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A Return to Form
Shinji Mikami has always been troubled by the recent turn to action horror games have taken. In this new game her brings back the traditional RE style with RE4 gameplay and The Last of Us graphics. Making for a new experience for recent gamers and a treat for old gamers.
Story: As Detective Sebastian Castellanos you enter a strange world only to escape back into reality but unfortunately it follows you. You must traverse town, castle and forest to find the reason why this is happening while slowly uncovering a mysterious past.
Graphics: The game looks great by every standard on the platforms. While the PS3 and Xbox 360 may seem a little choppy it still looks pretty good. There is a lot of detail both in the action sequences and the slower moments making for a great experience.
Sound Design: Not much to complain about here everything is top notch. Voice acting and music are pretty good while the weapons and enemies are very chilling but fun to hear.
Controls: Actually pretty simple and that's good as their are plenty of moments that will get you jumping while you need to switch weapons. No button is useless and it feels nice that their is a short cut buttons (take that RE4).
Gameplay: Is RE4 style while having stealthy moments during some chapters. It makes for good variety and allows for multiple playthroughs. It also has an interesting customize system that is pretty unique to this game. If I have one problem is that sometimes the enemies detect you a little too soon.
Overall a very fun experience that older games will love and scare recent gamers.
Alien: Isolation (2014)
Your eyes, ears and sweat will be your only allies
Alien: Isolation is a different beast from the typical horror games. There are no overpowered weapons. No over abundance of ammunition or resources. There is only fear and that my friends truly describes how I played and experienced Alien: Isolation.
Let me start off by saying this game is in the vain of Amnesia and Slender where being careful and methodical is your best bet for survival. Even with this information you are not guaranteed survival. There is much more than that in this game you will witness horrors from that of Fallout 3 and New Vegas. You experience the cold sweat rolling down your face as the monstrous Xenomorph stares at you from inside your hidy hole. This is Alien: Isolation and my review.
Story: Amanda Ripley, Ellen Ripley's daughter, has bee working hard and trying to find closure for the disappearance of her mother. Her friend Samuels tells her of the flight recorder at the Sevastopol Station, a large ship similar to Nostromo. When they arrive things go from good to terrible. Stranded alone and no way of contacting her allies Ripley must find a way to establish contact with them. Along the way she meets something out of her nightmares and must save herself or die in the near derelict ship.
Presentation: The game looks very good and allows you to take the semi-futuristic and retro looking environment. Form the DOS computers and portable TVs give the game a very 1979 Alien vibe. The game also has a very unique PDA like system where large cassette players are situated for your listening pleasure. While the environment is important the human and inhuman NPCs also look very good. Early on you can see the characters likeness to the actors portrayed all except Ripley who is modeled after Sigourney Weavers mom in her younger years, since she portrayed her in Aliens. The Seegson Synthetic are one of the more interesting enemies at first glance they look like simple humanoid Artificial Persons however the developers gave them red eyes in the shadows. An ingenious graphical tip for any player. The Xenomorph is s site truly to behold. H. R. Giger's beautiful vision is accomplished in the game. Showing every detail he painstakingly put into.
Sound Design: As with most high profile games voice acting is very good. Nothing to complain about in this regard as for the games sound it is very other worldly. From the start you are in silence only with the whirs of the dead city filling your ears. Cues from the world around you offer a very discomforting experience especially from the star of the game. As it growls and wanders the hallways looking for you and you hold up the motion tracker all you can hear is panicked breathing.
Controls: One flaw with his game is the controls at times it's simple other times it can be a little overwhelming. During combat it is very difficult to switch to a more appropriate weapon. Other times you have stumble since the game has a vision alter button you won't use unless you have the motion tracker out.
Gameplay: This is where the game shines. During the game you will have to adjust your play style if you want to survive. Since the Xenomorph will learn from you you must learn from it. Combat is not the center of this game. You will have to rely on brain power to figure out the best strategy to fight the humans and synthetics. Will you use a flash-bang or lure them into a trap? The game also offers a crafting system which is a little hectic but bearable. Creating some items feel like you have something value versus something of uselessness. It has happened to me but hey I need to learn.
Overall A:I is a superb game that tests the player to their wits and emotional end. I give it a 9 out of 10.
The Walking Dead (2010)
Go back to Comics
Frank Darabont made this series. He did right and that is why it was successful WAS. You see after watching this season first episode I can say this series sucks. Frank had decent characters, good drama and great action. Now nothing makes me come back. Absolutely nothing makes me want to see Rick or Daryl.
OK sorry let me review this sucker. After being in a coma for a short time Rick awakens to a zombie outbreak complete with cryptic messages and expositional characters. OK I can get behind this it sounds good. Season one had the potential to start good and end good. This season ends rather bitter sweet which is nice.
