Thursday, November 27, 2008

Call of Duty World at War Review: Another WWII Game? C'mon Already

Activision has released the next Call of Duty a few weeks ago. November 11 (Remembrance Day) 2008 on all platforms. I only played the PC version so I don't really know whats the difference between the platforms besides the Wii version which you can use the Wii Zapper (not required) to play.

So as you can probably tell from the picture the game ONCE AGAIN takes place during World War 2. My first thought was "WHY? Do we really need THAT many WWII games?" Like the event was tragic and blah blah blah. But that's in the past I'm sick of using the Thompson and all those other old shitty guns. I want to use modern weapons, its something I could relate to better. Which is why Call of Duty: Modern Warfare was such an awesome game.

The developers for this game are Treyarch, these are NOT the guys who did CoD4 (Infinity Wards). The game uses the same engine though so pretty much the only thing that's going to be different is the storyline.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Guitar Hero World Tour

Where do you even begin to start with this game? So Activision has decided to join into the "full band" experience so that they can stay in the game with Rock Band doing so well and having a sequel. The game and its instrument bundles came out on all platforms on October 26, 2008. With rock band doing so well in the race is there even hope of guitar hero catching up?

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Tiny Enormous Planet

Today--well I guess it's yesterday now--I finally beat PS3's most prized game, Little Big Planet by developers Media Molecule. Some say that this is the first game that actually FULLY utilizes the PS3. The game was released on October 28, 2008 worldwide. The main character in this game is a cute and lovable sack bag boy/girl that players use to journey through Little Big Planet. This 3D side-scrolling platformer is probably one of the most anticipated games for the PS3, or games in general... Maybe aside from Wrath of the Lich King. The game contains a number of modes that players and choose from their pods.

In story mode, the game is essentially identical to Super Mario World. The only major difference is that you need to use your head at times to solve mini puzzles and races to get stickers that are hidden or behind objects. Other than that, it's all the same. You run around the map collecting these clear glass balls that have this gas in them or something, sort of like the coins in Mario. You don't have to get them all but it'd be nice if you did. At the end, your points are tallied and that is the score you obtain. I found that the difficulty of the levels do NOT get progressively harder. Maybe harder in general but there are some that were a breeze but there were some that were very very VERY and I mean VERY frustrating. Like the one with the fire and mines =__= Holy shit crap the mines gahh. So hard. So hard. ... chan knows what I'm talking about. .. gah...

EDIT: "OMG THE FLAMES?!??! WHY DO THEY BURN?!??!! OMGOMGOMGOMG!!!1111" Was all that went through my head while playing that level... - Chan

Anyways after completing the story mode the first time, it'd probably be very useful to redo all the levels again at least once, because there are certain parts of each level that require more than one player to unlock, or they need a certain stickers to unlock more stickers, and come on--who doesn't like stickers?!

So with all the stickers, costumes, materials and decorations that you collect, you can have your sack... err... person put on the stuff that you find, like an assortment of weird hats, clothes and shoes (they could be pants?!), whereas all the other stuff can be used to decorate your pod, or make your own levels. All the levels that are in the story mode can be created using the level creator. It's just that it takes a very very long time, figuring out how to setup triggers and doing this and that, which...would probably take up quite a fair amount of time. The thing I didn't like about the level creator was that there was an endless round of tutorials that I had to sit there and watch and endure. At least you get an achievement if you watch them all?! Only problem is achievements are worth NOTHING!!! So I know now that the only way to find peace is... To just make random levels that nobody can ever win. MUHAHAHAHA..hahaha. *cough*

Of course you can always play levels that other people create which are always fun. There are an assortment of levels like one based off of Mirror's Edge, which are fun to see (snatch them up quick though because there is apparently a "kill switch" for maps based off of other company's IP) and then there are others which just help you get all the achievements which are nice as well.

Another great feature is the sheer amount of customization. Like I mentioned before you can dress your sack-person, and for those of you who don't like the costumes that come with the game, you can always buy new ones from the PlayStation Store for around $1 - $2. $1 for the ones that seem to be generic (shark, frog, etc...) and $2 for the "special" ones, like SEPHIROTH and OLD SNAKE. The special ones aren't out yet but I'm waiting for the day it does and user generated content arrives for them. Haha maybe someone will make a Shadow Moses map and you can fight Metal Gear Rex. I think that'd be pretty EPIC. Until then let's just hope that those people with too much time on their hands can be kept busy with the content that the game comes with, but it seems like they plan on releasing new DLC every week, so it will probably get the Rock Band-like DLC treatment lol.

Anyways to sum it all up, Little Big Planet is a great party game to play with friends. Although it is definitely challenging and frustrating at times because you can't pass a certain parts of the game (REMEMBER THE BOMBS AND THE CART ANSON...), but the game is lots of fun when playing with friends, and it's always fun to share the frustration and anger with friends...Right? This is a game that definitely worth picking up for all those PS3 owners out there that haven't already got a copy.

This game is playable online and offline with up to four people and is available exclusively on the PS3.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Four People Left 4 Dead

So after playing about 5 hours of the new Left 4 Dead on my PC, here are a few things that come to mind.

