Hey Dtoid community, just a quick summary of myself, I am 19 years old, I live in England in the UK (Home of the Worlds best football (soccer) league, Im a huge gamer with an appetite for the industry however my true passion is football. I am an avid supporter of Tottenham Hotspur FC.
My favourite genre is JRPG (and all of the cliches that come with them) including bad voice acting and spiky hair!
Favourite All Time Game: Final Fantasy 9 (PS1)
Favourite Video Game Character: Sonic The Hedgehog
Consoles Owned and Still Used: Xbox 360
Games Currenly Playing: Eternal Sonata (Encore Mode), Resistance: Fall Of Man, Spiderman: Shattered Dimensions.
Typically when gamers are asked to recall the original Playstation era, the same names are regularly referenced with rabid nostalgia. Crash, Spyro, Snake and Sir Daniel Fortescue all made their claim to fame utilising the ground breaking graphics and innovative controls methods (Analogue sticks!) the platform offered. Unfortunately like so many past generation success stories, Spyro failed to adapt and as such subsequent games became progressively worse. These quality issues were compounded by a lack of direction which can best be attributed to a constant change of ownership; the character has appeared in games created by no less than 5 different publishers and 13 different developers, to say Spyro has been around would be an understatement. After successive failures under the tutorage of Sierra, the popular purple icon fell into the ownership of behemoth Activision as part of an $18 billion merger with Vivendi in 2008. For two years the character remained a dormant asset of the monolith with little to no coverage on the future of the franchise; that is until February 2011.
On February 11th 2011 Activision announced the return of Spyro the Dragon under a new moniker, Skylanders. This fresh direction was designed to completely reboot the franchise providing the popular icon with a new aesthetic, new friends and an innovative new platform. In conjunction to the redesign the company introduced the portal of power and associated figures. These new accessories enabled gamers to play as each figure’s digital counterpart in game using the ‘magical’ toys as instigators when combined with the portal.
While not exactly a ground breaking concept this was the first attempt by a software based company to move into software toy figures. With massive liquid assets Activision had the resources and marketing power to make such a product a success and with a clear product proposition the company had discovered a massive gap in the market. The series has since proven to be a smash hit across the globe becoming a key player in Activision’s software portfolio and the highest selling kids video game franchise ever, breaking the $1billion revenue barrier in just 15 months!
After two smash hits the franchise has moved from strength to strength gradually increasing its character portfolio and scale of environments. To keep things fresh and maintain active progress in the series Activision has announced Skylander’s Swap Force, this title will allow players to completely customise their avatars and figures collaboratively. Each character for this series is designed specifically to break into re-attachable pieces, offering over 250 combinations, with so much diversity on offer this move can only increase the value of the figures attributed by parents and kids alike. By allowing children to mix and match they provide an opportunity for each to have their own personalised character.
Innovation keeps a series fresh and Activision has maintained enough variation within the games so far to maintain significant progression. This evolution has been an integral component to the continual growth of the franchise. This year it will be essential for the company to redefine their product offering once again, Activision needs to be able to differentiate Skylanders from those competitors who are making an attempt to steal market share and get their foot in the door by deploying their own diamond grade IP’s. Both Nintendo and Disney have released their competing products with Pokemon Rumble and Disney Infinity.
What makes Nintendo and Disney such a prominent threat is the IP with which they have to utilise, of the trio Skylanders remains the weakest of the three, but with the 2 year head start Activision has a solid foundation to build upon and has already garnered a strong user base that trust the product. Whether the newbies can muscle in on the market will be interesting to see.
So I understand that Xenoblade Chronicles is still yet to be announced in the US and there hasn't been much news on it for several weeks so I'd just thought I'd let those who care know that Nintendo seem to have taken extra interest in the game through there Club Nintendo system. I have received an email asking me to fill out a (very in depth) questionnaire regarding the game, now I have been a member of CN for nearly 2 years and I have not once been asked to do such a task for other titles in the past. I'd like to think this is good news and shows that Nintendo are trying to determine the kind of reception it has received over here in the UK before making a final decision on its release in other areas.
Just thought i'd give those who care the heads up, personally I think its a no brainer, the game is excellent despite its drawbacks. (incredibly slow start takes about 10 hours before they stop introducing new tutorials to you)
OK, so I’ve come to the conclusion over the past 10 years that some games age well, while others age faster than Sonic on speed, in fact thinking about it, Sonic is probably the best example of a series decaying rapidly over time, this is partially due to a mixture of changes within the genres of the industry, the preferences of the majority, emergence of new audiences (FPS Excessives anyone?) and the need to constantly reinvent to appeal to the next generation (No, not Star Trek fans).
