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About
22/M/CA

Raised by films and the internet, and programmed by music.

I try to keep it professional. I mostly fail.

DONT CLICK THE RED TEXT! YOU'LL DIE!

Home: http://levelseeker.wordpress.com/
lvl Blog's Retarded Cousin: http://levelseeker.tumblr.com/

LevelseekerTV
Youtube:http://tinyurl.com/nf3sk7w
Twitch: http://www.twitch.tv/ariccastillo

IRL
Art: http://lvlart.tumblr.com/
Muse: http://lvlmuse.tumblr.com/
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[This is a snippet from Seeker's Streaming Summer Quest]



Prime [Debut: Gamecube 2002] [Played Wii; †Metroid Prime Trilogy]

I didnít have much thoughts on Prime when it released. Friends around me were adored with the re-envisioned franchise, many of them on theyíre first Metroid. Something about it didnít stick with me at the time, I wasnít invested with the franchise, with only a limited knowledge of its history; Mostly that the original NES †and SNESís Super Metroid existed, and most of my time with Samus coming from the Smash Bros. games. Looking back, I think most of my gripe was with the aesthetic, unreasonably uninterested into the cyberpunk-ish design and the robotic soundtrack.

Over the years since, I fell deep in love with the Metroid series, right around the time I felt immense pity of Samus on her Other M debut. Since experiencing the (possibly) worst of Samusí adventure, Ive been pressing to visit all of her grander adventures. Beginning with the latest series (besides Other M) I figured going back and visiting the 2 editions thats peaked my interest: Prime and Super Metroid.

Lonely exploration and the other staples of the series are definitely present in my mind. For the first stretch of the game I felt the backtracking exploration to be a little dull. I fully understand the magic of MetroidVania but paired with the First Person Platforming and infuriating motion controls I just wasnít feeling it, ya know. It hit me about at the Frozen Phendrana Drifts, though. After acquiring the bulk of Samusís weaponry and treading through old locales, that signature feeling of ďOh! So thats what opens that door!Ē, began to appear. It never really loses its luster, even if slightly forgotten.

Side note: From the very second of hitting the opening menus, the howling synthetic whistles of the intro theme bring a sense of nostalgia that never existed. †The music was one of the biggest motivators to keep pushing forward, desperately chasing for that next great tune.




[This is a snippet from Seeker's Streaming Summer Quest, I didnt know how to keep it concurrently updated, without blocking the community page. Apologize for the second rate option. Read the rest in full through the link. Curious to the absence? Click here for a life update]








I just found out school starts back up on Aug 12.



I expected to get SO much more done. Kinda had an internal crisis midway through the vacation, so i guess that can justify it, but Im still disappointed.

My summer:



I started my†Seekerís Streaming Summer Quest†shortly after school ended, but I havenít touched it after 3 games, due to an unsatisfactory feeling of being unproductive. Seeing peers actually produce things, and achieving things, while I search for that last boss in Metroid, just felt unacceptable. Even if Im making something productive out of it: writing, critiquing (and small amounts of production work as extension), I still cant escape the task that it really is: reviewing a toy made for leisure. I still enjoy writing about them, and enjoy video games as a medium, but it cant be my only focus anymore. I look at these past days spent only playing games with regret.

Iíve done vaguely 'artistic'†things (someone†please†punch me for using the word artistic, Iím pretentious) I bought a†camera, so I can actually get out and start taking pictures, now that its not only a 'cool app'†on my phone. Iíve been painting more, something I wrongfully disavowed. Shoving foot in my mouth, Its actually really fun. I like getting messy. Ive been drawing more, oh†god†is it hard fitting back in these old shoes. I still havenít grown back my confidence, but like Lazarus in his pit, I feel it returning. Damn, have I been left in the dust.