The gameplay is EXACTLY the same as what those of you who have played the demo saw and experienced. It's just that when you buy the game each of the levels are actually about twice as long as the demo. You get to play the campaign mode with people online, or play in single player, and of course you can play versus mode as well, which I must add is very cool.

I haven't completed the 5 or was it 6 levels that the game comes with so I don't know if there are any to unlock or not. I know 5 or 6 seems very little but trust of as of right now you'll probably have lots of fun them until Valve releases new maps to download which hopefully in keeping with Valve tradition will be FREE DLC. Plus the levels are very long so I HIGHLY doubt you'd want to play more 2 levels from beginning to end back-to-back.

Single player campaign mode is exactly the same as the online campaign mode just that your stuck with retarded computer AI's. They don't pick up any grenades or anything and they don't know how to use such as the mounted machine guns, so they just end up kind of standing around you and use up all their primary weapon's ammo.

Now playing online would obviously solve this problem, but the problem is there's always those players that are utterly useless, who play this game and think they are the best in game etc. Those players generally will just make a dash for the safehouse and ignore the rest of the "TEAM", or they talk you into "playing" (if you can call it playing anymore) the level EXACTLY the way they want to. Kinda drags the online experience down sometimes. The good thing is that if any of those bastards drop or leave the game they are immediately swapped with a computer. Another thing I like that they made is, that you can make maps that ONLY your friends can join. I haven't had much luck with the online part yet because I haven't been able to create a game on a dedicated server and have been hosting locally, which kinda sucks. so I'll have to get back to you on that later... maybe...

The really cool part of the game is versus mode, where its the zombies versus the survivors. At first I thought it'd be just a lot of zombie running around. but its actually a portion of a campaign map where 2 teams (4 vs 4) take turns playing as the humans and the zombies. the objectives of each side should be obvious. Humans need to get to safehouse, and the zombies need to kill them before they do... So the human part is pretty much exactly the same as the regular campaign but the zombie side is where things get interesting. Each player randomly (or maybe its different on servers) becomes one of the 4 types of zombies: Boomer (big fat thing that explodes), Hunter (crawls around and jumps and rapes the human), Smoker (shoots its tongue to drag the human away from the group)and the Tank (big ugly hulk looking thing). Unfortunately the Witch is not available to be played. I also thought it sucked when I spawned as a smoker... It's kind of unbalanced because its a 1 shot kill for them on me. So I had to wait 20 seconds to spawn as a fat thing just to be shot at once before I have to wait again. But then again there's probably supposed to be a fair amount of sneaking around to do the most damage first, but I usually just ended up charging right in which probably isn't a great idea.

I think I've covered most of the modes and the pros and cons. Overall, I think it's a good game, who wouldn't like to join up with 3 other friends and shoot at a city full of zombies right?. It would have been cool if there were other modes or if it were possible to infect the people and almost make it a game of tag. and i guess more maps would be nice too. hopefully these are things that will be added in later on but I think in my opinion as it stands now I honestly don't think the game is worth $40 YET, I think if Valve introduces more content into the game then this game would be worth your money, kinda like Team Fortress 2 where they added more stuff after the game was released, lets hope they do that for Left 4 Dead as well.

This game is playable online and offline with up to four people and is currently available on PC and XBOX 360

EDIT: Thanks for the copy of L4D Anson - Chan

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Uncovering the Need for Speed

So Need for Speed Undercover came out in North America on all platforms today. And I’m just going to be straight up honest about this game. It’s a very lazy game… Okay I guess I should back up a little bit. The game play is quite similar to one of the games predecessors, Need for Speed Most Wanted. The story goes, that you’re working for the FBI to help put bad guys in jail, you know just like 2 Fast 2 Furious… Anyways, so you have to go around town and getting reputation and blah blah and to do that you have to win races.

The new thing that they added in now is that you don't have to be at an intersection to start a race anymore (kinda like Burnout Paradise) you just have to be in like a 3 block radius. Honestly, all you have to do is press the Tab button when you’re in the area and the race starts. So if you didn’t catch that, this is pretty much how you play the game:

1) Press "tab" to start a race
2) Win the race and end up in another part of town which has a race
3) Repeat

Oh and sometimes there's a cut scene with Maggie Q in it.

She's hot so it’s definitely worth watching, but the cut scenes with her in it only last about TEN SECONDS. Seriously what the heLL!? Can you even call that a cut scene?! Dammit, and then some other random people talk you but they aren’t Maggie Q so they don’t matter...

So it’s another Need for Speed and with it comes music and at least the soundtrack is good… like they usually are? Right? WRONG. I don’t know why but this version seems to be lacking in the music department... After playing it for about an hour straight, I didn't hear anything that made me want to drive faster. Where is YOUR RAGE EA? WHERE IS YOUR ANGER!? Yeah, pretty boring music = “Slow Driving”.

