MEMBER PROFILE FOR pottsee1
Average Overall Score Given: 9.22222 / 10
Total Forum Posts: 0
Overall: This is not just a video game. It is the best example of interactive media the world has ever seen! XBOXAddict's rating scale should really be adjusted to allow a 6 for this game. The game would be a 5 without online play including that it is priceless. They took Halo: Combat Evolved and added all the things that were missing. Most notable of these updates is online XBOX Live Multiplayer support. (For those of you who hadn't used XBConnect to play Halo online just wait 'til you see what you've been missing. And of course be prepared to get slaughtered like the newbie scum you are.) Another amazimg update is the elimination of loading screens. Don't know how Bungie did this but it is awesome. You don't get pulled out of the action once your in and you won't want to stop. Was it worth the wait, yes. Was it worth the money, yes. Is it fun to play, yes. If it wasn't for sleep I would have played the whole single player storyline in one sitting. I've completed it already on "normal" difficulty. (Time to up it and save the world again and lose a few more hours on XBOX Live.) Bungie and Microsoft have shown what talent, planning and quality can provide. Specifically these can produce a great entertainment product with pre-orders of over one million units (simply unprecedented). WHO NEEDS ANOTHER GENERATION OF CONSOLES? WE HAVE HALO 2!
Gameplay: Very simlary to the first. This is a good thing since they got it right the first time. I won't get into too may details because I don't want to spoil anything but you get to use any vehicle and the environments are absolutely perfect. Just as incredibly addictive as the original. New weapons, new enemies new challenges.
Graphics: Excellent. Cut scenes are more engaging than most television programs these days. Colors, textures and lighting show that the XBOX is the next generation of consoles today.
Audio: Play this with headphones on. You'll be jumping from side to side. Great example the attention to detail is the volume effect for online play that lowers the volume of player voices who are not near year on the map. Even the music is fantastic!
Suggestions: 1) Try not to take so long when creating these games. However, if it is necessary to produce this level of quality, we'll be fine. 2) Keep doing collector editions for big titles like this. 3) Consider a special box set for the games someday. It would be a good way to add special features for online play. 4) PRESSURE MICROSOFT TO INCLUDE BACKWARD COMPATIBILITY IN THE NEXT XBOX. Don't make fans keep two consoles just so they can continue to play this game. Otherwise, THANK YOU!
Overall Score: 10.0 / 10 ESPN NFL 2K5
Overall: "And I thought the 2k series was great before!" This is insane. Anyone who does not try this game out is simply afraid of change. Anyone who bought an XBOX should be outgoing enough to drop the $20 bucks this game costs. (I actually saw this on sale at Target for just under $16 dollar a week ago. Price is what gamers who are on the fence about this title should decide on. The game is better than ever with more control and depth of feature that are simply unbelievable. The game play is fantastic. It really starts to feel like a game. The ability to shrink the replay and start selecting your next play is AWESOME! This was always such a slow down for the pace of the game which drug the gamer out of the experience. Hats off to the developers for really working to be the best football game available not just the cheapest. This game is pure bliss. Oh yeah, AND ITS ONLY $20!!!!
Gameplay: If you wanted to feel like your in a football game you've got it. This game doesn't rely on reputation to get fans. It earns them. From incredible amounts of control for individual players after leaving the huddle on both sides of the ball to pure depth of structure this game takes football to a new level in the video game world. FANTASTIC. I actually sit back and watch the recap at the end of the game now with the full motion replays called by Chris Berman!
Graphics: Hands down NFL 2K5 is the best looking football game of all time. Realistic faces for the most recognizable superstars of the game. SUPERB. The players actually look like players not old school video game characters. ESPN presentation is built in much more smoothly than previous editions which doesn't get in the way of the game and manages to give you the feel of controlling a game and watching it as a spectator all at the same time. Stop me I'm gushing.
Audio: Great from the hits to the audio test system set up. That is correct! The game has an option to perfectly position a 5.1 surround system for sound. I'm telling you the developers didn't miss a thing!