I havenít recorded a thing. Iíve been more concerned with getting stable equipment than settling with creating with what I have, unsatisfied with muting every sound in my room in order to isolate instruments for my phone/Ipad audio recorders. With†this†I now have a more acceptable way of exploring, I just need to actually get off my ass. (Probably the plan for the day)

Thatís what I havenít done: Hereís what Iíve been doing.†My time has been spent doing something Ive never bothered to try: Getting out and exploring-]



-Quick recap then Ill get to that-†After ending school only returning to the void of my hobbit hole, I was reminded of every reason why I left my comfort zones and started school in the first place: I was a lonely, bored to tears hermit. Coming home to†onlyto hop back on the video game train felt so unsatisfying. For lack of a better explanation, its safe to say the past 5 years have been spent on that railroad, with only in the past year have I been writing about video games, in order to spark my life with purpose and give the endless leisure a bit of productivity. Returning after finally escaping felt like I had lost so much progress. Especially with the few friends I†hadnít†pushed away with introverted-based hatred, now suddenly†nonexistent once I was free. Feeling really depressed for the first few weeks left me at the perfectly low point. By the second or third week wasted, I was ready to step out into a new world of†possibilities†I had shunned away-



-Now back to my point, The lack of any tangible evidence of my productivity has been because†Iíve,†in a strange escape from character, have been out and about, exploring the world around me. Iíve always hated where I live, Swearing off ďthat Iíll leave this place in the dust" but never setting foot outside my door. Really poor execution of my escape, no? I agree. Hence why, slowly but surely Ive been stepping out into the dense world, that frankly scares the shit out of me. Since its completely impossible to suggest getting up and leaving today, I realized Iím pretty stuck with exploring Level01: Small town before Iím allowed access to Level100: Metropolis, so might as well stick around and gain the experience so I can level up out of here.

Anyways, like I said none of this excuses my lack of attention to bring you things, but it does explain them. Returning to school with†nothing†to show for my summer will certainly be a bummer, but I dont see it as a total loss. As Ive stepped out in the unknown, I feel a deeper sense of accomplishment, an internal one. I feel ready to embrace the darkness, With all the fears and strengths that come along with it.



These words have never had greater meaning

Photo Photo Photo








Chopping at the endless lumber in front of me I straighten to a stand for a moment of pause, exhausted in my daily chores against the forestís ramparts. Staring at the hellish wood that stare back at me with the hardened and lifeless amber eyes that form inside the treeís knots, I look past the infinite layers of oak and willow, and begin to wonder, ďhow thick is this enemy of mine, how many days of timbering must I take to eradicate this parasite that has pushed me back to my fleeting coastline, to hide behind the security of my Great Citadelís shade.Ē



After the last several days in memoryís past dedicated to fighting the titans of lumber, my brow has accepted its last bead of sweat. Dropping my axe and every other piece of utility I carry, I begin to step forth, into the womb of thickets to search for the opposing end of this Wood and the goal of my hardship. Each step forward, my stomach turns, as anxiety builds in wonder of what lie ahead, and the ever possibility of losing connection to my abode, a thought that would halt my foot and haunts my nights on any other day.

Several paces inside the wood, I witness remnants of forgotten attempts to navigate the forest; Lonely candles with their everlasting light diminished and hidden in the fog of the impenetrable brush leading broken trails attempting to clear the forest floor and locate my Great Tower; adding to this fear over the futility of this endeavor. The demons of anxiety mock my thoughts: This has happened before. Unfortunately, as I turn and rush home I realize the severity of my plight. I have wandered too deep, and lost sight of the passage that returns me back to safety, fooled by the false hope that the trails my past life has created, lain like traps preying on my foolishness.



Nervous and unaware of my surrounds I look to try and spot a landmark of my travel, to see some shred of my path that lead me astray, torn at the diminished vision of my Beacon thats become lost in the cover behind the leavesí shield. Paralyzed by the lack of security, I slow to and halt and begin to shake my resolve to retreat, and decide to push onward. Because even though stunned by fear and anxiety, I know I must push onward, for getting lost escaping the forest is no different than getting lost pushing to the end.

Venturing away from the incompetent paths that lead me further into the void of the growth, I break through the forest floor, and stumble across a large hill. Climbing to escape the shady darkness that haunts my focus and spot my watchtower from above the floraís sentries, I stumble upward to hopefully gauge my progress. While on the steep rise to reach the summit, the rays of the dayís sun begins to retreat behind the distant mountains, revealing the slumbering tones of the nightís blue and subtly starry quilt-like sky that adorns the jungle landscape around me. The peace of the falling sun fixes me in my position til its departure, where the image of its sister moon snaps my senses into awareness to the dangers of my unarmed solitude.



