Sam’s Rant – 2008 Video Games, Part 2

19 04 2010

Sam’s Rant

2008 Video Games

May began with the release of Iron Man the game which came out before the film which may have spoilt the film slightly (NOT). Games based on films are never the same no matter what you say. I wouldn’t buy the game any way and ruin the best film of 2008 (you will know this if you read my Film Awards). Steven Spielberg released his first game exclusively on Wii called BOOM BLOX which does look quite funny and FUN. Who wouldn’t like a game which involves blowing stuff up (including sheep shaped like blocks), oh yeah, that’s right, ACTIVISION. Haze was finally released in May but because it was in development for so long it did get bad reviews. Haze does look like a good game and if it had a bit more tuning it could have been one of the games of the year. Race driver Grid was released and it taught me that when moving at high speed I should hit the break when cornering, usually because I’m under the assumption that if you keep the accelerator on you won’t loose speed when going round the corner.

During the year GAMERTV ended and was replaced by PLAYR. PLAYR had a lot to do to replace GAMERTV but is already a brilliant show (Sunday’s 11:00am only on Bravo), even though they wouldn’t stop talking about Race Driver Grid for 5 weeks on end.

June saw the happy return of my birthday when I received Wii-Fit on the Wii and it does work if you work hard at it. I did for a while and went from 21 stone to 19 stone, and then I began not to use it as much after I went on holiday. The Bourne Conspiracy arrived (not based on a film) with the first time I heard about quick time events SADLY. Many big games arrived in June including the long awaited Metal Gear Solid 4 Guns of the Patriots which looked to me like every other Metal Gear Solid game, TOO HARD FOR ME TO PLAY and that’s why I haven’t bought it. Alone in the Dark finally arrived with many people saying how good it is. Another MEGA HARD game arrived in the form of Ninja Gaiden 2 which does look quite interesting but it looks so hard I won’t buy it. If you read some of my earlier rants you will know that I hate Guitar Hero and Rockband which was released during June. Oh yeah if you want to play some Aerosmith in Guitar Hero you were asked to fork out the cost of 9 PS3’s to pay for the guitar and the game. Super Smash Bros Brawl finally reached UK shelves with many positive reviews.

This was the biggest game in the series to date with the main designer revealing a new thing about the game every day until its release. Online play is included along with a level designer. This game has also the largest cast in the series including two characters from other franchises including Sonic the Hedgehog and Solid Snake. I can’t comment on the game mainly because I haven’t got it.

July did not see much game releases (well, non that were interesting at least) but did see the welcome return of E3. At least I thought so; many people complained about the way it is run nowadays (try to keep up with the long words) small and invitational. But some good games are still announced every year. The conferences started with Microsoft when Peter Molyneux lied on stage claiming that Fable 2 was finished, 5 weeks later at a games conference in Brighton it was apparent that the game was still being worked on. Microsoft’s conference went from bad to worse when they showed off their avatars, the room went silent and never recovered. Nintendo’s conference was better but still a bit more casual to the previous year but held announcements about some really big games including Animal Crossing – Lets go to the City (name changed from City Folk to Lets go to the City), Wii Sports Resort, Wii Speak, Wii Motion Plus, New Legend of Zelda and Super Mario, and the big news that Grand Theft Auto is on its way to the DS with GTA China Town Wars. Sony’s conference was the biggest and best with new games announced including Infamous, Resistance 2 and God of War 3. New announcements about Home were released with the introduction of specialized spaces. But the BIG news from all of E3 came from SONY with the announcement of MAG (Massive Action Game) on the PS3. MAG is being developed by Zipper Interactive (they make the SOCOM series) and includes large multiplayer games online with up to 256 players in a match. MAG is looking to be one of the biggest, best and most promising games EVER.

In July the CGS returned for a second series (Championship Gaming Series) with many gaming countries battling it out for the World Title. Teams battled it out on 4 different games – Dead Or Alive (2 rounds played – Male Round, man against man and Female round, girl against girl), Forza Motor sport (replacing PGR from the previous year), Counter Strike Source and FIFA 08. The final match of the series was a match between the San Francisco OPTIX and The Birmingham SALVO with the Salvo winning (Birmingham SALVO is the first team from both England and Europe to win the World Title).

August saw the release of Race Driver Grid on the Nintendo DS, this was the first major game to be released in August and as far as I see it a bad idea – What makes this one different from all the others. TOOOOOOOO HUMAN was released onto the 360 (a game that was originally intended to be released onto the PS ONE – its pretty obvious that they’ve never heard of deadlines). TOOOOOOOO HUMAN is also a bad idea due to the idea that a NORSE God can be killed with a gun. Oh wait that’s right you don’t die, you enter a pointless cut scene showing that you can’t actually die.

This has happened quite a lot in games this year with the whole notion that if you die you don’t die and some how get rescued from the brink (Prince of Persia). Another SIMS expansion pack was launched and Mercenaries 2 (or as Ben “YAHTZEE” Croshaw calls – Air Strikes 2, HOORAY for Air Strikes) World in Flames. Recently I looked at Mercenaries with its bizarre look and play and have realised that it is no more than a clone of DUKE NUKEM (with better game play and graphics).

September rolled in with the release of Face Breaker (a really good looking boxing game with what it says) being released, closely followed by Will Wrights SPORE. Spore was a pretty good looking game until after you have installed it and realised that you are required to register the game online first which can be a serious problem if your internet connection is down (WHICH IT FLAMING WAS). When you overcome this problem the game settles down and becomes a very enjoyable game, the idea that you can let your imagination “RUN WILD” (Hulk Hogan Reference). After a while however the game becomes extremely repetitive the more times you play it, and whatever you do not download any of the available patches (IT STOPS YOU FROM PLAYING THE GAME AND YOU NEED TO REINSTALL THE GAME WHICH TAKES FOREVER). The only real good bit about SPORE is the Cell and Creature phase. If a game was released with just the CELL phase only it could be really good. In September my Games Development Course started and currently is really enjoyable. MIDWAY released TNA Impact the game and got really bad reviews and has financially offset the company. Rock Band 2 was released on the 360 in the US with news that ACDC were going to be in it, WHO. Who would want Rock Band 2 when Rock Band 1 has only just been released? The Expansion for the graphically overpowering game CRYSIS was released with CRYSIS WARHEAD. The extremely PANTS game Brothers in Arms was released with many reviewers saying just how pants it is and explained why it is a good reason to stop making WW2 games. Disaster Day of Crisis was released for the Wii (Highly anticipated Wii game) after so long in production. Finally the newest game in the Sonic Chronicles series was released on the DS, Dark Chronicles, Not much to say on that. Another MEGA HARD GAME was released in the form of STAR WARS: THE FORCE UNLEASHED which did look like a good game but I can’t get it because it is supposed to be MEGA HARD.

Part 3 Next Week




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