Welcome back to my quest for PURE PLATINUM, a journey through the discography of Platinum Games' history and beyond. I started my list with arguably the cream of the crop: a gun toting witch with time compression and a rocket sliding Iron Man. Now lets get into weirdly creative territory. You'd think through the history of the video gaming medium that being tied to a 3rd party property would be incredibly stifling for creative expression. True story though, while designing Bayonetta's Hero of Time costume, Platinum went the conservative route and gave Bayo a modest white undershirt to cover up her cleavage. When the design docs went to Nintendo, they politely asked P* if they could free those sisters and Platinum was happy to oblige. So as you can see, Platinum has certainly built up a reputation where companies who approach Platinum know what they want when they asked good ol' P* for a character-action game based on their trusted IPs.
The next three games on my quest are not Platinum's characters to own but rather characters that they were given relative free reign to fit into their trademarked insane action set pieces. When you're told to think of a few of these characters, Platinum Games action title might not be the first thought but it shouldn't be the last either. At this rate P* can turn anything into character-action. Of course our first entry has gone so far off the rails with its franchises canon that the character might as well be a true-blue Platinum Games original character.
Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance: To this day Revengeance is still one of my favorite P* games due to how combat flows. Sure you can purchase the Offensive Defense skill and breeze through attacks with a healthy amount of i-frames and a free attack to boot. But I got a real kick out of reading my enemies' attack tells and parrying them. Raiden's main strong attack combo is still one of my favorite moves, with an insane Chun-li style lightning legs flurry with his high frequency sword pitched between his toes.
While there was plenty of action in between, the highlights were obviously the bosses of Desperado LLC. with some of the best attack patterns, set pieces, and even music which even breaks apart the fear of putting lyrics in game music. Mistral, Monsoon, Sundowner, Jetstream Sam, and Armstrong are all such worthy choices as some of the best boss fights in a game.
Also, you can fight in a mariachi costume.
Legend of Korra: Most people cite Korra as one of Platinum's weakest shots and I won't blame, though a certain amount of lacking skill can be cited in some reviewers. IGN flat out calls firebending useless but when properly level its one of the most useful hyper offensive styles in the game. Other than that, my defense of the game is that Korra is Platinum as fuck. Platinum games have a tendency of having a certain curve in their enjoyment. It ramps up the further you get into it and it curves even steeper when you decide to replay portions of the game with a maxed out character who has a complete moveset. Afterall, half the fun of a Platinum game comes from beating your previous score, and having all your moves helps.
Korra in particular suffers from an extreme example of bad pacing. Most of your enjoyment for the game comes from emulating the feelings from the show, of which Korra can bend all four elements. But the game Metroids and strips you of all your bending from the beginning, forcing you to unlock them at a slow, tedious, and deliberate pace. You don't get airbending until right before the last chapter and good luck having other bending styles leveled by then! You don't even get the Avatar State, Korra's version of Platinum's time limited powered up state, until you beat the game! Imagine playing Bayonetta 2 and not having access to Umbran Climax until you beat it!
But once you do beat the game, score chasing and clearing the difficulties isn't so monotonous once you have your complete moveset. The first chapter is a slog of weak enemies with just water bending but what about giving it a go on insane difficulty, with powered up triads blocking your way while you have all four elements at your disposal and god knows what other power ups you can equip like half health/unlimited chi or regenerating health.
You'd be forgiven for writing off Korra but you're missing out if you dismiss it quickly. Dodge cartwheels, parries, long range water whips, and AOE earthquakes are just some of the things you can enjoyably string together while fighting giant mechs.
Transformers Devastation: This game is probably one of P*'s most loving tributes and homages to an outside property. All of the G1 Transformers are lovingly rendered into 3D so they can engage in some of the craziest combos you'd never imagine them doing. I don't know if anyone could ever predict Optimus Prime doing dodge rolls and using time dilation focus but just hearing Frank Welker alive and well assures you that the Transformers deserve a shot at stretching their legs for high octane action and fisticuffs.
TD is probably the first title from P* to experiment with a randomly generated loot mechanic to govern damage values. I certainly miss the feeling of working up to unlocking a proper new weapon like Chernabog, Salamandra, or Bloodlust, but there can be a certain goofy charm to earning a completely broken weapon on luck. Mike told me he once got a hammer weapon he never replaced because it was that good. Luckily, what TD lacks in exciting weapons, it makes up for with a diverse character roster with unique powers. Optimus can spin attack with his trailer, Bumblebee has an evasive slide, and Grimlock is the only one who can grapple enemies.
I don't know about you but putting a fresh coat of awesome paint on a normally cherished but old fashion property like Transformers, especially G1 Transformers, is a lot of fun.
There are plenty more newer 3rd party properties that Platinum is tackling but they aren't quite out yet. Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutants in Manhattan promises the same great treatment Transformers got while Nier, known as turn-based JRPG, is also getting the Platinum treatment with Nier: Automata, not to mention Star Fox (please come soon!). But it just goes to show that Platinum has the chops to make just about anything shine with their signature Platinum luster.