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  1. It is very safe and by the numbers. Don’t think a single thing has surprised me so far, even the “big” reveal felt like ‘that’s X from Y.’ Second episode was largely filler, solely crafted to demonstrate... Thing is, with a combined running time of four hours, they can’t afford filler!
  2. Definitely going to watch for some patches before buying. Not just for the frame rate issues, but the repeated desire for a fast-travel option (which I’ve seen from both reviewers and players) is something I think Respawn will accommodate.
  3. I had heard that the game is somewhat front and back loaded with story, with the middle containing relatively little until you get to around 70% through then it ramps way back up again. I think hearing that the ending was a two hour cutscene really did it for putting me off. At that point, you’re just watching a movie.
  4. I expect they experimented with no vehicles whatsoever, but the walking probably needed breaking up and every now and then. I am intrigued by the gameplay in Death Stranding, but on hearing there’s around seven hours of cutscenes (some of which are in big chunks) I just can’t jump in. My first encounter with Kojima was playing MGS on the PSOne, and while the frequent codec conversations niggled a little bit, and the dialogue was sometimes ham-fisted, I loved the game because of the sheer amount of invention and energy it brought. But with every new MGS game, things got worse. Cut-scenes grew longer, codec calls more irrelevant and insistent, and the plot increasingly muddled and convoluted. It felt like there was this curious tug of war between Kojima and his design team, with his worst indulgences peaking in one title (MGS4) only to seemingly subside for the next. Either that or he’s always trying, but often failing, to get out of his own way. Ultimately, I’ve run out of patience with someone whose sense of dialogue, pacing and storytelling has failed to improve since I first enjoyed his work twenty-one years ago - and in some ways has actually gotten worse. I know a fair few enjoy Kojima’s pretzel logic and on the nose characters, but for me they’ve always been the gatekeepers of enjoyable gameplay with innovative mechanics. I guess I’ve gotten tired of paying the toll.
  5. They should’ve got Peter Serafinowicz to reprise his role from the WTBAM skits.
  6. Well, this was...fine. The budget and production values are obviously high, so it’s easy to enjoy that aspect of it, but as has been said the writing was predictable and didn’t really intrigue me to see more. It’s dark in a very safe and toothless kind of way, which isn’t unexpected from Disney but still a bit disappointing. The death via iris-door was framed so that younger kids wouldn’t know wtf had just happened, and bloodless and unseen enough to not risk upsetting anyone older. Interested, but not yet excited, to see where it goes.
  7. Is this going to cover how Scraggy becomes a stoner?
  8. I think this is my biggest problem with it. No matter how many promising impressions I read, I just think ‘yeah, but I’m spending the whole game as this fucking guy?’ It’s like something from the Wishmaster films where your desire gets horribly twisted: ‘I want to be a Jedi,’ ‘Done,’ gets turned into Cal Kestis ‘Noooooooo!’
  9. Well, kind of. Respawn has multiple teams, and most of the Titanfall 2 one works on Apex Legends. Around ten members of the TF2 team did work on Jedi: Fallen Order though.
  10. It’s pretty good. Smarter than you’d expect from the trailers, and quite funny in places, though the more relationship oriented flashback parts are tedious and the in-universe explanation for none of the teens using firearms was extremely unconvincing. If you enjoyed this, I’d certainly recommend you check out a similar, far lower budget UK effort called Zomboat. Which is at least as good, albeit a lot shorter. First episode can be found on YouTube.
  11. Reached about twenty minutes in but can’t do the whole hour. It gets a bit better, admittedly, though Mr Rogers had already exhausted much of my goodwill with that intro. It’s a curious approach (this far in anyway) to stress the game is a classic then mention a one hour cutscene, showing that Kojima seemingly learnt nothing from the mistakes of MGS4, and a ‘miserable’ twenty hour on-ramp (wtf?) It’s over-analyzation to the extent that every mistake or tedious mechanic is taken as an intentional one, making a grander point, because that approach allows certain folk to show how erudite they are by nodding along. I must have somewhat simpler tastes, because to my mind it’s no more complicated than this: if you’re going to bore me for the first twenty hours of your game, then you’ve fucked up. I guess it’s inevitable that after years of AAA Ubisoft collect-em-ups, which it behooved reviewers to cover, a number of those same reviewers would feel protective towards a wilfully oddball, AAA game like Death Stranding. It almost doesn’t matter that it has such a scattershot approach, simply because it’s trying something different on the big stage. I mean, I get it. But this game is not different enough from those same bland collect-em-ups to be judged via an entirely new system or set of standards.
  12. Certainly one of the most self satisfied video reviews I’ve seen. Seven minutes in and so far he’s essentially said nothing.
  13. A visual feast, for sure, but the plot is nonsensical. Though I’m sure in 45 pages this point has already been made.
  14. Much like Quiet needed light to survive, these characters require huge doses of sugar and taurine.
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