Suggestions: My suggestion is so ridiculously small that I can't believe this is the only thing I can mention. It should be taken as a huge compliment that something so trivial is my biggest problem with the game. The football for kick is often represented as spiral pass. I know kickers are good by vary the behavior of the ball when it is kicked. That is it. No other problems. This is what a video game should be even if it cost $50 bucks! If you own an XBOX and do not already have a copy of this game you are a certified idiot!
Overall Score: 10.0 / 10 RalliSport Challenge 2
Overall: Rallisport (the original) was amazing. Beating that level of experience and racing gameplay had to have been a difficult goal but the gang behind it certainly pulled it off. The game is simply great. The sense of speed is amazing. Some courses when racing at night and in the fog of a rainstorm actually make you think, "What idiot would race in conditions like these". The only complaint I have is the extreme change in difficulties as you get to the end of the career modes. It isn't that the game gets too difficult just that the degree of change from the Pro to Champion careers is too vast. The first two career levels could have been more difficult. This would have made the gameplay more challenging and therefore last longer. Overall, just a great racing experience.
Gameplay: INSANE - If you like racing games (regardless of whether you like rally racing) you'll like this one. Fast! that is it. Racing at night actually makes you need the turn calls from your navigator (easy left into easy right, tightens, careful trees outside, into medium left over bridge, careful jump). Pure adrenalin. The brake and e-brake are necessary although manual shifting is not an absolute must have to succeed. The game physics are great even if they are exaggerated. One of the things I liked was the fact that other cars on the head to head races had the same levels of control. Often in racing games if you make contact with CPU controlled car they keep on moving and you bounce of like a pinball on a bumper. If you need to get a car out of your way, push them. Crashes are amazingly realistic although the damage really has to add up before it takes a toll on your vehicle's performance. You'll manage to lose a wheel once in a while.
Graphics: The courses are amazing. The lighting is incredible. It is so real that you'll actually have to deal with sun glare if your racing in the evening. Occasionally birds fly off of the course to get out of your way. Mud and snow fly out behind your vehicle. One thing that was overdone is the 3-D effect applied to your vehicle when racing with the chase view option from just behind the car. For vehicles with fins like the hill climb racers the spoiler takes up a significant portion of the screen. On the Ice Races you can even notie the four wheel steering from this racing perspective. There are so many interesting touches to the visuals that no one will notice them all at first. Then you begin to notice your headlights went out after hitting that last tree head on. Or that dirt/snow accumulates slowly on the back of your car when you race. The reflected lights on the car when going through a long tunnel. Or the sparks when you brush up against a rail. (Not to mention the noise when that happens.)
Audio: The sound it good. Especially the noises from the surface on which you are racing. Leave the tarmac for a gravel road and you'll start hearing the rocks hiting the underside of the car. The music gets a little old but you have the XBOX option of selecting your own tracks.
Suggestions: Create a more even progression for the difficulty level. Add more unique tracks not just alterations of previous ones. Online posting of top times (as mentioned by others too). If possible larger support for more cars using XBOX Live. Wire frames aren't bad but physically bumping someone out of the way is better. (Wire frames remind me of old games like Tempest and Star Wars at an arcade not a state of the art machine more than a decade later.) Add the option to make damage have a bigger impact. Similarly make sure roadside obstacles react appropriately when hit. I went from 65 to 0 by hitting a park bench, not realistic at all. Light posts should fall down. Lastly, I got an occasional error message implying that my game disc was dirty which displayed only when the image of an unlocked item was being brought up for display on the screen. Fix that if others have also encountered it. My disc is spotless not even a fingerprint. Otherwise AWESOME job. I'd been waiting for this one for months and wasn't dissappointed.
Overall Score: 10.0 / 10 Ninja Gaiden
Overall: This is a good game. If only the controls were better. What it does best is to deliver the feeling that one imagines a super quick ninja has when laying dozens of enemies to waste in a matter of moments.
