• Publisher: Bandai
  • Release Date: Feb 10, 2003
User Score
8.3

Generally favorable reviews- based on 66 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 52 out of 66
  2. Negative: 6 out of 66
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  1. Josh
    Oct 23, 2003
    6
    I was very interested in the faux-MMORPG concept, but incredibly bored by the repetitive gameplay. After a while, I just couldn't force myself to walk through the same series of rooms over and over anymore. This game is worth renting, but not buying.
  2. PatrickS.
    Feb 19, 2003
    6
    The game is a bit fun at first but soon becomes tedious. The graphics and gameplay both get overly repetitive. There's also no 'hook' to the plot, more of a poke.
  3. Web.Master
    Jun 12, 2003
    6
    An average rpg game that should only be played by hack infection anime fanatic. The overall gameplay is dull. Multi-sequel rpg games should rather play xenosaga, a 4 part innovative rpg series that strongly rivals the greatness of Final Fantasy X.
  4. Aug 14, 2014
    5
    .hack Infection is the first of 4 games in an episodic series of games. The plot involves a game within the game. you had just signed up to a game called "the world". After a few tutorial quests with a friend, you run into a special and almost unbeatable monster. The monster performs a move that sends him into a coma in real life. He then finds himself with a bracelet that has the.hack Infection is the first of 4 games in an episodic series of games. The plot involves a game within the game. you had just signed up to a game called "the world". After a few tutorial quests with a friend, you run into a special and almost unbeatable monster. The monster performs a move that sends him into a coma in real life. He then finds himself with a bracelet that has the power to change the programming code of "the world" so it severally weaken his enemies. with this comes accusations of him being a hacker or a virus and many allies along the way. At least that's what i got. The game abruptly ends with many questions unanswered.

    For a 2003 game the graphics look ok. The levels look decent with the use of 3-D meets anime art style. The problem is that for what it tries to be it fails at. It tries to simulate a wide MMO, but every level is closed off and is accessed through other means. There are tons of dungeons in the game, but not a lot are needed to finish the game. Not to mention a good chunk of them look the same. They recycle the same style for 80% to 90% of them. same goes for the enemies. Sure a lot of them are menacing, but they get recycled so often that it can get mind-numbing.
    The audio is ok. The music is appropriate for dungeons and has a high quality sound to it. The game is also almost completely voice acted, which is a lot more than MMOs can say at the time. The problem is some of the voices are absolutely annoying. Certain key items keep saying their names out loud. You end up getting them, not because you want them, but to shut them up. The voice acting during the plot on the other hand is serviceable at best. No one in particular is good or bad.

    The game-play is boring. The game is a hybrid between an MMOs and a Action/RPG combat system. The problem is that it does neither very good. Every fight plays the same. You go up to your opponent and play shot for shot till someone dies. Not to mention none of the enemies are loaded in. Every fight has a giant sphere in which monsters are loaded in. this really takes you out of the experience if you ever played Everquest or similar games. Another problem is the dungeons. Plot crucial dungeons have set place for you to go to complete them. This makes the game even more repetitive when you realize you do the same thing to get a good item from a dungeon. The difference is that you teleport out during at the end of main quests. So it fails to simulate a MMO, it fails at being good RPG and since it cuts the plot off so soon, it fails to have more than a paper thin plot.

    Overall .hack Mutation is a bad game that is held together with a cool concept. If the first is a sign of things to come, this is going to be a long ride crappy ride for you. If you have any interest in the series, i'd say play at your own risk. This is a cash grab. Do not be duped. They spread this along 4 games to see how many suckers would give them $250 over 4 games.
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Awards & Rankings

84
42
#42 Most Discussed PS2 Game of 2003
65
#65 Most Shared PS2 Game of 2003
Metascore
75

Generally favorable reviews - based on 35 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 23 out of 35
  2. Negative: 0 out of 35
  1. I had to muddle through almost half of this 20-hour RPG before .hack really grabbed me... And now, I'm hooked. [Feb 2003, p.100]
  2. The most fun I have had playing an RPG in a long time! This game just spews forth with innovation.
  3. 80
    Despite some dated-looking visuals (it REALLY does look like PSO), Dot-hack is an impressive bit of high-concept work, and scores lots of points for its presentational excellence.