All About killip
In my restless dreams I see that development team, Hijinx Studios. You promised me you'd make a faithful HD collection, but you never did. Well, I'm alone on my chair now, waiting for an update.
I hope you guys enjoyed my parody of Mary's letter to James, for what sums up the cluster fuk that is the 'Silent Hill HD collection'. As recent news has been given out, I'm sure you're aware those that have bought the PS3 version of the collection has recieved an update for several major issues that have been more-or-less resolved. However, those unfortunate 360 owners that were waiting for the update have been given the news by Konami themselves that the update isn't happening and it's pretty much curtains.
The reason I write this on my blog today is the sheer disrespect given to both fans of the series and the creators of the masterpieces. They gave out a few, forgettable, excuses for as to why the games are the way they are, but the fact remains, if they couldn't get the games to work in the first place they shouldn't have put it on the shelf.
Even Konami trying to resolve the matter by issuing out an exchange is beyond a farce for most gamers, as there was a set deadline for the exchange and you needed proof of reciept, which to be honest is very unlikely in most cases. It even gives the double finger to those that bought the game pre-owned as it's void.
To sum up, it has just been one be pile of money making dung, and proves that games companies these days give even little respect to the consumer that before the gaming-boom in the mainstream.
This year has been probably the worst year of my gaming life. Journalists can sit there churning out magazines at the end of the year saying how many amazing games have been out, but the fact remains there really has been a huge lack in anything coming out.
It's the year of the HD collections, and for a good 80% of the gaming community, we've all played these games when they were first released. The last big game, I would personally say, to came out this year was 'Max Payne 3', back in May, and since then I've played Game of Thrones: a low-budget title worth little of bragging about. I've actually been going backward and finding games from years ago on previous last-gen consoles.
Then look at what titles are coming out later this year, most are just carry on's from a franchise that first started back in the 90's.
My point is why is there such a lack of original games these days? Only a handful of developers--most credit going to Grasshopper Studios for constantly trying to push the bar and make different games--that make games with a new universe, characters, stories, etc. The Majority of companies seem to sit there trying to claw as much money out of a franchise as possible, and doing as little work as possible. I could write off a list of games we all grew up with that were once amazing games that are now idealess cash-cows *Resident Evil*.
It's a shame to see the industry in such a state. Is it just me thinking it? Or are things really as gravy as people try and make it out to be?
Anyway, enough of this **** blog, lets enjoy some Frank Zappa. haha
Hey guys, I'm going to try and make an effort to get more regular on here again. Lifes pretty busy, but I miss being on here. haha.
So I'm gonna do a blog of what I used to do, which is basically talk about what I've been watching, reading, etc, etc. A good place to start!
I feel this year has been a pretty poor one thus far for games. A massive lack of good games has come out. I hope it picks up. But what I have been playing this month is Silent Hill: HD Collection and The Walking Dead Part 1.
The Walking Dead is a massive suprise for me. I heard of its release literally the same day it was getting release. Being a fan of the comics and an average follower of the show I felt I had to give this part a shot at the very least. To my pleasant suprise this game is great! £3.99 for each episode or save £5 buy buying --and pre-ordering-- the whole lot. It is about 2-21/2 hours of play, which is very reasonable if you ask me for the price. And the gameplay itself is very different to how one would think a zombie game of this type would play.
Playing alot like Heavy Rain or Fahrenheit, using the analogue to move around and waiting for buttons to pop up to prompt an action. It all works very well, and the action scenes can get pretty tense.
But by far the best thing about this is the story. Gripping, with every character and it's a joy to push on to find out what new things you'll learn from them. It goes more toward the comics rather than the show --a good thing in my eyes-- and the cel-shading is also a great touch.
Well worth a look if your a fan of Zombies or the series.
Silent Hill HD was something that got paned, and I refused to buy this due to the disrespect the noob developers had when revamping these masterpieces. But after being brought into the series once again with Downpour I fell prey to buying this.
It isn't quite as bad as everyone is saying, but it isn't great either. Taking out iconic moments with sound (the fog horn in the Historic Museum for example), a dire frame-rate, so bad it looks like they jacked into the Matrix and new voice-acting that aren't too great either, you'd have to question my sanity for why I think they are ok?
Well the graphics do look ok, and the trophies can bring a little bit of spice to the table. But I think from a nostalgic standpoint it was just a joy to go through these games again.
Overall I should have just stuck to my guns and not bought it. How can you f**k up a completed PS2 game?!
The Avengers is my most recent watch. And all I'd heard since it's release is epic talk such as "best film ever"... I for one didn't expect a whole lot from this. It isn't a film that should have worked. Too many A-list actors normally means the film caves in on itself. So my expectations for this were low.
However, after looking at critic reviews all feeling how I felt, I thought I'd better give it a chance at least.
Best film ever? F-in' no chance. What it is is a very entertaining family film. Loki, Thor and Hulk were very good. They got the balance of hero time on screen just right, and the final battle is filmed very well. But I felt the film was too "nice". This is down to marvels child friendly nature and isn't a direct problem, just something that bugged me as a person. New York getting destroyed, buildings, planes crashing down on the ground, did one person get killed in this havok? No.... ok... And there is also alot of really hammy dialogue which I felt ruined the flow of the film
Overall I found this film enjoyable. I'd happily watch it again, but I feel the hype for this film is too large. It was solid and is a great marvel film.
The Music and Books!
I've started reading American Psycho, and it is a very well written, cleaver book. Mostly hilarious with the way he goes into detail on what the characters are all wearing, but it picks apart life in the 80's, and basically how disgusting we all are. I love it! haha
Silent hill: the Terror Engine is the second book I've read this month, due to my SH obsession I've had from Downpour I bought this independant book taking an indepth look at the SH franchise on how it works the mind with its music, camera direction, graphic style and lighting -just really picking the games apart.
It's a really enjoyable read.The problem I had with the book was there was alot of filler in there. Being nearly 200 pages he had to talk about something, so he puts in alot of quotations from other people. At the start of the book it's interesting, but toward the end it starts to wear thin, and you begin to click on he's just trying to fill the book. His own opinions are really great to read, it's just a shame it wasn't that throughout.
Black Light Burns is a band I've been meaning to listen to for a while. Founded by --then-- ex-guitarist Wes Borlan, this band sounds like if NIN and Limp Bizkit had a baby. I was really impressed by the debut album. Well worth a listen.
Dir En Grey: uroboros [remastered & expanded], might sound pretentious, but in actual fact very much needed if your a nut for high production. Uroboros is what I consider to be "their" album, like AC/DC Back in Black or Pink Floyds DSOTM. And the band relised this after the release of the latest album Dum Spiro. So they went back into the studio to re-record the album with the producer that did Dum Spiro. The album has a couple of extra bits added to songs, a heavy version of a previous song back in the day and everything sounds crystal clear. It's quite a rare cd already from its release in feb and isn't cheap (costing me £27!) but I'd say it's well worth a look at.
Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds: Tender Prey is the latest album I've been listeining too. I've been a big fan of these guys, that always seem to give anything they write a very dark edge. This album in particular is one that got good reviews, so I had high expectations for this album and was very excited to find it for £10 in a record store that I go to that had the rare 500 press extra LP included.
Upon listeining i became very bored. Not alot happens and the vocal and lyrics are very repetitive throughout.
A long blog, but one i hope you've enjoyed. I'll be speaking to you guys in the near futute. xxxx
Hello my friends. Been awhile since i've put up a blog, but as you all know free time is something I don't get alot of. haha But, right now, at the very moment I am drinking tea and musing over two things: the latest Silent Hill addition and just general gaming itself.
Ok, so lets bein with modern day gaming. For those that grew up with games, you can probably relate to how much games have changed. But for me one thing has changed the way we play games forever: achievements/trophies.
Now, when they were first released on the 360, I thought the idea was a work of genius, you were given points for meeting certain criteria on a game you were cureently playing. You were given a reward for all your hard work you put into that 100g task.