Gameplay: Gameplay is fantastic. Jump slash, decapitate, spin, kick all in 2 seconds time. Great fighting capability. Unfortunately, your character often fights in areas and against enemies that are hidden from view either by items on screen or simply off screen altogether. I don't have any problem with the respawning of nearly unlimited enemies. This is what the game is about. Slice 'em up, take 'em down. The most agravating issue is the right thumbstick. Why can't developers just admit that Halo NAILED the perfect controller configuration and copy them!
Graphics: Visuals are fantastic. They really shine during the fight scenes when the effects are flying all over the place. Sometimes when pulling complicated moves I even have a hard time keeping up with my character's position. That fast that smooth!
Audio: Sound either works or doesn't. Since it didn't stand out as bad they got it right. If you don't notice the sound of a game it works.
Suggestions: Admit that Halo has the best controller configuration and copy them. Get the game character out of narrow spaces more often. Halo, Morrowind and Ghost Recon are fun because there is some much area to cover. Don't resort to run down this hall or that cave, its a crutch. Get outside of that box. XBOX can handle it. Too bad the majority of games out for the initial XBOX don't even remotely challenge the system's capabilities. You (the developers) are letting gamers down. XBOX raised the bar. Can you reach it or are you still programming Donkey Kong emulators? Ninja G. is great but not blow me away at all.
Overall Score: 8.0 / 10 Links 2004
Overall: Links. This is the Golf Sim and now it is on the convienence of a console. Perfection, almost. First you'll only have access to 8 courses if you don't have XBOX Live. New live contect is already on the way. Negative marks for the limitation. In comparison Tiger Woods 2004 has over 20 courses. However, many of these courses are unrealistic and then there is the lack of online support from EA for Tiger. Second the customization is lacking as well as the depth for the single player. That said one of the big draws in the past with Links on the PC has been online play and Microsoft got it right on the PC it is safe to assume that it is awesome on LIVE. This is the saving grace of Links '04. The ability to participate in tournaments online and in general sink that one eagle put to crush your opponent. It is all there just a shame that they didn't give gamers more at the start.
Gameplay: Typical set up thumbstick swing control but significantly more sensitive for timing and aim than others. Putting is much more realistic than other golf games with rim outs, near misses and quite realistic slope effects on your shot.
Graphics: Excellent. Aside from the character models that are somewhat bland the courses are great. The green of the grass is more natural looking than the artificial look of the courses in Tiger Woods. You ball rolling on the green is fantastically displayed as the logo flips past with each revolution of the roll. Shot cameras are sufficiently varied to keep you from getting bored. One of the nice options is the letterbox view without the display items. pretty cool just your player and the course. Nice touch.
Audio: Sound in golf, no screaming race engines, no guns firing, no explosions. Though it would have been hard to screw up golf sounds it is good to know that Links gets it right.
Suggestions: More courses - More indepth customization - More single player game modes - XBOX Live to PC Links crossplatform compatability (really open up the playing field if possible) - User based course creation and distribution FREE on XBOX Live or disc - more, more, more
Overall Score: 9.0 / 10 Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time
Overall: This game has amazing graphics. What else would you expect from a game by the game at Ubisoft. My only complaint the difficulty level involved. This game is hard. Very hard. Don't be suprised if you find yourself throwing your controller on occasion. At times you'll feel like the game was unnecessarily hard for no reasons. Two things have been promoted regarding this title. First the ability to alter time (rewind, slow motion etc.). This it not that big of a feature. In a fight it is almost useless. If you don't jump on the time button the instant you start getting outnumbered you'll just be rewinding to what your but get beat again in a new way. This is my complaint with the fighting mechanism. The game spits out 3 or 4 enemies at a time. If you get knocked down by one enemy before your character can get up the others started wailing on you. Trust me if you wanted to know what it feels like to be a rag doll this game will show it to you. The time mechanism is useless unless you start the rewind the instant you get hit initially or your just backing up time to try and escape the pummeling you just took. Blinx didn't really win anyone beside critics over with the time thing and I can't see it being a huge benefit for this game. During the puzzle areas the rewind mechanism is nice because it speeds up the "try again" ability. In the end though it is little more than a fast method for "do over". The second major selling point for this game was the graphics. This is where the game shines. Ubisoft does it again. Excellent environments very creative. The game just shines on Xbox, not sure if the other consoles will look as good. Overall I can't recommend this game for purchase since I've almost beaten the game and I rented it a day ago. It is addictive mostly because it is so frustratingly difficult. Definitely worth renting and sure to be a classic just like the original was so long ago. As for the other reviews calling this the game of the year, well they say it is an honor just to be nominated.
