Thursday, December 17, 2009

G-MAN reviews Team Fortress 2 (PS3 port)

Platforms: PC, PS3, XBOX 360

Studio: Valve corporation

Publisher(s): Valve, Electronic Arts (PS3 port)

Genres: First Person Shooter, Online Multiplayer

INTRO: When I was raising money for a PS3, one game on my checklist of PS3 games was The Orange Box, but for one reason; Team Fortress 2. After watching the Meet The Team trailers, I knew that I had to get the game.

While I have yet to play the PC version (I don't even own a PC), & the PS3 port has received heated criticism amongst fans & critics, I'm going to review the PS3 port. Here are my thoughts.

PLOT: The backstory of TF2 (which there is little of) involves two rival holding companies, Reliable Excavation & Demolitions (RED) & Builders' League United (BLU), competing against each other in objective based missions. As far as I know, that's about it.

GAMEPLAY: The game is as exclusively multiplayer game. The players will play on either the RED team, or the BLU team. There are no deathmatch modes; only Capture The Flag, Capture The Map Points (where the BLU teams tries to capture points, while the RED team defends the points), & Defend The Cart (which I haven't gotten a chance to play, & I'm not sure if that's even in the PS3 version, so I can't explain that one to you). There are nine unique character classes to chose from, each of them separated into three categories; Offensive, Defensive, & Support.

The Offensive consists of The Scout, The Soldier, & The Pyro. The Offensive classes are, of course, the most skilled at attack the enemy's bases.

The Scout is the fastest of the classes, & the only character who can double-jump. He uses a scatter-gun, a pistol, & a baseball bat as weapons. The Scout is probably the best class for stealing intelligence (which serve as flags in a "capture the flag" mode), but he's really weak, so he's not the best character for combat.
The Soldier is one of the more durable classes, but he's slower. His weapon consist of a rocket launcher, a shot-gun, & a shovel. If you know what you're doing, The soldier can be one of the most dangerous classes on the battlefield.
NOTE: While The Soldier is listed under the Offensive classes, he's more effective with Defensive strategies.
The Pyro is a thug wearing a gas-mask & a flame-proof suite. He uses a flame thrower, a shot-gun, & an axe as weapons.
NOTE: The Pyro is weak, slow, & his flame thrower has a very short range, so he's best used for ambushes, making him more effective with Defensive strategies, despite being list under the Offensive classes.

The Defensive consists of The Demoman, The Heavy, & The Engineer. As their name suggests, the Defensive classes are best used to defend their team's base.

The Demoman is a hard drinking, black Scotsman with an eye-patch. He uses a grenade launcher, a sticky grenade launcher (which are remote detonated), & a whine bottle as weapons. NOTE: Although The Demoman is listed under under the Defensive classes, he's a lot more effective as an Offensive player.
The Heavy is a lumbering Russian who's so obsessed with guns, that he actually names his weapons. His weapons are a mini-gun, a shot-gun, & his fists. He's probably the strongest class, but he's easily the slowest class as well.
The Engineer is a calm "good 'ole boy" Texan with an interest in machines. His weapons consist of a shot-gun, a pistol, a wrench, & a set of blue prints to build mounted guns (Sentrys), health/ammo regenerators (dispensers), & teleporters. He's not really good at combat, though.

The Support consist of The Medic, The Sniper, & The Spy. The Support characters requires a lot of thought put into their strategies, due to them being weaker than the other characters, both in the categories of weapons & health.

The Medic is a psychotic German, & is capable of healing the various members of his team. His weapons are a needle gun, the Ubercharge (which isn't a weapon, it's used to heal teammates), & the bone saw. However, The Medic is best used to defend your team's base, & not attacking the enemy base.
The Sniper is an Australian hit-man, who is, of course, highly skilled at sniping. His weapons include a sniper rifle, a sub-machine gun, & a machete. The best strategy is, obviously, to pick off enemies from a distance. Your ideal targets would be enemy Heavys, & enemy Medics (especially when they're trying to heal their teammates).
The Spy is a masked Frenchman, who's skilled at sneaking, & disguising himself. His inventory includes a revolver, a pair of butterfly knives (if you stab someone in the back with those, you get an instant kill), a sapper (used for taking out an enemy Engineer's creations), a disguise kit, & an invisibility cloak.

