Last updated on August 10th, 2015
Alright! I assume we all know the format now (but here it is again anyway). In my eternal quest to clear up my backlog of games from the PlayStation Plus service, I dedicate tiny portions of my day to trying out new games. What comes next (naturally) is that I make sweeping generalizations and provide do or die opinions based on a small fraction of the game’s entirety. First impressions: your move video games!
Coming off my Shootstravaganza edition I figured it would be nice to change things up by having another shooter. Well done Skare…well done. Vanquish has us in control of some guy whose name I guess I never caught (one of the pitfalls of the 10 Minute Review format). The game starts off with a tutorial “disguised” as a systems test of the crazy armor the protagonist is wearing. The armor can use a really fast 3D printer to duplicate weapons you find on the battlefield (up to three in your inventory at a time) and small rockets or something can be used to powerslide around the level minus a sweet guitar (you can pretend that rifle is a guitar if you want). Early stages (the only ones I did) have you in the midst of a battle that involves not only hordes of enemies but hordes of allies as well. Gameplay is overall a large departure from typical shooters with less emphasis on stealth or taking cover. Speed and firepower are the name of the game here. Actually it’s “Vanquish” but you get the idea.
- What subjugates it’s enemies: Most of the gameplay is really solid. When I said speed is important above I meant it. There’s a lot going on at all times and taking your time means you will miss much of the action. Take too long to put that guy in your sights and an ally is gonna get the job done. You can slow down time similar to Gun, or some more popular game that does this, to assist you in rough patches and your suit does this automatically if you take too much damage. I found this happening more often than I thought as things are coming at you fast and from all sides. This isn’t a tactical recon team we’re discussing, it’s an all out war and it feels like. Beautifully done. Speaking of beautiful, this game leaves behind the gritty atmosphere and has a more cartoon/anime style that fits really well with the frantic pace of combat in a suit of crazy space armor. Since there’s a big departure from the more realistic styles of other shooters there are…wait for it…BOSS BATTLES! I did one and it’s a pretty cool addition to the shooter genre to have an enormous robotic nightmare lobbing everything it has at you.
- What’s subjugated: Some flaws can be so glaring that they ruin the experience for a player. For me, this game has one of those sadly. And I don’t think it’s a deal breaker for most players but it was enough for me to want to move on. So what was the problem? The protagonist is a d-bag*. I seriously couldn’t stand this d***head and he ruined the game for me. Imagine this, someone who has no battlefield credentials, as far as I can tell, is given this amazing suit that amps him up to hero levels and is sent to help out in a conflict. Fast forward to right before the battle and an interaction with the leader of the group he’s been added to. This guy is a grizzled vet who has earned every scar and medal and doesn’t ask his troops to do anything more than what he himself is wading right in the middle of. Why is my guy talking **** to this leader and literally picking a fight with him? Hopefully he learns to be less of a tool as the game progresses but I for one wasn’t sticking around to find out.
How far did I get: I made it past the first boss and then the protagonist said something stupid and I played a different game
Who is this for: Anyone who loves shooters should really check out this one. While the main guy drove me away the gameplay really is quite good. He also smokes so anyone who is firmly against that might place another item in the “con” column.
Galaga Legions DX (PS3)
This game celebrates the awesomeness of Galaga throughout the years by being more Galaga. There are way too many aliens/ships/somethings and it’s up to you to blast them! Again. Controls are adapted for the modern age but it’s very similar to a game you’ve played a hundred times before.
- What’s chock full of awesome: The update on graphics and color schemes is phenomenal. It took me a while to figure out that you can use the right stick to shoot in all directions (since there’s a “shoot” button but it only shoots up) but once I did it highlighted one of the great new school things about the game. Enemies can start flying in from any side of the screen making positioning and maneuvering more important than ever. Instead of one hit being death or some sort of arbitrary health meter for a spaceship, you have a mini army of smaller ships. As you get hit you lose little ships which not only shows you you’re in danger but since all the ships have weapons, it makes your attack less effective. The combined result is that as levels progress, difficulty changes among a variety of factors creating a dynamic ebb and flow that keeps you on the edge of your seat.
What’s chock full of not awesome: It’s like video game crack. But seriously the only negative is that it is an arcade style game. While things ramp up as you progress it’s still repetitive.
How far did I get: I’m not entirely sure. The combination of rapidly changing and flickering colors, combined with the fast pace created an almost hypnotic state. There are only a couple things I know for sure. I started playing after everyone was asleep and it was light out when I stopped. And, I didn’t so much “stop playing” as much as I “woke up in a bath tub full of ice with a suspicious wound stitched up over my kidney.” This game may have an ulterior motive.
Who is this for: Everyone pretty much. It’s quick, it’s fun.
*I’ve always had concerns about the term “douchebag.” First and foremost it lends itself to the pattern of many derogatory terms (“b” word, “c” word etc.) that have a longstanding tradition of implying “you have a vagina which means you are inferior in some way.” So that’s not cool for sure. But apart from that it’s an illogical insult as to what you’re insinuating the person is. A douche bag is no more than a bag, used to assist in the douching process. In other words, it’s a plastic bag. For the sake of an intellectual conversation on the matter, consider this equivalent insult: “You sir, are a sandwich bag!”
I know, I know it’s a pretty brutal insult right? Anyway, what is the comparison with this insult? “You are capable of holding liquid without it permeating through you, you plastic bag!” Or “You’re such a plastic bag, I can’t believe how transparent/translucent you are!” or the worst insinuation yet “Hey you! You’re such a plastic bag you’ll probably take 20,000 years to biodegrade!” So yeah, douchebag is a stupid insult. Since High School I’ve been advocating that society would benefit by us taking it the next level.
Step 1: think of the potential uses for such an object.
Step 2: attach it to something/someone that causes a visual image and is generally accepted as pretty gross
Step 3: laugh
So my proposition is that we change the term to something like “MUDW” (pronounced mud wuh). What does MUDW mean? Why “Madonna’s Used Douche Water” of course! We can also make it gender neutral with the term WFCB (pronounced wuh foo Cob). This is (naturally) short for “Wilford Brimley’s Full Colostomy Bag”
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