Gameplay: Hard, but if it was easy would you be interested? Puzzles are challenging but nothing you haven't experienced before in Tomb Raider. A good example of the difficulty level are the vultures that you'll face. They attack you from above but you have no ranged attack or up swing with the sword. Unless you count a three button/three swing combo ending in a vertical slash a air attack. You won't be able to hit the vulture until it hits you first. Then you'll only get a shot it if it doesn't knock you off of a ledge first. Oh well rewind and try again. Another issue I can't stand with games are the camera angles. This disease of the next gen third person video games strikes again. Try starting a major battle stage with a view of your character from the front with his back to a closed door and four enemies coming at him from just off screen. You'll know it when it happens to you. I can't criticize to much as this is a problem with many games like P-o-P. The game is fast paced which is a nice change and the story is good too, not something that can be said for many games.
Graphics: EXCELLENT when not noticing the camera angle issues. Very detailed very large areas(levels). The sections are continuous from one to the next with no noticable load times. Props for the integration of loading to the save process after each major save section is completed. You'll never get the 20 second let down while the next area loads. Ubisoft is one of the few games development groups who are really taking advantage of the power of the next gen consoles. I just wish other developers were as fowardly focused. I don't like the idea that the next generation of consoles is being planned and we have bare begun to get games that exploit the capabilites of the machines that are out now, primarily the Xbox. (enough of my soapbox)
Audio: Sounds are great right down to the clap of our characters hands when he runs into a wall. As if written in other posts the best sounds are the ones that work and you don't notice them. This game is perfect at creating the right background to the action.
Suggestions: Find a way to fix the camera angle issues if your can. Don't deliberately make a game overly difficult or at least add a difficulty level selector and leave the choice up to the gamers. Keep up the innovation. Your group is hitting home run after home run lately with game releases.
Overall Score: 8.0 / 10 Soul Calibur 2
Overall: First, this is the best fighting game on XBOX. Better that DOA3. Amazing graphics and a story/mission based fighting routine that adds immensly to the typical climb the fighting ladder and beat the fire-monster bad guy in the end. That said I am going to use some red ink in this review contrary to all of the shining reviews posted so far. Number one reason, WHY NO XBOX LIVE? Anyone who has played this game knows that the addition of XBOX Live support would have resulted in blistered figures around the world. We're talking tournaments and just a ton of regular butt kicking. It was an option and they passed to ship the game to multiple systems, I get it but they still dropped the ball. Second the arcade mode was too much like DOA3. The big bad guy at the end is a fire guy, come'on. The story based fighting routine was excellent fighting battles to take your "journey" to find the ultimate Sword. To bad the battles weren't that tough to begin with. (2nd level fights, after getting through enough first levels they are unlocked, were at a challenging difficulty.) This game lacked in replayabilty for anyone who is not a diehard fighting game fan. This is the biggest obstacle facing the fighting genre of games, long term enjoyment. Online gaming and a more indepth story mode would have given Namco a 5 from me. Minus .5 for each issue gets a 4.0 overall.