Anyway I have decided to write a series of blogs (obviously length will depend on whether anyone cares to read them) looking back at some of the classics from the beginning of this generation and determine whether they have survived the passing of time gracefully or withered like a Christmas tree from the millennium.
First up we have Resistance: Fall of Man. (I will be focusing on Single Player only)
This Playstation exclusive was released in 2006 as a launch title for the PS3 and was considered the “Halo” killer for the Playstation Brand at the time, with an average score of 86 on Metacritic and sales of just under 4 million (Vgchartz, about as reliable as Wikipedia) the game was a monumental success particularly in the FPS genre where only Killzone carried the most of the weight for the Playstation previously. It was lauded particularly for its excellent graphical presentation and its ‘tight’ control system.
The analysis is broken down into five sections, Game Play, Graphics, Mechanics, Control and Satisfaction.
Game Play – The gun play is truly what makes this game tick, the accuracy and ease of use of each and every weapon in the game is a joy to experience, this makes the game seem fair despite a few somewhat despicable tricks used throughout the campaign which some may justifiably see as “dirty tactics” (guns which can fire through blind walls for example). With such ease of use the game does a good job of empowering the player, genuinely making you feel like you can overcome any obstacle, this also makes deaths seem more justifiable as the player is given the ability to fight back just as effectively against the enemies. Unfortunately the melee attacks do not follow suit in battle, the hit detection is absolutely atrocious (Think Black Ops magnified by 5), I was able to melee enemies from ridiculous distances and to make matters worse so were they, on many occasions I could actually see the motion the enemy took to hit me. (How can you see the punch after you’ve just been hit by it?) This would often not be too much of an issue however in Resistance the power of the fist is indeed mightier than the gun, the amount of damage dealt by a mere blow is enough to knock at least 50% health off, this is particularly problematic in one of the games many open areas.
Graphics[/b] – Obviously this is where you would expect the game to suffer the most, however it has held up surprisingly well considering it’s approaching its 5th Birthday. The environments remain detailed and texture pop in is low which is also surprising considering some of today’s more ragged efforts (Looking at you Call of Juarez!) still struggle to cope with this issue. The animations are solid but explosions are unconvincing (Smoke, that’s all we get most of the time) and enemy/ally movement is laughable, often they will find themselves either stuck on the smallest of hills or embedded in the best 1950’s cookie cutter vehicles the game has to offer. Now this brings me to my biggest foible (if you will) the constant re-use of assets, backgrounds and textures, this is perhaps the largest drawback and is most certainly noticeable the longer you play the game, areas start to become very familiar in a boring sense and detract from the playing experience in the long run.
Mechanics – Some of the design decisions taken in the game are questionable, pacing is extremely poor with checkpoints scattered in random places, and this is further exacerbated by the notification process used to provide information to the player; whenever the game needs to tell you something a message will appear in top left hand corner, this can vary from picking up ammo to reaching a checkpoint however, this text often disappears so quickly it is difficult to determine what it says, particularly in a fire fight. On several occasions I found myself wondering when the last checkpoint was and how far back I would have to go if I died. The biggest disappointment I found was the story telling techniques used, the game’s narrative is primarily conveyed through pictures and a narrator, there are very few actual cut scenes and as such it was very difficult to actually give a dam about the main character (so much so that I’ve forgotten his name already). The lack of a sprint button also boggles my mind, how the developers thought it was acceptable to create a FPS set in primarily open areas without giving the player the ability to transverse these areas quickly is beyond me.
Controls – Unfortunately the controls in the game feel extremely outdated, triangle is melee which feels very unnatural and is easily forgotten ( I died several times running up to an enemy only to press the wrong button and change gun instead, unfortunately this doesn't quite pack the same punch), a click of the analogue stick is required to zoom (this is forgiveable as it was the norm when the game was released ) however in this particular game control in zoom is slow and thus requires the player to zoom out in order to regain any scope of the surrounding area, this leads to the player being forced to zoom in and out repeatedly and can be frustrating, particularly in a fire fight with enemies flanking (which they do, it’s about all they do).
Satisfaction – Although the game is almost half a decade old it is still fun to play despite its drawbacks, the gun play is excellent and this is probably the game’s saving grace as it overcomes the poor pacing, repetitive environments and control system to provide an experience which is still worthwhile today.
