December 1, 2010

Review – Disney Epic Mickey

Disney Epic Mickey
The Wasteland is a refuge, a place where forgotten cartoon characters can live on within Junction Point Studios’ heartfelt tribute to the house that Mickey Mouse built. Freed from ownership by Universal Studios, even Oswald the Rabbit can find new purpose in this place, acting as both mascot and ruler for this world, providing shelter for his fellow ‘toons while obsessing over the popularity of Walt’s favorite son.

The sincerity drips from every digital brush stroke, and remarkable seems like a word worth using to describe the amount of attention given to the details. Junction Point has created a living, breathing world for characters few players are likely to readily remember. But the devil in those details is whether this labor of love offers an opportunity and incentive for players to truly immerse themselves in this world, or if this epic undertaking merely offers a lightly pulsing museum, one which assumes that the care of content can counterbalance significant design problems, which Disney Epic Mickey unfortunately offers in spades.

If this quick appraisal leaves you making a sad face beneath your Mouseketeer hat, join the club.


June 16, 2010

Trailer Park – Tron Evolution

Filed under: News Feed — Tags: , , — Jamie Love @ 1:58 pm

Tron Evolution
I’ve decided this week that Disney’s videogame for Tron Evolution was destined to be at E3 2010 – reminding companies that until they can actually put us inside the game grid, they’re just wasting our time with inferior products.

The latest bit of trailer can be had after the break – it’s more slick than informative, but it’s very slick so I forgive it.


June 13, 2010

Selling Epic Mickey

Filed under: News Feed — Tags: , , — Jamie Love @ 9:39 pm

Epic Mickey
Of all the photos you might be catching of the Convention Center before E3 begins, and all the gaming imagery gloriously plastered across the building and the city, Epic Mickey is the sharpest bit of marketing I’ve seen in quite a long time.

Since the show hasn’t started yet, I really have no idea what to expect – or how much of the game has been reworked since the initial reveal – but someone has done a terrific job with the art on this campaign, and it’s deserving of a seldom given nod as far as I’m concerned.

Catch a bit more Mickey after the break.


May 31, 2010

Review – Split/Second

Filed under: Reviews — Tags: , , , , , , , — Jamie Love @ 11:28 am

Racing around the track while a helicopter launches waves of missiles, which toss the car into a constant series of emergency drifts, I finally put a name to what Split/Second had first reminded me of when I’d tried an earlier build last year.

The arcade flavor of the game – that’s the part requiring players to dodge a near endless chain of explosions while trying to stick to the track – took me back to the first time I played the 2001 revamp of Spy Hunter – a game where the mission action often played second fiddle to controls that made whipping around levels more enjoyable than using the spy toys strapped to the frame.

The Michael Bay minded challenge modes are merely extras that Split/Second adds to break up the pacing of its televised Death Race sans the skulls and inmate motif. Every stage within the game feeds on the central premise of a track wired to explode at every turn like a starving man, and what this creates is a game where even something as simple as a time trial engages the player with a racing experience where survival is a victory in itself.

Mind you, crossing the finish line first is still high on the to-do list.


May 28, 2010

Random Acts of Tron

Filed under: News Feed — Tags: , , — Jamie Love @ 5:32 pm

Tron: Evolution
Whilst grabbing images to use for our review of Split/Second I came across some images for Tron: Evolution, and long story short you’re getting this post before that review. I’m sure the images have been around for quite awhile and are only new to me, but I’m also fairly confident that you can never have too much Tron.

With that in mind you can catch a glimpse for yourself after the break.


April 27, 2010

Demo Report – Split / Second

Filed under: Editorial Rants — Tags: , , , , , — Jamie Love @ 9:27 am

Split/Second Demo
So I was more than a little disappointed that the demo for Split/Second only offers up a single-player track – three laps around the airport is all I’ve got to work with here. And let me state the obvious – this makes absolutely no sense, specifically with the goal of “selling the game” via the demo. I’m not handing anything over to Activision’s Blur, but I know plenty of people switched their interest off in the absence of a comparative multiplayer glimpse into Split/Second.

Split/Second is scheduled to release on May 18, only one week ahead of Blur on May 25 – which has had a multiplayer demo hit the press and gamers weeks ago. It’s not impossible to imagine some racing fanatics buying both, but economics makes it one or the other in my world – where the x-factor in making that decision involves how much fun it becomes wrecking my friends online and reveling in that jerk factor. A little bit of mystery is the spice of life, but I can’t help feeling that Split/Second threw in the towel in the fight for more attention.

Again, I’m not handing anything over to Blur just yet. I still prefer what Split/Second has to offer in its approach, a game focused entirely on racing across exploding tracks, with players earning power-play attacks by drifting, drafting, and jumping, rather than tedious item management. The trick often becomes using power-plays without destroying yourself, and there’s plenty of “oh-so-satisfying” moments in wrecking an opponent and watching their auto corpse spin in the air and over your head.

And while I only have that one track to work with, a few dozen laps last night has helped shape some talking points for how the game feels so far.


Powered by WordPress