Gameplay: The fighting itself is Fantastic. I know I complained a lot in my overall comments but as far as mechanics and combos go this is the best. I tend to use the faster characters. Float like a butterfly, sting like a bee, you know. Plenty of weapons to choose from but I really didn't get the point of hunting just for an eighth type of sword for a character. Let's fight already and not worry about whose Schwartz is better. (Spaceballs reference for those youngsters who haven't see the movie.) Gameplay was excellent I just wanted more especially online.
Graphics: Graphics are phenominal in this game. No better than that. Characters move flawlessly without any visible polygon seems etc. to distract you. Infact the visuals were so good that the jello effect on Voldo's hips really was disturbing. A+ graphics on the XBOX I assume similar effects were achieved on the other systems but I can see how they could compare when considering XBOX's power.
Audio: Sound is so-so. In a fighting game you need two sounds, the weapon and the hit, that is all. An occasional gasp or weaze is good too. Nothing to impressive here. Sufficient is fine.
Suggestions: More gameplay and online capability. The first online game for XBOX live with this kind of detail and fighting gameplay will be a smash. To bad thats not going to be your game, Namco. Stop using the crutch of climb the fighting ladder. We've seen enough of that. Lastly, lose the land mine mission/story - that was practically impossible (just a personal wish here).
Overall Score: 8.0 / 10 Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic
Overall: Excellent game, keeping in mind that this is a role playing game. My first impression is that this is what Jedi Knight II should have been. Aside from that this is a "must own" for any RPG gamer with an XBOX. Fans of STAR WARS will need to get this one too. Knights is one of the few games that lives up to the expectations of a next generation console game. It is exciting to see game developers devoting themselves to creating better products. Too bad it took them so much longer to get this one out. Regardless it was worth the wait. To be honest I was almost afraid to play it worried that I would be let down compared to my anticipation. Luckily I was not. The game is great, has a solid story (not the case for many other releases these days) and won't be finished quickly like other titles; SW Starfighter, SW Jedi Starfighter, SW Clone Wars, SW Jedi Knight II to name a few. All things considered this is a great game but I don't recommend it for the casual gamer since it is a RPG. The casual gamer who only knows how to appreciate Madden because of its dominance in the video game market won't see the depth involved in KOTOR. (Side Note: SEGA's NFL 2K3 is the best NFL game ever made.) Final verdict - KOTOR is another game that will meet gamer expectations which is happening less and less often.
Gameplay: The controls are very detailed. Players will need to learn a large number of menus to control their party. This is especially true during combat. It takes a major effort to control three characters at the same time when attacking a group a Gam' Guards. You'll understand when a member of your party goes down quick in a battle. RPG fans especially those who've played games on the PC shouldn't have any trouble with it. Others may take a while (2-4 hours) before getting the hang of it. The only real problem I have seen so far is that the sections of individual levels are somewhat small. My point is simply that I haven't gotten a major feel for exploring yet which seems like a significant priority for a RPG. (Keep in mind however that I'm tainted by the freedom offered in ES3:Morrowind AND I haven't left Taris in KOTOR so I could be prejudging here.) Another issue that I am starting to adapt to is the fact that party characters which are being generically controlled by the system tend to be foolish when approaching a battle. Although it doesn't matter significantly with a turn based system it is still aggravating to what one character race right up to an enemy with a sword. At least make the enemy come to them. Otherwise the gameplay is great offering intense detail into the RPG background workings of the game such as attack scores and defense scores in battle. Diehard RPG fans will love this aspect, BioWare didn't forget these gamers in this release. Non-Diehard RPG fans can skip right past these details using the automated level up information and ingoring the turn based record- keeping. Essentially, the level of RPG experience depends on the desired depth of the player which means it is perfect! I highly recommend following the in-game suggestion to shut off subtitles which makes the large number of cut scenes more interesting and less of an intrusion into the game play.
