Thursday, April 7, 2011

Bulletstorm(Games)

Well, India won the world cup. Really don't wanna repeat myself so... key points: jumped around in an apartment, almost got stampeded in a lathi charge, lost my voice, embarrassed myself with my friends, went topless and celebrated... alot. So moving on from the hype. My opinions on Bulletstorm.





Before I begin, I want to point out that whatever you may make out of the following, the game was pretty good and I had alot of fun playing it. I say this because even though I felt I really wanted to point out how immature and full of toilet humor this game is, it's still a game full of some great design and at least interesting gameplay.

Remember Duke Nukem? The game that had unnecessary violence, scantily clad girls, ray guns and mutated pigs from outer space?(or was it the sewers...? Who cares. All you need to know was that you shoot them till they fall or explode from a pipebomb.) This was a game that had a story comparable to say, Tower Bloxx.(might be pushing it there but you get the point.) But it still had it's charm did'nt it? There a reason everyone's been waiting for the latest one for 14 years.

It was exactly what made a game/movie sell at the time(heck, even now). A over-the-top macho hero, unnecessary bloody combat, immature jokes and average gameplay mechanics. It is also what to some, proved, that video games and TV would one day give rise to an army of mindless zombie children which will break into a gun store and take over the earth(or at least shoot a few people.)

Bulletstorm is that kind of a game(with alot of polish and shiny objects.) Apparently people still love over-the-top macho heroes, unnecessary bloody combat, immature jokes and average gameplay mechanics. (Evolution at work) Not that it's a bad game, it's actually alot of fun, but at the end of it, it just doesn't manage to make an impression on you. Like... okay I just killed 3 mutants with a shotgun with 4 barrels, bought down a helicopter with a whip and played a role in wiping out an entire planet, WOW. Now what?

Gameplay
So first things first, gameplay. Bulletstorm is a very helpful game actually. It tells you pretty much all of what you're gonna do on the title cover itself. You are:
1.Gonna shoot guns
2.Gonna use a whip to pull enemies closer
3.Gonna kick them in the face to push them away


Okay. that's not completely true. There are alot of different weapons and all of them have a secondary overcharge shot. The best part is all of them can be used in a huge number of ways that are alot of fun.(believe me, you'd be surprised)

This where another key component comes in. Skill shots. And this is probably one of the only reasons that Bulletstorm's gameplay is actually refreshing.In what other game can you have the satisfaction of saying instead of shooting someone, you actually pulled him close with a powerleash and kicked him into a cacti or you kicked a parasitic plant into someones face and then shot him in the head. There are LOTS of different skill shots for EACH gun and one for pretty much EVERY environmental hazard you see. I mean there are electric wires, cacti, steel rods, explosive containers, man-eating plants etc. This is where most of the profanity comes from, although the names I'll let you discover yourself.

Using skill shots gets you skill points, which you spend for ammo upgrades and alternative shots. There's just one problem, the skill shots are alot of fun, but they easily get old, you're usually able to do most of them pretty easily and the mutants actually are pretty pathetic(hard to kill, but pathetic). Nonetheless it's a pretty good twist on the general FPS formula.



Story
Story wise, Its actually hard to judge Bulletstorm. The story is supposed to be about a outlawed soldier out to get revenge on the person who wronged him, but it never really picks up. It's original and would be pretty good in a game, but it never really shines with the amount of toilet humor on it. Sure, the back story is pretty cool, Stygia is a beautiful planet to be on, but story never really get's the focus it deserves. It's a short single player campaign, about 6 to 7 hours for me, but there is an upside, it's very well-paced.

Then there's the spectacle of Bulletstorm. It contains some of the best and most fantastic set pieces and, from lack of better words, big things. You'll see lot's of things chasing you, from massive turbines that roll off dams to gigantic creatures(you even control one of them, although that was abit boring). If nothing else, bulletstorm's worth playing just for those moments. And yes, the ending is crappy.
Yes, this happens
 

 Visuals
Now Bulletstorm is a beautiful game, it is beautiful enough to make your eyes bleed blood from joy. It's full of color, has great environments, very very good design and great lighting effects. It's nice to see how amazing the Unreal 3 engine can look if it's pushed. Bulletstorm is very stylish. For some reason(like most unreal engine games) it reminds me a little of gears of war, but that is never a bad thing. Stygia, as mentioned before is a beautiful place to be on, with gameplay losing it's charm just about mid way through the game, Stygia is what pulls you in. The only problem being the faced paced action may prevent more than a few from noticing this.

Stop sprinting too much. Might miss this.
Sound
Sound and music effects have been very well done in the game, voice acting is run of the mill(for video games) ,and dialogue is average, depending on how much you like swear words.


Overall
Overall, more of a popcorn shooter, a game you must play because, Stygia is  a beautiful world, combat is visceral and fun(most people like it), visuals are amazing and very good looking set pieces. It is pretty short, and I didn't play multiplayer(not supposed to be that great) it is still definitely worth a rent if not a buy.

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