The creaks of skeleton archers awakening from their holds that protect them from the dangers the light has upon the undead abominations sneak into my ears, painting their positions in the distant forest; The maleficent glow of spiderís crimson eyes riddle the trees under the hill scattered in view as they emerge from their nests; And the faint feeling of what†else†lay beyond my attention drive me to strive shelter away from the tortures of the wild. But without sight of my Spire, or defined trail home, I am forced to press forward against the horde that lies beyond, hoping for safe passage through the darkness of the night or the trees, whichever is overcome first.

Trying to make sight of the distant figures of the landscape in the darkness, attempting to locate the easiest route down the hill and through the branches below, I fail to make a decent imprint through the nightís veil, tentatively marching forward into the unknown of what horrors lie ahead, and cause the plague of cacophonous symphonies around me. Increasing my pace to outrun whatever could be lead on by my scent, or otherwise aware of my presence, I hold my eyes fixed several paces in front of me, too frightened of what could be pressing in to pull up from my gaze. Unaware of the sense of time, focused on the mental stresses of this journey, Iíve lost view the physical toll thatís paid itís price.




A bigger foe than the forces of the night, my stomach begins to churn with each passing step. Without a meal since axing timber, The rush for adventure takes effect, clearly establishing its presence over the creatures that surround me, overcoming my ability to escape. Scrambling through the trees and brush that lie beyond the mountain, I spot a bright selection of large berries shining in the darkness. Fiending in hunger like the beasts I cower from, I rip the husks from their branches and begin to smash the pods on the nearby rocks, relying on the thuds to blend into the wildernessís rhythm. Instantly throwing them into my mouth, my jaw cracks from the berriesís shell, causing me to spit them into my palm, reflexing from the pain.

While massaging my jaw with the relieved hand I begin to toss about the husks inside my palm to inspect the outlying food through the shades of the moonlight, unable to identify the pods under the shroud of darkness. Realizing the shells to be inedible, I stuff them in my pockets, unable to give up the potential resource. Wrestling hunger while stretching back up to a stand, my senses return to me, warning me of the attention I have drawn in hungerís impulse. Avoiding the drawing crowd, I continue to press forward, using the lulls in the orchestra as my guide for safe travels.



With adrenaline leaving after failing to attain some sustenance, I stumble onward accompanied by a continued churn of my stomachís hunger. Looking up through the thinning canopy to the sky above, Iím surprised as light begins to cut into view. Shining through the newly opened gaps in the trees, the moonís beams cut through to the forest floor, allowing a faint gleam to the area around me. Equipped with the newly appointed view of my surroundings through with the moonís glow, I notice a stampede of movement, subtly cutting through the trees, off in the distance, followed by the sound of a babbling torrent of water. Rushing to what could be the end of my quest, I pick me my pace, rising to a sprint in joy, ignoring the pain from my hunger.

Arriving at the banks of a wide river of water dividing my island into two smaller sections, a small sense of security embraces me as the torrent of water masks my presence from the dangers of the trees behind me. Panning the view for any immediate dangers, the sight of continued forest beyond the river breaks my spirit, knowing Iíve yet to complete my journey. Continuing to scan the far side of the river, a large monolith fixes my eye. A labyrinth of stone and mortar, stealing view from the nearby surroundings and obstructing the waterís passage down to a creak at the riverís mouth. Dumbstruck by the purpose of the foreign rook, I step further in to river, sloshing across the chilling stream. My goal has changed, mystified by the structureís wonder.


__________________________________

Coming face to face with the colossus of stone, the distant forest is dwarfed by its girth. Following around its edge to find a way in, running my palm across the cobblestone walls as I rise to the lower foyer of the tower that becomes increasing visible, I wonder of its origins, climbing the formation of rock dug into the hillside. ďHow long has it been here? Who would built this lone tower? Or perhaps itís sentry for a bigger fortress further into the forest,Ē thoughts swirl amidst my mind, as I step through the opening passage into the shadowed fortress.

