Failures of 2008: Devil May Cry 4, Splinter Cell Conviction and Haze?
The class of 2007 learnt a pretty good lesson, too much hype results in a fundamentally flawed game. Rarely has there been a case that a game that has been running on a million shots of morphine, been able to cross the line of both critical acclaim and sales, with the year ending the buzz has already started on the lineup of 2008.
The original Devil May Cry sold millions to the PS2, after DMC's initial screening at E3, MGS 2 was not the only game people wanted to play. Dante was pegged to be the next big avatar next to Snake and Max Payne. The game was launched and proved to be a big hit. Next year the developers decided to make another game starring Dante but this game hardly proved to be different from its predecessor and bombed. The team came back one last time on the PS2 to revamp Dante in DMC 3 and proved that with necessary and radically cool changes in gameplay, the audience would still yearn for Dante.
Production for DMC 4 started off with a bang and then Capcom decided to give gamers a bigger bang by announcing the title for the "Dead (Now) Rising" Xbox 360. The game's officially in production since the announcement of the PS3 and by the looks of it the game might just go down the alley as 2008's biggest disappointment.
Looking at a whole lotta stuff from the game it seems, the gameplay is almost coherent with its predecessor DMC 3 with most of the styles remaining the same, slashing through demon hordes collecting orbs and moving on, straight simple gameplay. The problem however comes when the camera still remains fixed creating obscure angles, a huge problem associated with the series. Come on Capcom why can't we see the environment with our eyes? The game scores points on style that looks absolutely similar to DMC 3 with most of the animations are carried forward form its pervious games.
In addition to this, the game seems to have too many loading screens, within a span of 2 battles there are almost 5 loading screens. You enter an area, witness a cutscene (game loads), finish off the enemy, head to a door which opens (loads) witness a cutscene (loads) finish the battle move to another door nearby (loads) and plays a cutscene. This might just be a tad bit irritating since they are supposed to be working with super computers now aren't they. Plus the whole idea of two heroes has never worked, it just seems the players get pissed off when there are more than two characters to control, Halo 2, MGS 2, DMC 2 (Lucia and Dante) are classic examples.
Moving onto Haze, the game did have me all pumped up when it was initially announced. Combine the words Free Radical with a FPS and I go weak on my knees. A mature Halo is what they called the game, but from what it looks this game might just become the saddest FPS in the company's golden legacy. The AI really looks shoddy throughout; the environment looks huge but seemingly empty, visuals are average, which should be taken into notice since Killzone 2 is also being developed for the same platform, and the whole concept of "nectar" seems annoying than helpful. I saw so many battles with the use of nectar and it seems the "Drug" kills the word shooter out of a FPS, its more like watching two snails run a marathon.
Splinter Cell: Conviction seems like a carbon copy of Assassin's Creed which is probably one of the reasons why they delayed it till next year. Now with the failure of Assassin's Creed this game seems to be treading risky waters. The whole idea of stripping Sam out of all his gear and putting him in a open-ended environment may not be such a good idea, especially if most Microsoft honchos think that Sam is their answer to Solid Snake.
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