Entry 102: Weekly Thoughts
1) At Leipzig GC, a rare breeder was announced that may very well initiate a new sub genre: an ''eco-thriller''. A New Beginning, as it is called, will be a cell shaded painted adventure/quest adding a beautiful artistry to the much cataclysmic theme of saving the planet. I know how unsuccessful were some cell shaded games in the recent years, most of them ( well, very few sparingly released in fact ) somber in an ocean of mediocrity. The latest that come in mind is XIII, a decent effort unfortunately leaving untapped material overlooked by the masses then. By chance, the recent evolution of artistry in games ( such the overlooked jewel Psychonauts and the uber popular juggernaut that is BioShock ) could highlight future offerings innovating enough for the masses to try the interactive paintings of the 21st century. They just need a wider marketing.
2) I tried the Medal of Honor: Airborne demo. Mixed feelings: the open battlefield, the different paths the player can choose to complete the objectives in any order wanted, and the lighting are all cool implements. You can guess I have some nitpicks. First, once the path chosen, the numerous Italians/nazis you encounter look all the same. Second, little gameplay enhancements grace the experience: just shoot bad guys, advance, duck, shoot bad guys, and if you stuck too long they'll respawn indefinitely. Third, the Unreal 3 engine doesn't seem to be very polished in this demo. Though the lighting & shadowing really strike, the overall plastic veneer appears artificially compressed ( especially without the AA support on larger screens like mine ). Moreover, the frame rates are inconsistent with some stuttering.
3) The Fort Frolic and Haphaestus levels in BioShock waver a great deal of inspired design. The game provides what I expected for sure, but the difficulty needed some tweak ( too easy as we progress ). I'll choose the hardest setting for my second campaign.
4) The Crysis DEMO will be unleashed September 25!!! :D