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The Play it/Avoid it Report - 001 // Bioshock Infinite, Sleeping Dogs and more

Hello, bloggers.  I have been struggling with what direction to take The Buy it/Avoid it Report for a while now.  Although I have always enjoyed writing it, lately I just haven't been buying much.  Other than a few digital games here and there, I've mostly been renting games through GameFly in an effort to save myself some money.  I've never been much of a collector so this just makes more fiscal sense.

So, because I'm weird and I can't write about games that I didn't actually buy in a blog that makes purchasing recommendations, I changed the name.  It's more for my sake than yours, I assure you.  Also, "buy" and "avoid" aren't really opposite ideas, but "play" and "avoid" are.  That makes sense, right?  The only problem now is that I'm setting myself up for confusion between my "P/A Report" and the real PA Report.  Hopefully Ben Kuchera won't get too upset.  Anyway, let's roll.


>>  If you had told me a couple years ago that the new Tomb Raider game would knock my socks off, I probably would have laughed in your face.  I had roughly zero respect for Lara Croft and assumed her popularity had simply stemmed from her big boobs and short shorts.  However, when this reboot came around and I started seeing footage, I instantly noticed a difference.  Lara was filthy, cut up, bruised and beaten but had a fire in her eyes that wasn't there before.  She looked tough as hell.  All of a sudden she was a compelling character.

This game does so many things right that it's ridiculous.  The environments are incredible looking but also brilliantly constructed.  Linear paths bleed into huge, open areas with tons of secrets to discover. Running, jumping and climbing are all tuned perfectly.  It's simply a joy to traverse the environments, and the animations for every movement are simply fantastic.  You get Lara's signature bow very early in the game and can upgrade it extensively.  It was so fun to use that I often forgot that I was even carrying guns at all.  I didn't need them.

There are lots of cinematic moments in Tomb Raider that feel heavily inspired by the Uncharted games.  Yes, I see the irony in that statement.  Stuff will crumble or break at the worst times and Lara will have to make countless life-or-death leaps before the credits roll.  The main difference here is that the theme of survival is constant.  She may survive a terrible fall, but she'll land on a piece of rebar and have to pull it out herself.  The character you start as and the character you finish the game as are two completely different people, and you get to witness the entire transformation.  It's an incredible journey.

 PLAY IT if you are craving a cinematic adventure with perfect pacing and impressive production values.

 AVOID IT if you're bad at quicktime events because the death animations are almost too violent to have to watch over and over again.


That's it folks.  This was a long one but it had been a while since the last issue so I guess I was making up for lost time.  Thanks for reading!  See you next time.
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About Phoustone of us since 2:05 AM on 02.11.2010

(Banner crafted by the amazing COM 01)

My name is Eric. I'm 39.
Here are some random things I'm into:

The Buy it/Avoid it Report - back issues
#001 - Ilomilo, Uncharted 2, Infinity Blade, Pac-Man CE DX, Battlefield BC2: Vietnam, PixelJunk Shooter
#002 - Batman: Brave & Bold, DJ Hero 2, Dead Space 2, Bionic Commando Rearmed, Marvel vs. Capcom 3, Bulletstorm
#003 - Pokemon Black/White, PixelJunk Shooter 2, Monster Tale, God of War III, BIT.TRIP RUNNER, Torchlight
#004 - Portal 2, Steel Diver, Sin & Punishment Star Successor, Pilotwings Resort, Crysis 2, Blocks That Matter
#005 - L.A. Noire, Alice Madness Returns, Resident Evil Mercenaries 3D, Shadows of the Damned
#006 - GoldenEye 007, Insanely Twisted Shadow Planet, AC: Brotherhood, Sword & Sworcery EP, Trenched
#007 - Deus Ex: Human Revolution, Jetpack Joyride, Gears of War 3, The Binding of Isaac, Renegade Ops
#008 - Dark Souls, League of Evil, Uncharted 3, Batman: Arkham City, Super Mario 3D Land
#009 - The Buy it/Avoid it Report's Awards - 2011
#010 - Spelunky, Max Payne 3, Trials Evolution, Mario Kart 7, Escape Goat
#011 - Super Hexagon, Tekken Tag Tournament 2, Lollipop Chainsaw, Mark of the Ninja

The Play it/Avoid it Report - back issues
#001 - Bioshock Infinite, Darksiders II, Dead Space 3, Far Cry 3, Sleeping Dogs, Tomb Raider
#002 - Dishonored, DKC: Tropical Freeze, Grand Theft Auto V, Legend of Zelda: Wind Waker HD, Rogue Legacy
#003 - The Binding of Isaac: Rebirth, Mario Kart 8, Middle-earth: Shadow of Mordor, Sunset Overdrive

Secret Moon Base - episodes
Subscribe on iTunes - a podcast about video games and other stuff with my pals knutaf and Occam

Spelunky HD - blogs
Mega Guide - part one
Mega Guide - part two

The Binding of Isaac - blogs
Blood, Shit and Tears - a love letter
Instruction Manual - w/ tips and tricks for beginners
Unlocking Godhead - tips for playing as The Lost

Social Network(s) - ugh
Twitter - @corduroyturtle
Xbox LIVE:Corduroy Turtle
PSN ID:Corduroy_Turtle
Steam ID:17wizards
3DS Code:4639-8962-6190


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