Archive for February, 2011

Bulletstorm – The Review

Bulletstorm LogoPerhaps I’m jaded or perhaps I’m negative but with all the hype surrounding Bulletstorm I never bought into it. It was a little too talked up. I thought to myself “It’s all marketing. It is not possible for this game to live up to what everyone is saying about it. No kidding, the people that make the game think it’s great.” Then the demo was released so I thought I would give it a shot and I downloaded it. I played it once, I deleted it, and I moved on. Bulletstorm was absolutely all hype.

Ishi from Bulletstorm

"Don't let my patchwork exterior I'm really quite the singer."

Finally the release day came and I got my copy of Bulletstorm. While I waited in the morning and early afternoon for my copy to arrive I checked what others had to say and it was doing well. Very very well. So well that I started to feel a small twinge of excitement for its arrival. When I started playing I realized that my initial assessment was spot on. Bulletstorm did not meet the hype. It took the hype kicked it with a shining golden boot and then proceeded to dance on it while singing a jaunty tune. It so flat out beat all of the hype about it that the hype is currently in critical condition and Bulletstorm faces a lengthy sentence for “effing awesome FPS”. Odds are that it is not remorseful and will not get time off for good behavior.

Bulletstorm – Controls

The controls for Bulletstorm are about as tight as tight could be. There is nothing that feels out of place, nothing that feels like it needed to be tweaked. Bulletstorm came out of the gate kickin’ for the balls and landed solid blows each and every time. The controls are precise, common sense, and make the game wonderfully fun to play. Whether you are using the leash to bring a person in, kicking them onto a cactus, or adjusting the flight path of your bullet from a sniper rifle, Bulletstorm’s controls leave nothing to be desired.

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Bulletstorm’s controls get a 5 out of 5.

Bulletstorm – Gameplay

Bulletstorm Gag Reflex Skillshot

THIS is how you play Bulletstorm

There are two ways to play Bulletstorm, the right way and the wrong way. If you play it the wrong way you will hate it. You will find it tedious and boring on all levels. When you play it the right way then you will see why Bulletstorm is outstanding. The game isn’t built on the premise of run, shoot, run, shoot, run, shoot some more, duck, cover, shoot, repeat. This breaks the formula for first person shooters with use of their Skillshots. The more Skillshots you perform, the more points you rack up. The more points you rack up, the more upgrades you get.

But you can’t keep using the same one over and over. You have to unlock them for higher point values. You have to use them smartly because if you chain them together you get more points. More points, more upgrades, more fun. Bulletstorm is not a video game where you can merely run into a room and clear it and move on. You have to quickly evaluate the situation and move swiftly to find the best way to clear the area. While some of the enemies might be somewhat formulaic in how you take them down, the game itself never is.

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Bulletsorm’s Gameplay gets  a 5 out of 5

Bulletstorm – Graphics

In a word, gorgeous. Every level has clearly been designed to provide as much beauty or filth as possible. This is an overrun vacation resort planet you are on, after all. It should damn well better be picturesque. Bulletstorm does this perfectly. From the scenic views, to the cityscapes, to the flowing rivers, to the absolutely gorgeous way that the water sprays up Bulletstorm delivers in every possible way.

But the views aren’t all there is. The characters and weapons are exquisitely thought out and designed as well. When you wrap someone up with a flail you can see them struggle to get free. If you aim for the arms or legs you can see the damage being inflicted on the arms or the legs. When you overload your weapon it glows a very angry hot glow and as you watch it cool down you watch the weapon slowly work itself down from its fury.

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Bulletstorm’s graphics get a 5 out of 5

Bulletstorm – Story

The story takes a break from the “space marine’ trend and puts you in the boots of a space pirate who was formerly a space marine. The reasons for this are something you will have to discover for you own. The story for Bulletstorm could very easily have been its downfall. However they didn’t leave the story in its own world breaking from the action to explain to you why you are doing what you are doing. They fully integrated it into the gameplay itself. When you’re in a firefight you can hear the interactions of all the characters. The people you surround yourself with engage one another while you’re working your way through the world in a way that is both downright hysterical and believable.

It’s these interaction that really help keep you motivated, interested, and ultimately laughing your ass off with the colorful expletives and outstandingly crude metaphors.

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Bulletstorm’s Story gets a 5 out of 5

Bulletstorm – Overall

The scores don’t lie. Bulletstorm isn’t your run of the mill first person shooter. It so surpasses everything that’s been done before we just have to shoot the wad on it. Bulletstorm gets a 5 out of 5 for not only being absolutely mind blowingly amazing but for also restoring our faith in hype.

