So if you’ll remember last week I laid down a great big ol’ heaping helping of hate on Syndicate for no other reason than I resented the fact that it was re-using an ancient franchise for no good effect other than backstory. I even went as far as to compare it to Black, Brink and Bodycount.
Turns out I’m a blithering idiot who should not be trusted with your money
On the other hand I still stand by my statement that anyone who bought last week’s Dynasty Warrior game is simply biding their time until death.
Turns out I’m wrong about a lot of things, most of them not recorded here at Nitrobeard or my old site at Big Red Coat. Turns out over the years I’ve accumulated a track record that makes Michael Pachter look like Nate Silver:
JOHN EFFING EDWARDS: I supported John based on his North Carolina roots and my assumption that we’d need a white Southern guy on the ticket to stand a chance in the general election in 2008. Turns out Barack Obama won in a landslide and John Edwards recently won a court case to have the sex tape of him and his mistress burned taken AS HIS WIFE LAID DYING OF CANCER.
Fuck you, John Edwards.
The Atari 7800 vs the NES: I was a stupid kid and already heavily invested in what we would now call “The 2600 ecosystem” despite that ecosystem largely consisting of mishappen square lumps and bursts of static.
Silverhawks vs Thundercats: I still stand by my decision to side with the Silverhawks in this dispute, although history has forgotten that hawk-shaped spaceships powered by keytars even existed. Thundercats was always just a highly depressing He-Man ripoff, whereas Silverhawks was admittedly awful, but at least weird and inventive.
The Estonia Disaster: What can I say, I thought I threw the latch. Whatever.
Traded Chrono Trigger, Ogre Battle, and FF6 for a PS1 w/Resident Evil: In my defense this was the long-box PS1 era and if I still owned that copy of Resident Evil I could somewhat make up for my stunning financial disaster!
TotA.jpg Not pre-ordering TotA 3DS because man, that shit is gone. Luckily that won’t be a mistake for this week’s selection of games:
Publisher: dtp enterainment AG
Platforms: Xbox Live Arcade; Playstation Network
Release Date: 2/29/12-- supposedly?
Provided Awesomenauts is coming out this week-- and due the secretive nature of XBLA and PSN release schedule there’s no guarantee that it is-- you can expect something of a 2d Defense of the Ancients for consoles. It’s a good concept, and the hand-drawn art is well animated and sharp, with none of the Flash Game feel 2D HD games often fall into. The only thing I don't like about Aewesomenaut’s art is that Romino didn’t go for spritework.
Hopefully Awesomenauts works out, although it’s hard to tell if you can charge for DotA and still make it work. These are also the guys who gave us deBlob and they’re Norwegian. So we have to like them, right?
Developer: Yakuza Studio
Platforms: PlayStation 2, Xbox 360
Release Date: 2/28/12
Yes, it’s a Japanese cover-based third person shooter, and while that’s enough to give anyone pause (after all, an overt Japanese attempt to ape Gears of War gave us Quantum Theory), it’s also a Japanese cover-based shooter where you shoot up robots and that, my friend is the concept that led directly to Vanquish.
Also, you’re asked to manage the relationship dynamic between your squad mates. So Vanquish plus Persona 4. If you look at it and squint hard enough, Binary Domain has the makings for the best video game ever crafted, if not the highpoint of Western Civilization and ironically the start of our long downfall and cultural doom.
So I fired up the demo and-- well, civilization is probably in okay shape. Whereas Vanquish took the Gears of War formula and cranked all the action, speed and Holy Fucking Shit dials up to 11, Binary Domain goes the exact other direction and delivers a slow, plodding, downright stiff experience. Hopefully this is just a weird quirk of the demo and not representative of the final game, but nothing in what I played there seemed satisfying or intuitive. The neat thing about Gears is how despite how deceptively complicated the game is, everything has a zen-like flow to it and you don’t really have to think much to make cool shit happen. Binary Domain feels like you’re driving an old Soviet nuclear sub and you don’t know a lick of Cyrillic.
Plus, any action game where I have to pay constant attention that I’m not going to hit my AI squad mate with an errant grenade is simply never going to be fun, full stop.
