Games Meet Metal: Playing With Hellfire-Some Abridged Game Reviews

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Thursday, May 24, 2012

Playing With Hellfire-Some Abridged Game Reviews

As a gamer, I try to cram in as much gaming goodness as I can. This usually means playing a few duds along the way. For the most part, I'm pretty easy to please. So, it takes a lot for a game to really get under my skin. I now give you a few that really pissed me off.

Ah, The Witcher 2. One of the most hyped PC-to-console releases in recent memory. There was actually a lot going for this game. The story, a framed man trying to clear his name and regain his memory, is well written. The voice actors all give great performances, especially considering the possibility of cheesiness can be very high sometimes. I'd say the bast aspect of Witcher 2 is the overall adult theme. I've never seen sexual situations or heard language this open and abrasive. At certain times it feels the game may go straight into Penthouse Forum areas of silliness, but the great writing prevented it from doing so.

The main gripe for me was the game's control. Combat is such a pain in the ass. People say it's the rugged difficulty, but I say it's terrible button timing. No matter what command you give your hero, there seems to be this 3/4 of a second pause before he actually performs the selected command. This applies to anything: unsheathing a sword, using said sword, using magic, using an item, running, EVERYTHING!! Plus, the menu system is a bit of a mess. The main equipment menu is fine once you remember what button does what, but the leveling and alchemy menus are just to hard to really adjust to.

Another gripe is the length of the game. What I thought was going to be an expansive world like Skyrim turned into a castle prologue and three main cities posing as chapters. Granted, there's a lot to do in each city, but the tease of a great huge land being fought over by several monarchies is only mentioned in story and never shown. It felt like such a waste to create this mythic land, and all you get to see is it's version of Alabama.

Definitely give this one a rental for the story, just be ready to slog it with the controls.

 A BAD Resident Evil game? Yep, I'm afraid so.

Operation Raccoon City was supposed to turn the series cockwise. You play the bad guys, Umbrella agents, as they infiltrate Raccoon City during the zombie apocalypse. It lets you grab zombies for cover and distracting would-be enemies. It let you really screw with the story line by giving you the option to whack Leon Kennedy. The biggest of all was a switch from the excepted RE4-style controls to something more akin to a 3rd person version of Modern Warfare.

So, what's the issue? Well, take Witcher 2's pluses and minuses and flip them. The control and firing is super tight, but the story is one of the most lackluster things I've ever had to try to drudge through. It's just so uninspiring and dull. More time was taken to give the multiplayer a better part of the game. Remember how I referenced Modern Warfare? Yeah, seems eerily familiar with how the COD games are made nowadays.

In the end, RE:ORC will be remembered like some of the earlier Resident Evil experiments, such as the PS2 rail shooters: an attempt to vary up the formula, but an utter failure.
Now here's one I just got and already I'm really not liking it. Dragon's Dogma was one of my most anticipated games coming out of Capcom for awhile, as I really wanted to see their version of a Western RPG. Well, things are not going that good.

First, I'm really not digging the menu setup. While it's not as bad as Witcher 2's, there's still a lot of confusion going on here. The equipment and item menus are hard to read, and the map isn't all that great. Speaking of which, you have no hot key to get straight to the map. You always have to pause the game first. Man, there's no way Skyrim would let you get away with that, what with all the quick traveling you do.
Speaking of which, where the hell is the quick traveling in Dogma? Oh, that's right, this game doesn't have that option. Oh, that's some bullshit!

On top of all that, the main story seems so secondary to the usual task doing. You'd think that having your heart ripped out and eaten by a dragon, but you still live and have to get your heart back would be a big thing in and around your village. Oh no, it's one glancing remark, then you're helping them chase away seagulls. Yeesh.

Of course, I'm only a little bit into the game itself, and things have a chance to change and re-engage me into Dogma's story. I'm just doubting it.

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