Entering the monolith to tentatively search what lies below, unaware the dangers hidden in the night, I begin to crawl down the corridors, searching in the darkness for what lie inside this tomb of mortar, pushed on by curiosity's call. Even with my eyes attuned to the nights shade, the blackness of the twilight mixed with the shadows of the tower blind me, leaving me to stumble like a madman. Locating the gradients in the dark, I follow the corridors patting the walls in front of me while carefully attuning to the silence listening for the sound of what could be ahead.



Reaching an larger opening at the end of the corridor, I spot a large chest in the distance of the room, hidden in the blackness. Fixed on its sight, my mouth waters with the possibilities, boosted by the curiosity of its tower blockade, for who would keep such a lone box so secret. Stumbling forward like a zombie searching for hunger, desperate in the torments of my travels. Moving forward, blind and unaware of my surrounds, I feel a tug on my ankle as I trip over a small wire. Feeling the slack in the noose, the sound of a faint click as the rope reaches its taut limit enters my ear, setting off a series of mechanical tumbling of gears that sounds like deafening boulders in the silence of the night. Regaining my footing to unwrap from the wireís trap, I stumble inline with the gearís maestro, an unmanned crossbow embedded the rock, left to defend the chestís treasures.

Unaware of the unloosed bolt until it pierces my chest, the shock of the impact causes me to fall under the pain, panicking from the sudden rush of endorphins, along with the thoughts of failure followed by the blood from the wound. As I stare at the chest just out of reach, Un- in my defeat, I try to pry out the bolt from my breast, unable to muster the strength to relinquish the point, torn by the pain of the arrowheadís†prongs, weak from starvation. Feeling the life drain as I waste my strength removing the arrow, I desperately inching towards the chest, bent on revealing the treasure from within.



Delusion rising as the diminished glow of light fades into an internal blackness, I drag myself ever closer to the chest, clenching it with my last bite of strength. As I lift the large casket-like lid, the last glimpses of light fades from view, tunneling into the slumbers of death, causing my hands to quiver under the weight. Unable to muster the stone slab, I collapse back to the floor, as the slam of the chest echoes throughout the jungle. Weak from the arrow and hunger, my head begins to throb from the crash, as I struggle to pick myself up from the floor. My eyes, affixed on the stone ceiling, slowly shuttering, matching the rhythm of my fleeting breath, as the view of the last sights of the stone room slowly pass. Strobing out of view accompanied with the withered pulse, the glimpse of the fleeting beads of light suddenly fade, before blackness.










Why?

With a rumored 400 dollar console down payments looming ever closer and both houses of hardware confirming the lack of backwards compatibility, it dawned on me: Why purchase more things that will be proven obsolete in 6 months and make that jump into the future all the harder to accomplish?

It's with this that I've decided to take the inevitable leap of faith and not waste much more on the remaining vessels of the dying aristocracy called the current generation (Dont worry Last of Us and Beyond: Two Souls, you will safely be purchased). Its in the meantime that I shall bind, wetting my palette with the games of yesteryear, especially playing some of gaming's must-have's that I might have been looked over or put behind the ever prominent backlog, waiting for a decent length of time to dedicate a sitting. Now is that time.

Throughout the summer I'll be updating these with my thoughts on each game,†Carter's Quest Style, painting my thoughts before and after experiencing them. This does feel alittle out of place, being more a general collection as opposed to a specific series or franchise, but the glue connecting my titles together will be the that I plan on broadcasting these over on Twitch.tv, as well as frequently posting updates here, dont worry I wont make you hop around, though encourage is another matter nudge, wink
http://www.twitch.tv/ariccastillo†.

