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PS3 Game Review: Vanquish by Platinum Games

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Looking good, Sam!

Looking good, Sam!

Platinum Games delivers another snappy game by the name of Vanquish. A sci-fi third person shooter featuring a guy with a special suit that lets him rocket around the battle field while granting him some super human qualities. The name of the game is bull rush speed with pin point shots. Can you save the world from the Russians? Read the rest of this entry »

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Written by vigorot

March 2, 2011 at 4:27 pm

Monster Hunter Tri

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For America this is the first version of Monster Hunter on the Wii and online co-op gameplay thru the Wii.  Monster Hunter is exactly like it sounds like, you hunt monsters.  Like the previous games you start out in a village which is being terrorized by some giant monster.  You come in and help out the village by taking on quests to hunt monsters and/or gather materials.

Hunting:  when you first start the game you are given generic weapons and armor which don’t really help.  To get better gear you have to kill/trap monsters which will allow you to make their specific weapons and armor.  You have 3 chances to complete the mission before its game over.  If any of you know the previous games there is a steep learning curve.  Hunting the monsters for the first time is pretty hard.  You have to get used to their attacks and then strike back.  Too many errors and you will lose a life.

Once you manage to kill the boss monster you can carve the monster.  This is a basic premise of the game, carving the dead monster gives you items from the monster and like all RPGs it’s random.   Don’t get mad if you don’t get the specific item you want because there are still quest rewards at the end.  Or you can trap the monster alive and you forgo the carving for more quest rewards.

Weapons:  This game has various weapons to choose from.  While they did take away most of the weapons from the previous games they added a new Switch axe.  They left the core basic weapons in which are Great sword, long sword, shield and sword, Hammer, Switch axe, Lance, and Bowgun.  They also changed how the Bowgun works now instead of a single gun you have to buy it in parts of the Stock, Frame, and Barrel.  Depending on which items you combine you will create many different Bowguns for various modes of play.

Co-op: On the Wii players can now go online to quest with other players.  Teams of 4 can help each other fight monsters.  This is the first time the American version of this game can go online co-op.  You get special rewards and it makes some fights easier with a buddy or two.

For the fans of the previous games BUY IT.  For casual it’s not a pick up and play kind of game.  You have to spend time learning and developing.  I really liked this game but I can see that it’s not for everyone.

Beat the offline game once and finished the first 4 star ranked missions online.

Written by Theonlypersonhere

October 6, 2010 at 4:33 pm

Haven’t seen you in a while

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Hi there it’s been a while.  I know that it’s been about 5 months since a post but I assure you that I have been busy with other stuff like school, summer vacation, etc.  I probably lost everyone who ever was reading this site, yes all 2 of you.

Let’s begin again with Metroid Other M.

This is the latest installment of the Metroid series where you play as Samus a chick with a bio combat suit.   The story continues from Super Metroid and plays out in a short cut scene.  The new thing about this that separates it from other games is that it takes first person and third person shooters and mixed them together.  You move in the third person and you can go into first person mode to shoot and to take a closer look at things.  Like any other Metroid game you have power ups and explore.

This game is pretty fun.  The boss fights are action packed.  The ability to do some combat other than shooting is nice.  Some of the challenges were pretty dumb.  There is this event in this game where you are forced into first person mode and have to spot something to trigger the cut scene.   The problem here is that it turns into “I spy” with no hint at where you are supposed to point at.  Also it doesn’t help that the graphics on the Wii are only 480p, which makes the environment and everything in it look the same or a pile of gray stuff.

The story is a bit far-fetched with a few holes but bearable.  The dialogue is horrendous.  This is the first game in which Samus is given spoken words and the delivery and words are so bad.  I mean every word is delivered with the same monotone cold voice.

On the verdict of buying it or not, buy it.  I know what I said about the dialogue and some pretty minor details but overall I liked the game.  The gameplay is very solid.

Game was finished on normal on one play through on the Wii.

Written by Theonlypersonhere

October 1, 2010 at 5:49 pm

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No More Heroes 2

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This game is an action game for the Wii. The player controls Travis Touchdown returning from the previous game in becoming the number 1 ranked assassin. Players kill enemies using different light sabers and wrestling moves. You can also take 8 bit side missions where Travis can earn money to buy clothes and weapons.

Gameplay: You hack and slash enemies with your beam katana. And you can also finish them off with various wrestling moves. Retro 8 bit games are side missions which you can play to earn money. You don’t have to play them but they are well done for nostalgia sake. The fights can get very bloody. You can even turn into a tiger!

Story: A highly sexy satire about various movies, pop culture, and video games. The story doesn’t really matter in this case nor do you want it to matter. The story doesn’t make sense half the time and the characters break the 4th wall. The inciting incident is one of Travis’s buddies gets killed by an assassin and he is out for revenge. But honestly this is just an excuse to get Travis to back into killing people with his beam katana.

