45 s over 47 Reviews
I frankly don't care to finish either of the Watch Dogs 2 DLC packs. Maybe one day when I nab these on PC, I'll go through them, but for now, I've essentially retired my PS4, and just don't care to finish it.
This game is rather strange to quantify, because, on the one hand, I found Broken Reality to be a rather mesmerizing experience, chock full of abstract beauty while wallowing within the deepest pits of irony that Vaporwave is synonymous with, but on the other hand, it's a deeply frustrating experience of meaningless checklists stretched out far past its welcome.
To note, I reached the final level of Broken Reality before I decided to just shelf the game. I spent around 7 hours in the game, going about the multitude of quests and scavenger hunts for "likes" and so forth, but I was soft-locked at the very end of the game, requiring me to go through what would seem to be another several hours of backtracking to see the end credits; frankly, I didn't have the patience to do that. Out of my own impatience, I just went ahead and looked up the ending online, gathered the story bits from that, and called my experience with this game finished. Ultimately, I find it a shame I called it quits with the game, but it helms a multitude of pacing issues that severely hamper the experience.
Broken Reality is ultimately a simple game mashing up first-person exploration titles with a general Metroid-Vania flavor, all doused within the ugly yet extremely charming aesthetics of Vaporwave, and if that sales pitch sounds like something you'd be interested in, then you'll definitely find something enjoyable about the game. I know I found my fair share of fun with it in uncovering the strange, twisted secrets of this virtual space gone mostly abandoned/corrupt, but the overall pacing of the game didn't keep me invested throughout the experience; several moments of the game drag on for far longer than they should, and that's a shame considering the talent put into this project, however, an hour or two shaved off the game would've greatly impacted the game for the better.
I'm torn on Broken Reality; ultimately, I'd recommend it, especially for those fascinated by internet culture, but I'd just be aware of the sluggish pace come the final hours of the game; if you can handle that, you'll probably have a blast.
This game deserves a much greater analysis in the future, one I'll have to do soon.
Dead Space 2
Game quality: 8/10
PC port rating: 8/10
Right from booting up the game, it's obvious that Dead Space 2 is a considerable upgrade from the first installment. To start, the PC port isn't terrible this time around, having native mouse/keyboard support that doesn't feel like you're wrestling with a ten-foot-tall slug, and the overall optimization is much better, although it still leaves a lot to be desired like a FOV slider, and in-game VSYNC support that doesn't lock the game down to 30FPS.
Anyway, as for Dead Space 2, itself, it's a much tighter, better-paced experience from its predecessor. Dead Space 2 runs around 3-ish hours shorter than the first game, which in some cases may be cause for concern, but I honestly felt that the 10+ hour-long, sluggish pace of the game to be a real hassle. You're no longer left to solving menial puzzles at every turn, nor are you forced to needlessly backtrack through large portions of the game, so that's a plus. As I've said in the past, I would much rather play a shorter game that's paced well and ends when it's supposed to, than play something that drags on far past its welcome, and Dead Space 2 is very much that kind of experience.
Outside of overall better pacing and control, Dead Space 2's narrative sees a considerable boost from the first one, primarily through giving Issac Clark more personality through being a voiced character instead of a total blank slate. I understand that many take issue with Clark being more of a "character" this time around, yet I liked that this game gave Clark actual personality to his character. Clark's overall narrative ark is more interesting, and I rather liked experiencing the outbreak of Necromorphs this time around, even if I really loved exploring the Ishimura in a post-outbreak scenario.
I'll still roll my eyes at Dead Space 2's obvious influences, and it's still a bit tacky how much this series "borrows" from other contemporary horror/sci-fi media, but for an action-horror experience that provides some fun spooks, and a somewhat engaging story, all things considered, you can't go wrong with Dead Space 2.
Overall game score: 3/5
PC port score: 1.5/5
Well, I've completed as much of the game as I could considering the circumstances of this really shoddy port job. I originally played Dead Space on the Xbox 360 years and years ago and had a rather fun time with it; a fun spookhouse/sci-fi adventure aping the aesthetics of John Carpentor's The Thing and Paul W.S. Anderson's Event Horizon, while melding it with obvious game-like influences from Resident Evil 4 and System Shock 2. Ultimately, I've always stated that Dead Space is a more "dumbed down" version of System Shock 2, and I still stand by that claim to this day, yet that doesn't discount the game from being rather fun in its own right.