So how does this game stack up to the last entry into Need for Speed franchise Need for Speed Pornstreet, (I mean Prostreet but the cars are so sexy…) it’s definitely better than Prostreet. It’s not all that much better but it’s definitely good to see that they got scriptwriters on this one. In the end it’s just lots of racing to grind up rep and then you win. Which is the same basic principle as all the other games in the NFS franchise, so in my mind this is how I would order the Need for Speed(s) from Great to CRAP, Most Wanted, Underground (1 & 2), Carbon, Undercover, Prostreet.

Now, back to some Left 4 Dead… This game is hard on single player.

Need for Speed is currently available on most major consoles and supports online and offline play.

EDIT: I forgot to mention how PAINFULLY easy the game is, and there's no option to change the difficulty either.

Red Alert 3

Left 4 Dead is installing... I realized that I was running out of room on my computer so I had to uninstall Red Alert 3 and since the_chan seems to be bothered by me not using proper capitalization in my blogs I decided to type more so that he can read this and have the need to fix it.

Anyways, so EA has released a new Command & Conquer Red Alert, the release date was on October 28 for PC and November 11 for the 360 and PS3 is still TBA. So here's what I have to say about this game mind you, I don't really remember the gameplay of the original games or even the previous one. The only thing I'm basing this review on is the game's competitors, Starcraft and Warcraft 3, of which I know the gameplay.

First thing that I noticed right from the start, (besides the cutscenes which are quite good, get to that later) is the speed of the game. The pace of the game is really really slow compared to Warcraft 3. Most of the time I felt like I should be pressing buttons or clicking something to make me feel like I'm still actually playing the game. Usually this point could be countered by saying that the gameplay requires strategic planning and all that stuff, but the fact is, it doesn't. The game revolves around 2 things, making money and pumping out units. No creeping, or leveling up heroes (which they have included now) or anything like that. All you have to do is sit there for about 20 - 30 minutes to farm up enough gold and build enough units to just demolish the opposing forces and then you complete the mission. So pretty much every game I played was just me sitting there putting up my defenses until I have (what I thought to be) a large enough army to just walk through the enemy's base, and boy do they move slow. So much so that each campaign game took almost an hour for me. it literally took me 8-9 hours just to beat the first of the three campaigns.

So aside from the boring gameplay, the cut scenes were the only thing that kept me going. The cast was, filled with relatively famous, actors like Peter Stormare ("vee-dub in da house" dude), J.K. Simmons (Jameson from Spiderman), and George Takei (Hiro's father from Heroes) and hot actresses like Jesse McCarthy, Kelly Hu and Gemma Atkinson. the scenes were very hot and sexy and it kept things interesting. Other than that, I guess the only other good thing about it was that the campaigns are co-op now, so that was something new for me. But only thing is EVERYONE in the industry is making EVERYTHING co-op, so I guess it's not really that new, just that its the first RTS that's done it? meh?

Now it's time for me to play Left 4 Dead.

EDIT: Love you to

Monday, November 17, 2008

Living on the Edge's Mirror

So I finally finished playing Mirror's Edge on the PS3. and right now I can't really sum up a verdict on it in one word. There's are lots of good parts and points to it but at the same time some bad stuff too. So lets start with the bad?

First thing is, and I mean this is major one, the combat system was VERY weak. My first impressions of this game when I saw the trailer for the first time AND when I played the demo that was released was that it as a game of running and stealth, sorta like Metal Gear Solid. Where combat should be avoided if possible. Though while playing the game, Faith gets trapped in a room with 20 guys that are ALL SWAT and have like ridiculous arsenal against you, and you can't really do what you have to do to escape until to knock them all out or kill them all. So much for being stealth... So why not just disarm all of them you say? Well, for the police and security guards disarming them is actually cool, you do a cool knee to the groin and the guy falls down and you take his gun. The problem comes when you need to deal with the SWAT teams, the timing to disarming them needs to be so precise that its just too painful to do. Using the slow motion thing (whatever it was called) helps but you can only use it like once every 5 minutes. Which is not a great idea when 20 other people are shooting at you.

The second thing I didn't like about it was the fact that the it's very hard for you to gauge how much room you have left before you need to jump. I found myself falling a lot because I jumped too early or because I jumped too late. If I screwed up I needed to redo all the acrobatics that I did to get to the same point to just fall again... very frustrating.

I like the game on the note that it was something unique and something new. The parkour-ing part of the game was really fun I must say. Jumping off rooftops and just the whole free-running idea was very nice. I found that most of the time it was quite easy to navigate around and know exactly where I'm suppose to run to but getting there was entirely up to me. Almost. I say almost because your still use the same areas to get to point A to B but it was up to me to decide which was the fastest route to go.

I also liked the fact that the game put an emphasis on using momentum. Building up momentum was key if you wanted to make a long jump, or... Well, that's pretty much it. I'm not sure if running faster helped me dodge bullets better (maybe?) but I found that once I had the speed, it was very easy to do what I wanted to do in the parkour environment.

So in the end the game was good (using momentum and parkouring). but it had it flaws (combat system and the amount of combat in the game). I thought it'd be more like Eyeshield 21 where I had to run and dodge, but as it turned out the game was almost like half a shooter game.