Season two is slower and at least has a gripping side story that made us all love Daryl and hate Shane. Why? Due to the fact the characters were written competently however their were snags. New people getting introduced then dying. Hershel a side character in the comics is now a main character that's not bad part what is the bad part is that we see him as an antagonist then bam protagonist.
Season three was bad. No characters to sympathize with except Rick, Glen and Daryl. Lori dies thank god. Lori was an awful female lead. She was a double standard, condescending, two face person who didn't need to stay alive. The antagonist is just awful. I'm sorry but this Liam Nesson wannabe was bad.
Now that's over lets talk about action. Season one had good action scenes and stunt work. Season two not a lot of action but sporadic enough for someone to at least enjoy. Season three saw absolutely none unless the plot permits it. See those zombies in the background they are just there. No reason for existing just there.
Characters were well written at one point until Darabont was fired. Sadly that's when the writing made everyone into a stereotype. I hate Carl so much he isn't written at all. Thankfully the video game are so much better.
World War Z (2013)
Misjudged Zombie Movie
I am a huge zombie fan and of course I had to check this out. After reading the book I knew the movie wasn't going to be like the book. Due in fact to the words "production problems" seriously why does everyone think it's code word for "Don't worry we are polishing this movie/game. There is no problems at all." I know I'm ranting at this point but seriously you people need to learn English.
Anyway I sat down in a not so packed theater. A group of teens, an old couple and several couples with young children. The parents with children all left. The teens were horrified and the older couple were also enjoying themselves and you know what so was I. It's not perfect film but people are so damn hard on this film due to The Walking Dead. Let me say this after the first season WD was losing steam. I stopped watching when the second season was over.
Now onto the film oh god. Our hero Brad Pitt Er Gerry is normal ex- government man. On this particular day he drives through Philly and everyone knows from Romero movies Philly is the best place for a zombie flick. Soon zombie's plow through human meat and the story lumbers for a bit. I won't lie the film is slow...at really small intervals. I never felt bored with this film just angry at some idiots within this film.
Gerry's wife calls him in the middle of a big event which gets people killed. A bunch of Hebrews sing and then out of nowhere wall crawling zombies because sound draws them in. These two moments made me want to punch these people. Not the writers or producers. These everyday people who screw up. That was smart because as humans we can screw up big time.
Despite this I enjoyed the zombie effects and horror elements. Sure they weren't very scary but still effective. You see people want a direct adaptation of the book weren't doing research. I looked stuff up and they didn't. OK again rant over. My problem with this movie isn't anything too terrible.
First the formula was just stock. Gerry goes somewhere bad stuff happens. He goes somewhere else bad stuff happens. See formula, not a good thing. Second the inclusion of his family. Yeah he has one but nothing comes from it. They are just there unfortunately. Third unfortunately was the cgi. I know people have said it before but oh well. This movie could've used people for zombies but no, some scenes are just cg. Not saying it breaks the movie but good god hire people.
Despite this I did enjoy this movie it was fun and very pleasing to this zombie fan. Overall 7 out of 10.
The Amazing World of Gumball (2011)
Gumballs Unique World
I have been around some major nostalgia geeks who perceive anything as new bad. I saw this one night flipping through channels and noticed a wacky promo for the show. I was interested but after a few weeks it faded out of my memory. Then several months passed and I saw the first two episodes and I was instantly hooked.
The show circles around an anthropomorphic cat and his brother/best friend Darwin. Together they get into wild and sometimes strange adventures. The show also focuses on their sister Anisis, mother Nicole and father Richard. They all have their quirks and generally are funny.
Thats one of the positives and negatives of the show. Some humor makes me laugh...hard other jokes are flat. The Pressure while not bad had a rather unfunny joke mid way through and broke the episodes enjoyability. Another Negative is the sometimes odd use of staging a joke. Many times the show will stage a joke too late or too early which may be due to it being from Europe who's humor is different.
However the superb voice acting from the main and supporting cast shine through making it a very good vocal cast. The animation styles are very fun and refreshing. My personal favorite thing about the show is the overly happy soundtrack which include it's rarely used into and the numerous songs in the episodes.
Overall I love this series and recommend it to anyone.
The Sad Truth
I have enjoyed Matt and Amy since their beginning years on TLC and now their next big step. With the kids gone or at least the two boys and the girl. Matt and Amy wish to help make a magical day special with funding from the soon-to-be married and guidance by the wedding designer Matt and Amy embark on a new show.
I have seen the episode which a couple wanted a Hawaiian theme and Zack the smaller twin wanted to leave. The episode was fun t times with Matt being his usual "I'mma get it done right" attitude and Amy's "Let's get this ball rolling" attitude. There was just one problem just one kid and an entire farm to themselves. It just became a realization that everyone gets older and leaves.
Seeing Matt without Jeremy or Jake is just odd. The absence of Molly is just odd as well. The kids were part of a show that allowed people to see things from their perspective now that perspective is gone and replaced by a desire to make people happy but now without the family coming together. Without the kids and the challenge it's lost it's hook Little People in a Big Unforgiving World.
