I’ve never been much of a drinker. I mean, I’ve had a beer or two on occasion, but I’ve never really been in one of those situations where I just compulsively need a drink. I started playing Star Trek and was having a pretty alright time with its subpar co-op, third-person shooter action. Then Kirk uttered a line about how he was frustrated with the number of locked doors along their path. It was meant to be a quip, delivered by the dashing action hero and used to lighten the mood in a desperate situation. But this line only frustrated me. I hate it when characters call out flaws in a game’s design in an effort to brush them off; it’s as if the designer knows the game is terrible, and wants to joke about it with the player. I had a pack of PBR sitting untouched in my fridge for a pretty long time. It’s no longer there. All that’s left are a few crushed cans and a crumpled up cardboard box sitting in the corner next to my trash can.
To begin, I would like to say that this post will contain a fair amount of spoilers so read at your own risk.
Bioshock is not just a game. It is a masterpiece in storytelling, as you have likely heard from many other critics and review sites, such as our own. This is not to be debated; it is a fact set in stone no matter what reality tear you are in. As I write this my mouth is still agape from the ending events and how complex and astounding they are. With the concluding events now behind me and the intrigue of forthcoming DLC on the horizon, I became curious as to what Irrational Games could possibly do. While I would like to obviously see new vigor’s and weapons, I am far more curious with the story and where it could place players within the floating skylines of Columbia, and with whom they would come to interact with. Following are a few hopeful wishes for the DLC and how it will further come to shape Booker, Columbia, and all of its inhabitants.
I had fun precisely once in Army of Two: The Devil’s Cartel. About three hours in, I started playing solo, and hopped in the driver’s seat of a jeep with a turret. My AI partner was going to pick off enemies from his elevated position, but I barely noticed. I slammed on the accelerator (in first-person, no less), running over everyone in my path for a good one to two minutes. Because of the game’s new “dismemberment technology,” bodies exploded and limbs flew around goofily. It was dumb, but it was different. Most of The Devil’s Cartel isn’t.
In another life, things would probably be different. In another life, we might be somewhere else, someone else. But we’re forced to live with the hand we’re dealt, and there’s no changing that. Or is there? It’s hard for Bioshock Infinite to cast itself away from the shadow of its predecessor, mostly because of how strong the narrative of the original Bioshock was in its day. Bioshock Infinite quickly relinquishes itself from the shackles of just “going through the motions” and carves out a unique place all its own.
A Raven lands in a war torn courtyard; faceless men clad in bulky armor and armed with chainsaw machine guns stand at the ready. A drab color palette completes the scene and confirms that Judgment is definitely a Gears of War game. The similarities stay concurrent throughout the game, but there are changes that make Judgment feel fresh and new, despite having a very similar aesthetic to the past games in the series.
I played through The Walking Dead: Survival Instinct in one sitting. It wasn’t because I was having fun with the game, or because I had a large amount of free time I could devote to it. I played it through in one sitting because it was incredibly boring, incredibly short, and I wanted all of it to end as soon as possible.
The Lara Croft of old was a snarky, athletic, rich girl, toting two pistols and clothing that any legitimate archeologist would chortle at if they saw. But the rebooted Tomb Raider’s Lara isn’t that kind of Croft; she’s a frightened, inexperienced, young adventurer thrown into a situation where she must fight if she has any chance of surviving. Crystal Dynamics’ reboot of the Tomb Raider franchise is a high-stakes adventure that develops a character from innocence to murder – in a very abrupt and disjointed way – and creates a platform for further Lara Croft adventures.
The original Dead Space was a tense, atmospheric horror game set aboard a mining vessel in the vacuum of space. It was frightening, stressful, and creative, but certainly not without fault. Two years later, Dead Space 2 took what made the first game great and expanded upon that formula by refining the combat and crafting a greater sense of tension from its atmosphere, lighting, and sound design. Dead Space 3 is little more than just another Dead Space game, and that’s not necessarily a good thing.