I, of course, fell pray to the craze and began trying my best to collect as many trophies as I possibly could. My life was consumed by all things achievement related -hell, I didn't even have my 360 online, so no one but me could see them anyway, but it didn't matter because it was good to know in myself I could get these achievements- and it got to the point where I actually went... "wait a minute, why is my entire life being consumed by this?"
These days I'm not affected by trophies or achievements, I do still put the game on the hardest difficulty and do all the pointless little tasks they have to offer, but I'm not as consumed by the idea as I once was.
The point I'm getting at here is, if you think back to the old days when trophies didn't exist, you weren't under that constant spell of trying to unlock these points for games, and you just enjoyed the game for what it was --stomp on 30 grunts while doing a backflip *30g*-- and were free to enoy everything the game had by your terms.
I know alot of people that buy really crap games, just because they know they have easy achievements and can boost their point score. This to me is someone who is dominated by the point system and is overlooking the joys of games themselves.
To summerize: the idea of trophies and achievements is a brilliant one, no doubt about it. But when it gets to the stage when your buying "Barbie: the game" to get an easy 1000g, I think it's time to relise the game is playing you.
Now onto Silent Hill: Downpour. This game has managed to single-handedly take over my life this past week. After barley managing to find a copy in my small town I put it on for 4 hours and wrote a review of what I thought of the game. Most of my opinions on that review remain, but after playing it for the second time I've found things in this game I feel need to be said further.
The game is developed by Vatra, another western games developer taking on the task of trying to fill Team Silents work were so many others have failed. But their shorcomings means Vatra have managed to pull out most of the punches.
I feel I need to talk about this game, because of just how close they came to creating a Silent Hill game worthy of following on the series since 4. The only 2 things I could find wrong with the game was the "combat" (always been a problem with the series anyway) and the overall quality with the game.
The game basically suffers from some pretty serious frame-rate and graphical inconsistancies, such as draw distance (Ironic due to the game being surrounded by fog.)
But lets avoid talking about the problems with the game --as my review points out the faults-- I'm here to talk about its brilliance.
The atmosphere in the town has been nailed. It's very, very close to the "Team Silent" atmosphere, and has a very SH2 esque feel to it. This was the main selling point for me. The start of the game you spend the first 1 1/2-2 hours just getting to Silent Hill, but once your left to explore the town and discover, not only the past of our protagonist, but the staggering amount of easter eggs and nods to the series. One easter egg in particular actually had me go "WOW" outloud. It's a joy to look round and you can spend hours doing it.
The story has gone for a much more traditional approach, as aposed to the all too clear story telling of previous western developed games. Sure, the story is clear as the latter, but there are elements of sheer madness which bring back the series to form. You'll go through certain parts of the game that take you to your past and it'll be some bad sh!t crazy area you have to get round -similar to the "nowhere" area of SH1. And there is a humour ending which is a cracker, too!
Research has clearly been done on this game. Past games have stumbled and fallen flat on its face for following the film, and to me a game that gets turned into a film, then the film is the basis for the new games just isn't right. Vatra have gone, right we have all this material to go off, so lets collaborate all the good bits from them and make a great game. As I said, some of the gameplay elements don't work so well, but for the most part they are great. The chase sequences used from Shattered Memories work well in this, the general mechanics from Homecoming work well, the atmosphere and feel of the game from SH2 work really well here, and you'll just about notice an element from every game in here which has been used. Great lengths of research show that they really did try to make a great game.
The side-missions are what steal the show for me though. 14 in total, and each one has you doing something to put a spirit at rest, uncover mystories, each one plays a very different part from the last and this for me is the fresh take the game needed.
Overall, I just want to give Vatra a well done, really. The series has been falling behind for nearly a decade now and this is the first sign of the series climbing from the ashes again. Hopefully Vatra make another SH game and make it a much more polished one, because this was so close to being a huge hit in my eyes. With abit of brushing up on the techincal issues and some better monster design this would have been a 9/10 all the way. But it's crept up as an 8/10 for me now. Can't get enough of it.
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