Daily Archives: July 7, 2010

Welcome to Mars

I thought I needed a game to fill in the gap until I could play LEGO Harry Potter: Years 1-4 again, but I think I was wrong. That’s like only two days away, and tonight I’m visiting Tara, leaving really only yesterday evening and tomorrow evening to battle boredom with my Xbox 360. Well, not really boredom…more like…procrastination. Yeah, that.

So. Red Faction: Guerrilla is cheap. The good kind of cheap. I found a used copy for $17.00 and, always having been a fan of the first two in the series, decided to give it a go. I’ve been on an open-world kick as of late, and for the first hour or so, it was actually hard to tell the difference gameplay-wise between this and The Saboteur. You run around and destroy the enemy’s stuff; you can hijack vehicles at the push of a button; the cover system is pretty lame; and you die a lot because instructions aren’t clear. But it’s fun. And crumbly. And set on Mars.

Red Faction is one of the first games I got for my PlayStation 2 way-back-when. That and Dark Cloud. It promised me I could blow holes in walls…and then go through the holes. Finally! It and its sequel were first person shooters, and they handled pretty well. I actually have more fond memories with Red Faction than with Red Faction II because I enjoy being a low miner in a renegade faction than some super soldier taking out zombies. Yup, zombies again. The only thing Red Faction II had going for itself was its multiplayer, even if I only ever shot at bots.

Red Faction: Guerrilla is more of an action-adventure game set on a very red, very dusty, and very empty Mars. You’d think with all that terraforming they’d have built a mall or burger joint. Anyways, this change is welcome. You play as a dude. Mason something. Something Mason. It doesn’t matter, and neither does this spoiler that comes at you predictably in the very beginning of the game: you are out for revenge against the Earth Defense Force (EDF) for killing your brother. Basically, you want to blow up EDF stuff and make people on Mars happy. Along the way you’ll collect salvage to buy new weapons and perks.

I played the main story for about two hours last night, which involved liberating a small development–I struggle to call it a town or anything close to that–from EDF hands. Blew up some buildings, defended a dorm, ran over some radio transmitter towers with a reinforced vehicle, and so on:

Spread the Word (10G): Liberated Parker Sector.

After that I roamed around the area, trying to collect some more salvage before exiting to the main menu screen. From there, I decided to see what this Wrecking Crew thing was about. Turns out…you wreck stuff! You are given a choice of levels and game styles, each with their own restrictions. Some limit the time you have for destroying stuff, and others limit your ammo. Fun all around. I tried each one once. Here’s proof:

Party Time (10G): Played all Wrecking Crew modes once.

I also partook (now that’s a funny word) in one multiplayer match over Xbox Live. I was not on the winning team, and I think I shot an enemy player once. There were also a bunch of jetpacks I didn’t know how to use. Yeah, gonna need some more practice…

So, all in all, it’s a decent game at this point. Like I mentioned before, very same vibe I got from The Saboteur. Big open world, lots to do and collect. That could be a good thing. We’ll have to see how it all plays out…

Spelunking for sweets and a soggy bottom

Soggy bottoms. Am I talking about that lusted, best-selling boy band in O’ Brother, Where Art Thou? or something babies always have? Well, neither actually. I’m referencing the fourth movie level in The Misadventures of P.B. Winterbottom, where in our pie-loving dastard is stuck deep below the ground with broken pipes, sewer rivers, and evil clones. I just completed it last night, and had to only look up one guide to help me move along when stuck:

Soggy Bottom (10G): Completed the “Spelunking for Sweets” movie level.

The theme to this one was…evil clones. You record them only from specific starting points, and then can’t come into contact with them save for jumping on their top hats. They are red and evil. They eat evil, red pies. That’s kind of all you need to know about them. It made for some interesting and frustrating puzzle-solving, but we got through it, got our pies. Only one level–“Pie Own Worst Enemy”–proved troublesome and, again, once I saw how someone else did it, I felt annoyed that I didn’t take the time (pun intended) to figure it out.

Only one more movie hub world to go through, and then that’s it for the main point of the game. After that, the only Achievements left have to do with the challenge levels, and I don’t know if I’m skilled enough for them. Will have to give it a go, naturally, but I’m also a little apprehensive. I mean, I still don’t really understand the ins and outs of recording clones and mostly stumble upon a level’s solution with a little luck and patience. We’ll see. Next bottom I desire dearly is…Smacked Bottom. Hey-o!