This edition of "Jebussaves88's Sexy Interesting Backlog Diary that everyone finds Interesting" will contain spoilers for Resistance 2, Journey and Bionic Commando (2009), but let's face it, I don't think anyone's going to be too upset about the latter.
Today I'm going to be talking about three games where you die. Well, I think you die in two of them, but you're definitly dead in one of them. For the sake of indecisiveness, I will approach each one in order of goodness.
Todays shitkicker is Bionic Commando
, the 2009 attempt at rejuvenating an old NES game that was done better by Bionic Commando: Rearmed. You play as yet another Nathan, except this one isn't called Drake or Hale, this one is "RAD" Spencer. Mr RAD has lost his wife, and goes about trying to find the truth of what happened to her by being the governments errand boy until they tell him where she is, in a whirlwind story of danger, growling, cussing and swinging which made me kind of miss Dom and his constant whining about not being able to find his ball-and-chain. After being stabbed in the back by old pal "Super" Joe (who's an old guy in a suit... super), it is pretty much revealed that your wife is your left arm... yeah. Only Japanese minds could fashion such a whimsical excuse for saying "If you use your left arm, it's like someone else is doing it!"
Not as fun as I thought it looked
Masturbation references aside, the game was okay. Mike Patton was kind of wasted on this one, and I think I'd have preferred Spencer's MvC3 voice actor to step. The plot was weird, and the ending was not really satsifactory considering I spent six hours with this bastard, only to be knocked unconcious and fall down a friggin' hole. Also, I'm pretty sure the sound team slipped up by accidentally putting in a messed up line by "Super" Joe in...
Joe: "Spencer, there's no escaping it. You're going to have to fuck it"
Level design is uninspiring and not particularly convinvcing, and controls are awkward. Shooting mechanics are clunky, movement on foot is dull, and the swinging controls with your BIOOOONIC... ARRRRRRRRRM! are far from satisfactory. For good swinging controls, I always look back to Spiderman 2, a very good movie-tie in game from the last generation. I feel bad about not showering this game with praises, considering this was a gift from my younger sister for my last birthday, but no amount of going commando was getting me into the spirit of this game. I'll give it a 5
, which is rather generous, considering I'm even taking its age into account. But Leanne, if you ever happen to read this (fat chance), I want you to know I don't mean anything I've said, it was a lovely present and it gets 110% :P
Our piggy in the middle is Resistance 2
, a game which takes its prequel, takes some colourful crayons and felt tips to its face, and shoves in horrific scenes of tall bastards running at you. I was amazed at the leap from Resistance: Fall of Man to this one, both graphically and in gameplay.
Firstly, a lot of the things I found to be missing in R1 are now here; sprinting, ironsights (kind of), more colour, and more enemy variation. Finally, the Chimera were a bit intimidating, especially in that bit in Ohio where those seven foot fuckers burst out of those pod things and just run at you in their hundreds. That scene in the cinema where you turn the corner and there are hundreds of the pricks was brilliant, and I commend Insomniac in mastering the effective use of set-pieces. Tense swamps full of Predator-Trolls were harrowing, and the final scenes where things go Regan MacNeil were quite satisfying after hours of careful control and thinking with guns.
Also, a lot of the fat had been trimmed, namely unneccesary vehicle sections, which were kind of underwhelming and ripped straight out of Halo anyway.
Warning, this image may contain spoilers.
But yes, as the intro stated, you appear to die in all three games, and this is the one where there's no room for doubt, as Hale's brain matter actually hits the camera as the curtain closes, which unlike Bionic Commando, I thought was a very effective ending, and paved the way nicely for Capelli to take the stage next time round. So, expecting big things from Resistance 3, I give Resistance 2 an 8
And finally, the King of the Mountain of this weeks three games is Journey
, a unique platfor... is it a platformer? It's kind of a platformer with stealth elements. Yeah we'll go with Stealth Platformer. Even thought it really isn't.
Now I used to be one of these people who got all excited about the prospect of games becoming a true artform, with the capacity to make people think about things they wouldn't normally think, to see things that they wouldn't otherwise be able to see, and to do things they wouldn't normally be able to do. Unfortunatly, Journey fails in this respect, because I've been to a mountain before, and I didn't even collapse in the snow.
Better wrap up warm
Just kidding. What Journey achieves is having the the player doing something rather basic (travelling to a mountain), and yet doing it in a manner that no other game previously thought to do so. Sure, you have the unique level and character design and general art style, but the true unique thing about Journey (as others have already blogged) is the co-op. I won't bore you with details, as I'm sure you've already read about its anonymous drop-in, drop-out gameplay, with communication only being through beeps, and how this fundamentally basic level of co-operation with a complete stranger gives new meaning to the game. You don't have to work together, but it's more satisfying if you do, and it's heartwarming to see your partner fly off ahead, only to turn around, realise you're still stuck on one of those scarf-tree things, and come back to sing at you so you can jump better. "Wow, you really do care about me!". Not since Left 4 Dead has a co-op game really impressed me, but this feature is essential to what thatgamecompany was trying to achieve. The look of the game, whilst beautiful, is merely a frame for this all important gameplay device, and it isn't the surfing down the sunlit dunes that shine to the point where you don't know where horizon meets sky, or the vast cavern with dragon-bastards that you'll be talking about after completion; it's the bond you formed with an anonymous brown bundle of rags. And for that I give Journey a 9
, my only criticism being it ended all too fast and I wanted to experience more. Oh well, guess I'll just have to settle for a re-play.
LOOK WHO CAME: