the Gears 3 campaign

Again, sorry with the lack of posts of late.  As the release calendar is finally showing signs of life again, I expect to be back here on a much more regular basis.

I’m not in any position to review Gears of War 3, as I haven’t touched any of the co-op or multiplayer features, of which there are seemingly dozens.  I’m not a multiplayer guy, and I suspect by this point – it’s been over a week since the game’s release – I wouldn’t last more than 30 seconds in any sort of competitive match.  I do intend to play some of the co-op stuff, though, someday.

I did finish the campaign, though, and so while that’s only maybe 1/3 of what’s on the disc, it’s the 1/3 that I knew I was going to play, no matter what.  And I’m of two minds about the experience.

On the one hand, it’s the tightest, most polished, and most evenly paced Gears experience yet.  I’d be hard-pressed to find an Unreal Engine game that looks better, too – Bulletstorm‘s color palette clearly influenced Gears 3, which is much appreciated, as the world is now no longer (only) brown and grey.   Most importantly, the combat is as satisfying as it’s ever been.

On the other hand, sweet Jesus, I am sick and tired of elevators that require 3 power sources to be turned on before they work.  The sound of Marcus Fenix whining “Revive me!” like a petulant toddler having a temper tantrum was only made worse by my companion AI who would often walk right past me without, in fact, reviving me.  I started the game with a Lancer, and I finished the game with a Lancer, and while I used a bunch of other weapons throughout the campaign, I never accessed anything truly new and exciting to use – and those giant catapult monster things, while new for the series, are not exactly “new”.  And while the game’s ending was refreshingly devoid of any stupid cliffhangers, it’s not as if the narrative really mattered.  These characters were not all that likable, and the world that I saved was pretty much on the verge of total collapse anyway; if there are any civilians left, their homes were most likely destroyed and they probably don’t have any jobs to go to and it didn’t look like there was any clean food or water around.  So, hooray.

Also, Cole Train’s bizarre hallucination in the football stadium?  What.  The.  Fuck.

———————

I’m still slowly plugging away in Resistance 3, but I suspect that a lot of my focus over the next few days will be on the Ico & Shadow of the Colossus collection, which just arrived via Gamefly.   I was one of the few Americans who didn’t own a PS2, and not being able to play those 2 specific games was my biggest regret of that console generation.  (I’d also include the God of War games and maybe Final Fantasy 10 in that category, which is why I gobbled up the GoW reissue and why I’m hoping that the rumors of an HD remake of FF10 are, in fact, true.)  Last night I played about 10 minutes of Ico, which is obviously nowhere near enough to garner any legitimate impressions, but I was quite taken with the little bit I’d seen.   So that’ll be nice.  Of course, Rage arrives next week, too, and my PC copy of The Witcher 2 apparently received a gigantic update today that is supposed to make it a lot easier to get into, so…

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