Kirby Collection [ Lulz for Quicky's]


Kirby's Dreamland [Debut: GBA 1992] [Played WiiU<Wii Kirby's Dream Collection]

I remember playing this as a lad on my ancestral brick Gameboy, man do I remember that thing. I was probably one of the last generation to remember that olí thing. As a kid, I never knew Kirbyís Dreamland was actually the first outing of the pink puff ball. Even as a growing adult, after getting to know more of the repertoire, I always assumed the Gameboy adventure would have been the spin off to the NES, wrong like the rest of us.†


Man this game was better as a kid though. Itís not bad fundamentally, its mechanics are fine, enemies are varied, but it is alittle funny how Kirbyís floating ability breaks everything, especially for such a short game. This game could easily be beaten within an hour.† And while I dont disagree with anyone with issues with the Kirby seriesís ease, Iíve always have an affinity to the pink ball, mainly interested in his friends of the later dreamland games.†




Doom 3 [Debut: Xbox/PC †2004] [Played Xbox 360; Doom 3 BFG[Collection]

When Doom 3 was upon release, I was excited. I knew the seriesís pedigree, but I hadn't spent the time to learn the praise, firsthand. I was way too young for the originals, and I recall owning Doom 64, though I could never make it past the first few dimly lit hallways, blaming my ignorance on poor design. By the time the 3rd was about to release, I was ready for my generationís Doom. Duct tape in hand, I was ready for these dark halls, ready for the depths of Marís hell.† My anticipation turned into wax wings, as it turns out, as I never got very far in, after all. The anticipation mixed with the anxiety of the first couple of foreboding halls was enough to deal me in. The experience didn't feel worth it without a companion, either, as the experience of jump scares never felt the same alone, without someone there to enjoy the scares as well as enjoying my look of fear as I dive further into the Inferno.


At first, that anxiety seemed unwarranted, as most of the soldiers and introductory demons can be handled with a moderate skill in shooting games, something that should be pretty common in these days, with online multiplayer running rampant among the generation, but diving further in, the locales began to affect me. The dark hallways still do very much for the atmosphere, as I try to keep it traditional with limited flashlight use, especially while in the darkness the groans, demonic military chatter, failing machinary and demonic howls are heard just around the corner. As I dive deeper, and the mouth of hell starts widening, things start to pile up and add to the tension, with depleting resources and more enemies being unleashed. Like Dante traveling through the Inferno, I cant wait to pop out to the shining side with a sigh of relief, at this point. Doom 3 can go to hell.


P.S. Doom definitely gives me an alien vibe as well, with its endless hallways of the mechanical labyrinth that make up the Mars base, even though it is an unused cliche at this point in gaming.†



Metroid Prime†[Debut: Gamecube 2002] [Played Wii; †Metroid Prime Trilogy]†

I didnít have much thoughts on Prime when it released. Friends around me were adored with the re-envisioned franchise, many of them on theyíre first Metroid. Something about it didnít stick with me at the time, I wasnít invested with the franchise, with only a limited knowledge of its history; Mostly that the original NES †and SNESís Super Metroid existed, and most of my time with Samus coming from the Smash Bros. games. Looking back, I think most of my gripe was with the aesthetic, unreasonably uninterested into the cyberpunk-ish design and the robotic soundtrack.

Over the years since, I fell deep in love with the Metroid series, right around the time I felt immense pity of Samus on her Other M debut. Since experiencing the (possibly) worst of Samusí adventure, Ive been pressing to visit all of her grander adventures. Beginning with the latest series (besides Other M) I figured going back and visiting the 2 editions thats peaked my interest: Prime and Super Metroid.

Lonely exploration and the other staples of the series are definitely present in my mind. For the first stretch of the game I felt the backtracking exploration to be a little dull. I fully understand the magic of MetroidVania but paired with the First Person Platforming and infuriating motion controls I just wasnít feeling it, ya know. It hit me about at the Frozen Phendrana Drifts, though. After acquiring the bulk of Samusís weaponry and treading through old locales, that signature feeling of ďOh! So thats what opens that door!Ē, began to appear. It never really loses its luster, even if slightly forgotten.

Side note: From the very second of hitting the opening menus, the howling synthetic whistles of the intro theme bring a sense of nostalgia that never existed. †The music was one of the biggest motivators to keep pushing forward, desperately chasing for that next great tune.





