Bulletstorm asks players to kill a "metric-fuck-ton," of enemies with skill. There doesn't seem to be a compelling motive for this undertaking; if there is, it's not apparent in the demo recently published on Xbox Live and the Playstation Network. Apart from the obvious objective of survival, the only other reason you're given to play is to out-score your friends; there's no greater good that you're fighting for, and no civilians to save. People Can Fly have tasked gamers to kill throngs of people and monsters in elaborate fashions because it is amusing to behold, and humans are by nature, comtpetitive. The me of 5 years ago wouldn't have had much of a problem with this; however these days, the older, infinitely-more principled (read: boring) me needs some greater purpose to take a life. Bulletstorm may be a reasonably good-looking game, with some interesting weapons and score mechanics, but ultimately (at least in its demo form) it seems pointless.
Don't get me wrong: I chuckled the first time I scored a "Gag Reflex," and a "Voodoo Doll." I laughed out loud (lol'd if you will) when I performed the "Mercy," skillshot. The mirth began to fade after I played the game as intended; witnessing these gory, sometimes humorous death animations several hundred times over on repeated playthoughs, trying to best my previous scores. I'm sure the full retail version will have some form of narrative, and enough change-ups in pacing to engage me for a few hours (maybe even a single plathrough); but at the moment I can't help but feel it will be Vanquish all over again. A squad of potty-mouthed, murderous rogues exhausting me with their radbaditude.
In other demo-related news, the multiplayer demo (or closed beta as its advertised on the XBLM) for Crysis 2 went live on Wednesday, and I must say that I am disappointed with what I have seen and played. For all of Crytek's huffing and puffing, the game does not appear to be any more attractive than most recent FPS releases, and plays much like your average Call of Duty instalment. Granted you can cloak, and jump a fair bit higher thanks to the nanosuit; but in the end Crysis 2's multiplayer offering doesn't appear to be the breath of fresh air I hoped it would be (to qualify once again, at least in demo form). The game also features a now, clichéd rank and unlock system. I'm sure once again, that the full version will feature some interesting upgrades to your nanosuit which should hopefully serve to differentiate it from the competition. There is of course, a single player campaign to consider as well, which is not featured in the demo: so I'm not quite ready to remove Crysis 2 from the list of potential purchases in 2011. With that being said however, I wrote to a friend recently:
"I was hoping to spend less on games this year, but if there is any hype behind it, odds are that you'll find it at my house. Shooter or otherwise."
I know this may read like a future FPS troll-fest, but I was hoping that at the very least, Bulletstorm would not be a blood-soaked, one-hundred-dollar ticket to the Gears of War 3 beta. I guess that "Kill with Skill," is the first tagline in recent memory to hold a candle to that of Bizarre Creations’ 2008 release, The Club. “The Club rewards stylish kills,” after all.
What’s your favourite regrettable quote or tagline from a videogame? What have you guys been playing recently?