Thursday, 13 March 2014

Lost Planet 2: Master of None

I've been trying to hold off on reviewing this game until I get to try the co-op version of it, but thanks to the rather clumsy way the Windows Live accounts are handled and the simple fact that I have better games to play co-op on that doesn't look like it's going to happen.


So I'll start of with the positive bit first. The graphics are sharp and pretty damned good. As for the rest of the game... well... it's like they couldn't decide what they wanted the game to be. So they tried to make it everything. At it's core, it is a futuristic shooter - that has FPS elements when you aim some weapons and other times you are stuck with an over the shoulder camera and HUD crosshairs. You can dodge roll out of enemy attacks but also have a shield and health that you replenish by... picking up cartoony yellow cubes of... who knows what. Or shooting / being shot by your allies with healing rounds. Got to be careful to use the right ammo type though as there is friendly fire.

You also have a grappling line which lets you maneuver up towering structures and the maps occasionally have minor branching paths but generally they are all small areas separated by loading zones and with the amount of enemies you can expect to be respawning a few times. There are also combat robots you can climb in or hang on to gain more firepower at the loss of agility. From what I've seen you also spend at least half the time fighting alien creatures, some of which are gigantic bosses - while the rest of the time you fight human scum with ridiculous group names. In chapter one you go after the Jungle Pirates. Because they live in the jungle. Really? Also the cut scenes I've seen makes it feel like some guy was trying to copy Metal Gear.

There are timed obstacle challenge modes too which take place on race arenas. Complete it within the allotted time and you unlock something you can use in the main story. Then you can run the same map with more obstacles to unlock something else. This becomes increasingly difficult not only because of the obstacles themselves (from holes in the floor to missile turrets) but from the very awkward controls the game has. Yeah, maybe I can change the default key bindings but I don't feel it's worth it. As an example, mouse up changes your gun. Mouse down doesn't change back to your old gun, it switches your grenade types. Who the hell thought that was a good idea? Someone that doesn't play shooters no doubt.

Strangely it feels almost exactly like Avatar: the game (I played the demo), which suffered from much the same mess but at least there I got to kill off a few hundred Nav'i natives. Screw your tree, give me my Unobtanium! HUMANS RULE! RAAAAAAAHHHH! Alas Lost Planet 2 doesn't give me that same sense of team spirit, despite always having an NPC team with me (and they respawn as often as I do). In closing, Lost Planet 2 tries to be many things which ultimately degrades the game as a whole I think, and I give it 2 cartoony cubes out of 5.

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