Now, I played the PC port of this game, which in all honestly, is terrible all things considered. The mouse and keyboard controls are absolutely terrible unless you work an unofficial patch into the game (which was rather easy to install but that still doesn't excuse a bad port job), the in-game VSYNC locks your framerate to 30FPS, and on top of all that, the physics of the game are all over the place, actively making the game perform worse, the higher your framerate is. These frustrations were fine to deal with for a while until I began to get frustrated at some of the additional issues I ran into this port, including one crash towards the beginning of the game, a weird bug where a character didn't show up in a room that locked me in, meaning a required combat encounter never happened (twice, mind you, I had to reload a save a few times to get this scene to trigger properly) and a moment towards the late-game where all audio went silent within the game, making me restart the game to get sound back. Minor instances like that in a 10-ish hour experience are fine enough, except for the fact the game hard crashed on me within the final chapter multiple times, all within the exact same spot. I lost my patience working with the port job, and just decided to call this playthrough finished, since I had around 20 minutes left as it was until I rolled credits. Maybe there's some way to fix this issue, maybe I just had a string of bad luck, but either way, I'm not going to bother digging for fixes when I was at the end of the game, anyway.
If you're wanting to play the PC port of this game, which besides all of its issues, I would recommend because this is easily the best-looking version of the game, keep in mind the many hurdles you may have to mantle to get the thing working properly from beginning to end.
If you're willing to put up with the frustrations, Dead Space offers a lot of fantastic qualities that have made the game age rather well, considering its age: the atmosphere is thick and brooding, simultaneously beautiful and disturbing, and the combat is rather fun, if not a bit samey, and tiresome come the final hours. I honestly would've liked to see Dead Space trim a bit of the fat from the length, since the game goes on for maybe an hour or two too long, but even with the pacing issues (especially come the end), the game is a rather great proof of concept. If you like your horror on the more action side of things, Dead Space is certainly worth your time. Again, just be aware of the PC port's issues.
Dead Rising 2
I honestly can't say how many times I've played this game. I'd say this last playthrough might be my 11th or so. I've loved this game since I was a kid, and it's given me hours upon hours of continuous fun and was my entry to this storied franchise with all of its ups and downs. Dead Rising 2 is just a blast, with the wacky combo weapons, clothing customization, tons of side quests, and the whole time limit mechanic always adds a fun level of tension to the whole affair.
Be wary of the PC port in the frustrations that come from trying to get a controller working with the game, especially a Dualshock 4 (my preferred controller), but after some tinkering around, the game works great; steady framerate, didn't crash at all, and it's easy to run on modern machines. Dead Rising 2 is certainly a game to check out if you've been curious about Dead Rising if the first game is too intimidating to start off with.
A rather fun action/shooter/rougelike with some unique mechanics and gimmicks. Not too mechanically deep so it's rather easy to get into, but can really ramp up the challenge, which is sometimes extremely unbalanced.
The art style is great, controls smooth, and this game can seemingly run on a toaster, so there's no excuse to give this a try.
+ aesthetically fantastic
+ sound design/soundtrack is impeccable
+ great enemy variety
+ loads of accessibility options
+ the story is fantastic
+ voice acting is superb
+ lots of fun cosmetic customization
- hard to get used to the controls
- combat isn’t too engaging
- motion blur is still noticeable even with it “turned off”
- controls are clunky a good chunk of the time
- no fast travel
- map design is “alright” to “horrendous”
- runs horribly on certain planets/high-density areas
- boss design is rather repetitive
- Unreal Engine 4 is awful
Ultimately a fun game, but very flawed. Might bump up the rating if I played this on a platform that didn’t run the Unreal 4 engine like total trash. Will more than likely play the PC version in the future, but as it stands, the PS4 port is overall good, but has a lot of problems that really hold it back. Hopefully we can get the franchise expanded in a sequel and cut out the graphical issues with the next generation of systems.
Super Destronaut DX
A fun enough Space Invaders clone.
Quite literally the worst thing I've ever attempted to play in my life.
Fairly fun for what it is. A short, arcade-style shooter with some really fun mechanics and weapons to mess around with, but there are a few glaring issues with the game.
While I eventually got used to there not being any jump button, I found some of the mechanics of the game to feel rather useless, primarily in some of the weapons available to use that are frankly gimmick weapons when compared to more useful tools. I only really stuck to around five weapons I used on repeat, only bringing out other weapons if I needed a quick switch to a new gun on the fly.
I also found the story to be total hot garbage, which wasn't a big surprise if I'm to be honest. While the gameplay remains mostly a great time (it kinda peters out in the end but it thankfully ends before things get too repetitive), the story is a jumbled assortment of stale cliches helmed by stereotypical characters. The story isn't also helped by the severe amount of racist and sexist dialog both our protagonist and antagonist characters spout. More than anything else, Bulletstorm comes off as being edgy for the sake of being edgy, than telling any sort of actual coherent narrative. The fact that the story ends on a major cliffhanger that'll seemingly never be resolved also bites.
I picked this up on a Steam sale where it was like four or five bucks, and that's what I honestly feel it's worth. A fun little way to kill some time in the gameplay department, but it certainly isn't anything special like how it wants you to think it is. I'll certainly do another run of the game in the future with the Duke Nukem DLC when the time comes to play that.