Metroid Prime 2: Echoes
Metroid Prime 3: Corruption

Half Life
Black Mesa
Half Life 2
Episode 1
Episode 2
Grand Theft Auto
3
Vice city
San Andreas
Metal Gear
Twin Snakes
Sons of liberty
Snake Eater
Guns of the Patriots
Peace walker
Super Mario World
Super Metroid
Super Mario Sunshine
Mario Galaxy 2
Budokai HD Collection
Team Ico Collection
Ico [MAYBE]
Shadow of the Colossus
Zone of the Enders HD Collection
Jak Collection HD Collection
Ratchet & Clank HD Collection
Devil May Cry HD Collection[+4 why not]
Splinter Cell HD Collection
Silent Hill HD Collection
Pikmin 2
Photo Photo Photo








[Destructoid: Theres a lot more personal blog than game ramblings below, but a deep part of me enjoys sharing this on the internet, where everyone and no one can read my thoughts I refuse to say IRL. And mainly because itís been too long ;P.]



So the school semesterís down, and really I couldnít be happier. Even though its only been four months, itís felt like an eternity. I forgot how much I donít like school, but it didnít take long before the drag began to remind me. The lulls in between classes haunted me with perfectly lengthened pauses that allude me to accomplish extracurriculars tasks that would require more thought than time allowed. The whole time during, I felt less productive, honestly. The process began to waste time, robbing away the smaller hours that I could be using putting things into practice, opposed to endlessly learning theories thatíll get forgotten before theyíre ever utilized.

Classes exponentially drain me of vigor, each day taking more inspiration from me than the last. Returning the investment of my buck and time encouraged me to better my grades more than any knowledge from the material. The pressures of succeeding weigh down on the wrong foot, focusing more on not†failing, instead of actually gaining knowledge. While a problem in itself, my point is that, that pressure lead to a painfully familiar routine. After each day of classes, and night of studying, all I want to do is rot on the couch in front of a monitor catching up on an idiot box. Granted that is my usual M.O. but the point is thereís no ulterior motive in the action; Iím just relaxing!

Thats a problem for me..


After counting the time Iíve spent ďjust relaxingĒ since leaving high school, and realized it outweighed anything else Iíve dedicated time to, the thought to change barreled in-chase like sound after a jet.† Iíve been a man obsessed with filling my time productively ever since. Filling my time with any forms of creation, returning to the talents left collecting dust, and turning my entertainment into broadcasts on Twitch, unsatisfied with having nothing to show for out of the time Iíll never get back. And though rooted in productivity, attending school just doesnít feel productive, I donít feel any sense of accomplishment, not even a nibble of the inevitable feast down the road that is a lone semester to the eventual graduation. I feel like theyíve taken something from me, time I cant get back.

And as such, the little red devil on my shoulder is inkling me to respond in spite. Thereís the old statistic that students forget their subjects over the summer vacation. Itís no surprise, when the struggle has been to ensure my dollar a justified home, rather than striving to memorize the subjects (Yes, thats a childís statistic but shush, proving a point.) After completing the semester all I want to do is lay around and relax. The urge to rejuvenate through total hibernation (Read: Fermenting in a dark room, in front some form of a screen) is tugging at my newfound devotion against it.



And with seeding ideas of returning to this circle of hell in the fall, the struggle to be productive instead of duly-wanted†recuperation is a tough internal debate. And though my body wants a summer hibernation, I must push onward, I cant waste that time. That asshole of a building hasnt defeated me yet! And armed with a blade made of hardened†schedule†and a shield forged in a slew of†content, plenty is in hand to slay the almighty†summer.

So...

These three months are going to be a busy bunch, Iíve planned quite a lot during my time away, plotting if you will. Three months feels like just enough to time relocate the groove, touch nirvana, and be pulled out of it again, returning to my trials. As such, I'm going to be condensing a lot of things in these short months (and by golly I aim to tackle them all). Iíve planned a full Twitch Tv gaming schedule (look for that soon) with plenty of video content on the my inventively titled ďLevelseekerTVĒ to share, as well as a variety of written features that I hope youíll enjoy.

Iím starting to drag on, so Iíll continue the rest of the Twitch news later in the week, in another dedicated post, and Iíll be†sprinkling†write-ups throughout the summer. So the only thing left unsaid is: Its good to be back Internet!










