#1 Movie of All-Time
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Even though I don’t watch the WWE anymore, I can still appreciate a great pro wrestling video game. ‘Pro Wrestling’ for the original Nintendo was a fun game and my first experience in digital wrestling. There have been some hits and misses over the years for sure. Some of my fondest memories as a gamer were playing 4 player co-op with friends on the various WWF and WCW titles on the Nintendo 64. We’d literally spend hours playing fatal 4 way ladder matches and screwing each other over as special guest referee on the classic ‘WWF No Mercy’.
Last year’s ‘WWF ’12’ reinvented THQ’s long running series ‘Smackdown vs. Raw’. I enjoyed the new control scheme as well as the beautiful graphics and the never ending WWE Universe mode. Online was a different story with server problems beyond imagination, not working way more often than not. It didn’t bother me, since I rarely play online.
I recently had major foot surgery done and I’d be stuck at home for the next few months. I purchased WWE ’13 mostly for kicks and grins trying to kill some time while I’m stuck at home. What’s happened since has pleasantly surprised me. Hell, since I bought the game, I haven’t even gone back to ‘Resident Evil 6’ yet. Anyone who knows me knows how much I love RE, so that’s a major statement in itself.
The game itself is incredible, jam-packed and just plain fun. Let’s start off with the roster, which boast more than 100 playable characters [including yet-to-be-released Downloadable Content or DLC]. That is, by far, the biggest roster in any wrestling video game to date. That doesn’t even include the popular create-a-wrestler [CAW] which can hold up to 50 creations or the 2 non-playable managers: Paul Bearer and Ricardo Rodriguez. The best and probably most popular part of the roster are 44 superstars from the Attitude Era that lasted from 1996-2002. Unfortunately, some major players from that time are not included in this game. Copyrights as well as working for rival Impact! TNA Wrestling prohibits major stars like Kurt Angle, the Hardy Boyz and the Dudley Boyz from being in the game. The good news is simply called ‘Community Creations’ found in the Online portion of the game. Just like ‘WWE ‘12’, gamers around the world can create any current or former star. Not only create the superstar, but his or her entrance and move-set. Then the gamer has the choice of uploading their creation to the Community Creation. I’m telling you now, that there are some gifted people out there who do a tremendous job creating carbon copies of their superstars. Many gamers dreams are answered because Kevin Nash’s theme music is the old nWo theme music. So if anyone wants to create a Hollywood Hulk Hogan or anyone else from the infamous group, they now have proper music. In my case, so far I have uploaded Angle, the Hardyz, the Dudleys and Paul Heyman to join my roster.
The Attitude Era is regarded by many fans to be the greatest time in the history of pro wrestling. Led by Stone Cold Steve Austin, the WWF surged passed WCW in the Monday night ratings war. The Attitude Era is the game’s main selling point and I think the creators pulled it off perfectly. The Attitude Era story mode replaced the Road to WrestleMania mode from year’s past. With the previous games, the story mode was made specifically for that game and it didn’t have anything to do with current or past storylines. The Attitude Era lets you relive some of the greatest, controversial and epic moments and matches in wrestling history. Some of the highlights include playing playing as Bret Hart as his captures his 5th and final WWF World Title from the Undertaker at SummerSlam 1997, playing as Shawn Michaels during the infamous 1997 ‘Montreal screw-job’ and playing as Stone Cold as he captures his first WWF World Title at WrestleMania XIV with special guest referee Mike Tyson [who is a playable character if you reserved the game before it went on sale]. This story mode will take the average gamer about 10 hours to complete. Along the way, you can unlock superstars, championships and arenas to compete in. It also shows video clips of some of the Era’s greatest moments. And while you play these matches, fan favorite commentators Jim Ross and Jerry “The King” Lawler give all new commentary and I think sometimes they even use the original commentary which is pretty cool.
The replay value of this game is simply phenomenal. So many match types including the return of special guest referee as well as a [10 up to 40 man] Royal Rumble, the Championship scramble, “I Quit!” matches, inferno matches, last man standing, hell in the cell, elimination chamber, money in the bank [simply called 6 man ladder], TLC [tables ladders chairs] and the return of the King of the Ring tournament. There are over 20 different Championships to unlock, win, or retain in different match types. Several classic WWF arenas can be unlocked as well including WrestleManias XIV and XV, Badd Blood 1997, Over the Edge 1998, One Night Only 1997, and Survivor Series 1998. WWE Universe mode 3.0 is replay unto itself. It is a never ending mode where it takes you through weekly shows Raw, Superstars and Smackdown as well as the monthly pay-per-view events. In this mode, you can defend or win titles, create feuds, even turning superstars heel or face [bad or good].
The gameplay is exceptional too as the remained for the most part the control scheme from last year’s game. The reversal is key when you play. Don’t expect to win if you can’t time the reversal prompts when they pop up. One cool addition is in regards to stored finishers. When you set up an exhibition match, you now have the option to start with none, 1, 2, 3 or infinite finishing moves. Infinite would be considered cheap by many but it’s still fun to have that choice I think. Other additions this year include the OMG! Moments like heavyweight wrestlers like Big Show and Mark Henry suplexing off of the top rope and destroying the ring. Other moments are throwing some poor sap off of the hell in the cell onto the announcer’s table. Not an OMG! Moment in the game per se, but still fun to watch. You can also smash through the 4 corners barricade in front of the audience. Some of the wrestlers like CM Punk, Chris Jericho and Randy Orton can use their finishing moves when their opponents springboard towards them off of the top rope. Nothing like seeing an RKO out of nowhere like that.
