LEGO Star Wars III: The Clone Wars
The LEGO games, once a whimsical send-up of the icons they portrayed, have become lackluster and uninspired.
The usual formula is in full effect: a group of mute, charming characters makes its way through the storyline of a movie, collecting LEGO blocks, building things from said LEGO blocks and solving puzzles. All the while having comical adventures and mishaps along the way.
By now, though, the formula is so formulaic that it’s kind of sad, and all the whimsy has been leeched out of it in an attempt to drain as much profit from the brand as possible.
The 3D effect on the Nintendo 3DS is at its best in the flying sections of the game, where there’s plenty of depth to show off. But in the ground-based sections, the 3D effect makes you lose track of things on the screen too easily. The combat in the game is the same recycled button-mashing from any of the other LEGO games. The puzzle-solving takes so little thought that it’s simply busy-work to waste your time instead of true gameplay.
I guess the highlight of the game is that Jar-Jar is still the butt of several jokes. Only get this if you absolutely have to play all the LEGO games you can get your hands on.
Crysis 2, like it’s predecessor, has an incredibly powerful game engine. Quite possibly one of the most powerful, capable of rendering exquisite details and expansive outdoor vistas.
So why did the developers set the game in a city where you are going into and out of enclosed buildings and alleys and subways…?! You’re going to see some of the most beautifully rendered dumpsters and cluttered desks and graffiti you’ve ever laid eyes on.
The storyline is the weakest point of Crysis 2, and barely ties in with the storyline from the first game or the first game’s expansion pack.
The gameplay, though … wooo! While the developer, Crytek, has loosened quality control on the story team, they have definitely improved the gameplay. The controls for the nanosuit’s abilities (invisibility, armor, strength, speed) are more natural and intuitive to use than the first time around, in Crysis.
While much more linear than its predecessor, Crysis 2 encourages you to make tactical decisions before engaging a group of enemies. Used properly, the nanosuit your character wears can make him a near-invincible super-soldier, but if you make the wrong decision, you’ll be paying for it. This can be frustrating at times, when you can’t quite time a particular sequence of events just right. When you do, though, it’s exhilarating.
The multiplayer is fairly well balanced but still needs some slight tweaking, however, as the nanosuit’s invisibility option leads to some seriously frustrating matches due to those players who use it to near-exclusion of all other options.
I’d recommend Crysis 2 to players of shooters who are looking for a great single-player gameplay with high-quality visuals, and who don’t mind a thin storyline. The multiplayer component is decent and satisying but doesn’t bring much new to the table beyond the nanosuit’s abilities.