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.


March 7, 2010

Lazy Sunday – My Weekend is a Blur

Filed under: Editorial Rants — Tags: , , , , , — Jamie Love @ 9:59 am

Lazy Sunday
Explaining how the multiplayer beta for Blur took up so much of my weekend has been a bit of a challenge, particularly with other editors who dismissed the game after previews last year – I don’t blame any of them because I earnestly couldn’t have cared less about the game myself.

Activision’s PR suit pitches of WipEout on wheels and Mario Kart for adults did little to change my interest, which flatlined completely when I heard hype cycles about Blur doing for online racing what Modern Warfare did for the online FPS. Blur offers up a leveling system that increases as completed races earn players fans, offering access to new vehicles and levels, and also coupled with the ability to modify how certain power-ups work, but I wouldn’t go calling it Modern Warfare Kart Racing just yet.

An Editor from another site talked me into at least trying the game, and about 50 races later there’s a few points worth mentioning.


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