Reviews by JimRory

25

If You Like Wasting Your Time

JimRory | May 16, 2013 | Review of Borderlands

I honestly have nothing positive to say. I would say anyone that likes Diablo and FPSes would enjoy this game (I don't enjoy Diablo). Shoot a bunch of muppets, get cash, level up, get guns, get more guns, and get more, better guns. That's literally the entire game.

It is cool to drive around and explore the world of Pandora, but the landscape of Pandora is a little dull. This game was not meant to be taken seriously, but the "humor" is downright childish and I didn't once laugh at any of the "jokes". For all the talk about the millions of guns, the guns seem to just be slight varients of around a half dozen stock weapons; you've got your shotgun, assault rifle, rocket launcher, pistol. The only difference is the damage it does, if it has fire or corrosive damage, and some other useless thing. The gameplay is also just as repetitive. Especially when limited to one class, you'll be doing the exact same thing the entire game. The game does look good, but the graphics are nothing noteworthy. Cell shading has been done in a ton of games, move along.

By the end of the game, I felt like snapping my keyboard in half to keep myself entertained. And speaking of the ending, prepare for one of the worst, anticlimactic, and flat out idiotic endings you'll play in a videogame. It's literally like Gearbox just ran out of ideas by the end. Or, perhaps Gearbox never really had any ideas, and instead tried sticking Diablo into an FPS. So, if you like Diablo and FPSes, and you don't smash things when you play an awful game while thinking of the time, money, and effort wasted on a pile of garbage, then go ahead and buy this game.

100

An Excellent Game, A Current Gen Classic

JimRory | May 13, 2013 | Review of BioShock (NA)

An FPS set underwater in a Ayn Rand idealized world set during the mid 20th century? Yes, you should be skeptical given that the only FPSs that seem to exist are set in modern combat dumbed down for teens.

From the very beginning of the game (and the opening truly is amazing), you get the sense that there was more effort put into the first 5 minutes in this game than entire levels of other games cough Call of Duty cough. Literally anything that I say about the setting and the gameplay would spoil you of the incredible world that is open for you to explore. Yes, the game at point does seem linear (there is a tram you take between levels), but the gameplay is varied enough and gives you a lot of options. There aren't two guns and pistol that you swap out when you run out of ammo. Instead, you are given multiple weapons, all of which have specific uses in certain situations, and plasmids, superpowers (I wont go into details about what exactly it is) that allow you to spew fire, shoot bolts of electricity, and more and more that I'll leave for you to find out.

As for the story, the only thing I will say is that the game does have a disappointing ending, which is actually in retrospect extremely disappointing given the incredible climax. Yes, the ending did sour my overall experience, but the sum of the game is very much worth your time. I haven't played Bioshock Infinite, and look forward to it once GreenManGaming has a good discount, but if Bioshock sets any precedent, then you'll be sure that the Bioshock series will be a classic franchise that questions what games can be, tells stories that are built specifically for the video game medium, and leaves forever lasting impressions of worlds you couldn't even dream of. The less you know of the game, the better. So what are you doing? Buy it.

(Bringing up the length of a game is equivalent of grading a middle school essay, where length is more important than substance. Do yourself a favor and buy this game. It's worth it for any price.)

60

A Streamlined and Simplified S.T.A.L.K.E.R.

JimRory | May 8, 2013 | Review of Metro 2033

As an Eastern European game set in a post Apocalyptic Russia with monsters, dark underground facilities, and areas where all you hear is the Geiger machine nonstop beeping, Metro 2033 is a game whose strength should rely on its environment. The comparisons to games like S.T.A.L.K.E.R. are merited and should be taken seriously; the flaws of Metro 2033 come to light due to this comparison.

As someone who both hated and loved S.T.A.L.K.E.R., a game that had an incredible atmosphere but difficult to get into (let's face it, Eastern European gamers are uber hardcore), Metro 2033 was a mixed bag for me. Metro 2033 has many similar qualities to S.T.A.L.K.E.R., but it's differences help distinguish the two games. For one, it's much more streamlined; in Metro 2033, you don't have to reach all over the keyboard to play, the gameplay is linear, no health packs (S.T.A.L.K.E.R. had food, bandages, health packs, and super health packs, I kid you not, and I'm pretty sure I'm missing some), etc. However, while the atmosphere in Metro 2033 rivals many current games, it pales in comparison to S.T.A.L.K.E.R. There is no open world, there are scripted moments, and the world never seemed alive the way S.T.A.L.K.E.R. felt. There are no roaming scavengers fighting off packs of monsters and no random freaks of nature. The moments are I do pop out of the Metros felt more like scripted train rides with only one path. Compare this to S.T.A.L.K.E.R., where during nightmare inducing, thumb sucking in the fetal position, underground levels, you literally cannot wait to return back to the dreary, depressing Chernobyl wasteland or else risk soiling yourself for the third time. That's not to say every game needs this; what I'm trying to say is that there are alternate games with very similar ideas that are a better investment that Metro 2033.

The story is nothing to cry over, the gameplay is nothing memorable, and the graphics are fine. I never ran into any bugs (I can't say that about S.T.A.L.K.E.R.). I never really understood why people keep mentioning the time it takes to complete a game (this isn't a middle school essay, where the length matters more than the substance). Overall, a decent game, but there are better alternative games out there.

70

The sum of mediocre elements makes a decent game

JimRory | May 4, 2013 | Review of Mass Effect 2 (NA)

The problem I have with Mass Effect 2 is that it has a lot of elements: it's a sci fi third person rpg shooter with decisions to make. However, the individual elements on their own are mediocre at best. The third person combat pales in comparison to games like Gears of War or Uncharted. The sci fi story at best is very good fan fiction (The ending is just plain silly). The rpg has been streamlined to the point where I feel it's unfair to call this game an rpg. There are no grey areas in the decisions and feels childish; red is bad and blue is good. They do a great job in fleshing out the side characters, but overall the game is composed with a bunch of mediocre elements. Together, however, you have a decent game.

90

A Great Game

JimRory | April 26, 2013 | Review of Dead Space 2 (NA)

A lot of people complain that DS2 isn't as scary as DS1. The problem with that complaint was that DS1 wasn't scary at all and the horror and scare moments felt forced and ineffective. The game was also extremely repetitive. However, DS2 fixes in my eyes all of these problems. Absolutely perfect pacing. The game stopped focusing on horror and instead focused on being a thriller and insane. A well polished and absolutely enjoyable game, and I hated DS1.