Archive for August, 2011

Update

Posted in Uncategorized on August 31, 2011 by caseystorton

Hey all 10 of you reading this, sorry I haven’t done one of these in a while, I’ve just been really busy lately with school, work, and marching band, so I haven’t really gotten to play that much recently. As for what to expect, the next game I’ll finish will probably be Condemned: Criminal Origins, so expect a review of that at some point in the future. I’ve also been playing The Darkness and Black on and off, so those will probably happen eventually as well. Thanks for listening, I hope you’ve all been enjoying what I do here. I’ll see ya later.

Mortal Kombat

Posted in Uncategorized on August 7, 2011 by caseystorton

-Let’s get some things kleared up here, first of all, no, I didn’t spell klear wrong, I’m just getting into the spirit of this game by spelling it with a “K” as the game would, and second, this is the 2011 Mortal Kombat, not the 1992 Mortal Kombat. I had never played a Mortal Kombat game before this one, but I was familiar enough with the series to know a little bit of what to expect. I knew there would be lots of blood, and I knew that the fatalities would be pretty ridiculous. So, let’s see what happens when I come into a series 9 games in with those expectations.
-The first thing I did when I got the game was checking out the tutorial mode, which walked me through the basics for a while, but after trying and failing to do a kombo for the 100th time, I decided that I was good enough to go on and try the story mode. I played the story mode for a long time, as it took me through many different kharacters and their roles in how they either saved or took over “The Earthrealm.” The game does a good job of having you play as a variety of different kharacters with a variety of different move sets. There’s Johnny Cage, a movie star skilled in martial arts that possesses some ranged energy attacks and directional kick moves, Scorpion, a resurrected ninja with fire based attacks and s spear on a chain that pulls enemies to him from across the screen, Stryker, a S.W.A.T. officer with a pistol, hand grenades, and a police baton, and many others.
-The kharacters all have their own regular and special attacks which kan be easily viewed from the pause menu. Most  kharacters share a few common moves, and everyone has the same basic kontrols, so it’s easy to get acquainted with new karacters as the story progresses. One thing new to this game from previous entries is the edition of a super meter, that gains power as you both deal and receive damage. It has three sections, the first allows you to use a powered up version of a special move, the second allows you to use a kombo breaker, and if you fill it up all the way, you kan execute a brutal “X-ray move.” These moves turn into mini sort-of kutscenes as the camera zooms in and shows an x-ray view of your attacks as they break the enemy’s bones and rupture their internal organs. It sounds disgusting, but in isn’t bad.
-In addition to the story mode, there are also ladder, tag ladder, versus, team versus, challenge tower, and many other modes to keep you busy. Ladder is a linear progression through seven randomly selected kombatants, with 8, 9, and 10 being pre-determined boss kharacters. Tag ladder is the same thing, but with two kharacters on each team, and it kan be played kooperatively. Versus is a simple two player battle mode, with team versus working the same way, but with teams of two and the ability for up to four players to join in. Challenge tower is a linear progression through 300 objective specific modes that have widely varied gameplay and offer interesting kollectibles for kompleting these challenges successfully. After you win a fight in either ladder or versus mode, you kan do a “Fatality” move that will finish off your foe in a ridiculous, over-the-top, and brutally violent way. Fatalities depict heads being torn off, bodies being ripped in half, and people being beaten to death with their own limbs.
-For doing just about anything in the game, you kollet koins that you can than spend on special new kollectibles at the krypt. Most of them are pretty lame, like concept art, music samples, and damage models, but you can also unlock alternate kostumes and fatality kodes, although you kan look up the fatality kodes online, making this part of the krypt somewhat redundant.
-Overall, Moral Kombat is a great game that’s a lot of fun play and has enough kontent to keep you busy with  it for a long time. If you have any remote interest in an awesome fighting game experience, check it out. 9/10

