Friday, August 20, 2004

I As In Ninja!

Ahh Ninja Gaiden, the game that is said to be extremely hard. But with good reason, because the game is pretty goddamn difficult.

However Ninja Gaiden must be one of the few games that is very challenging but also so rewarding and great fun. Sure you die a lot, have to replay certain areas of the game over and over, and have to keep trying to defeat a certain boss, but when you do, you feel like you have really accomplished something.

Plus the strange thing is that you never seem to get frustrated with the game. It's hard, but not "I'm going to put this damn Xbox controller through the window" hard. I think the only time I really got angry was at the beginning of the game during one of the first boss battles, and I had already taken the boss on 4-5 times, and then died just before I defeated him. But I learnt what I did wrong, and next time round I kicked his arse!

The other thing you remember when playing the game is that it is hard, and getting pissed at it isn't going to help at all. The best thing to do is to just keep at it, plus having to replay certain areas isn't a chore it's great, you improve you skill and get to behead strange creatures.

Though the thing that simply impressed me the most when I first battled an enemy was simply how fucking solid this game is. The gameplay is simply some of the greatest ever. It just feels great, this is how an action game should feel SOLID!

Even the controls for simple movement are great, though a few things can be a bit tricky and the camera at times can do a few strange things, it's still one of the best out there. But the range of moment and action you can perform are just insane.

The gameplay is just fantastic, and the other things like the weapon upgrade system, magic and additional weapons just add the proverbial icing to the cake.

TeamNinja this time have really out done themselves, the only thing that could top this would be a sequel with more of everything!

Monday, August 16, 2004

Escape From The Bay

Well after a bit of a delay I finally managed to check out Riddick for the Xbox. Now I haven't really seen a bad review about this game, and for the most part with good reason. One of my favourite sites because of their fair reviews, NTSC-UK hints at most of what isn't so hot with the game, but are still partial to it, fair enough.

First of all Riddick has what I believe the Beastie Boys would say "The skills to pay the bills", which in essence is very true. This game looks bloody fantastic, thanks in part to the power of the Xbox and of course StarBreeze who put it all together.

I went into Riddick with high expectations, and when this happens you are usually disappointed. The problem being I had read a few reviews and was sort of caught in the hyped about it. How can you not be, when you have so many people saying something is great, well you kinda believe it.

Riddick is a FPS, but it dose bring a new feel to a worn genre and a few new things. Though I'll say it out right, I don't like stealth in my FPS's, I play MGS, Splinter Cell and Thief for stealth, I don't want to have to fucking sneak about in a game when I can just shoot people. Since your in prison in Riddick, you don't have a gun, and even when you finally do all the work to get one it gets taken away from you. This is where things went sour for me, no gun, having to use stealth and having to fuck around to complete vague objections.

That is my other main gripe, if you get lost in Riddick, you aren't given a hint or any help. This game isn't hard, but with all the vents and locked doors you can get lost and end up wondering what the hell you are doing.

It may seem I am very down on the game, and while I didn't like all the vent crawling and stealth palava, when you do get a gun it's a great game. The sound (loveley 5.1), graphics and atmosphere are top notch and everything just looks great. Also one of my favourite little additions are the cigarette packets you can find to unlock hidden items, very nice.

I would have to say that the main problem is I wasn't into Riddick expecting something it wasn't. For some reason I imagined more Half Life and less Thief, where I ended up with more Thief. Defiantly worth a rent, and if it's $50 pick it up.

Monday, August 09, 2004

A Delay of Sorts

With all the talk about Doom 3 lately I though I would post something different. The fact that I don't currently have a PC that will run Doom 3, and won't until I've bought a car, doesn't factor into it. Though I very much want to play Doom 3, I can wait. Plus I'm looking forward to Half Life 2 much more. Which by then I hope to have said PC.

Anyway onto more pressing issues. The other day as I was reading the usual sites I read on a daily basis and I came across this interesting article. Lost among the mounds of Doom 3 news posts, I'm fairly sure many sites dismissed it. What caught my attention though was the mention of a completion percentage of GT4. Now I'm sure with GT4's imminent release status many people would assume that GT4 is almost complete, as did I. However the article quotes Yamauchi as saying that GT4 is currently only 75% complete, which really thew me. 75% isn't a very comforting number, its a whole 25% away from 100%, which is exactly one quarter. Now this really doesn't fill me with confidence, especially for a release this year.

Maybe it's possible (a release this year), maybe I'm just making a mountain out of a molehill, and maybe 75% to Yamauchi is a lot closer to 100% than I'm thinking. But this game has been in the making for a bloody long time now, and I just keep seeing delays. I was hoping that they would be at around 95% now and just finalising little things and fixing bugs.

I guess we will just have to wait and see, after all there are 5 months left in this year. This isn't a rant about Polyphony Digital or GT4, as it's one of my most loved gaming franchises, it's just an observation. I would rather wait till next to play a perfect version of GT4, it being everything I hope it will be, and not some buggy rushed version. I'm sure many fans of GT4 will agree, as perfection is what makes GT4 a great racing series.