Two Weeks of Meh

Posted by OrginaryMagoo On June - 30 - 2010

Ok, a week late yes, so I have two weeks of this column to squeeze into one piece. Hold on to your pants, here goes nothing.

No tax breaks for the games industry in the UK!? Well, it’s well seen that the new government is really trying to save the economy by hindering the fastest growing industry in the world. The previous government had promised tax breaks to games companies in the United Kingdom, but now it looks like some of the smaller independent companies will find it harder to get off the ground and it is a very distinct possibility that there will be job cuts. Considering there are a lot of freelance programmers with non-secure work, this will not help their situation. Well done ‘the government,’ my faith in your new leadership is assured.

Moving on from E3: The exaggerated electronic event that is E3 is over for another year, and the Cirque du Soleil can finally return to doing what they do best…not putting on mediocre performances for the benefit of Microsoft. That being said, the thought of Kinect is quite amazing. Controller free gaming that goes beyond the likes of Tom Cruise’s glove in Minority Report. Myself and my family have jumped on the bandwagon and pre-ordered our Kinect peripheral (as well as the oh so shiny new xbox 360, courtesy of trading in a not so needed console. Yes Nintendo/PS3, we mean you!).

Speaking of the new Xbox console, which is not officially called the Slim, apparently it can’t red ring. Why? Rumour goes that it has no red LEDS!! In all seriousness, it should be at less of a risk of over-heating due to the extra vents installed and I’m guessing that because of the smaller size, it may have smaller parts. Yet to be confirmed.

Coming out of E3, there are a slew of games that have grabbed the attention of the media and public alike. We can all assume that Halo: Reach will be the biggest selling game of the year on its release in September (on a personal note, I have the Legendary edition pre-ordered to add to my growing fan-boy need for ‘collectors items,’ but I personally believe that some of the best games will not be as high profiled as Halo or COD: Black-Ops. Games like Vanquish should not be over-looked, it is being made by the same company that brought us the wacky and super fun Bayonetta.

My top tips: I would like to take a moment to talk about the games that have that certain something.

I’ve already mentioned Vanquish, which to be honest looks like Gears of War on a heavy dose of amphetamines. The fact that a developer has considered that games that use a cover system don’t have to be slow…now that’s progress. Personally Gears of War can seem very slow at times, so Vanquish could be the kick in the ass that the shooter genre needs.

Next up is the latest title from Sweden’s People Can Fly studios, Bulletstorm. This game looks so insane that it could very well be the next Duke Nukem, the duke is dead, long live the successor to Painkiller!! Yes, the makers of the Painkiller series are producing yet another insane shoot-em-up. I thoroughly enjoyed Painkiller: Hell Wars and it’s about time that the studio took another shot at the FPS genre. Judging from the released footage, this points based shooter could be very addictive and once more, a solid kick in the butt, this time directed at FPS games.

My final tip is simply a fan-boy favourite. Since the disappointing sequel to the classic Deus Ex, I have been aching for a new iteration of one of my most beloved shooter/RPGs. I know very little about this one other than it is a prequel, it has x-ray vision and it may be possible to victimise your opponent’s weak spots through the use of this ability. I will be watching Deus Ex: Human Revolution with bated breath.

Moving away from my most hated week of the year, movies now. I recently watched the absolutely astounding Kick-Ass. Quite possibly the best movie I’ve seen this year. I may not have read the comics, but what does that matter? Nic cage pulling off his best Adam West impersonation while dressed as Big Daddy, and if ever there was a movie that should have came with the tag-line “Boom! Headshot,” this is it. All in all, a great comic performance by the cast, that had some serious laugh out loud moments and enough gratuitous violence to make even the hardiest gore fan think ‘yum!’

I was lucky enough to get an early release code of Crackdown 2, and had a fun romp around Pacific City alone and with some people I befriended on twitter. It was fun and most definitely a return to force made by Dundee based Ruffian Games. It is my opinion that this will be the summer blockbuster of 2010, that coming from 30 minutes of play. Short and sweet, but that’s what I think.

I’m happy to say that I have been living and breathing Transformers: War for Cybertron since it’s release and it has been a pleasure. For anyone undecided about this one, I would definitely recommend it for solo play and a bit of the old co-operative campaign play. The multiplayer is not too shabby either, with plenty of room for customisation. Bundle this with a horde style mode and you can’t go wrong.

I managed to make it to the local games convention in Belfast, called Q-CON. Now, without getting in to too much detail, this is no e3. It is a small local convention for table-top games, console gaming and comic books, hosted by the Queens University of Belfast’s very own DragonSlayers gaming community. More on this later in the week with a full write-up.

Activision has really gotten on my nerves recently, but then who haven’t they been annoying? Talk of a Call of Duty: MMO with its own subscription service, paying full price for individual Rock Band peripherals and generally being an all-out money mongering corporation. Bobby Kotick, you are the most hated man in the gaming industry right now, while Peter Molyneux still retains the title of the biggest bull-shitter.

On a final note, I would like to campaign for the recognition of Raven Software’s latest development, Singularity. This game has been pushed down by Activision, under promoted and downright ignored. This is probably due to Activision’s new and relatively unknown new policy of promoting franchises as opposed to individual stand-alone titles. Singularity is an exceptionally good title with a Bio-Shock and Wolfenstein blend. I’ve only started on this game, but I would recommend that anyone who has an interest, look in to it and check out the reviews. So far they’re great across the board.

Well that was two weeks of the UK connection, check back next week to see what’s been grinding my gears and massaging meh bile gland.

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