Resistance has managed to maintain its playability and fun as its level design and game play save it from what would otherwise be considered a slow and painful death as the method of storytelling, game mechanics and absolutely god awful control system feel extremely outdated in comparisons to their modern counter-parts.
Middle Aged, Heading Towards a Mid-Life Crisis
Explanation Of Rating – The game has aged reasonably well however its decline is likely to continue and in another five years it is likely the problems which have surfaced now will be much more of an issue, this one is not immortal and will eventually die.
Just recently I have been having warnings from my Norton Antivirus stating the site has 34 threats, can anyone just verify to me that these are harmless. I understand the community blogs are no place for a comment such as this however I am currently experiencing issues with the forums, any help would be appreciated, thanks.
Ok after searching the internet long and hard I cannot find anyone else with this issue so heres hoping somebody here knows whats going on.
I like many other gamers purchased FF 13 on the Xbox 360 on Tuesday, once I arrived home I played the game for an hour then decided to have a break, when I came back to my Xbox I attempted to resume playing the game but when I put the disc in it wouldn't read, I tried putting other discs in and hey wouldn't read either, after many many tests I came to the conclusion that the Xbox had broken ( as they do). So I decided I would play on my brothers, this was all good the same as before until I attempted to play it for the second time where I received the same error message, as the first, the console would attempt to read the disk but fail.
Now this could just be coincidence but both Xbox's breaking one after the other seems very strange especially as the incidents are exactly the same. Im now out two Xboxs and I can't play FF though at the the moment that is the least of my worries.
Can anyone please gives me a heads up as to exactly whats going on, it would be very much appreciated.
After playing Fifa 10 for well over 50 hours, I have come to the conclusion that although it is the best incarnation of the series, the amount of problems, inaccuracies and glitchs included within the gameplay makes it the most frustrating and irritating game yet. Most are related to either a lack of understanding from the developers, lazy programming or just a conflicting AI. Although none of these issues are game breaking they do detract from the game's overall quality.
1. Automatic Goalkeepers On One On Ones In previous Fifas the player was given the option to bring the goalkeeper out,this provided the player choice and made the goalie very unprodictable however in this the newest version the player has no freedom to make the choice, the goalie will always leave his line in order to close down the player, this leaves the goal vulnerable to lob shots which online especially are utilised to the full.
2. Open Legged Players The majority of players in Fifa 10 have there legs open more than a sex addicted hooker, the amount of times they will step over the ball when attempting a tackle or block is rediculous, trying to defend a cross along the ground is near impossible sometime as up to three players will watch it go though there legs and into the back of the net, this is worst against human players who seem to have a knack of taking advantage of this flaw.
3. Incorrect Implementation Of The Offside Rule For those who know the rules of football/soccer they will know the offside rule is perhaps one of the most confusing and controversial rules in sport, now I can imagine implementing this rule into any game must be extremely difficult however in my opinion this does not excuse the developers of there lazy programming. Anyway the issue I have is relating to deflections, when the ball is played and bounces of the opposing player falling to another player who is in an offside position play should continue, however in Fifa no matter how big or obvious the deflection the offside is always given, now this is a severe issue as generally these decisions are given in goal scoring opportunities and have the potential to effect the final result.
4. Player AI Now I understand footballers are seen by most as unintelligent but Fifa 10 takes there stupidity to a whole new level, on several occasions they will run to intercept a ball only to run straight past it leaving them out of position and looking like a complete and utter fool. The idea of passing seems straight forward enough but even so the majority of the time they will make passes that just don't make any sense, for example passing it back into there own half from the opposition's box.
Goalie AI In my opinion this is the worst issue in the entire game, the goalies are perhaps the stupidest players on the pitch, on lob shots they will only dive on the spot, no matter how weak the shot may be if its on target and it goes above the goalies head it will go in, not only is this rediculously unrealistiic but also takes out any skill required in order to do a lob shot. The best goalkeepers in the game have the decision making of flipping David James, they leave themselves vulnerable unnecessarily especially on crosses where they more often than not will go to punch/catch a ball that Peter Crouch would have trouble to reach usually leaving the goal empty for the receiving player to score an open goal.
I did have more but I thought i'd stop at five as most of you won't read the whole thing or read it at all, especially with the hate sports games generally receive from dedicated game sites, personally I will be surprised if this gets more than three comments but anyway im glad I got these problems of my chest and im sure those of you who have played Fifa 10 know exactly what im talking about.