Jeditor’s note: I just realized today that Activision is charging $50 for this pile of trash. Get ready for downright brutal reviews when it releases.
The highly-anticipated Ghostbusters reboot releases in about a month. And in the very same week a twin-stick shooter that takes place after the film will be available. None of the main characters from the film are in the game. Instead, original recruits made up of two guys and two girls fill out the cast, each with unique weapons and upgrades.
I’ve played many similar shooters to this, and this is easily one of the dullest ones. Each level consists of going from one point to another, shooting ghosts, zombies — which as far as I know were never in the original films– and flying flaming skulls in the face until they die, while capturing others. Why do you kill some ghosts and capture others? I have no idea, as it wasn’t explained.
Before E3 all our hands-on previews of Cuphead have just been boss battles, but we got a chance to take recently revealed platforming levels for a spin and left unimpressed.
While the game’s mechanics lend themselves well to platforming, the two available levels felt uninspired, repetitive, and old-school hard. If you’ve played the old-school Konami classic Contra series, then you know what to expect here: enemies come at you from all sides of the screen at a constant pace forcing you to advance slowly while shooting in every direction and dodging bullets. I saw very few members of the press making it through the platforming levels, as they are truly difficult, but after I few tries I was able to with ease. I guess others just need to ‘git gud.’
The classic gory car series is back, though it doesn’t feel quite as edgy anymore. You’ll find the typical juvenile humour the series is known for, such as the ‘four skins’ pack you get for pre-ordering, and a hidden ‘smelly bush’ to find in every level. And who could forget running over innocent people and animals? It’s the type of humour and violent content that stopped shocking us since Grand Theft Auto blew up back in the PS2 era.
Instead being a straight racing game, Carmageddon Max Damage lets you play it however you want. Racing killing all the other opponents, or just driving around aimlessly… the choice is yours. The only problem with that is that without defined goals, I wasn’t sure what exactly the game wanted me to do. I drove around for ages, running over any living creature in my path. I suppose it is a similar setup to the open-world Tony Hawk games, in that each level will have things to do and hidden stuff to find. All the same, more defined goals certainly wouldn’t hurt, as I felt like I was aimlessly driving in circles. The driving isn’t all that thrilling either, as the controls are rather clunky. That seems to be a staple of the series, though, maybe it’s on purpose.
When Rare announced Sea of Thieves, I shrugged it off. It looked to be little more than a generic, MMO-like pirate game with uninspired graphics. Then when the new trailer hit this E3, laced with YouTubers screaming about climbing ladders and falling off the side of a ship, I groaned and quipped on Twitter that the game ‘looked like the best Project Spark game I’d ever seen.’ Project Spark being the failed, build-your-own-adventure game that Microsoft is pulling the plug on in August.
I finally got to play a portion of Sea of Thieves on the E3 show floor this year, and boy, was I wrong. So, so, wrong.
The original Titanfall only managed to hold my attention for about a week before I went back to playing the budget-pricePlants vs. Zombies: Garden Warfare that had released just before it. It wasn’t because Titanfall was a bad game, very much the opposite, but because it lacked enough content to keep players playing aside from the Call of Duty like unlocks and the prestige system. On top of that, the campaign was multiplayer only and could be completed in a few short hours and barely had a story.
Thankfully the developers at Respawn Entertainment have answered every complaint I had with the original game while at the same time adding in a killer feature I didn’t know I wanted: grappling hooks. Want to get on top of a building? Hook it. Get to your titan quickly? Hook it. Get on top of an enemy’s titan? Hook it. I can’t stress how useful and fun using grappling hooks are in this game, but trust me when I say they are a huge game changer.
“They can try,” Koji “Iga” Igarashi remarked when I asked him about the rumblings I’ve heard of Konami possibly working on a sequel to Castlevania: Symphony of the Night. This was a game that Iga himself wrote the scenario for, programmed, and helped direct. Iga’s translator was seemingly angry at the mere mention of the sequel being a possibility. They stated that Iga, “still knows Konami insiders, and would have heard if such was happening.”
Iga was at Xbox’s E3 booth, showing off his crowdfunded spiritual sequel to theCastlevania series, Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night, when I spoke with him. I’m happy to report it looks like this is the Castlevania game we have been waiting for in everything but name. It has all the things you’d expect to find: great music, a gothic aesthetic, ghoulish enemies, and massive bosses. Practically everything is here, right down to candles that can be broken to reveal items.
On the final day of PAX East, I woke up after getting a measly four or so hours of sleep. I’d been ill (since birth, but also sick for the past couple of days), my back hurt, my legs hurt, and I had a headache. I had two goals in mind for the day: Try out PlayStation VR for the first time, and not shit myself — a goal I’ve had even since returning home since I’m still sick.
It turns out I succeeded at both, but not before I literally hit the woman demonstrating PS VR to me in her face. I didn’t do it on purpose, of course, but it still happened.