Copyright Adam Schlosser
Contact:
aschloss@gmail.com


Copyright 2005 Adam Schlosser


Posted by Pip

FL11- Feelings Vir Tu

Content is naturally the most emotionally complex of the Virtues. Sheís taken to hosts easily (and seems to delight in fixing their hair, watch out Fortune, your hair ninja skills have competition), wants to be active in the world, and if any of the Virtues are tolerable enough to actually be in a relationship itís Content. But itís totally platonic! Just because everybody is one small toga away from nudity that doesnít mean theyíre all knockiní boots. ...And we STILL donít know if they have naughty bits...
Poor Fast... the pet nobody cares enough about to look after.


Quick Review: The Darkness (the game)- Itís when youíre doing the mundane that The Darkness drags on. The early gunfights, having to take the subway everywhere, your ludicrously slow walking speed, finding people you need to talk to, trying to find certain addresses, but when you start getting powers and you try to find the fun ways to get through fights... Oh yes, the game shines quite nicely. Eating the hearts of your fallen foes for strength afterwards is just nice stress relief. The main issue seems to be that itís a game rushed and unfinished. The main character looks like a high school goth Nathan Explosion incapable of emotion but sadly, from the snippets of the comics you can read, the character seems more fleshed out in the source material. An oddly defined snipe distance (you can see things clearly and reasonably, yet they wonít react to your shots until you get a lot closer), lights that are oddly invincible (random light bulbs are stronger than steel), and things like enemies talking when youíre not in the room (enemies will carry on as if youíre in the room fighting them when youíve left or sometimes havenít even met them yet) but there are two big issues that prevent the game from being really great. One is that itís just damned hard to see/find your enemies most of the time. On the one hand, being in the dark and shooting out lights makes you stronger, but then youíre left with enemies wearing black standing against a black backdrop, and the designers made the baffling decision to not give you a damage indicator. Most shooters flash where youíre being hurt so you know to look to the right or left. Darkness doesnít have this, so there are plenty of times you find yourself standing there taking damage, scanning the room for a muzzle flash or some sign of where in the shadows the enemy is, even if it isnít hiding. The other big problem is the brain-dead AI on your minions. I love the Darklings and some of their dialogue cracked me up the first time I heard it, but theyíre utterly useless. So aside from puzzles requiring their use, I rarely bothered with them. They always lag behind you and wonít advance anywhere so you end up having to micromanage them, but by the time you do that, you could have just taken down the enemy yourself. Theyíll ignore enemies or objects that theyíre supposed to be focused on (the light breakers are maddeningly stupid and will sit under a light and ignore it no matter how much you order them to do their damn purpose for existing). Not only are they useless, but they decide when they despawn themselves (unspawn?) so times when you might actually really want them; youíll turn around to see them teleport away or abandon you. Itís still a fun game and definitely worth playing (rent or buy now that itís really cheap), but Iím hoping that the sequel has more polish.
Multiplayer seems to suffer the most from the rush to get the game done. Deathmatch is a poor version of what you see in almost every single FPS around and was incredibly jumpy. Itís not full on lag warping, but instead of seeing characters walk, they teleport very short distances, making every gunfight (that wasnít someone catching another player by surprise) people dancing around until someone got lucky enough to score a few random hits. The game setup is pretty clunky and poorly executed overall, but thatís made exponentially worse by so few people playing. After making a match by my lonesome, the Darklings could have been a lot of fun for a CtF match. Theyíre basically like Scouts that can walk on walls and the ceiling. An awesome combination.