January 14, 2010

The Daily Sync for January 14th, 2010


Today's edition of my favorite video game news articles of the day includes a new Batman: Arkham Asylum, the unreality of button mashing, and the eagerly anticipated first details of Bungie's mega-hyped Halo: Reach!

Halo: Reach?  Yeah, it really could be that big

Many sources released information today about gaming magazine GameInformer's latest issue, and that prized information was about Bungie's latest and last Halo entry, Halo: Reach.  IGN billed the information as making Reach "sound awesome and made the wait until the game's fall release all the more annoying."  After reading it, it definitely seems like Bungie is staying true to the franchise but tossing in some pretty cool gameplay newness that the series badly needed.  Please, Bungie, don't delay this one.

If anyone knows me, they know I love story in games, and while the Halo trilogy had plenty of mixed reception to it's save-the-universe saga, I went along with it, gung-ho-ly blowing up Flood infested Covenant ships and racing across two exploding Halo rings, fueled with heroism by Marty O'Donnell's inspiring score.  Reach is taking a more "cinematic style," which very simply excites me.  Plus, they've added a creepiness to the Elites and possibly a bit of strategy, which sounds to me like they're making the Covenant more of an unknown threat you wouldn't always rush into fighting.

Staying true to the time setting, gone is anything Brute related and recharging health, but something new is "armor" option.  To me, these "armor" things sound like the Spartan versions of Modern Warfare's revolutionary "perks," especially since they'll come into play in Halo's uber-popular multiplayer.  But click above to read the article, and I dare you not to wish you hadn't spent your money on reserving any other game already for this year.

Game of the Year version of Batman: Arkham Asylum

Another popular update today was the announcement of Batman: Arkham Asylum GotY Edition.  I found out via one of my favorite sites, Joystiq, that the British Board of Film Classification (really, them?) laid this piece of information first.  Sadly, no specifications are mentioned, but as much universal acclaim as this game received it's something I'd look into purchasing.  Unfortunately I have yet to play it, but one day would love to.  Don't hate.

To mash, or not to mash ...

All I have to say is that I hate button mashing moments.  There's not much that can take you out of playing an amazing moment than having to put all your wicked skills aside and push only a shiny blue dome over and over in which to accomplish something so menial that normally your character would have no trouble if you could really take the controls.  I lump Quicktime Events into this category.  I hate button mashings.  I hate dem!  I hate all the button mashings in the whole world!!!

However, sometimes these thoughtless moments can actually add to what your character is going through (Metal Gear Solid 1 painfully and successfully accomplishes this. Twice!!!).  It's a feat that can only be tackled if done carefully and with a purpose.  Many props and kudos to those designers who nail it because, even though I hate them, they can be effective.

Russ Frushtick at MTV Multiplayer has written an editorial piece discussing this topic, which he entitles, "The Highs and Lows of Effort in Video Games."

Worthy mentions

- A new line-up of Xbox 360 Platinum games has just been released, and it includes the awesome The Orange Box.  Please pick that one up at least!

- Wanna know what games are being honored for their writing by the Writers Guild of America?  Check out Kotaku.

- Also from Kotaku, if you're suffering from Achievement Point Addiction, there's hope.

No comments:

Post a Comment