Games for 2009... And BEYOND!

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jelco
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Postby jelco » Mon Jan 04, 2010 9:21 pm

One of my housemates returned last weekend from the Christmas holids, taking his brand new PS3 with him plus some games to go along with it. I decided I wanted to try Brütal Legend and see if it was really as great as people made it out to be. Honestly, I'm disappointed. There's some good humour in it, and the satire which is kind of forced at times but mostly appreciable (speaking from a metalhead's point of view here). Especially the appearances of actual metal legends, along with references to them, are great fun for someone who knows lots of faces and names (Lars Halford for example is one name that made me smile when I saw it because it's just one of those fun details). That being said, gameplay-wise it's impressively dysfunctional. Sure, the cruising around, randomly stopping for the occasional dragon, relic or monster, all of that is great fun. However, the battling system is disastrous. Strategy requires a lot of tweaking to work properly on a console, and I'd hoped people had figured that out by now. If this worked with a system like the console ports of Overlord, then it would probably be great. Next to the battle system, there's trouble with animations (sometimes you can already perform the next action while an animation is busy, sometimes you can't, and sometimes it'll seem like an animation is finished when it really isn't), hints (many first hints resort to lines of dialogue, but in a music game it's hard to pick out an audible line, and subtitles aren't exactly helping either because with multiple people talking at the same time they just randomly jitter from person to person), cluttered controls (I guess you're not supposed to walk around with the left stick and give orders with the D-pad at the same time because it's nigh impossible due to the controller layout) and the ubiquitous framerate stuttering.

The funny thing is that in the beginning I was afraid the game's perception of 'metal' would just be stupid (not even in a funny satirical way) but assumed the gameplay to be OK. Turns out it's just the opposite. I've found I enjoy the game best when I watch my housemates play it, even though they're ranting on about the game's issues as much as I am - at least I'm not putting myself through it anymore.

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Postby ynbniar » Mon Jan 04, 2010 9:27 pm

jelco wrote:One of my housemates returned last weekend from the Christmas holids, taking his brand new PS3
Jelco


Get your housemate to get Uncharted 2...it's fab... :)
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Postby jelco » Mon Jan 04, 2010 9:37 pm

He bought Uncharted first and played right through it, he's gonna get Uncharted 2 as soon as he's recovered from the rather heavy virus he caught during the holids...

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Postby bert_the_turtle » Tue Jan 05, 2010 1:27 pm

Heretic! Brutal Legend is the best game evar! You just don't get it!

Slightly more serious, yeah, it does have its flaws. But I object to some of your points. The controls aren't any more cluttered than any other game I played recently. Sure, every button and pad on the controller has a function, but that's the curse of those blasted things with two many buttons and gizmos. And no, you're not supposed to run and give orders at the same time. In fact, you're not supposed to give too many orders at all. The maps aren't that twisted, there's hardly any need for army splitting finesse, and mostly, your units act sensibly on their own (the cases where they don't don't matter much in single player.) Just plant the rally flag where the main battle is and keep spawning. Regarding being able to do something while a previous animation hasn't finished: it's called cancelling and a regular feature in fighting games :) At least, the instances of it I know of. Like being able to roll/dodge while a special combo attack is still in its after-effect animation. Dunno about not being able to do something new while the last action seems finished. Can you give an example? Music covering dialog? Umm, just mess with the individual volume sliders, I do that in every game that is smart enough to include such a feature (curse on Wallace&Gromit there). The framerate seems to be mostly a PS3 thing. The 360 version has its fair share, too, but it's nowhere near as bad as in GTA4, and mostly happens when content needs to be streamed in while exploring the world (and I guess there's the problem, on the PS3, that data comes from the relatively slow BlueRay and on the 360 from the HD, for me at least) and not when it matters.
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Postby NeatNit » Tue Jan 05, 2010 1:59 pm

FINALLY!!!

http://backloggery.com


I really needed something like this... :o
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Postby jelco » Tue Jan 05, 2010 5:56 pm

bert_the_turtle wrote:The controls aren't any more cluttered than any other game I played recently. Sure, every button and pad on the controller has a function, but that's the curse of those blasted things with two many buttons and gizmos. And no, you're not supposed to run and give orders at the same time. In fact, you're not supposed to give too many orders at all. The maps aren't that twisted, there's hardly any need for army splitting finesse, and mostly, your units act sensibly on their own (the cases where they don't don't matter much in single player.) Just plant the rally flag where the main battle is and keep spawning.

You say they act sensibly on their own, but in my case they kept doing stupid suicide runs because for some reason they always managed to start their attack the moment the enemy kicks them dead. Could be that this only happened while I was looking and it worked fine the rest of the time but that's one hell of a coincidence I think.

bert_the_turtle wrote:Regarding being able to do something while a previous animation hasn't finished: it's called cancelling and a regular feature in fighting games :) At least, the instances of it I know of. Like being able to roll/dodge while a special combo attack is still in its after-effect animation. Dunno about not being able to do something new while the last action seems finished. Can you give an example?

