Sparky

Mar 072016
 

Status: Story complete, all Endless modes unlocked Most Intriguing Idea: Time stops moving when you do Best Design Decision: The throwing / grabbing interactions Worst Design Decision: Lack of embodiment Summary: The elevator pitch is this: SuperHot is a first-person Hotline Miami spliced with Matrix-like slow-mo. Time moves quickly only when the player does, allowing for incredible precision of action. The game balances against this incredible power by making the player’s other resources very finite. Any gun the player picks up can only be fired a few times, most melee weapons break apart in a swing or two, enemies enter [Read more…]

F.E.A.R.

 Immersive Shooters, Short Take  Comments Off on F.E.A.R.
Mar 022016
 

Status: Campaign completed Most Intriguing Idea: that enemy AI can be good Best Design Decision: that AI, man Worst Design Decision: the evil spirits Summary: F.E.A.R. is a dumb name for a game, and the story that goes with that name is dumb. I want to get that out of the way at the start. The scenario is absurd, the plot is ludicrous, the characters only rarely manage to gain even two dimensions, and the whole thing is written as sloppily as can be. HOWEVER I did not come here for a great story. I came here to slo-mo shotgun [Read more…]

Feb 222016
 

Status: Completed, all secrets found Most Intriguing Idea: Yarny’s principal handicap is also a key to its mobility Best Design Decision: The versatile knotting mechanic. Worst Design Decision: That field with the birds oh my god Summary: Ever since one of its designers showed up to E3 with a little yarn doll much of the gaming world has been awaiting Yarny, although some writers fervently wished for the little character Yarny to burn in hell. I occasionally shared the sentiment as I was playing. One problem I often had was being unable to tell that an object on the screen [Read more…]

Feb 172016
 
One Hand Clapping

A curious feature of games that seem to be the least bit intelligent is that they inspire people to believe that one True Meaning™ can be found in them. It’s a little bizarre. Games, like any work of art, tend not to be about One Thing; that’s not how creation works. Any work of art contains multitudes, not only because the creators have more than one idea in their heads but also because the interpreters are of wildly divergent backgrounds. Regardless, the temptation remains, especially when one auteur is primarily (and often erroneously) identified with the work. This approach has [Read more…]