Review – Mortal Kombat

When Mortal Kombat hit arcades back in 92, my friends and I were in awe. Never before had we seen a game display so much blood and over the top violence with no apology. It also featured a never seen before in a fighting game called fatalities. Insanely violent and hilarious finishing moves – Eat your heart out Street Fighter. We were instantly hooked and that game ate up our quarters but as the years droned on, the franchise lost much of its lustre despite the ever increasing cast members. There just seemed to be too much focus on fatalities, babalities, arena specific finishers instead of keeping the game fresh and interesting. Despite a few attempts at regenerating interest in the series, the game was old and tired.

The new MK game manages to feel both old school but new at the same time with the return of character both old and new (28 to be exact + unlockables and however many DLC characters are planned for release)

The developers clearly felt that they needed to breath some new life into the series and one why they did that was by changing up the game play just enough to give it a fresh feel for the hardcore fans but still feel accessible to the casual fighting game fan. Instead of high and low attacks, the buttons are used for their left and right limbs allowing for a more seamless transition between moves and performing combos.

I was more than a little happy to see original fatalities make their comeback but I wasn’t able to perform all of them What I did see was awesome. To the best of what I can tell, the number of fatalities have been dropped down to to just 3 per character (just as violent as ever) though there may be more out there that I’m unaware of and I’m told that babalities are back (I can do without those). Another nice and entertaining function is the power meter that generates depending on how well the fighter does allowing for reversals and “Xray attacks”, totally outrageous attacks that show a cut away of the opponents body from the inside as the punishment is dealt to them in slow motion.

The game has multiple game modes that should keep everyone thoroughly entertained. A story mode where the player takes the role of a variety of different pre-determined characters as they battle their way through the story. A tournament mode which hearkens back to the original series much like a ladder tournament, training modes and online modes (not reviewed adequately as yet – partially because I’m so awful at the game). There’s even a pretty sweet mode called The Challenge Tower that consists of 300 individual challenges from simply winning fights, to testing your Might, Sight and Strike to fights with specific conditions.

Graphically I thought the game looked pretty sharp. The animation was fluid and the environments were nice to look at.

NetherRealm studios has by and large successfully made Mortal Kombat relevant again. Coming from someone who doesn’t really enjoy the fighting genre that’s saying a lot. This is a title worthy of the MK brand. Now, “Get over HERE!” and play this game.

Pros:

  • Accessibility to the Fighting Genre inept (Myself)
  • Old school feel
  • Return of original fatalities
  • Game modes

Cons:

  • Overwhelming number of moves to memorize for casual gamers (Hardcore fans will love it)

Feed Your Console gives Mortal Kombat an 8 out of 10

Review: WWE All Stars (THQ: Stop Pissing on Wrestling)

When I was a kid, WWF as it was known back then, was something my friends and I very much looked forward to each and every weekend. Before the time when wrestling was on Raw Smackdown and Pay Per View events, we would cheer on our favorite wrestlers and whenever Saturday Night Main Event was one (which was very rare) it was a pretty big deal. When I learned of WWE All stars and saw the incredible roster of wrestling greats some of whom have left us for the big ring in the sky – I was pretty jacked up. The graphics looks great with their stylized characatures and arcadey gameplay I was sure it would be a great game.

Was I ever wrong.

WWE All Stars features a great cast sure but the execution of the game is pure garbage. The player can either create their own superstar or take control of the existing greats. From there you have 3 options – Go after Randy Orton and take the belt, create a tag team and go after the belt or go after The Undertaker and beat a legend. Each path gives you only 10 matches with some poorly executed dialoge from the respective Champs as they taunt you.

The overall game experience is completely broken due to the overly aggressive AI that consistently and perfectly reverses a majority of the moves performed against them. It got more than a little frustrating having a reversal performed on me 7 times in a freaking row no matter how many different options I tried. Further to the above points, THQ needs to invest in some new programmers because this game is a total dog when it comes times to load a new match. I waited for no less than 30+ seconds each time a new match loaded or finished.

For the 2 non tag team paths there were only a small handful of match types – One on One, Triple Threat Elimination, Cage, Extreme Rules and Fatal 4 Way Elimination. They just seemed to take the easy way through this game. I really don’t know why WWE keeps rewarding THQ with this franchise – They’ve done nothing good for the wrestling game genre since Smackdown back on the PS2.