I know it's regular, but not in this sense. I can't give you an example off the top of my head, but I do remember I thought all of them were pretty glitchy. I'll try to look out for them when I next see someone playing it to give you a proper example.

bert_the_turtle wrote:Music covering dialog? Umm, just mess with the individual volume sliders, I do that in every game that is smart enough to include such a feature (curse on Wallace&Gromit there).

I probably put it wrong, but it's not just the music. In scenes where lots of your soldiers are shouting at each other (or you) it's impossible to make out Eddie's own voice and this cannot be adjusted with the sliders (since it all falls under Voice).

bert_the_turtle wrote:The framerate seems to be mostly a PS3 thing. The 360 version has its fair share, too, but it's nowhere near as bad as in GTA4, and mostly happens when content needs to be streamed in while exploring the world (and I guess there's the problem, on the PS3, that data comes from the relatively slow BlueRay and on the 360 from the HD, for me at least) and not when it matters.

Honestly, most of the jitters happened in mid-battle for me, when lots was going on and it's pretty obvious that there's a lot to compute (I'm sure the PS3 can easily handle it as long as the code isn't horrible, it's not the kind of game that's going to earn any visual excellence awards anytime soon if you catch my drift). Framerate drops in battles are about as annoying as they can get, and drops to 5 FPS take away any possibility of forgiving the game for it.

Jelco
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Postby bert_the_turtle » Tue Jan 05, 2010 6:16 pm

jelco wrote:in my case they kept doing stupid suicide runs because for some reason they always managed to start their attack the moment the enemy kicks them dead.
Humm, which units were that? Of course, they act sensibly within the limits of their abilities, and they always attack if they see an opportunity and have nothing else to do, even if it's suicide (like, headbangers vs. metal beasts). There are subtle differences in that depending on whether they have just been spawned and ran to the rally flag, have been ordered to move to a spot, and have been ordered to guard a specific spot, of course, but it all amounts to 'if enemy in aggro range, attack'.

jelco wrote:I probably put it wrong, but it's not just the music. In scenes where lots of your soldiers are shouting at each other (or you) it's impossible to make out Eddie's own voice and this cannot be adjusted with the sliders (since it all falls under Voice).
Odd, never saw this as much of a problem. The mumbling of the units should usually be toned down. Of course, there were severe audio problems on the original PS3 build. They were immediately patched, but returned recently, some people report. Could be that.

And, umm, 5 FPS? Really? Never saw it getting close to that. Regular framerate here is 30 FPS and it never drops below that for more than half a second, during which time it can be quite irregular and annoying (especially if you're just playing a solo at that time), but I don't think even the worst frames were more than 100 ms apart. I am quite sensitive to issues like that :) And I've seen recordings of PS3 game sessions, they don't look worse. Maybe your copy/ps3 is slightly defective? Or were you playing online games? Lag can be bad and cause extreme stuttering (doubly annoying, because while the action is paused, inputs are ignored).
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Postby DTNC Vicious » Tue Jan 05, 2010 7:45 pm

i was playing Rogue Warrior on the ps3 yesterday its terrible!
-Vic
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Postby ynbniar » Tue Jan 05, 2010 8:24 pm

Vicious wrote:i was playing Rogue Warrior on the ps3 yesterday its terrible!


So it seems...

http://uk.ps3.ign.com/objects/849/849721.html

...hope you didn't spend money on it.
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Postby DTNC Vicious » Tue Jan 05, 2010 9:16 pm

nope llol
-Vic
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Postby Xocrates » Wed Jan 06, 2010 12:44 pm

Achron (you know, that time travelling RTS) is available for pre-order now. Doing so gives you access to the alpha demo.

I admit I'm kind of tempted.
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Postby mibias » Wed Jan 06, 2010 1:33 pm

I bought it. It's a very interesting concept, though you can't really do so much in this first alpha build.

Looking very much forward to the multiplayer releases.
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Postby martin » Wed Jan 06, 2010 6:39 pm

I got it too, unfortunately I'm pretty much terrible at playing the game. I can't seem to do any kind of time travel which doesn't end up with me in a worse position :/

I think I just need a bit more practice :P

I've got to try fighting a battle, then chronoporting the survivors back in time and sending them as reinforcements to the battle...
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Postby Jordy... » Wed Jan 06, 2010 8:01 pm

I was temped not, I don't see how this is ever going to be a good game. Sure it's intresting, but I think there are so many possobilities that everybodies head is going to spin in trying to think of them, especially in a relative short time.
So what you get is hoaxes and you hope your hoax is better then the enemies, but please tell me if it get's any better then that.
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Postby NeatNit » Wed Jan 06, 2010 8:30 pm

Isn't that the ENTIRE point of RUSE? Achron is much better than that in so many ways, but even if it wasn't: why does that make one game really good, and the other one 'meh'?

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