Alright, I should stress; the Lost Planet 2 reviews were not wrong. When it released, the gameplay was designed against you; badly stitched mechanics, the faceless (lack of a) story, a multiplayer focus with weak matchmaking, that fucking train. Weighted down with all these problems, I watched Lost Planet 2 transform from a broken sequel to a personally regarded treasure that I hope isn't tarnished.



Now Iím not saying Lost Planet 2 is perfect, far from it, and though itís patched to its throat, a patched turd is still a turd. Animation timing have evolved from horrendously outbalanced to only manageably bearable. The giant bosses still retain their relentless animations that continuously knock down players, but their cool down times are lengthened to give the player a sense of leniency. Itís campaign is cooperatively focused, but has traded in its haphazard matchmaking for a lack of players, baring the dedicated few. Firefights are hilarious, simulating airsoft pellets bouncing off kevlar until the combatants explode in ragdoll physics.

Even with these problems stated, itís still an hilariously fun romp, and gameplay is decent....now. Instead of putting all its chips in realism, Lost Planet 2 feels very gamey, something thatís become a relic of design. Objectives are loosely disguised in context; animations switch transparently, and hardly ever try smoothing together its maneuvers. Upon defeat, bosses regurgitate credits with no other context beyond being meant for upgrades; and heads pop with an unrealistic, completely inhuman ďPing!Ē to help confirm your headshot. All painting the picture that Lost Planet 2 understands its a game, and doesn't bother propping up its badly constructed fourth wall in the hopes of feeling cinematic.



Lost Planet 2 visits every environment I can imagine: mountains to jungles, swamps to cities, deserts to the sea, and up to space, and though itís not pristinely detailed due to minute issues with Capcomís MT Framework 2.0 engine, LP2ís visuals are still vivid. Cutscene surprise me how well they can be despite being an less-than-average looking game from 2010 (especially when presenting lots on screen), and the densely braided pathways of the levels create an broad open world while still pushing you from objective to objective. Yes, Lost Planet 2 isn't the greatest at handling a set piece, but (at least in my case) my imagination combined with the combatís ebb and flow compensated for its lack of spectacle, once I was given the diverse settings as my playground.



Now I canít recall the story events or the whole pictureís significance, but I don't need to to have fun, and I think thats the point. In fact, the looseness of its story returns me to a lost past time of when I was an ignorant child who misunderstood gamingís many convoluted plots. Since I didn't know what was going on, Iíd reinvent and interpret my own story. Though I don't care for the masks, they do help envision your own protagonist, making it your own story, something that certainly increases my investment in the experience.

And my Coup de Grace, Lost Planet is my favorite Gundam(insert favorite giant robot series here) game, envisioning how Iíd imagine the machines would work. The controls are obtuse, (almost purposefully) to add the sense of complexity that staring at a real bipedalís control panel might develop. The understanding of weight, as the larger behemoths are rightfully heavy, and therefore slow and clunky to handle, making it easier for the smaller and agile soldiers to outmaneuver, until attached with jets to propel them across the battlefield. The advance suits defy reality, while still appearing plausible, dancing around with rocket propulsion, but requiring frequent short bursts, as the jetís don't wield enough thrust to move the weighty mech great distances. While it isnít the greatest, Lost Planet 2 is one my favorite, and closest representation of a Gundam simulator Iíve witnessed, better than the actual series has managed.



Its got everything I need in a video game, unique yet loosely defined story to breed my imagination. A decent engine thats not bad to look at. And while overly complicated, I really enjoyed LP2ís controls, as they make the combat dense and satisfying, even if they're not entirely thought out or ergonomic. It has Gundams.. I'll say it again, Gundams..

With Lost Planet 3 and returning to the originalís viewpoint of the singular hero with a heavier cinematic focus, putting its chips into realism and immersion, and redesigning everything including the mechs to a practically engineer-driven design, I hope I dont lose what I enjoyed about Lost Planet.



What do you think of the Lost Planet series, Did you enjoy the original? Did you mock the sequel? Do you believe the series deserves a third chance? Leave your thoughts in the comments below!