Wednesday, May 4, 2011
*Games: In a very ironic turn of events, I just started playing [ _____ ]. I never would have guessed it, but it arrived this morning, so clearly the universe works in mysterious ways.
I don't have a lot to say about it at the moment except that my first impressions were terrible, and they didn't get any better as more time went by. In fact, I’ve got some pretty harsh criticism for it, but unfortunately, I can't say a word.
Sorry to be such a tease, but more on this later. Maybe.
Games: In non-embargo news, I put a little time into Outland (XBLA) today. It's best described as a Metroidvania with a main character that looks like Tron and a color-switching mechanic very similar to Ikaruga or Silhouette Mirage. It's kind of a crazy combination of elements, but for the most part, it really works. The art style is fantastic, the controls are tight, and the boss battles are great.
On the other hand, the prologue is too long and I'm not entirely convinced that Metroidvania was the right way to go. A lot of my time has been spent on simple level traversal in the hunt for keys and switches to flip -- not exactly riveting stuff. It occurs to me that if the developers had gone with more straightforward linear level design and positioned it as a traditional action platformer, the adrenaline level would've been kicked up by at least a few notches.
I'm still working my way through so I'm reserving final judgment at the moment, but at this point I would categorize it as a thumbs-up… hopefully that feeling will remain.
TV: The wife and I just watched the first two episodes of Doctor Who’s new season, and I’ve got to say that we’re both feeling a little… dismayed.
We had misgivings about the way the previous season was going (season five) and especially about the way it ended, but we were hoping that the rough patch was due to the transition between Tennant and Smith, and that things would be tightened up after the hiatus.
At this point (and I certainly admit it's still early days) that doesn't appear to be the case.
I'm not quite ready to go off on a full-scale rant yet, but the pace of these two new episodes was overly brisk and left too many details behind. Some of the logic on display was also quite questionable, and although there is certainly a level of disbelief suspension that is required to appreciate a show of this sort, the writers are playing a little too fast and loose for my taste.
I hate to say this because we fell head over heels in love with the show after discovering it last year and we've been eagerly awaiting the further adventures of everyone's favorite Time Lord, but this… I don't know, it just feels as though things aren't quite right here.
Hopefully things will start coming together as the season goes on, but I do have butterflies in my tummy after seeing how it kicked off. Nothing to do but keep fingers crossed and hope for the best, I suppose…