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Rating: 4.0/5 (4 votes cast)

Ubisoft Decides it’s Time to Make Some Awkward Moments with We Dare

We Dare for Wii and PS3

There I was sitting at my desk. A client had just unraveled a mat to be used for beer pong (yes I am 100% serious) and I thought “This could be the most amazing / awkward moment of my day.”  I finished my meeting discussing the product in question and flicked on my computer monitor. I checked Twitter and saw something. Something that made me so very very wrong.

I won’t lie to you I really didn’t watch it at first. I just had it up on a screen to my right while I looked at marketing figures, but I found the song catchy. I finally glanced over and what I saw meant that I had to hit the “restart” button. This is an advertisement for a rather adult looking video game for the Wii and PS3. I became intrigued. I was seeing “We Dare” from Ubisoft. According to the information on the video:

We Dare is a sexy, quirky, party game that offers a large variety of hilarious, innovative and physical, sometimes kinky, challenges. The more friends you invite to party, the spicier the play!

What did I see? Well allow me to share:

Update: Apparently the video we had wasn’t working…lets try an alternate source.

A few comments on We Dare: Those girls are way more into the spanking than the guys are, however the guys are far more eager to strip down. This flies in the face of everything I learned in college. Also why are they nuzzling a Wiimote? Thats just not sanitary. Did they use a bleach wipe before playing? Please tell me they will after. If they have kids then there are going to be some interesting questions like “why is the Wiimote sticky?”

Finally the video brings us to one final question: what are those “Parental Codes”? Well that’s the easy part. What we have is some bonus content that really only creates more questions. Join me shall you as we watch and ask the questions that come to mind of an Ohio ginger as he watches videos for We Dare.

We Dare: Bonus Video 1 – The Group Effort

So this video game can lead to orgies? Well that doesn’t sound like bad thing per se, however if Chasing Amy taught me anything it’s that behavior such as multiple partners can really take its toll on a relationship. I hope they set up some ground rules before engaging in that. Otherwise knock your socks off as well as the socks of at least two other people. Lets face it if you can’t do that then maybe you should just stick to one at a time.

We Dare: Bonus Video 2 – The Awkward Moment

Those two gentleman sure do look left out. They look downright sullen. They got left by the wayside while their dates adjourned to what we assume is the boudoir. You can tell that neither of them really knows what to do. In a desperate attempt to entertain himself one suggests that they nuzzle the Wiimote again. They are clearly not into one another or else they would be having some fun of their own. How about this as an option, try Wii Sports. I’ve wasted a few hours with the Home Run Derby. Guys there is nothing wrong with changing video games. Hell, if the other guy just wants to end the gaming and you’re not ready throw in Twilight Princess or hell, Animal Crossing. Still board, watch a movie, the Wii has Netflix!

Still not what you want? How about you knock on the door and ask if they need anything. Man up, engage the situation. What’s the worst thing that happens? They say no. Do something other than sit around like a pair of tools, no wonder your women don’t need you!

We Dare: Bonus Video 3 – The Unwelcome Guests

Okay one of  three things is going on here. Either their partners have left them for the company of another, their friends are in their bedroom, or they are really overstaying their welcome. If it’s the third option then take the damn hint you two. When the hosts go to bed for the night that’s typically a sign to put down the bean dip, flip off the TV, and hit the road. I assume there’s bean dip. If there isn’t then it’s not that much of a party. If it’s door number two then they are entirely too accommodating to their guests. Know when to draw the line and say no. Also their friends are assholes. Seriously, there are certain things that shouldn’t be done  in a friend’s bed. Their guest beds, okay. Just make sure to let them know to wash the sheets before you leave.

If they have in fact decided to switch partners, which the start of the first video would allude to, then I think there is a tremendous problem going on here. Ubisoft has decided that they want to say to hell with endorsements of conventional relationships. Lets really take things to the next level. We’ve done the monogamy thing. We like it. Not always for everyone but hey, more power to you if it is. Let’s try to be swingers. Swingers who can’t do this kind of thing without the help of video games.

However once again I’m left to wonder, why the hell are you just sitting on the sofa? What’s so wrong with you that you decide “No thanks, I don’t want to have fun. I’m cool having an awkward staring contest with everything in the room OTHER than the person sitting next to me.” You’re adults. Grow a pair and have some fun.

Either way someone is going to hear “We have to talk” in the morning and that will not be a fun conversation.

We Dare: Bonus Video 4 – The It’s About Damn Time You Figured it Out

Oh god no. It’s these two idiots again. What the hell are they waiting for an invitation? Oh…they were…they really are a couple of tools. Protip fellas, if she has to invite you into the bedroom, you’re really in over your head. Not in a good way either.

Given that this is a Europe only release for the PS3 and Wii it looks like over here in the States we won’t have to worry too much about strange awkward relationship moments. Just the normal awkward relationship moments.

