Remember the time I got Eddie?
Yeah, so let’s come to the point. I’ve used it to play a lot of games. And here are short reviews of each, in the order I played them.
Burnout Paradise (The Ultimate Box)
The Burnout series of games by Electronic Arts is hailed as one of the most innovative and fun games ever made. With Burnout Revenge!, and Burnout 3: Takedown hitting it big across the world, and Burnout Dominator failing to, emulate that success on a large scale, EA returned with Burnout Paradise. And boy what a return it was. Brilliant visuals, superb car modelling and even bikes as a DLC!
The entire game is set in the fictional Paradise City, named after Guns ‘n’ Roses‘s hit song of the same name from Appetite For Destruction. The game always starts with this great song, but the soundtrack does remain a problem for the rest of the games, as it recycles tracks from earlier Burnout games. In Burnout Paradise, you’re supposed to take up challenges like takedowns, races, burning laps, etc. to climb through the achievements and earn your “driving licence”. Despite awesome crashes and challenging races with fiery opponents, the game starts to feel repetitive and you soon get bored with it. Climbing from a Class E to Class A requires more than a hundred races to be completed, leaving you bored midway. It’s like a toy you’d play for a while, and throw it away.
Call of Duty : Modern Warfare
Call of Duty has always been about gut-wrenching blowing up of bad guys and have plots which may be good for some B-grade war movie. Modern Warfare is only slightly different. Only engaging in bits, Modern Warfare does surprise you in some portions, especially in the ending. The graphics are pretty good, but nothing extraordinary to blow you away. I wasn’t very impressed by this over-hyped game. Although the game makes it up with an extra-ordinary ending, I was like “What Modern Warfare? What’s so special?” Trouble is, the single-player campaign gets over in a blink. I was able to do it in really short time of about a day.
But you know what really saves the day? Multiplayer. It has a great multiplayer mode which does make up for the single player campaign. It’s exhilarating, and fun.
It’s not that short games can’t be fun. Especially if you’ve played…
When the Orange Box debuted, a small insignificant game based on the Source Engine was released, known as Portal, along with the much more anticipated Half Life 2: Episode Two and Team Fortress 2.
Portal was instantly the surprise favourite of everyone. It is easily one of the best games I’ve ever played in my life. I took about five hours to complete it, and that is quite long by any standards.
The great thing about Portal is the wacky sense of humour it packs in, along with an engaging gameplay. GLaDOS and the Companion Cube are lovable creatures too. Although the single-player campaign is short, it’s so enjoyable, that it has an immensely high replay value. Few minor bugs occasionally spoil the fun, but the mind-boggling puzzles make you want to come back for. Finishing the game may get you a “Portal hangover”, where you’d want to create portals to various places instead of traveling there.
Call of Duty : Modern Warfare 2
One of the most anticipated games of all time, I finally got my hands on the reason I bought Eddie. After the disappointment that was Modern Warfare, it’s sequel takes the game to new heights where no game has ever been before.
Like it’s predecessor, it has a small single-player campaign, but it is much more sweeter, and has a darker and more powerful plot. The graphics are also significantly improved, and the controls seem much more easier to use. What makes it distinct from Modern Warfare is that it doesn’t feel repetitive at all.
The variation in gameplay is so amazing, it’ll blow your head off. Be it driving snowmobiles in freezing temperatures or “earning Makarov’s trust”, Modern Warfare 2 is a game that is sure to stay etched in your mind eons after you’ve played it.
Assassin’s Creed II
There was no game ever like Assassin’s Creed, and boy there won’t be any like it. Upon it’s released, Assassin’s Creed II was called as the game the first one should have been. Based in the 1480s, you play Desmond Miles/Ezio Auditore da Firenze, who’s a total vagabond. He loves spending his dad’s money and enjoys with the girls. But his father and brother’s death changes him forever as he vows to avenge his death.
What makes Assassin’s Creed II distinct from any other game is its emphasis on non-linear gameplay and the importance given to character development. The graphics are superb, especially in the places where Ezio dives in the water. His clothes actually look wet.
The problem with the PC version of Assassin’s Creed II lies in its DRM protection. Skidrow claimed in his .nfo file that he thanked Ubisoft was such a challenge the game posed for him and his team to crack it.
Unfortunately, the game suffers from a really long plot length. Despite some awesome characters such as Leonardo Da Vinci himself (who makes a “flying machine” a.k.a hanglider), the game suffers from being very repetitive. It’s got its heart in the right place, but just gets a few things wrong. When you reach the end, and defeat the main villain, you’re really bored and don’t care any more. What could have been a spectacular achievement just ends up being fairly awesome.
Mass Effect 2
Hardly ever has game been made which is so diverse, so imaginative, so… real. Commander Shepherd is back in Mass Effect 2, and Electronic Arts has done a marvelous job of putting together one of the finest games in recent times.
Commander Shepherd is back, and immediately killed due an attack on his ship, the Normandy, but soon resurrected at an astronomical cost by pro-human organization Cerberus, that has some shady origins…
The game is placed well into the future, giving you the liberty to navigate your spaceship to different galaxies, and explore new planets, and even mine them for new minerals. These minerals help you research new technologies for your weapons, or armour or biotic powers.
But what really separated Mass Effect 2 from the rest is the extreme emphasis on non-linear gameplay. As Shepherd you decide how the game should go ahead, and the game travels willingly based on your decisions alone, seriously impacting the story line. This is managed by a well established (though occasionally tedious) planet exploration activity to mine minerals.
While certainly one of the best games ever made, Mass Effect 2 suffers from an awkward and slightly unbelievable plot line. The wide variety of missions did put me off on many occasions, but that’s probably only me. But one thing’s for certain: Mass Effect 2 has an immensely high replay value.
Batman: Arkham Asylum
I thought I had seen it all with Mass Effect 2, when Batman: Arkham Asylum came over and swept me off my feet. Batman: Arkham Asylum is that kind of game that you’ll hardly ever see.
Such a superhero game has probably never been made before. Ever. Superhero games don’t actually have a history of doing great with the critics and the masses (remember Superman 64?)
Following its release. Batman: Arkham Asylum has received massive critical acclaim and does so from me too. Set in Arkham Asylum, the institution set up for the mentally insane, the game starts off with Batman transporting the Joker to Arkham (who submits too easily). What Batman realises is that the Joker planned to be caught, and there was a much darker plot afoot.
The boss battles, though numerous, never bore you for once with the sole exception of Poison Ivy. You’ll face the Scarecrow thrice, and the others like Killer Croc, the Joker and Bane as well.
The tone and color of the game is so well set and the graphics are so beautifully merged with the storyline and gameplay, that it is difficult to set your hands off the keyboard. You’ll always be hungry for more and will come back all the time.
Be it Joker’s crazy sense of humour, Batman’s brilliant martial arts assisted with fluid controls, or gliding seamlessly over Arkham’s dark landscape with the skyline of Gotham in the view, Batman: Arkham Asylum is one of the most perfect games ever created. I’m only disappointed with the font in which “Batman” is written on the box art. Looks a bit weird, if you ask me.
So what did you feel about my views on these games? Let me know in the comments section.