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Dee Yun: (contact-deleteme[at]-deleteme-direman [dot] com) 2010-02-08 13:01:46
Next Week On Sonic the Hedgehog 4...
Episodic releases? Seriously? It's not like the great drama of battling Dr. Robotnik lends itself toward a rich narrative tapestry. We just need Sonic to run fast through levels. They can't come up with enough levels to put out a complete game?
The only reason I can figure this is that Sega has whiffed it so many times that they no longer have the confidence to put out a solid Sonic game. This way, they can respond to user feedback and make corrections to any grievances for "Episode 2".
If so, this is simply pathetic. Mario was a revelation in the 8-bit era, and probably saved the videogame industry as we know it. Nintendo's mascot has a decades-spanning history of banging out gaming greatness and I can't wait to see the sequel to Super Mario Galaxy. Sonic? Sega are scaling him back all the way to 16-bit design, and STILL don't have the confidence of recapturing 20-year-old fun.
The one new game release this week of note is BioShock 2. Its predecessor was the Direman Press 2007 Game of the Year and a beloved critical and commercial success. However, I've had serious qualms about this sequel. It's handled by a different team (what's a "Shock" game without Ken Levine?), with a tacked on multiplayer (handled by yet another team) that is thematically disjointed with the main campaign. 2K has put a lot of resources into this product, so it should be technically polished, but I am concerned that the underlying artistic design -which was what made BioShock great- will end up deeply compromised. Nevertheless, I'm certain many gamers (including me, despite my doubts) are interested in this significant release. Links for the Xbox 360, PS3, and PC are below. Pick your poison, for every purchase through these links helps us out.
Dante's Inferno also releases this week, but I feel confident advising you to skip it. Xbox owners who are fans of the genre should grab Bayonetta instead, and their PlayStation 3 analogs should wait for God of War 3. (I can't recommend the PS3 version of Bayonetta.)
Now Playing - Modern Warfare 2 (360); level 27, 9th prestige, 2.11 kill/death ratio
Xbox Live/PSN Gamertag - Vawce