Here Comes Honey Boo Boo (2012)
Honey Boo Boo and Gravy Mama
Honey Boo Boo is a fan favorite of the pageant scene and of course got he own show the problem it sets back southerners for 500 years. TLC just doesn't understand kids aren't worth our time unless they have a quirky family life or parents who act like parents.
Her mom or "Mama" is a rather rotund woman who fits the bill perfectly for "Insert baby maker here" as she has had four children with at least four men. The other bill is "Stereotypical white trash" as she wakes up, goes to the bathroom and sleeps food. A relatively infamous line of hers is "If had two thumbs I'd pick up more cheese balls." It was due to someone having two thumbs and she made into a food joke.....classy. Speaking of food the family has somehow made these following terms "Forklift Food" and the most disgusting thing "Neck Crust".
Now the dad or "Sugar Bear" is the father of Alana and recent boyfriend he is just like mama stereotypical. The only likable character is Glitz a pig....who dies. In any case I don't look down on southerners I just dislike idiots.
Toddlers and Tiaras (2009)
In the wake of their high ratings of Jon and Kate Plus Eight TLC decided to start airing shows for people to respond towards the show. J&K had Kate a borderline psychopath who wanted fame, fortune and a body to die for and Jon wanted a quiet life. T&T has moms whoring their children so they can feel accomplished for what they have done.
TLC was smart enough to never speak a word of this show since they didn't confirm or deny they followed these practices. Smart but the show has become lamb basted for abusive parenting which in todays society is a huge no no.
The children are "forced" (I say that in quotations due to some kids being dumb enough to accept the prodding and poking of uncut finger nails) to wear heavy makeup the makes the children as fake Sarah Jessica Parker looking sexy. They also end up parading in small clothes that unfortunately make them look like mini call girls.
However one can not put all the blame on the moms. The dads seem to resist it until his precious is crying on her stomach because she wants to play or the mom verbally threatens him with divorce (it has happened). Dad of course by the ends turns to the camera and says "Well if she likes it she can do it".
Sadly though this is not the worst it gets in real life children have been kidnapped and murdered due to these types of abuse. In any event this show is awful for it's content and it's message.
Dance Moms (2011)
My Re-Do Review
Dance Moms is set in The Abby Lee Dance Company and is a drama based show focusing on the mothers and the dance instructor Abby.The show is on it's third season and currently a ratings goldmine. So what makes this show so addictive? Well its the characters and relationships. Abby is the instructor who has little patience for any mistakes and the mothers constant prying. She is not the main source of the problem but a big one (no pun intended). She has yelled, demeaned and even caused the girls to cry but at the same time she does seem to care. She has shown some level of love for her students and seems to want them to succeed in their ventures.
The moms are rather high privileged women with a great deal of hatefulness for the dance instructor. One in particular named Kelly has got up and quit before and even came back because her daughters didn't want to leave their friends. Jill is quite fickle at times. She will tell Abby of the things the moms do and then turn around to call Abby names. She wants her child to be the best but her way of proving it is showering Abby with gifts.
The girls while not the main focus should be since sometimes the show paints them as unintelligent girls who are just pretty.
However Cathy is the one that seems to be the catalyst for all the hate on the show. Cathy has hit, spit poured water down the heads of the moms and insulted the girls. She has very little patience for failing and is one sore loser. She is known for using her money for everything such hiring other dance instructors to do her job for her and even paying for ridiculous costumes. She also is underhanded for trying to get sympathy votes from the judges since she uses boys in a girls "sport".
It's not a terrible show but one that is for certain crowd just not my kind of crowd.
Transit: Where Movie making Dies
Transit is an action, driving movie where weak scripts and acting are useless and the only thing good is the location.
A family is in ruins after the father has been in jail due to fraud. In their travels a group of dumb ineffective criminals decide to hide their money with their camping gear. After this the movie tries to go Transporter on our minds. High octane car chases ensue and of course the movie tries to do it's thing or lack there of. In a way if it any different this movie would've made a decent start a strong ending but unfortunately it takes a massive acting and script plunge.
What's wrong with the acting and scripting? How about a sadistic car driver turned worried Samaritan. A villain who stays in "I'm a villain" mode throughout but somehow pulls this off like lead being a taco. Then a spat between the wife and husband is a whisper fight. Emoting is also nonexistent throughout since the villains also whisper aside from the busty female villain who is actually the only decent actor.
Finally we come to the biggest flaw the action scenes. Wanna here the same chords played during an action scene neither do I but apparently the editor does. How about an "extreme" U-turn that has NOTHING of noteworthy value. My favorite however is the lack of an alligator eating anyone. A gun fight which somehow a mom turns into a sharpshooter. Again this movie kills everything it tries to do and then some.
Transit is the worst action movie in while no doubt there.