Clover will get pissy if I don’t post anything. Probably. The reason behind it is, naturally, either lack-of topic or lack-of time to spend writing up stuff, due to working… But I digress:
I’ve been re-doing my room, and that’s given me time tofish out my old PS2 and blow off some time just sitting under the bed, letting my eye-sight degrade to shit. It’s fun.
One of the games I’ve found was Dragon Ball Z: Budokai Tenkaichi 3 (GTA: San Andreas, Spiderman 3 and FFVII: Dirge of Cerberus notwithstanding). I bought a second-hand copy of Ultimate Tenkaichi on the ‘360 a few weeks ago.
I’ve already traded it back in.
Fact is, it doesn’t compare to the older iteration of the franchise for me. The story seems a lot better. The only thing that made the game even slightly worth-while was the character-creation, and even that felt limited.
Long-story short? I prefer the older version. End of. I may get DBZ:UT again sometime, but that’s only after I either get bored of BT3 or just get the hankering for the improved graphics.
Also, for those of you who haven’t watched it, the title is a reference to TeamFourStar’s Dragonball Z Abridged series. Enjoy.
Clover here. Well this is strange. There have been an uprising in Call Of Duty posts recently hasn’t there. Well it’s obvious why, the news of a new Black Ops and my review that came to mind while i was in my bed trying to sleep. I thought of it when I was sleeping and couldn’t remember if a pillow hit me or if it was Captain Price trying to hang me (spoiler). Moving on. If you can count there have been 8 Call of Duty installments excluding the extra ones on the earlier games and they all seem to have something in common. They’re all the same game. No no, please listen, I think this is a good point, is your mouse off the close option? Good, I can carry on. The Call Of Duty franchise has been going on for nearly a decade now and unfortunately there is no sign of it dying out. I’ve noticed that the game as a whole has started to turn into a gimmick. The Modern Warfare side series started off as a serious game. It had serious plot points such as the threat of global nuclear war and a treacherous civil war for Russia. This was a good turning point for the franchise, if it could do more of this then it could have lived on to still be a legacy, but unfortunately the second Modern Warfare went a lot over the top. There was a little bit too much patriotism for America going on. It made me feel uncomfortable as a Welshman even though I carried on and finished it on Veteran. The later games after Call Of Duty 4 just repeated the same thing year after year.
The earlier games were games meant to give detailed stories about the life of a WW2 and modern-day soldier and show the hardships of being one. Now it’s a bunch of cinematics with a few cover based shooting situations in between. I remember playing Big Red 1 on my friends PS2 a few years ago and it was an incredibly good game. Now i play it and I feel like I’m playing out the actions of a James Bond style character. It is irritating that a game would repeat itself for the sake of money, it used to be good.
It must evolve and innovate itself to keep on living as a video game. If a game is worth keeping then it has to change itself at some point. Even Just Cause knows this, the first and second are incredibly different to each other. Every gamer that has his head out of a pile of sand will agree with me in saying that Cal Of Duty needs to change. For this I blame the publishers. seeing as Activision basically owns the franchise, they can decide what happens in it and what not. They know it sells by the multi millions every year so they don’t want to take the risk of losing money by changing the game entirely. If people go off the game that’s game over for them. Activision is notorious for milking a series out of its sweet liquid. This happened with Guitar Hero but thankfully that was stopped before the sweet liquid turned into dust like with Call Of Duty. They’ve ruined the Spyro series by giving him a new look and adding this strange machine to your console that you can stick these ugly little plastic… creatures on and you can play as them. I haven’t played it but I don’t want to either, thankfully the Tony Hawk series still has sweet nectar left in its fine bosom but because of the later series’ negative reception the next game might be postponed to this year or 2013.
Another thing that irritates me is the abbreviation “COD.” I despise it. Cod, is a fish, not a video game. Call Of Duty is a video game, not a fish. I say that but ironically Call Of Duty is metaphorically nowadays a mediocre tasting fish. Get it on your plate and you’ll enjoy it for a little while but that short enjoyment turns slowly into disappointment after eating one for 6 hours and eating one with your friends over the internet will make you feel frustrated and bloated. See the metaphor? I do…
I have a series rating here for you:
Larten Apple here. Haven’t been on for a while. Don’t blame me – blame the fact I don’t get much free time to follow my own interests past schoolwork and pursuing a social life. Hell, I’m tempted to get Clover to add a page for one of my friends, titled “How to Pick Up Chicks If You’re a Gamer.” My first tip is for the people who’re in the gaming industry: if a chick asks you what you do for a living, simply state “I work in the media.” If she asks which type of media, she’s too smart for you, but I digress…
Storytelling is present in almost every game these days… RPGs, RTSs, FPS… You name it. Some are reliant on the story, such as Gears of War 2 & 3. Others depend on the all-out fun, like Just Cause 2. In the end, the narrative is a key element. So here’s a few of the greatest examples I can think of, and that I’d recommend purely for the story.
