The Purple View

Reviews, rants and purpleness

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Archive for the ‘Reviews’ Category

Doctor Horrible

Posted by Nathan Hardisty on August 10, 2009

I saw Doctor Horrible for the first time.


Yeah you’ve heard the rest from everybody else. Now watch it. Now. Now.


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Review: Bioshock – Honestly, Who Builds A City BENEATH Sea Level?

Posted by Nathan Hardisty on February 2, 2009

Around a year ago, the 360 and PC guys on some of the forums I visited starting having this werid fever – which caused bioshocks over the course of the next 2 months. I asked them ‘WHAT THE **** IS WRONG WITH YOU PEOPLE’, and I got a link to a gameplay video in return. When Bioshock was launched, I hugged my Big Daddy statue – kissed my embossed box and put the dual-layered DVD in my box. 

One year later and here I sat, with controller in hand, sat in front of a different machine – my big black beast. I was just watcing the game install, and I decided to write this very paragraph in that 7 minutes. If you don’t know what the hell Bioshock is, it’s the story of Andrew Ryan – a man with a dream to build an underwater utopia – he did this and he got more than he bargained for: genetic modification.
Oh nice it’s almost installed, anyway they found this slug at the bottom of the sea – and turned it into this big bottle of fluid you jam into your wrist called Eve, or into Adam – which was used as a currency for the city until it… was betrayed – by it’s own citizens, and even Ryan himself. I can’t spoil this damn thing, but I’ll go into depth of the story near the end. 

Hmmm…. installed…. I’ll get back to you guys after a week or two – we’ll see, I’m off to go ‘survive Bioshock’, I’ll send postcards while I’m on holiday in Rapture guys, don’t worry about me!
Back, lol, even though it seemed 1.3 seconds for you, it seemed like a year for me.. First of all I made the mistake of my life and put it on Survivor and decided to turn the vita chambers off – oh joy. After clambering into Bioshock and travelled down the sub, a few thoughts ran through my head. How can a game that scored over 120 Game of the year awards, a BAFTA and even a future film get any better? Oh yes it can. 

For starters, the plasmids and weaponary seem to work better on the PS3 – a quick selection and a hammer of the right trigger, make you spray lead, and the left trigger makes you shock that daddy to death or make someone’s best friend maul them to death. The controls somewhat feel slightly… ‘tight’, because of the SIXAXIS, it’s also a bit werid to be hammering down on R2 – I prefer R1 anyday, but 2K thought we’d be better of hammering those mountains. 

Bioshock belongs on my ‘games to remember’ list, it’s probably one of the best games ever made too – at the time of it’s launch – Halo 3 was a month away and we were getting clunked up FPSs like hot cakes – then Bioshock came along and whipped them to death. The atmosphere, the art, the story, the gameplay, the voice talent and even the damn cats are top notch. Bioshock did more than define a year – it defined the morality of videogames. 

A small little choice can make a big difference, right? There are things called Big Daddies – who roam the halls of Rapture and help protect the ‘little sisters’, twisted little girls who are forced to put syringes into bodies and drink the blood, for only one purpose – power! These sisters don’t get toys, they get adam – which grants genetic modification. Only by defeating these daddies can you get yor hands on the girls, and bloody hell…. on survivor mode, without vitas, it’s like pulling your teeth out with leprechauns. 

After beating the daddy to death, you grab the girls and get the choice, a choice to kill or save. Killings grants you more adam, but a consequence later on, while saving gives you a little sweet thank you and less adam – but a giant reward awaits… these little choices aren’t just on the little sisters, they’re everywhere and anywhere – from birdmen to Sander Cohen.
So, let me round this off with a comment on the story – Bioshock is deeper than the sea Rapture was built in, it goes beyond the laws of video games and at some points, storytelling. I cannot possibly think of a better story in videogaming, we all thought Metal Gearz was as good as it was gonna get, well… BOOM HEADSHOT. 

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Review: Far Cry 2 – Heat Before Use

Posted by Nathan Hardisty on February 2, 2009

Africa is the new place for everything, away from the urban hums and hues of hits like GTA IV and Fallout 3 – it makes a nice good change of formula, but is it as ot as it said it would be? Simple answer : no, long answer….

When you start Far Cry 2, there’s no tutorial, no help – it slaps you into a spankin’ hotel and hits you with Maleria, giving you one simple objective – find and kill The Jackal, the story goes a bit haywire afterwards – ‘cos all your’re really doing is missions for both of the two big factions who are raging civil war: the UFFL and the APR, but it gets a bit too complicated near the end. Ol’ Nelson’s land ain’t good for fightin’ much thoug, we’ll get to that…

It’s an FPS, so it plays like an FPS – but with it’s doodads and whistles: you get a target, get to the place where it/he is (using a boat, car, hanglider, feet), get rid of the respawning guards (year…) and then kick his booty and claim the diamonds. There’s a little more depth than that – for starters – if you get hurt, you have to perform a gruesome self-surgery act: pulling cords and bullets out of your body with nothing more than teeth, pliers and knifes, it can be a little annoying at times, especially in multiplayer, but it does add to the immersion sorta.

Now we get to the guns, which are prone to a thing called jamming, but also exploding. I just don’t see how you can use a weapon for 10 minutes and it explodes in your hands, all rusty and dirty, this is supposed to be a realistic shooter right? There’s some weapons in the game, like that flamethrower, which degrade faster and some weapons which are always in tip top condition (gotta find ’em first).

The hum of the wildlife and the gentle breeze, Far Cry 2 makes you feel it all , from the little puddle in the middle of the desert, to the skin of the man your hunting, it’s without a doubt: the best looking game on the consoles right now. Apart from a few graphical bugs and ligting issues, this is a great example of atmosphere and general immersion. It deffo makes a change from your average alien horde ’em ups and your lonely depressed trecks through radioactive wastelands.

So, what else makes Far Cry 2 special? For starters, it’s possibly the first full FPS in such a lush setting, and the graphics are probably the best I’ve seen on a console shooter so far… but presentation doesn’t get you the big points, and to be honest – it’s not anything different to the shooters that we get every month.

I love games that have it all, a good multiplayer, an alright single-player, but most of all I love all the extras and whistles you can get with it, the map editor is amazing – a simple wheel tool can create a miniture africa in minutes. These maps can also be shared, and although there’s a few connection difficulties, it’s all done very well.

The multiplayer side of things are… alright ,as said, there’s a few connection issues, but it all goes down well at the end of the day, deathmatches work well imo – all add to the action with that self-surgery. In fact, the whole game is a good FPS, there’s ajust a few nitpacks I might add – guards respawning at the checkpoints along with vehicles (which means they chase you when you go through them) and a lot of bugs, which I won’t even go into details. The connection issues will probably be fixed with a patch later on.

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