Reviews by TheCrownless
Grindhouse Teaches You TypingTheCrownless | Nov. 6, 2013 | Review of Typing of the Dead: Overkill
The Typing of the Dead is not an unfamiliar series, having played the original back when it was first released and even so far as to play it's Arcade iterations while visiting various places in Asia. After the second game in the series failed to get localized it seemed to be the end of the series coming over to the West, when Lo and Behold, The Typing of the Dead: Overkill is quietly released on Steam!
The game itself is based off of The House of the Dead Overkill, Originally released on the Wii, then released on the PS3 in HD. The version that this game is based on seems to be the PS3 version, and this can be seen as the resolution of the game is locked to 720p regardless of the setting you choose to display. This is just a minor nitpick however as there are various screen filters in play which help to alleviate this. It's an incredibly over the top excperience, very much in line with the Robert Rodriguez school of B-Movies. There's gratuitous swearing, incredibly bad oneliners and a deep basey narrator which introduces each of the 'Episodes' that you play. So from an Aesthetic stand point, if you love lame B-Movies, this is definitely the game for you.
Gameplay is actually incredibly simple; instead of having a gun to shoot zombies with, a set of words appear on the body of the zombie, you type out the words and the zombie dies! Very simple. The humor and pop culture references which appear in the word bank are incredibly humorous and add to the replayability. It also seems like down the line, the player has the ability to add new and custom word banks which will greatly increase the replayability of the game.
Not only does this game have The Typing of the Dead, but it too has the original House of the Dead: Overkill HD included in it! So if your fingers get tired of all the typing, you can go and play a traditional light gun game, utilizing the mouse as the aiming reticule.
In summary, if you have a penchant for bad B-Movie acting, while also wanting to practice your typing against hordes of zombies/mutants and all other manner of nasties, I most definitely recommend this game.
Welcome to Dubai, gentlemen.TheCrownless | Nov. 6, 2013 | Review of Spec Ops: The Line
What makes Spec Ops: The Line a very special game, one that I feel has been overlooked by in large the community as a whole is the attention to story; the subversion of expectation. Indeed it is hard to talk about the game without first going into the story.
On the surface, the player is presented with a seemingly generic third person shooter, under the military category. The gameplay is serviceable, gunplay varied and enough to keep the player engaged but nothing to groundbreaking at all. The player has the ability to switch between two main weapons, carries a variety of grenades and a nice feature implemented is the ability to order your two squadmates around the battlefield. The gameplay itself will, truth be told, not be engaging enough as it's own to continue onwards, as stated it's the story that pushes you forward.
Captain Walker is an interesting man, almost amiable to begin with, driven by the noble goals of saving the last remaining survivors in a Sandstorm torn Dubai. The banter at the beginning of the game is quite indicitive of this, falling very much into the rather Jingoistic styled attitude of "We are the US and we will save you" and such. Yet as the game progresses, the player discovers that all is not as it seems.
The sound design for the game too is top notch. Most of the gun's sounds are serviceable, snipers and desert eagles in particular sound like they pack quite the punch. The voice acting for Captain Walker, done by Nolan North too has to be commended as his voice and attitude changes drastically over the course of the game. Now finally, the music selection for this game is by far the stand out feature, with music giving a very much Vietnam War vibe. The choice in music fits incredibly well with the aesthetic designs of the game, and even music made for the game fits incredibly well.
Graphically the game is standard fair, but it is the Art Design which more than makes up for this. The beauty of Dubai ravaged by a monster Sandstorm is something which needs to be seen to be experienced. The tranquil beauty compared to the destructive nature of the people within it giving the game a wonderful backdrop. The art assets in game, be it graffiti, artwork, architecture really stands out in comparison to the rather cut and dry military found within.
So in summary, Spec Ops: The Line is quite the experience, one which is by far worth your money. In an age where Story seems to be more and more a backdrop or an excuse to go in guns blazing, this game is a great subversion of expectations. You owe it to yourself to give this game a look.