Black Knight Sword
Developer: Grasshopper Manufacture / Digital Reality
Publisher: Digital Reality
Platforms: Xbox Live Arcade, PlayStation Network
Release Date: Oh please let it be this week please please
Fans of Suda51’s efforts at Grasshopper Manufacture have been waiting on Black Knight Sword since last Summer, even if it’s not really Suda’s game as much as it is Digital Reality’s, but his name is attached it, and much like Quentin Terantino’s “production” work, this is often good enough. I just wish there was good evidence for it coming out this week, or that it was even still in production at all. IGN and VGreleases are intent that we will see BKS this week, but the only real evidence we have of that is that Grasshopper was targeting a February 2012 release and, well, this is the last week for that. I remain unconvinced as Microsoft is in the middle of a month-long XBLA promotion and this is the sort of game that they would advertise the hell out of (comparatively speaking for XBLA games) as a bone to hardcore gamers.
Sadly the most information that exists as to the existence of Black Knight Sword is the Dark Souls Wiki page for the weapon labeled “Black Knight Sword”. Hopefully I’m wrong (again) and if so, you really need to buy this game.
Country Dance All-Stars
Developer: High Voltage Software
Publisher: Game Mill
Platforms: Xbox 360
*Rhythm Game? Check
*Filled with Country Music? Check
*Kinect Exclusive? Check
*Produced by “Game Mill”? Check
*Total Lack of Effort On My Part For This Talk Section? Check
*Are You An Asshole If You Buy This Game? Check
Pokepark 2: Wonders Beyond
Developer: Creatures Inc
Platforms: Nintendo Wii
Well they finally went and crossbred Pokemon with Wii Sports. The observant reader will realize that this is the exact moment where we need to begin making our way to secret underground NASA launch facilities to begin our new lives on Glise 581 c. Don’t let the fact that it’s an awful game give you hope for mankind-- it is well documented that a game’s quality is no bar to Wii owners, Pokemon fans, nor Nintendo followers.
Shin Megami Tensi: Devil Survivor 2
Platforms: Nintendo DS.
Release Date: 2/28/12
1: You probably have at most a week to get hold of this before Atlus runs out of the 400 or so blank DS carts still left in their warehouse
2: While I can appreciate that this game was in development well before the 3DS was ever released, is it asking so much for major late-era DS releases to at least have a widescreen option that displays more of the play-field so 3DS owners aren’t stuck with a Gameboy Advance-era screen ratio? Also, holy crap you should buy this game if you have a DS what’s wrong with you why are you even reading this?
3: Part 1 was probably a lie. Probably.
Developer: EA Canada
Publisher: EA Evil
Platforms: PlayStation 3, Xbox 360
Release Date: 2/28/12
I never got into the whole extreme sports genre-- I always figured if you were going to make something that looks and feels and controls like a racing game, then that game should control like a racing game and I should not be concerned with staying upright. That said, I always felt I had unfairly cut myself out of a large chunk of gaming culture-- after all gamers as hardcore as anyone swear by the original Tony Hawk games and SSX-- so I loaded up the SSX 2012 PS3 demo.
Turns out I was right and I don’t like snowboarding games, for the very reason I feared. Not that I don’t realize that there’s a lot of potential there and for anyone who is already in the (criminally underserved) genre there’s probably a lot to like here, but I’d rather that if I turn to the left that there wasn’t a better than 50% chance that my head would wind up buried in a snowdrift.
So lacking a nostalgic link to the original SSX I have to say I’m disappointed that EA Canada did not go with the weird spec-ops theme when this game was originally called Deadly Descents. This game carries some aspect of that concept a series of deadly dangerous untamed snowboarding slopes, but let’s be honest-- the world is ready for a combination of snowboarding and Modern Warfare. Or just a single Finnish WWII sniper game. C’mon EA work with me here.
I refuse to hate MASS EFFECT 3 LALALALA I CAN’T HEAR YOU LALALA
STREET FIGHTER VS TEKKEN still sorta blows my mind. Hopefully the whole gem mechanic doesn’t fuck everything up
MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL 2K12 is shipping on DS, PSP, and PS2, among others. We can only assume the lack of a Dreamcast port is tied directly to a worldwide shortage of GD-ROM discs.