Graphics: The game looks good but its only 480P at best, since it is on the Wii.

Problems: The controls are a little off on the motion controls with the remote. The game feels short if you decide to cut the side missions.

Thoughts: If you want to play a game where you kill people with a beam katana and some wrestling moves then play this one. Some cool, funny and sexy cut scenes thrown in. This story does not take itself or anything seriously. Also a mix of retro mini games to bring back memories and what do you get? No More Heroes 2.

Written by Theonlypersonhere

April 1, 2010 at 2:03 am

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Trine review

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Trine for the PC and PS3 is an action side-scrolling puzzle game. The game features three characters a thief, a magician, and a knight. The player switches between them and uses their unique abilities to get across a level.

The story is the three characters stumble upon a magic item called the Trine and when they all touched it their souls become bonded and only one of them can physically move while the other two are stuck in the Trine. The main characters thus search for a way to separate their souls.

The gameplay is a basic puzzle side-scroll much like Mario. You get through the level by using the three characters powers. The thief has a grappling hook which she can swing across and arrows that can push/destroy targets. The magician can move objects and create boxes and planks. The knight has a shield and sword. By using these elements the player has to survive the level and discover experience and items that will help you along. You use their abilities to solve puzzles like getting to the top of the level to pull a switch.

This game looks pretty. The level designs are unique and refreshing. The character themselves aren’t as well-crafted as the scenery but you can tell them apart and they standout well. The areas are well detailed and defined. When you are playing a forest level you can see the well-drawn leaves, grass, and trees. There are some platforms and bridges that may look out of place but are well detailed. You can see the joints and metal frames. Torches and candles in the game give you the primary light sources in dark areas.

In the end I liked the game. It was fun and challenging at times. Combat is solid; mouse clicks for shooting arrows and swinging swords. You draw a box with the mouse for the boxes and a line for the planks. But toward the end the magician could create many boxes and planks which made the game a little too easy. I filled up the level with them and made it a whole lot easier. The other character’s upgrades weren’t as significant. The thief could shoot more arrows and then fire arrows. The knight gets a flame sword which isn’t as much stronger than the original.

Written by Theonlypersonhere

February 24, 2010 at 12:10 am

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Review: Prototype on PC

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Prototype is an open-world sandbox game akin to GTA. For those unfamiliar with what I’m talking about, you are basically given a giant environment and you are free to explore at your own pace, given a basic objective and side missions scattered all over. In this setting for Prototype, you are Alex Mercer, a man whom has suffered amnesia, with only a gist of whom you may be and endowed with incredible powers; you seek out answers to why you are this way and who’s responsible.

At least, that’s how it would’ve started if the game didn’t already drop you near the end of the story, you are given a very basic tutorial of general things such as jumping, attacking, targeting, along with a crash course on one tenth of your powers. After your little taste of super Alex, you are put back to the beginning of the story where he has yet to accumulate the strength you had just seen.

So right from the get go, you already have an idea of where the story is headed. You witness NYC covered in “the infection”, which can be described aesthetically as ketchup and hardened meat fat spread all over the place by a lawn sprinkler. You can hear all the screams and wails of the not-yet-infected citizens and the unintelligible growling of the was-too-slow citizens. This will give you some context on what will happen as you progress and witness the events unfold.

Prototype Box Art

Story: A little spotty. While I didn’t expect an award winning material from a game like prototype, I expected it to feel less rushed. The voice acting felt a little rushed, some of the lines felt like they were all read in one breath while others felt like the voices were attempts at establishing a character type but then felt flat. This mostly applied to the main scenes earlier on.

The presentation of the story wasn’t too flattering either, with some unnecessary shaky cam in cut scenes and character animations that simply aren’t good. Nice try but the end result isn’t very nice.

However I will give them props for what they did in the latter half of the game where the story picks up with a lot more interesting elements along with a pretty clever plot twist. At least, I most certainly didn’t see it coming. Even with this though, the first half is just too poor to sit through just to get to the later portion.

Game Play and Mechanics: At its heart, Prototype wouldn’t be too far away from other super powered sand box games and it’s fun. You are given a large array of abilities that by majority add flavor to the chaos. You have your claw ability that lets you serve as a blender on legs, the hammer fist ability that lets you pound tanks into soda cans, and even a whip arm that will allow you to grab and pull either yourself or the target  towards each other. You’ll find yourself traveling the city mostly by roof top, running up building walls, gliding from skyscraper to skyscraper, jumping, and sprinting the way super humans usually do in movies and comic books. All these elements as a whole give you that omnipotent feeling of a super powered mutant with the world in its hands, which is until the military breaks out the missiles.

In this game, you can buy abilities with Evolution Points, granting you access to more and more powers as you go through the game. You can earn EP by killing enemies, collecting the orbs that they drop most of the time, collecting special orbs around the city, completing side missions as well as completing events in the main story. As you progress through the story, you get a chance to buy more abilities that weren’t available before, giving you some incentive to progress through the story line. A very basic formula of these game types, and that’s what you’ll find here.

