Again, I find myself with too many games and too little time. Right now I’m in the middle of slaying thousands of zombies using a ridiculous arsenal of home-made weaponry, feeling nostalgic and old for the first time ever because of a classic 2D platformer, and am climbing and fighting my way across an overgrown jungley wasteland inhabited by killer robots. Below are some thoughts of Dead Rising 2, Sonic 4 Episode 1, and Enslaved: Odyssey to the West, so far…
Dead Rising 2
Killing swarms of mindless zombies has never been more fun since the first Dead Rising, but the sequel has proven to be superior in a number of ways. The game still gives you a rather irritating time limit to carry out certain tasks, but there is a lot more stuff to do in Capcom’s hilariously entetaining sequel. Scattered throughout the mall are these maintenance rooms which allows protagonist Chuck Greene the ability to combine a huge variety of items with each other to form makeshift weapons. Its brilliant fun figuring out what goes with what, and you end up with such insane contraptions as the Defiler (fire axe + sledgehammer), the now infamous Paddlesaw (boat ores + chainsaw) and my personal favourite the Plate Launcher (cement saw + plates). You will kill literally thousands of zombies if you play this game, and its 80% fun with 20% frustration. Expect a review from either Paul or myself in the near future.
Sonic 4 Episode 1
FINALLY, Sonic has returned to his roots! Sonic the Hedgehog holds a special place in my gaming memories as he was the first true gaming hero I loved as a kid. The megadrive was my first real console, and as a result, I grew up playing the original sonic games. The new one finds sonic returning to those glorious 2D days – the visuals mimic the style of the old games very nicely, and the sound effects and music are all full of nostalgic bounceyness. It’s not quite there, though… For the first time ever, I feel myself thinking “they don’t make them like they used to…” and am disgusted with myself for it. Argh! Still, at least Sega hasn’t completely forgotten what made Sonic great in the first place, and I have hope that the future episodes will be even better.
Enslaved: Odyssey to the West
It’s very rare for me to have never heard of a game until I’ve seen an advert for it on TV. And generally when it does happen, I’ll dismiss it as being crap, which is what nearly happened with Enslaved. As soon as I found out it was co-directed by Andy Serkis (Gollum), and co-written by Alex Garland (28 Days Later, Sunshine) I suddenly became interested. I bought it on impulse the other day for the Xbox 360 and have been blasting through it for the last couple of nights. It’s a beautiful game set 150 years in the future where most of mankind has either been killed or turned into a slave for these deadly machines that have taken over. Cities are overgrown and derelict, and you have to escort techno-geek Trip to safety back to her home. Along the way you’ll do plenty of Tomb Raider style platforming and climbing, along with some simple, brutal melee fighting against some pretty cool robots. The animation is particularly good. Generally, Enslaved is very fun, but I’ve clearly been spoiled with the likes of Unchartered 2, which does a lot of similar things, only better. Still, I’d easily recommend it so far, and will try to have a review of it within the next week or so.