How long has it been since I’ve actually REVIEWED some games, huh? Geez… I’m such a lazy fucking bastard. I’ll play them sure, but writing… eh… podcasting is easier. Well, when I can get to EDITING the damn thing anyway. In the meantime, here’s a bunch of printed words about some games I’ve played. No, seriously.
DEATH DOESN’T BECOME YOU
I was a big fan of the two previous entries in the DEATH JR series on PSP, so when I heard it was coming over to Nintendo’s handheld for a third, I was excited. Sadly, after playing through DEATH JR AND THE SCIENCE FAIR OF DOOM, I can’t say the wait was worth it.
For starters, the graphics, obviously, just aren’t up to par with what the PSP can produce. Normally, this isn’t that much of sticking point: no one expects the DS to have the same kind of graphical output. However, the game looks REALLY blocky, more so than most DS titles, and it really hurts not only the look and feel of the game, but the hit and jump detection as well. Because of the game’s need to compensate visually for the graphics with a changing camera angle (often side scrolling, but switching to slightly overhead in some scenes) you’ll find yourself falling to your doom more times than you can count on your bony fingers.
Also, the dynamic of switching between Pandora (in ghost form) and DJ doesn’t quite work as well as one would hope either. The first time I began the game, I didn’t realize quite how Pandora was to keep the magic orbs gained by defeating foes (but touching them with the stylus). At first, I tried dragging them to Pandora, but that only served to launch them across the screen AWAY from her…a feat you need to do ONCE you’ve obtained them.Still, the game has its moments. The story, while nothing fantastic by DJ standards, does have some truly funny moments, and still looks like a Tim Burton wet dream. The audio leaves a bit to be desired however, as it’s just as poor as the graphics. When it comes right down to it, this is one best left alone, in the hopes that DJ’s eventual console debut has a bit of these types of problems fixed.
One Gamer’s Opinion:
BOLL WII-VIL, GET RIGHT OUT OF YOUR HOME
I’m not going to delve into the story again on this, the third iteration of RESIDENT EVIL 4(now the WII EDITION…or would that be RESIDENT WII-VIL?) but suffice to say, this is probably the best version of the game released yet. Two years later, however, it’s also now easier to see some faults.
Wen the game debuted two years ago on the Gamecube, its graphics were some of the best we’ve seen on a home console system. While it still looks good, it’s finally starting to show it’s age. Not only that, but the fact that you can’t run and aim at the same time is REALLY more of an inconvenience than one would think. Or maybe we’ve just become to accustomed with GEARS OF WAR.
This time around, the Wii Version is a combination of both the Cube and PS2 version, featuring the graphics of the former, and the extras of the latter. Ada’s bonus missions are included, as well as a trailer for the upcoming UMBRELLA CHRONICLES. Nice additions, but it would have been even nicer if you didn’t have to beat the game (again, for many) to unlock the Ada missions.
The new Wii version features what are both the best and worst aiming systems, all at the same time. You have a bit more of precision with aiming with the Wii-mote, but sadly, your view remains boxed in to just what you can see on screen. For example, if your foe is just off camera, moving the targeting reticule to the edge of the screen doesn’t slide it over to face your foe. You must move the camera with the analog stick AND aim with the Wii-mote…taking a bit more precision than necessary. Still, once they are in your sights, it’s a welcome addition to aim LIGHT GUN-style.Still, at thirty dollars, it’s nice to see that you won’t be paying too much more for the newly waggle controlled version of a game that’s still available for other systems at $20. A bit more improvement would have been nice, but honestly, let’s just move on to a NEW entry in the series.
One Gamer’s Opinion:
Ok, so as it has been said before…I’ve never really played any of the FINAL FANTASY games before the recently released XII. Thankfully, due to the series 20th anniversary, the opportunity to go back with the series’ classic beginnings has arisen again with the release of the first FINAL FANTASY on PSP.
Strangely, however, this isn’t the first time the game has been re-released. Twice before now it was available (with the second game as well), once on PSOne, and once on GBA. Apparently, this version is the best of both of those, with the CG-I cut scenes of the PSOne version, and the slightly easier difficulty of the GBA. What this means is that you’ll get the same classically old school style sprites, simplistic turned based combat, and six character types to choose from for your four man party. What this also means, however, is that you’re also getting the same amount of fun as before.
Honestly, as many RPGs that I’ve played over the years, I think I prefer the old school sprites and side view turned based battles to the overly complicated three dimensional games of the day. There’s just something so satisfying about heading to town, picking up an adventure, heading out across the land, exploring a dungeon, fighting a boss, then heading back to town with the spoils of your adventure. Thankfully, the PSP version’s widescreen handles the graphics with a shine and clarity that makes every moment worth watching, and it’s “save anywhere” system works perfectly for the portable players.
If you’ve played the game before, you’re not going to find anything new with this adventure, save for one extra dungeon, but for those of you more familiar with the games later on in the series, it’s nice to see how far they’ve come, and how it all began. And while it’s curious that this version doesn’t include the second game as the two previous re-releases have, it will be available separately at the end of July. We’ll see how that one fairs once it’s released.
One Gamer’s Opinion:
CRAPTACULAR GAME OF THE WEEK
Goodness me. I didn’t think they made games that sucked as bad as VAMPIRE RAIN anymore. Especially considering how “next gen” is supposed to mean high quality, not just in terms of graphics and control, but gameplay and story as well. It begins with some promise, with a cool little CG-i cut scene at the opening of a woman walking the streets, stalked by a bloodthirsty “nightwalker”. Once you start playing the game, however, all that potential vanishes down the drain with the rest of the rainfall. In a game that looks like SYPHON FILTER meets BLADE, it’s amazing that your tasks are so menial and bland. Wow, you can avoid being spotted by a Vampire by simply walking behind a car, rather than just past the alley it’s in? The cut scenes take the biggest drag out of the coolness factor, as the voice acting is so horribly bad that I’m not sure whether it’s the translation, the writing, or BOTH that should take the blame. The in game graphics are the worst, however. While the cinemas are nice, the gameplay looks like first gen Xbox…and BAD first gen Xbox at that. Shame on Microsoft for charging a full $60 this obviously budget game.
One Gamer’s Opinion:
And that wraps up another bit of reviews. That summer blockbuster podcast I’ve been promising should be along soon… work has been a bit of a bitch lately, so my time to edit has been limited. Soon though. In the meantime… yeah, looks like I’ll be typing. Ah well…
THE GAME ON! RATING SYSTEM
Ratings From Greatest to Least:
Kick Ass, Right On, Okay, Eh, and Stinker (aka CRAPTACULAR)
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