I am, for lack of a better word, loathe of the Call of Duty franchise. The Modern Warfare series was OK as far as the story goes. Either way, I wouldn’t go near them again with a 20ft pole. Black Ops however is fantastic… I mean, I hate the multiplayer and the controls are pretty much generic when compared to every other shooter, plus there’s no bullet fall, buildings can’t be levelled… Those things. Rather than spoil the plot for any of you who still haven’t played it, I’ll cut to the chase – it’s well delivered, it’s thought-provoking (though far-fetched) and the characters… well, they leave leave a bit to be desired but they’re still fantastic. It’s one of the best narratives I’ve encountered so far. But still, CoD online multiplayer is a social network for twelve year olds, idiots and virgins who still live with their mothers.
L.A Noire, Gears of War series, Fable 3… I’d give them all high marks as the narrative goes. L.A. Noire delivers the story while giving an insight as to old-fashioned values – it tackles racism, sexism, drugs (“They did tackle drugs very well, and they did a good take on post-war trauma,” – Clover), post-war trauma, grooming, prostitution. homelessness, alcaholism, mental-health (“Sort of,” –Clover)… The list grows. The only concern is that the face-system they used, while looking damn good, wasted a lot of space. An image is worth a thousand words, but the visuals and narrative that’re delivered by Rockstar in this masterpiece is simply… Glorious.
Now, the GoW series… I admit, I played and loved the first one. The second I like, and the third I only got up to “Brothers ‘Til The End” or w/e before throwing my controller down. Frankly, the games rock, but the gameplay stayed the same. I’ve nothing against over-the-shoulder shooters but when there’s nothing new after the third iteration of the franchise then they’re doing it wrong. Apologies to my partner for using his phrase but, “No! Bad idiot developers!” Epic Games, please heed my words: I love the Unreal system, I really do, but please use it for something different than what you are. The narratives on the games rock – I love the story, it’s touching – but you’re bringing yourselves down by pulling the same crap you did in the first two installments. That’s just nasty.
Now, then… Fable. I… have no idea where to begin with this. The story is precisely that – a fable. I can’t put too much details in it without giving spoilers, but the fact is I like Fable 2… some don’t. Customization was fun, pleasing villagers was fun because of th– hold on, remembered I’m supposed to be speaking about the narrative… Well, it’s good. Not as retro as the first but a damn sight better than 3. I’ll leave it at that.
Rather than drone on, I’ll include a list of the games that I believe have a fantastic narrative. Please suggest any if you can think of others:
- L.A. Noire;
- Gears of War 1, 2, 3
- Fable, Fable 2
- Fallout 3 [main quest];
- WarCraft I, II, III (plus all the expansions – NOT THE MMO);
- Dragon Age: Origins
- Dragon Age II (the story rocks, but the game sucks)
- Mass Effect 1, 2.
- Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim (The main quest is short, I admit, but it’s still bloody fantastic.)
- Deus Ex: Human Revolutions (I’ll admit the story is thought-provoking)
- Call of Duty: Modern Warfare, 2, 3, Black Ops.
The reason I don’t include Battlefield 3 is because the story was too similar to Black Ops. Anymore for the list, speak up.
Clover performs “maintenance” almost daily. Here’s to you, buddy, if you pick out any spelling mistakes, underline ’em for the world to see. Leeroy knows I can’t be fucked proof-reading my work.
For all this I blame us, the consumers, we buy this non challenging produce from overrated developers. I admit, I do enjoy the odd modern-day shooter but if it keeps going down the rate it is going today, then I fear the worst of the gaming community’s future.
Thanks for reading guys. Now I have to think for another 3 weeks on what else to write.
Hey guys, this is Clover again. I’ve realised that quite a few of you want games to be considered a medium of art. Now don’t get me wrong, there is nothing more I’d love than our medium to be accepted as a mature art form to display emotions, flaws and feelings in the human condition. I would like it if we were up there on the pedestal with music, literature and film. But let’s not get into that right now. I’ll have time to write that later.
Back to my main point. So to you who thinks that all narratives should be deep and immersive, to those who want all characters to be compelling and different. I will ask you a question, where did you start playing games, or how? You probably started the same way I did. On Nintendo. Face it, almost no Nintendo title has had those kind of titles, it’s either go save a princess or level up your little pet until he evolves. You see what I mean? You didn’t start off with games with the most complex of stories, you started off simple and fun. Sure when you get older, you might need more thought-provoking titles to ease your hunger. But the thing is, video games have been, and always will be, made for entertainment.
I admit, I like a little compelling and complex story myself but on the other hand, I like to let loose and find some fun to have. Within a world so foreign I don’t believe it’s real. If I don’t believe it can be real then it’s all the more fun knowing you can do anything in there and it won’t affect you outside the game.
I feel I’m contradicting myself here. I’ll get to the point. For you, people of art, there are games made for you. I’ll give you a small list of modern games suiting your needs, Deus Ex: Human Revolution, GTA4, L.A Noire, Red Dead Redemption, Fallout: 3 and many more. But you have to realise that “dumb” games are made for entertaining the masses and make money. Games like Call Of Duty, Battlefield, Super Mario, Dead Space, Space Marine 40K, Halo, Gears Of War and Just Cause.
Gamers, one day we shall have our No Country For Old Men, Macbeth or Mona Lisa. One day, we will have the game that brings us out of the dark and accepted by all as our own medium of art.
And for those of you who have shit for brains, go play Duke Nukem Forever.