than a novelty experience. It can't be experienced once, or twice, but only thrice. The Bouncer is just a tech demo with a nice story to boot. Beautiful graphics and interesting story is the games only selling point. Such a fine marriage of ludology and narratology is quickly divorced. The RPG elements and Beat Em Up elements are fairly good at best. It's no Devil May Cry. It's probably on Ebay for real cheap if you're really tempted.