All in all, an excellent wrestling game. Any gamer who appreciates a good wrestling game will simply love the fact that there is so much to do. You don’t even have to be a fan of the WWE like me to really enjoy this game. Is it as good as the popular wrestling titles on the N64? I think one bald redneck said it best…
“Oh hell yeah!”
Score: 8.5 out of 10
Warning!! Spoilers ahead!!!
Resident Evil 6 was released on Tuesday, October 2, 2012.
Being a lifelong fan of the Resident Evil franchise, I was as nervous as I was excited for the release of the next chapter.
Gamespot is an amazing website. I go there to get up-to-date information of all of the video games that interest me. I go there for information, NEVER to read their reviews. So naturally, I chuckled to myself when they gave RE6 a 4.5. Let me repeat that, they gave it a 4.5, complaining there's too many cutscenes and quick timing events.
Metal Gear Solid: Sons of Liberty was more of a movie than a video game. I was so severly pissed off after I bought that game, it remains the last blind buy video game for me. I couldn't believe how many freaking cutscenes it had. Anyway, Gamespot's review of that game was a 10. So, in a nutshell, I don't give a flying fuck about good or bad reviews since I hardly ever agree with them. Rant over.
Needless to say, I was still pleasantly surprised when I started playing RE 6. I have completed all 4 character campaigns. I haven't touched Mercenaries or any of the extra content/online stuff. Simply put, those things never appealed to me and therfore do not reflect the score of my review. I'll play them down the road here and there, mostly for kicks and grins.
Anyway, I'll go over the major points of the game, good and bad IMHO:
The story. As always, I'm impressed with how the powers that be pan out the story in all of the games. This one is no exception as a zombie outbreak involving the U.S. President as well as mention of a terror organization simply called Neo Umbrella.
The game time. Wow, just wow. 4 character campaigns, each having 5 chapters. Even if you can fly through 30 minutes per chapter, you're still looking at 10 hours of game time. Ada Wong's chapters were short and I'm convinced Capcom decided to put her in the game right away instead of the obvious DLC [dowloadable content].
The characters. For the first time in the series, two of the franchise's main characters are playable in the same game. Chris Redfield and Leon S. Kennedy are back with 2 different story elements. Also included is the aforementioned Ada Wong and a new character, Jake Muller. Leon's story harkens back to the zombie element that made RE so popular in the first place. Chris' campaign is about him recovering from depression as a result of losing some of his BSAA or Bioterrorism Security Assessment Alliance soldiers. Chris has a very shocking ending that took quite the twist I wasn't expecting. Since Chris is my favorite, I was expecting to hate his "Call of Duty type campaign" but it ended up being my favorite. Jake's story also includes grown up Sherry Birkin from the classic RE2. Jake finds out that his father is the series' main villian and deceased Albert Wesker. Ada's campaign is clearing her name [somewhat] when she discovers she has a doppleganger. What's great about all 4 campaigns is how they tie into each other so flawlessly and beautifully. It really takes me back to when Leon and Claire Redfield's stories intertwined in RE2.
The graphics and sound. Although not as crisp and clear as 2009's RE5, Capcom still did a tremendous job with the visuals.
The controls. To say they take some getting used to is the understatement of the year. There's simply so much going on and so many controls to choose from, it will take a while to get adjusted them and using them on the fly.
Quick timing events. I really don't have any issues with the QTEs except when it comes to button-mashing. I hate hate HATE button mashing. I love my $50 too damn much to beat the shit out of them. RE didn't have this at the beginning and it's something they started in RE4 and I think it's a huge step back. They can do without it.
Derek Simmons. The main villian from Leon's campaign is an interesting character, but he fails as a monster that keeps coming back and back and back again. There's a monster in Jake's campaign called the Ustanek that haunts you through the chapters much like Nemesis did to Jill Valentine in RE3. Capcom did a great job with that monster that won't die, but Simmons' failed miserably.
All in all, I was quite pleased with RE6. It's certainly not one of the best games in the series but it's definitely not the worst either. I'm fascinated in where Capcom goes next and I sincerely hope we see the return of fan favorites Jill Valentine, Claire Redfield and Barry Burton for Resident Evil 7.
Here's my current scores for all of the major RE games thus far:
RESIDENT EVIL [PS1] 8 out of 10
RESIDENT EVIL 2 [PS1] 9 out of 10
RESIDENT EVIL 3: NEMESIS [PS1] 7 out of 10
RESIDENT EVIL CODE: VERONICA X [PS2] 9 out of 10
RESIDENT EVIL [GC] 10 out of 10
RESIDENT EVIL 0 [GC] 7 out of 10
RESIDENT EVIL 4 [GC] 9 out of 10
RESIDENT EVIL 5 [PS3] 9.5 out of 10
RESIDENT EVIL 6 [PS3] 8.5 out of 10