01
Dec
08

My Weekend in Gaming – Resistance 2 Impressions

 

Lets not waste anymore time, I’m already late to the party – Resistance 2 has been released for almost a month in the US, but European and Australian gamers have only managed to get their copies a handful of days ago.

Resistance 2 isn’t a single player game with online multiplayer tacked on, nor a multiplayer game with a single player campaign added for good measure. I wont make the distinction, because Insomniac haven’t either – Resistance 2 is a game; and in this day and age a game consists of both online and offline content. We’ve past the point where online functionality is an offshoot hidden in it’s own menu, it’s just taken Resistance to tell everyone. In fact, launching R2 initially displays three menu options; Campaign, Cooperative and Competitive – with only the campaign confined to a single player experience.

I was with a friend when I made my purchase and took it home, we decided to cut our teeth in co-op; we’d get a grip on the game before taking it online. While our time in co-op lasted longer than initially planned, our time offline did not – hitting that ‘Play’ button had us kicking ass as part of an eight man team. It doesn’t sound that exciting when put in words, but it was pretty amazing to be thrown online without even realising.

I had to force myself to stop the addictive multiplayer to play the single player campaign, it was the fact that I would be writing this that motivated me to do it. I’m glad I did.

As the campaign starts, a quick intro about Hale and his involvement in Fall of Man runs and as the screen fades the cliché text this is his story is displayed. It took me a moment, but I understand why Insomniac put that there – everything from Campaign, Cooperative and to a lesser extent Competitive is part of the Resistance narrative; cooperative tells the story of Specter Team, and the campaign tells the story of a single individual, Nathan Hale.

I wasn’t expecting any real ‘wow’ moments from Resistance 2 – I’ve seen the trailers, I know to expect some big enemies. In that regard, I haven’t been disappointed. But it was my introduction and first encounter with the Chameleon that really blew me away.

 

Following two teammates into the dense forest, we locate the other ambush survivors – or more accurately, their bloody remains.

‘What happened here’ one of my accompanying soldiers ask. I examine one body, cut clean in two; Cyborg Ninja is the only response that comes to mind.

We continue along the trail, I follow close to one soldier as the other scouts ahead. Control is gently removed from my hands and my weapon lowers; a cutscene is triggered. The scouting soldier turns to face us. A shimmer surrounds him, a beast materialises behind his back and his body contorts – two pairs of wolverine like claws already extend though his gut. The beast isn’t large, but is certainly strong, without effort lifting my teammate and throwing him to its left and right. Before the pieces hit the ground the enemy is gone, shrouded in invisibility.

Control is returned to me, my remaining teammate doesn’t dwell on what has just happened to a 3rd of our trio – ‘I’ve lost visual!’ –his total focus is the destruction of the enemy and his own survival.

Cautiously we continue. An unnatural noise echoes through the forest, assumably that of our stalker, created to unnerve it’s prey; It works.

I follow behind my sole companion – I stop when he stops – I move when he moves.

We turn a bend. A shimmer speeds head on toward the solider, fading into full visibility just long enough to tear the man’s abdomen open. Shit – It’s too quick or I’m too slow, I don’t have time to get an accurate shot off – but I can’t dwell, I see the beast materialise, sprinting toward me. I unleash both barrels of the shotgun into it’s chest and the creature drops.

I have saved my own life. But now I’m alone; and can still hear that eerie sound.

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Playing on Playstation 3

Red Dead Revolver - I paid about $1000 for my launch model PS3, so I guess it's time I get some use out of that emotion chip crammed inside. I remember Red Dead Revolver looking rather good when it was released, and despite the low resolution and odd blurring (that I attribute to playing on a HD set) the game holds up well. It looks good despite these graphical limitations because the art direction is so precise and awesome. And it isn't just the art direction, the music, dialogue and set design (for some reason, set seems a more fitting word than level) all work in tandem to recreate an iconic Wild West atmosphere. Red Dead Revolver doesn’t aim to recreate life in the Wild West, it allows our imagination to take over and populates the locale with legendary men and their legendary stories.

Playing on iPhone

edge - Well I never thought I'd consider playing a game on iPhone as actually gaming, but edge has turned me around. The game is built for the iPhone. Sure, it could be ported, but the elegance of what has been created is astounding, it boggles the mind and makes me wonder what amazing gems we'd receive if current gen consoles weren't clones of eachother.

Playing on PC

Sins of a Solar Empire, Demigod, Generals - Zero Hour - It may be a temporary effect as I slowly reintroduce the PC into my gaming diet, but it seems every title I’m excited to play on the platform is either a strategy game, or a cheap indie game. PC gaming isn’t dead, it’s just restricted to titles that require complex input or a pointing device, and games that couldn't be developed or distributed on other platforms. I guess that’s part of the reason the AppStore is so far a success, there were a lot of indie devs stuck on PC for lack of a better alternative.
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