Ben's Week In Review: September 27
The Tokyo Game Show was all sorts of boring, but strangely enough, I've never been more enthusiastic about the games that are headed our way. :)
God of War Collection - You GET or I will HUNT YOU DOWN
You know, even though it'll get a wonderfully warm reception and there are a great many people out there who are anxiously anticipating its release, I still don't think there's enough hype surrounding this Collection. I mean, I know we're talking about two "old" games, but let me just remind you all: they're two of the best games in history (just look at review scores) and that high-definition re-mastering is going to make each production shine like never before. Even though GoWII is already several years old and was only available on the PS2, it's still better than most titles released since, and that's that. Furthermore, with the announcement that the E3 GoWIII demo will be included, this package's appeal just got jacked up another notch. I own both GoW and GoWII of course, but you can bet your very last dollar that I'll be a proud owner of this collection, and if you decide to pass on it, I will hear about it. I'm very tired after the insanity of the MAG beta giveaways, the TGS coverage, and all the reviews we've had to do lately, but I will still summon the energy to do bad things to you, damnit. 'evil grin'
Of course, we all have our own personal preferences so I'm just kidding around. Even so, I will go out on a limb and say that God of War is one of those very rare franchises that are respected by just about everyone, and loved by maybe 95% of the gaming community. That's exceedingly rare, you know.
Er...so Halo 3: ODST is...a $60 expansion?
I own every Halo and I very much enjoyed playing every Halo, which is why I was planning on picking up ODST this weekend. But I always do my research and while the critical reception was mostly great (I think it's at like 86% at GameRankings), I started to notice a bad recurring trend in the reader reviews. The majority of those are usually trash, but I got the information I was hoping I wouldn't find: many are saying Bungie and Microsoft simply took advantage of the "Halo" franchise name and produced little more than an expansion pack...and still charged $60 for it. According to the IGN review, the campaign will only take a "leisurely 6 hours" to complete and with only two new (or remodeled) weapons, I'm not convinced it's worth the full price tag. I read about the new Firefight mode and it certainly sounds intriguing, but...$60? For this? I kinda get the feeling that any other game wouldn't get away with this so easily; ODST seems to be selling on the power of the game name alone. Now, if it was Halo 4, I wouldn't think twice; I'd just buy it and play it. But that's not what this is. Obviously.
Well, I guess it goes on the Christmas list and if I don't get it, I'll just wait for it to drop in price. Forgive me, but I fail to understand why anyone would rather pay the same price for this game than shell out for something like Uncharted 2: Among Thieves. One is an entirely new adventure that shatters review scores and could very well redefine the nature of the action/adventure video game as we know it, right? And because Naughty Dog will keep making new titles, that franchise could very easily challenge Halo in terms of overall quality...
Personal gaming update
Like I just said, I had planned on playing ODST but now that I'm passing, I just keep moving through Katamari Forever, which almost never stops being fun. And I haven't yet had time to jump into the MAG beta - it's a little frustrating to hand out all those codes and never get a chance to use my own - so I'll do that this coming week. You can expect my hands-on preview just a short while after; I promise. But until Uncharted 2, I don't think there's anything else I absolutely need, although it bugs me that Brutal Legend comes out on the same day. Guess I'll just have to find a way to fit both in, along with all the reviews that will continue to assault us through the better part of November.
I guess that's it for now.
9/26/2009 Ben Dutka