What makes TF2 so great is how different each class is. Because of the characters' advantages & disadvantages, this makes teamwork a must, thus making the game a lot more unique than other games.

DESIGN: As said before, the variety of the characters is what really defines the TF2. Much like Sly Cooper 2, every character is a different experience from the other characters. It's fun to ambush people as The Pyro, or to steal enemy intel as The Scout, or to gun people down from a distance as The Sniper, or to backstab enemies as The Spy.

I also really love the retro art design. When looking at it, it's hard not to think of Pixar's The Incredibles (I get the impression that that was on purpose).

However, there are some technical problems with the game. Occasionally, the game lags.... badly. But that's not the biggest problem with the game. The biggest problem is that sometimes, the game will randomly freeze for a few seconds, & go back to the main menu, where it read; "Lost Connection". Thankfully, this doesn't seem to happen often.

The Teamwork Aspect Is Perfect
Great Art Design
Loads of Variety


IN CLOSING: While the glitches can be annoying, if you have a PS3, TF2 is still a must-have. It's my favorite multiplayer game, &, in my opinion, the cartoonish art style, the espionage, & focus on teamwork actually, almost, makes this the FPS equivalent of Sly Cooper. In fact, if there never is a new Sly game, I'd still be happy with TF2 as the substitution. As crazy is that sounds, I'm serious! To me, this is the perfect substitution for Sly Cooper!

10 / 10

G-MAN reviews Uncharted 2: Among Theives (PS3)

Platform(s): PS3

Studio: Naughty Dog

Publisher(s): Sony Computer Entertainment of America

INTRO: When raising money for a PS3, I was going to buy Uncharted: Drake's Fortune. However, the sequel, Uncharted 2: Among Thieves, looked so great, that I couldn't wait out for it. Anyway, here's the review.

PLOT: The game centers around fortune hunter, Nathan Drake (a possible descendant of Sir Francis Drake). The game starts with him looking for Marco Polo's missing fleet, but, he ends up going to Nepal, looking for Shambhala.

While the characters are very memorable (most notably Drake), & the script is great, the story itself isn't at all memorable. Do you remember how ROCKY III had great characters, but the story itself was kind of boring? Well, it's kind of like that here.

GAMEPLAY: The game is a third person shooter, similar to Gears of War. The game takes use of covering in blind fire, over-the-shoulder shooting, & climbing.

There are total of four things you'll do in the game; shooting, climbing, puzzle solving, &, rarely, sneaking past guards.

While the game is addicting, I didn't really enjoy the puzzle scenes (namely because the shoot out scenes were so much fun), nor the stealth scenes. Thankfully, the stealth scenes were rarely in the game.

But what really makes Uncharted 2 worth while is the online multiplayer. While not as good as Team Fortress 2 (which I will review soon), it will keep you playing for weeks. My favorite aspect of the multiplayer is the machinma tools.

DESIGN: Uncharted 2 features some of the best graphics I've ever seen, & probably the best graphics currently on the market.

The sound effects are perfect, though the music is kind of bland.

The controls controls are perfect, & the hand-to-hand combat kicks more ass than Chuck Norris in every single episode of Walker: Texas Ranger.

In other words, the design is awesome.

Great Characters
Awesome Shooting & Hand-to-Hand Combat
Addicting Multiplayer
Machinima Tools
Sound Effects Are Perfect
Some of the Best Graphics Around

The Story is Boring
The Puzzles Distract From The Action
The Stealth scenes Are Out of Place
The Music is Bland

IN CLOSING: This deserved the Game of the Year award that it won! The online is great, the single player is great, & all the flaws seem very minor! This is tied with inFamous as my number one favorite game! Don't miss it!

10 / 10