The targeting system can be very iffy since the game will automatically target what it thinks you should be targeting. Sometimes this works great cause you don’t necessarily have to have this target in view for the game to pick it out for you, but half the time it’s telling me to keep my eyes on a tank 2 blocks away while my face is being pummeled by a crazed mutated gorilla. You can use the right analog stick to change your targets but this doesn’t always cooperate as well as you think cause sometimes it would cycle the same couple of targets, or it makes you cycle through the crowd of soldiers in front of you before you can get to what you want.

The game also has what we all now know as Bullet Time or that slow camera trick thingy from the Matrix! While many games of all kinds have this little mechanic, I appreciated how it was implemented here. Usually on-the-fly ability/weapon switching in other games can be detrimental to your survival because while you are thinking about what you should use, you might already be cake frosting on the wall before you figure it out. In Prototype, the game will actually initiate bullet time every time you bring up your menu ring of all your abilities neatly categorized for their purpose. While this little instance of bullet time is brief, roughly three to four seconds, it gives you a little breathing room to decide what power to switch to and you can do this at any time short of a cut scene; although I did notice if you constantly do this it takes a little time for the game to catch up. You’ll also find these little camera tricks when Alex uses one of his Devastator attacks, his version of a smart bomb so to speak; it’s purely aesthetics and it certainly does look nice.

Sound: Most of the time you’ll be hearing screams of the civilians running away from the infected and the military blowing up said infected. Voice Acting runs a flat early on, while the only real significant voice actor is Alex himself, and even then it sounds like he tries too hard to be angst. A majority of the voice track would be the generic “disembodied military general gruff” placed behind “tons of images sequenced together at 100 miles per hour.” Nothing really note worthy otherwise.

Graphics: Like many sandbox games, the environment is quite bland compared to Alex himself. NYC has many faithfully recreated land marks but anything outside of that is “generic building A” and so on for the rest. Alex himself has extremely well detailed transformations and all his powers have a very unique look from each other. The grunt units, while mostly generic in design, actually have quite a bit of detail on them from the hand gun in the holster to the shining lenses on their gas masks. The Tanks are also exceptionally detailed. Oddly enough the Helicopters have the least amount of polish among all the vehicles since you do zoom in really close to it and see the extremely low res texture on the copter’s wind shield.

A game like this wouldn’t be very entertaining if it was ever ridden of anything to kill, thankfully, the game provides that in endless amounts of destructible objects, civilians, military grunts, giant infected called Hunters, and so on to keep you entertained. If you ever needed to blow off some steam, Prototype will provide. This is especially true if you’re a New Yorker such as me. This is all pulled off without dragging down frame rate down to the single digits and that’s quite impressive.

Conclusion: I could go on and on about the mechanics that drive prototype and what makes it both incredible and disastrous but I could do that till I’m blue in the face, as you can tell, I already wrote many paragraphs on just that alone. The game is quite spotty with its elements. Its main appeal for me was its combat and the super powers, that being done admirably and I hope more games in the future could feature such elements again. I would like to see, however, a better told story along with a better designed environment.

All in all, Prototype is most definitely fun at its heart with some issues that drag down the experience, it’s worth a rent for anyone interested in the whole Supah Powahs genre of video games, and this is actually as good as you’ll get in the sand box spectrum. However as for a buy, that’s a call you’ll have to make.

Notes for the PC Version: I have noticed while reading forums that the PC version of Prototype is riddled with significantly more bugs than the console version, some of these bugs I’ve encountered myself. One of these bugs was “Assist the military till you’re called back to Base” and when I destroyed the hive as instructed, the mission would not progress. You were basically stuck. I had to shut down the game and then load it again to fix this bug, no dying and re-spawning and check points was able to fix this issue. There is also some graphical differences between NVidia and ATI video cards, namely the ATI cards has a significantly worse looking game with some software compatibility issues on lighting in all the wrong places, giving you shadows where they shouldn’t be. It’s hard to say if it’s just because of ATI because other games I own don’t have this kind of problem, such as Batman and Bioshock. Chalk this one up as another sloppy port.

This review was based on my experience on the PC version of Prototype downloaded through Steam on a AMD Phenom II x4, ATI Radeon HD 4890 drivers updated as of Feb 3rd, 4 GB DDR3 Ram, OS Win 7. Used a XB360 controller. Finished game on Normal Difficulty, 90% of powers unlocked. Barely touched side missions.

10.9 hours clocked according to steam.

Written by vigorot

February 4, 2010 at 5:45 pm

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Bayonetta review coming soon

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You may have already heard of the awesomeness that is Bayonetta. I got the PS3 version and will put up a review on the problems that this port has. The full in depth review will not be up but I will give a few words on the problems and how much it affects gameplay.

Written by Theonlypersonhere

January 8, 2010 at 12:42 am

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