Friday, October 18, 2013

Saints Row IV [Game][PC]

Amount Completed: Entire game with just about every activity completed (might have missed gold on a few).

Saints Row IV takes the Saints Row series into an entirely different style of plot but continues and expands the standard sandbox gameplay of previous games. Now in addition to the standard run/gun/drive gameplay your character takes on ridiculous super-hero powers allowing you to run up buildings and glide through the air. This functionality was first seen in DLC for SR3 only to be expanded upon extensively for SR4.

The plot was a bit bizarre at first but seemed acceptable in its semi-serious homage to Mass Effect. Unfortunately as with the previous games the writing seems to leave a lot to be desired. It's not necessarily that things are weird and sometimes outlandish it's that so many decisions/characters just leave you confused and asking "why" -- it's primarily a problem of not really having a solid rulebook for given characters as they go through the plot of the games.

The game plays really well with tons of things going on at once. I was very impressed with the graphics as I flew through the city and leapt across the skyline. This is not to say the graphics themselves are always great but the performance certainly was. The activities were a lot less frustrating than in the previous games... but not always that much fun. Platform jumping and hurling colored items at targets seemed more like a demo for a Wii game than a Saints Row activity.

Gut: I really enjoyed the actual gameplay experience. The quick time events were limited and used appropriately. Much of the story was meh/fine but like its predecessors when it was bad it was really terrible. I definitely recommend Saints Row IV for the super-powered sandbox experience. (My Playthrough experience)

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Resident Evil 5 [Game][PC]

Amount Completed: Entire Game with my spouse.

Resident Evil 5 is a clunky 3rd person survival action game. The graphics are good and the imagery certainly is gruesome at times. As a cooperative game it is fun and at times teamwork can make things much easier. Unfortunately the controls really hamper the ability to feel like you are in direct control of your character. Instead you spend much of the game fighting the interface instead of the zombies/undead/infected/whatever.

The story is not exactly enticing but at least there is a narrative to an extent. Some of the game felt like a designer wanted to make a Tomb Raider game instead of a Resident Evil game. The quick time events in this game are just abusive. Not only does failure result in repetition but often quite a bit of repetition. I hate quick time events that appear over plot development as I want to pay close attention to the action and dialogue not random prompts that can appear up to and including 1 frame of game time (yea that's fair and balanced).

The biggest flaw/bug I saw was a prompt that indicated to hold a button down that was in fact intended to indicated to rapidly tap the button. To make things worse this occurs when battling the final boss. QA wins an award for not actually paying attention when testing the PC version (and possibly others too) in English. Congrats you did terribly!

Gut: Not exactly worth it... invalid instructions for quick time events aside... The experience is more infuriating than enjoyable. I hate most quick time events in just about any video game. This one relies on them too heavily and often requires you to fail to learn the key combinations ahead of time so you can press them within the given 1 frame window (I suggest pressing them before it even prompts you).