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Ecco The Dolphin: Defender of the Future

by Dreamcast
Sega Dreamcast
Everyone
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (43 customer reviews) 84 / 100

Price: $37.95 & FREE Shipping. Details
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Ecco The Dolphin: Defender of the Future + Sega Dreamcast Console + Visual Memory Unit - Blue
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Product Details

  • ASIN: B00004T4XI
  • Media: Video Game
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (43 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #17,048 in Video Games (See Top 100 in Video Games)

Product Description

Product Description

Ecco, the bottlenose star of a nearly forgotten side-scrolling adventure on the retired Sega Genesis, has made it to the Dreamcast in Ecco the Dolphin: Defender of the Future, and this time he's a 3-D dolphin in a hyperrealistic underwater world. Players will control Ecco as he is sent back into the past and tries to reinstate the paradise of his future. How? Evil forces have conspired to destroy the planet, and if Ecco can recover the stolen and scattered dolphin power, he'll be able to restore the harmony between dolphins and humans.

But there'll be time for that. First, you're going to have to learn to swim, eat, and think like a dolphin. Use different songs to communicate with other sea creatures and be prepared to defend yourself against predatory sharks. Later, go on to solve puzzles and work with others to accomplish your goals. The game features beautifully detailed seascapes, with creatures and plants that look and move realistically.

Amazon.com

Ecco the dolphin has always played the part of Sega's more sedate mascot, providing a relaxing contrast to the hyperactive Sonic the Hedgehog games. Ecco the Dolphin: Defender of the Future continues this tradition on the Dreamcast, putting the title character in charge of saving the world yet again. An alien force (creatively called The Foe) has abducted all the humans and most of the dolphins from earth, leaving only a tiny force of dolphins to restore things to normal. As Ecco, players must travel through an enormous underwater world, interacting with other sea creatures and solving puzzles in a quest to stop The Foe once and for all.

The Dreamcast's power is exploited to beautiful new extremes in this game. The underwater environments are filled with shimmering rocks, colorful plants, and outcroppings of coral. Families of turtles slip through the water in a stately line, while schools of fish dance in circles and translucent jellyfish sit suspended in the depths. The most amazing creatures by far are the dolphins--including Ecco--as they are rendered in perfect detail and benefit from incredibly fluid animation. This is one beautiful game, and the serene soundtrack adds to the overall atmosphere.

Unfortunately, the gameplay is about as shallow as the ocean is deep. There are many missions to complete, from dolphin races to killing teams of sharks, but there are so few controls that nearly all assignments are completed in the same way. Tasks become much harder as the game progresses, and the lack of direction given to players players needlessly adds to the difficulty. We wasted countless hours of trial and error trying to figure out what we were supposed to do--time that would have been saved had the mission objectives been clearer. Still, Ecco the Dolphin is an engaging way to waste time, thanks to its open environments and hypnotic beauty. --T. Byrl Baker

Pros:

  • Absolutely beautiful environments
  • Fluid animation

Cons:

  • No way to save games in the middle of a level
  • Repetitive gameplay
  • The game slows when there are many objects onscreen at once

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
43 of 46 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful, but fishy October 4, 2000
Let's get one thing straight: This is easily the most realistic dolphin simulator on the Dreamcast today.
The graphics are, in a word, outstanding. When I got my first look at the undersea world (at the game's option screen, no less), my mouth was agape. Sunlight rippled on the colorful ocean rocks, jellyfish bobbed slowly in the gentle tide and bubbles lazily floated to the surface. It truly was beautiful. It's clear that the good folks at Sega did their research when it came to creating this undersea domain.
The animal models themselves are also well-done. Ecco looks and swims just like a real dolphin. Add countless sharks, fish, jellyfish, turtles and other undersea life and you have an entire ocean at your fingertips.
Enough rambling about the graphics, there's a game to play.
To begin with, I don't really care for the story. Sometime in the future, humans and dolphins work together to explore space. Some interstellar deity known as the Foe doesn't take kindly to that, and invades the Earth. Mankind, with its limitless intellegence and resources is forced to stand by while the dolphins take matters into their own hands. Er, flippers.
Naturally, you control Ecco in the 3-D undersea world. All of his moves from his 16-bit days are here. You can swim, swim really fast and sing songs. There are a few powerups, most of which let you swim even faster.
The controls are actually difficult to master. Getting Ecco to swim is easy, getting him to swim the right way (AWAY from the sharks) is harder. You'll die quite a bit.
Plus, the missions (several in each level) are rather vague. Generally, you'll enter a new area; a nearby crystal will give you a very general hint, and you're left to fend for yourself.
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32 of 35 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The most beautiful game environment yet created July 26, 2000
Durability: 5.0 out of 5 stars    Educational: 5.0 out of 5 stars    Fun: 5.0 out of 5 stars   
Playing the demo of Ecco the Doplhin: Defender of the Future at E3 in May is what convinced me to purchase a Dreamcast. It is the best game I have seen or played for the system, edging out Jet Grind Radio, a great game in its own right. The graphics are superb, play control is intuitive, and the environment is immersive yet beautiful. Playing this game, you feel like you are a dolphin swimming in crystal waters, avoiding sharks, and (though the demo was't complete so I don't know for sure) saving the world. Sega and developer Appaloosa both deserve praise for this game, one where the avatar is not a gun-toting bi-ped, but instead a sleek aquatic mammal. I love sports games, fighting games, RPGs, and action adventure titles, but for most new games in these genres, you get the feeling you've played it before. Not with Ecco. Bordering on revolutionary, Ecco delivers a gaming experience freshly different and totally enjoyable. Sega should also be proud of this game as it showcases how fluid and graphically stunning games on the Dreamcast can be. Ecco is a must buy for any Dreamcast owner. If you aren't one already, become one, and get this game when it comes out.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful
The Ecco The Dolphin games for Sega's previous systems have always been a relaxed and relieving alternative to the droves of violent action/fighting games. Ecco The Dolphin: Defender Of The Future for Dreamcast carries over the theme and atmosphere of the past Ecco games, and injects the formula with smooth and realistic 3D evironments. This has to be one of the best looking console system games ever. Once you get over the hypnotizing graphics and sound however, you will find there are some problems with this game. The control is precise and responsive, but some levels are way too difficult, and offer little information to help the player complete the next objective. Unless you are a seasoned gamer, you will be overwhelmed to the point of boredom with the longs hours you must spend in order to finish Ecco. This is not one I would recommend for the kids...a lot of patience and skill are needed to play this game. If you are looking for a game with tons of depth that will pass the time however, you've certainly found it. Even if it makes you pull your hair out from frustration, Ecco: Defender Of The Future is a great title to have to showcase the graphical abilities of the Dreamcast, if nothing else.
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15 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another Upper Class Game For Dreamcast July 26, 2000
Durability: 5.0 out of 5 stars    Educational: 5.0 out of 5 stars    Fun: 5.0 out of 5 stars   
ECCO : DOTF. Received my copy a few weeks ago. Have been playing it alot, here is what I think of this game ;D Boot up, nice classic "SEGA" image appears (no music). Followed by the Appoloosia Interactive Loga (no music). You cannot skip past these scenes. Finnally you are presented with a luscious title screen, With Ecco presented in the middle, truley awesome title screen. But there is still no music! I looked down at my VMU and saw it has said "LOADING" on it, with these bubbles. Looked back at the screen and music began to play, "PRESS START BUTTON" flashes on the screen. You can see why it took a few seconds to load, it was because the following menus are AWESOME! Hit with 3D underwater scene with menu text in the middle, nice sounds... "poP pOP PoP" and "Gulp", real water sounds. They are very nice menus.... The game is very high quality. So much time has been put into it. At the start of a new game, after you have enetered in your VM Save game name (2 Blocks VM Data), you begin. BLAH BLAH BLAH. The levels are hard to start with, controls seem to be apart of that problem, I have only just really got the hang of it. When I first tried to move Ecco, I went all over the place! Remember, he can turn upside down, all around, knocks you off sometimes, like the small caves... There is always a task to complete in the levels. The levels are really good. The VM uses 6 blocks, for ECCO settings and an additional 2 blocks for each Save file.
Graphics are very high quality. Really pumping graphics in this game. The sound is also very good. Music is relaxing and changes often to suit the scene. There are two 2D levels in the game, they are like bonus levels, They look so cool!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
4.0 out of 5 stars Hope you like the ocean.
O.K. so I haven't really gotten far in this game. I like it, I really do. I just have a deep fear of sharks and it doesn't take long into this game to be facing big ones. Read more
Published 11 months ago by demonsRendangered
5.0 out of 5 stars Don't buy this game if you hate Dolphins!
This game is so relaxing to play. The music alone in the game is so relaxing that you could literally just not play the game and fall asleep to it playing in the background! Read more
Published 11 months ago by Cimbus
5.0 out of 5 stars i love this game
the only thing i didnt like about the game was it didnt have the manuel to help me figure out stuff. Read more
Published on January 23, 2013 by alisha
5.0 out of 5 stars Very artistic game for Dreamcast
I would recommend this great game to any Dreamcast enthusiasts that enjoy the highly detailed and rich environments of an adventure game such as Ecco. Read more
Published on December 21, 2012 by Kay
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful and fun game.
Even though I've never beaten this game (stupid non-working memory card)I do have the strategy guide to this game and know what the game looks like and I have to say this game is... Read more
Published on December 26, 2009 by Kenneth Gilkenson
5.0 out of 5 stars Ecco is Fantastic
Though I must warn you, this game gets very difficult. But it is beautiful, unique, and long. It will provide for hours of gameplay. Read more
Published on October 5, 2008 by Al Hedgehog
5.0 out of 5 stars Ecco the dolphin: defender of the future
i'd most likely say this is the best game i've ever played, (on Playstation_) really easy once you have been playing it for about 5 minutes, but it gets alot harder once you get... Read more
Published on May 9, 2008
4.0 out of 5 stars Frustration beyond belief (but I love It)
This game is BEAUTIFUL!!! there is no doubt about it!!! Though it is a very stressful journey from beginning to end, you'll be sooo proud of yourself when (and if) you finally beat... Read more
Published on October 10, 2003 by Captain Jag
4.0 out of 5 stars One of the most visually impressive games for the DC
When Ecco the Dolphin: Defender of the Future was first released for the Dreamcast, it's mouth watering 3-D graphics and incredibly realistic environments were unlike anything else... Read more
Published on April 28, 2003 by N. Durham
3.0 out of 5 stars Good and Bad
This game is great in so many ways. Ecco handles exactly as you would expect a dolphin to handle, and the scenary is gorgeous. Read more
Published on January 2, 2003 by "jeff_giant_robo"
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