Phantom Dust

The first game I’m playing is the Xbox exclusive Phantom Dust (Giant Bomb|Wikipedia).


Phantom Dust is a game where you run around an arena and use magic abilities that you pick up to defeat your opponents. These abilities appear as floating orbs and when you pick them up you need to select a face button to map them to – and this is one of the big things that stood out to me. The controls in this, while relatively easy to get used to, are completely different than any other game I’ve played. The analog sticks control movement and the camera as you would expect, but the triggers handle engaging a lock on to your opponents as well as switching between them. The face buttons, as mentioned above, work as abilities that get mapped as you pick them up. Like I said, strange to get used to but I was starting to get a feel for it after an hour so I’m sure that with time it becomes intuitive.

Another thing that really stuck out to me is how good this game looks – it’s an original Xbox game and it looks incredible for that system. I guess I’m just used to my Playstation 2, but wow these graphics are nice for their time period.


The story in this game is much too long for this summary, but there was a good long cinematic in the intro that explained the world, and all the characters I ran across were voiced competently. The game has a very cyber distopian future about it and was clearly influenced by The Matrix.

Phantom Dust according to various sites, also has some sort of card collecting mechanic, but I did not run across it during my brief time with the game.

There is a multiplayer aspect to this game, but with Microsoft’s shut down of the original Xbox Live service, it is sadly not usable.

Verdict: Revisit – this game was pretty fun once I got used to the controls, I’ll be sure to pick it up again.


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