Copyright Adam Schlosser

Copyright 2005 Adam Schlosser

Posted by Pip

FL4- What Could Happen

When logic, reason, and all else fail, just stick your face in it. Really the worst that could happen would be that it kills you instantly and without suffering because you just sheared your brain off and then think of all the good that could come from a glowing portal.

End of the month and the first official full month of dreaded summertime. Even though itís been damn hot since March here. Donate arts, creativity, or money and then just ask and this monthís wallpaper could be yours!

This monthís amusing search string leading to Sins is a simple one but worth it: ď7 deadly sins of algebraĒ. Honestly, the fact that ďiĒ is considered a quasi-real and legit number in math is all the proof you need that algebra isnít on the level.

Quick Review: Overlord (PS3)- Overlord is basically a Pikmin thatís actually fun to play, has great characters, and isnít horrifically boring. Thatís why it pains me to say that under no circumstances should you buy the game. Iíll explain in a second but letís just get the basics down. The characters are awesome, the dialogue is fantastic, itís funny, and the story is really interesting and for anybody that really likes or really dislikes the Lord of the Rings, you basically get to inflict torment on hobbits, dwarves, elves, and every other annoying as all get out fantasy race. The initial main problem is just the horrendous level design. Levels are basically laid out like you gave a child a crayon, told him to go nuts and scribble all over a sheet of paper, and thatís your level. There are constant dead ends and loops and areas that sometimes you can get into but the next time you see a similar area, you canít get into it. Trying to find out where to go, where an objective is, or even how to get back from where you came is an exercise in hair pulling annoyance and tedium made that much worse by a camera and lock on system that shows more disdain to the user than just about any Iíve experienced. The minions suffer from the same brain-dead AI that the Pikmin had and will seemingly go out of their way to drown, poison, set themselves on fire, or blow themselves up. Getting them to heal one another seems to be completely random because your healers are more willing to jump into battle where they die in a single hit than to actually do their job and help you. Youíll frequently have a large group of healers walk passed an injured minion, refuse to help him when you order them, and do nothing when you manually guide them to the body. But if thereís something on fire, dammit they are there to rush into the flames and die on their own accord! The extra levels for the expansion are just so poorly laid out and executed that youíre better off just skipping them or pretending that they donít exist.
Even with all those problems, the game would be salvage and actually still fun until we hit this one bottleneck. Theoretically, this section should take no more than thirty seconds, but after an hour trying to do it, I was so broken down that it wouldnít take much to reduce me to tears. I calmly saved my game, ejected the disc, and put it back in its envelope to return. All you have to do is herd a person through some passages and into a specific spot. Again theoretically, sounds pretty easy. However, the controls, camera, and lock on just absolutely give out and leave you with nothing to control you character, the view, or your minions. Left randomly becomes right, right becomes left. If you're too far away, the character doesn't react to the minions herding her but if you get too close she walks through you and goes back to the start. I actually felt physically ill from the camera shaking, jolting around, and just randomly spinning at this part so that combined with the shear frustration and hatred of the moment, the game ceases to be fun, or hell, even playable at this point. Up until this point and even with the horrible AI, the game wasnít hard (itís actually pretty darn easy) and it typically made sense. But then... THIS. You canít advance the game if you donít finish this spot, so thereís nothing to do but quit, curse yourself for all the hours you sunk to get this far into the game (no, this couldnít happen at the start of the game, this is getting near the end), download the ending from Youtube, and possibly weep in a fetal position.
Sins Committed: Bad camera/lock-on, bad AI, bad level design