Ty the Tasmanian Tiger 2: Bush Rescue

Posted in Uncategorized on August 1, 2011 by caseystorton

-A lot of you are probably wondering what this game is and why I’m reviewing it. Well, let me tell you a story. It was my 9th birthday back in 2003, and one of my friends gave me the original Ty the Tasmanian Tiger for a present. I played it for a while, and it was a lot of fun, but there was one particular boss that i couldn’t quite figure out how to beat. And so it remained until my brother and I found the sequel, which I am here to review today, at a local game store. At the time I was about 11 years old. I’m 17 now, so it’s been a few years since I played it. I recently found a copy on ebay for pretty cheap, so I jumped. What follows is my experience with a childhood favorite from an older perspective.
-The original game took a linear level based approach to gameplay, and it was a fairly well designed platformer set in Australia with a focus on the main character, Ty the “Tasmanian Tiger,” and his quest to gather five mystic talismans to free the rest of his family from another demension called “The Dreaming.” Combat was centered around the different types of boomerangs that you could collect that each had different special abilities. Enough about the first game though, time to get our sequel on. Let me start by saying that I don’t like it when a sequel just does the exact same thing as it’s predecessor, because it feels more like an expansion pack that a true sequel. It seems that Ty’s developers, Krome Studios, share my opinion, and made Ty 2 a vastly different experience, while leaving much of the core gameplay intact. The game went from a selection of linear levels full of samey objectives that only escaped monotony by way of varied settings, to an open world setup with varied mission objectives, creative levels, new rangs (boomerangs), creative vehicles to drive, and more. In the first game, every level had 300 opals, the game’s equivalent to Mario’s coins, which could be collected for a prize, as well as enemies that yielded no reward other that getting them out of the way. In the sequel, the open world setup allows you to stockpile opals collected through exploration in hidden caches, breaking open boxes, and killing enemies. Using these upgrades, you can buy new rangs, mission specific vehicles called “Bunyips,” special maps to hidden collectibles, and health upgrades. From the first store, you can buy a large variety of rangs, some old, and some new. They all have special uses, one lights things on fire and burns through spider webs, one freezes enemies and creates platforms on water, one does more damage and breaks open special metal crates, one seeks out more enemies after it hits rather than simply coming back to your hand, one electrocutes enemies, one has a zoom function and can see hidden crates and platforms in the first person aiming mode, and one is on the end of a lasso and can spin enemies around for extra opals, grab opals from a distance, and swing on hooks to reach hidden areas. All of these can be upgraded later on from a different shop, where you can also purchase a rang that explodes on impact, and a rang that you can steer manually directly into foes where it explodes. You can also buy vehicles that you need for certain mission that may require you to navigate a volcano and put out a fire, lift objects out of your path or onto a truck, or dive deep underwater; in this respect, there are also a few helicopter missions that mostly involve picking up objects and navigating them to a drop zone while taking out enemies with the rockets in your arsenal. To get around between all of these missions, you drive around in a truck and throw explosive rangs from the back to destroy crates and kill enemies on motorcycles. You can also participate in Mario Kart style races complete with powerups to earn extra opals.
-Around all of these new innovations for the series, the core gameplay when you get to a mission is mostly the same as it was in the original. You fight off enemies with the rang of your choosing, which can be selected from a radial menu that pauses the game at any time, a step up from the real-time d-pad  selection system of the original. In between, or occasionally during these fights, you will engage in some sections of platforming that work alright, if you can put up with the sluggish camera that doesn’t move fast enough to keep the game flow going uninterrupted.
-Nostalgia aside for fond memories of this game from before my voice had even changed, the game is not without its issues. As I mentioned earlier, the camera controls are simply too slow for a game like this, the rangs always seem to have a shorter range that you think they do, some rangs that are arbitrarily more expensive have very little practical use in either combat or puzzle solving, some upgrades feel a bit phoned in, with the fire, ice, and electric rangs all simply receiving the addition of splash damage, in contrast to the Smasharang, which gains explosive power, or the Inferang, which allows you to see hidden objects outside of the first-person view, and driving around the same area to get to missions eventually starts to feel like padding. But overall, it’s a solidly designed game, that holds up decently well seven years after its original release. 7/10