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Rating: 5.0/5 (1 vote cast)

Gears of War 3 Announces Release Date

Gears of War Logo

Who doesn't see this as "fun"

While it was supposed to release in spring of 2011 we heard the inevitable cry of the delay not too long ago. I suppose we can forgive this since the delay of Gears of War 3 wasn’t too long. Come September 20th you can lay waste to even more Locust unless of course you live in Japan in which case you will get it September 22.

What will developers be doing during this time? Odds are they will take the time to work through any last minute bugs, tweak, adjust, and hammer it home to reach that perfect score from all those reviewers out there and quite all the haters that seem to come out.

Gears of War 3 is the final chapter in this Gears of War trilogy and will be exclusive to the Xbox 360. What can you expect in this outing on Sera? Well there is going to be a heavy online component. So much so that they are going to have dedicated servers just to handle the Gears of War 3 multiplayer bonanza. Throw into the mix the 5 on 5 multiplayer and 4 on 4 co-op and you have yourself something that is shaping up to be pretty entertaining.

This does not, however, mean that the Gears of War will be over. Gears 3 is going to be the end of this trilogy, however they may continue the series past this moment with an entirely new story. Two things are absolutely certain, one Kat Tiki will be avoiding this the same way she runs from anything that may potentially startle…like clowns.  Two, my dog will hate the Locust and try to attack them. Both of these means I’m sure to have a fantastic late September.

To help pass the time lets watch the old trailer and swoon at the dulcet tones as hell rages on in the surroundings, shall we? Also…seriously…someone find Kat. I think she ran and hid.

 

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Rating: 2.5/5 (2 votes cast)

Video Game Pin Ups: Ezio Auditore da Firenze

Ezio Auditore da Firenze

If you can get past those knives, you get to those sexy lips...if you dare.

Assassin’s Creed II blew the first Assassin’s Creed out of the water.  Not only because of the many varied quests (breaking out of the standard ‘rescue citizen’, ‘eavesdrop’, and ‘beat up’ events), the beautiful scenery set in Renaissance Italy (rather than the very dull, grayish setting of Jerusalem), and the introduction of new characters and new mini quests (Subject 16 videos!), but also because of the more animated, more interesting main character.  Ezio Auditore da Firenze starts off as a spoiled rich kid, but when some catastrophic events happen to his family, he grows into the assassin.  Not only does Ezio have a lovely accent, but he actually sounds authentic.  In the first Assassin’s Creed, the main character Altair was one of the biggest drawbacks in the game.  He wasn’t interesting to listen to, and he didn’t sound like he belonged.

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Is it possible to stealthily stamp this on Ezio?

But dear Ezio charms both men and women.  His stoic attitude and fierce passion for revenge has men falling in formation as allies, and his attractive features and knight-like qualities has women falling in love.  I find myself charmed by Ezio’s humor and dedication.  Even in Assassin’s Creed: Brotherhood, when Ezio decides a goatee is an excellent fashion statement, I still love him.

Ezio Auditore Brotherhood

He protects his most precious assets with his daggers. Just TRY to kick him there, guys.

There’s nothing greater than getting behind a character you find both attractive and rousing as an Assassin.  And of course, it’s great to see Ezio getting some lovin’ in the games.  Thus, Ezio Auditore da Firenze, we award you with the Ass Stamp of Approval!

…because you know we approve both when he assassinates his enemies and when he flirts with the ladies.

-Kat

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Rating: 5.0/5 (8 votes cast)

Dead Island Trailer Debut

The game Dead Island released its first trailer today.  And based on the fact that it’s already a trending topic on Twitter, it’s safe to assume it caught a lot of attention.

Dead Island Logo

Who wants to go on vacation?!!!

The trailer focuses on a family that appears to be heading to the island for a lovely, relaxing vacation.  Of course, when you head to DEAD Island, you can’t count on your stay be relaxing at all.  The scene opens on a young girl, who clearly has fallen upon some hardship.  Watch the trailer, and when you do, please forgive the pun.  What’s interesting about this trailer is that it works backwards, so as a result, you already know that the whole situation won’t end well.  Now you’re just wondering how this horrific thing came about.

The trailer, and most certainly the game Dead Island itself, promises to be a disturbing zombie shooter, one that might make you sick to your stomach when you see what happens to the little girl.  Since we all know that I’m the biggest Scaredy Kat on the planet, I will definitely not be playing this game.  Just wanted to mention the game, since I watched the trailer in a rather unsuspecting manner, and almost threw up.

What are your impressions of this game?  Watch the trailer from IGN below.

-Kat

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Rating: 5.0/5 (2 votes cast)