Despite some proclamations that 2018 is already matching 2017 as a great year for video game releases, I’ve found myself not interested in most of the big releases.
I wasn’t interested in Dragon Ball Fighter Z or Monster Hunter World. Although I’m actually hungering for a game with a lot of character customization, Monster Hunter World’s gameplay loop doesn’t appeal to me very much.
On the near horizon, Far Cry 5 and God of War are series that I’ve never paid much attention to either. Unless these games end up getting incredibly rave reviews, I may skip out on them this time around as well.
I did dive into the Shadow of the Colossus remake, which has been great to finally experience what everyone’s always talked about.
But playing a 10+ yr game always has its downfalls. Bluepoint has done an incredible job remaking this game with cutting edge graphics. The scenery looks stunning and I’ve paused to just look around at the landscape. But the world definitely feels a bit hollow. And the gameplay loop a bit shallow.
That said, I can fully appreciate how groundbreaking this game was when it was first released. It’s more of a history lesson than a true game for me to play. And you can see how it’s influenced games such as Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild.
Plus, even after all this time, there are moments that feel unique to this game. The scale of the “enemies” is still rarely seen in other games today. And the feeling of clinging to a flying Colossus was a vivid and electrifying moment that I can’t recall any parallel to.
The other game I’ve been spending my time with lately is Friday the 13th.
On the surface, nothing about this game would appeal to me. Online multiplayer, horror theme, subpar graphics, based off an IP I’ve never paid any attention to.
Yet there is something that is, frankly, really fun about this game.
Firstly, the developers wisely leaned into the campy b-movie style of the film series. In that way, everything about this game works in its favor. The cheesy setup, the dated and somewhat exploitative character designs. It all feels right.
Plus the actual tension and terror this game creates is surprising and hard to convey through reviews or watching video clips. I’ve had so many moments when Jason pops up nearby and I get a flash of panic that ripples through my body. Frantically trying to escape from him is harrowing and successful survival is a euphoric moment.
The main frustration for the game is the matchmaking. The game has been out a while now and thus less people are still playing it. Plus there aren’t dedicated servers so you’re at the mercy of the host who can quit or lose connection at any moment during the match, ruining your experience. (Also there are a disturbingly high percentage of little kids playing this. What the hell, parents??)
Aside from these two, I’m really itching for a good story-driven game, maybe from the indie side. As well as hoping we’ll get release dates for Spider-man and Detroit: Becoming Human.