Over the weekend I finally got myself into serious gaming and got to playing the Asian version of Aquanaut’s Holiday: Hidden Memories for the PS3. First of all, the game is highly importable. Just make sure you are getting the Asian version. The whole game is in english and if needed, you can switch to chinese.
The graphics are amazing. It really feels like you are cruising underwater with the sound encoded in DTS adding to the atmosphere of diving.
There’s a lot to see beneath the waters and a mystery to solve. My only gripe? There’s no evening diving. It’s like racing 24 hours in Gran Turismo, the sun is always up and doesn’t change or set. It is widely known that there are varieties of fish that only come out during the night.
You can’t use your own music while under water and the in-game music is something you wouldn’t want to listen to outside of the game. Which is realy weird for a game that relies heavily on “atmosphere”.
Getting around requires a skill since you can either navigate through all the tunnels and passageways to get around and then there’s the NaSu. It’s some sort of becon that you can set anywhere in any of your explored areas. You also need to buy batteries to supply the sonar buoys located all over in order to navigate properly. It’s a good way of controlling the progress of the story. Sort of leading you from one plot twist after another compared to the free flowing exploration of Endless Ocean which would lead you well…endless searching for the next chapter.
But this is a game that the PS3 really needs and it’s sad that there’s no release date for North America. If you’re looking for a really casual game on the PS3 then look no further. This is that game. Take a hint Sony.
AQUANAUT’S HOLIDAY opening
If you have the Wii, you’re stuck with Endless Ocean. The plot is not as mysterious or as “dark” as Aquanauts but it takes a more relaxing turn. Filled with Enya-esque music, which I believe is better here than on the PS3. Just load up your music on an SD card and play away. Endless Occean provides a relaxing environment for diving and it really is diving with you and your dolphin friend compared to the enclosed submersible that Aquanauts puts you in.
Endless Ocean Trailer E3 2007(Wii)
But then there are the last generation graphics and the weird poking around of sea creatures. Then again, they do have the concept of time and moving around the map via your boat. Much easier than Aquanauts. But then again, how do you know where to go? Using the Wii-mote is easy and painless. Just literally point and swim in that direction.
But once you’ve finished the main story, there’s hardly any motivation to pursue all the side quests. The only way to track your progress is to check your sea discoveries and aqua library. Aquanauts has the trophy integration thus providing us with a rough guide on what to complete next.
So if you have both consoles, I suggest you get Aquanauts for the real underwater adventure. If you want to relax, get Endless Ocean and just sit on the deck and watch the sunset. I’m not kidding, you can really do that.
But if you’re a big underwater fan, then by all means get both. There’s a lot to learn about the ocean and the secrets that it holds.