The best part of the game is hearing and seeing so many of the guys I grew up watching and hearing their music while they acted exactly like their real life counterparts did when they wrestled and then pretty much backing out of the game waiting an excrutiatingly long time just to pick new wrestlers and wacth the intros again.

In the end there’s hardly enough to keep even the most hardcore of fans entertained outside of a 20 minute span filled with aggravation, swearing and total hatred directed at THQ and their merry band of idiots who made this abomination. The dearly deceased Wrestlers whop used to grace my TV every Saturday must surely be spinning in their graves right now. Once again THQ has done nothing for Wrestling or the Wrestling Genre unless you think pissing on someone’s grave is ok.

Pros:

  • Old School Wrestlers

Cons:

  • Everything Else

Feed your Console WWE All Stars a 2 out of 10

Gears of War 3 Beta Impressions

If you haven’t seen our live play video yet stop reading and go over to our “Gears of War 3 Beta Footage” post and take a look.

Last night I hustled on down to the Toronto Microsoft office to hang out with Epic ‘s Rod Fergusson, Executive Producer for the Gears of War franchise, to get down and dirty with the Hoard for some 5 on 5 multi-player.

New features that players should be excited about:

  • New Executions – Why curb stop when you can make a meat puddle by blasting the entire head off a downed opponent with a weapon exclusive finishing move. That right each weapon have it’s own unique finisher; like the flame thrower jabbed in the gut of a downed enemy with flames bursting out your enemies mouth.
  • Over the wall kicks – Tired of your enemy hiding on the other side of the wall where neither of you can get a kill shot, well now you can jump the wall and execute a kick to the head that stuns the enemy giving you time to finish them
  • Changes to button control – quick actions to do basic things like heal a downed ally, or execute the standard curb stop, or an extended hold on the button to lay down the pain with your finishing move, or pick up that new weapon your enemy just dropped. These new button layouts were a lot more intuitive then you would think, and they got rid of some of the mistaken weapon changes from the first two Gears
  • New Weapons – Digger Grenades (alive underground attacks), sawed off shotguns – for close range massacres, and new skins for your weapons… you will likely a lot more of these after the beta too
  • Self Revival – If your down but not out and you have time you can self revive your character by continually pressing the ‘A’ button
  • Four beta maps – last night we saw a couple new maps (I only played these two) – the trenches, a sandy location with dust storms that leave you completely blinded to enemy locations, and the Thrashball arena, where the Cole Train was a hero before the war. Providing lots of cover and some surprises that even the most experienced player will enjoy.
  • New Characters – Anya, for those that read the books or paid attention during the last two titles, the voice of command is unlockable and some for the horde will be unlockable as well (can’t spill to many secrets here)
  • Character Levelling – this includes experience from all game play and not just MP Matches, or within specific types of MP matches… all game play counts towards your levels
  • HUD improvements – Find your teammates and weapon spawn locations with the click of your left bumper and mark enemy characters for your team mates.

All in all Fantastic experience – I can wait to get my hands back on the controls for some more game time with the Beta dropping later this month.

Big Thanks to @GearsViking, @Jadelive, @JRivait and the rest of the Microsoft team for hosting a great night

Gears of War 3 Beta Footage

Well it seems that our good friend MVern managed to worm his way into the Gears of War 3 Media Event in Toronto last night.He even had a chance to get some hands on time with the game and I managed to cry a little bit today because of this.

Without Further Ado – Here’s the video he managed to snap.

Spider-Man: Edge of Time TEASER TRAILER

Ok I’ll be one of the first to admin i haven’t picked up a Spider-man game in a long time because I was left feeling blah after swinging around Manhattan in Spider-man 2 for hours and hours just repeating the same type of mission over and over… but this new Current/Future Spider-man mash-up defiantly has my ears burning for more news…

Activision what’s the Deal? Give me more!



Get more info from Hero HQ.

Source Code – or Sci Fi With A Chick Flick Ending. What?

Mobile Movie Minute 174 cracks the code as Jake Gyllenhall is ultimately seduced by hottie Michelle Monaghan and stays back in time. Or not. What? You’ll get it by the second time jump, but you won’t get the sappy chick flick ending. Vera Farmiga is featureless but effective, and Jake is somewhat convincing.

[pro-player]http://m.podshow.com/media/5937/episodes/275476/mobilemovie-275476-04-03-2011.m4a[/pro-player]

3.4 bags of blow-the-train-up-again-and-again popcorn for this it-couldn’t-happen-here-could-it flick.

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