Graphics: I will agree that the graphics didn't blow me away. However, references comparing them to PS1 quality are a joke. This reference was probably made in relation to the character models. The graphics processing has been devoted to creating a moving world to investigate. Think of it this way. If you have a limited number of Polygons and you create 2 characters in a fighting game versus the 20 that are present in a RPG city building, well you do the math. I'm not trying to turn this into a lesson on word problems. It is an unfortunate necessity to sacrifice some graphic quality to allow space for more game activity. Otherwise the graphics are fine. The in game movies look spectacular. Any STAR WARS fan will love the opening sequence. I was ready to break out some popcorn afterward and watch the trilogy again.
Audio: Sounds are hard to review since good sounds are not noticible they just go along with the game like they should simply be there. This is exactly what happens during the KOTOR. Once I noticed, while playing a part in a Cantina scene, that the dishes rattling made me think someone was in my kitchen that when I decided that the sounds were excellent. The only criticism I have of the sound in the music tracks. Thought fantastically STAR WARS they tend to stop and start irregularly. If I'm going to hear music while scrolling though a menu I should hear it all the time not on and off after the track finishes.
Suggestions: Added exploration. Try to avoid linear story progression. If I am going to play the role of a character I want to be forced to discover not just go where so-and-so instructed me. Give me more control over party character actions that I am not directly manipulating during battle. Don't make them run foolishly into a battle with multiple enemies even if the turn based combat makes this unimportant. Swords don't hit characters who aren't nearby. Otherwise this was worth the $$ which I can't say for 90+% of games that are released.
Overall Score: 10.0 / 10 Elder Scrolls III : Morrowind
Overall: Morrowind: Elder Scrolls III IS A RPG game. If you don't like RPG games you may not like this one. However, it is good enough to convert those fans on the fence with the genre.
The game is expansive. How Bethesda Software pulled this off is beyond me but M:ES3 has essentially a huge island country to explore. But it is more than a hack and slash D&D type of exploration. Fights with creatures are realtime action based (not turn based like Final Fantasy). The fights are not fast and furious like Halo by any means but they are not staged like many RPGs. That said the real power of Morrowind is the scope of the world and the story. This is a real journey versus a set number of cut scenes to get you into the next shoot 'em up stage ala Max Payne. You pick what kind of character you want to be and do what you want. Ignoring the storyline is fine but your actions have consequences either way.
I wrote this review because to date, with the possible exception of Halo, M:ES3 has been the most involving interesting and addictive game I have played.
Who should get this game? ALL RPG fans and those who haven't tried an RPG but are interested in trying one. This game is so close to what a real RPG game should be with its depth and character development specialization anyone who tries another RPG will not get the best first experience however other RPG games may be a let down after M:ES3.
Why get it? Simple it's a fantastic game and now it has joined the XBOX Platinum Hits Collection ($19.99 US). This game will provide you with hours of gameplay. I have beaten several other games in the midst of playing M:ES3 off an on each week.
What's not to like about the game? Actually there are some things that could be improved in future ES games. Occasionally the game will lock up on you like a PC game will. Sometimes the other characters in the game will react in a glitch-like manner. (Bird-like creature flapping their wings trying to fly straight into a hill etc.) These types of glitches are still somewhat commonplace in many next gen games. The game is relatively slow paced which will not interest many instant gratification gaming fans. (You won't simply start the game and blast everything that moves. Actually when you first start even a rat will be a tough enemy.) The game will take a long time to finish even if you don't stray from the story line. Some gamers won't be interested in finishing the game if they don't truly enjoy the RPG experience.
Bottom line if you have ever enjoyed a RPG game get this game. If you have tried an RPG game and hated it you should probably pass on M:ES3 (at you own loss).
Gameplay: The sheer immense size of the world that you can roam is amazing in the game. You can walk from one coast of the island to the other. Although this will take you 30 minutes or longer with random fighting of creatures along the way. If you feel like swimming around the whole island, do it. Take as much time exploring as you wish. No console game has every offered this much gaming freedom to my knowledge. The hard part is deciding what to do. As a gamer it could take a while to get used to a non-linear gameplay format. Although the storyline is essentially linear you don't have to participate in it unless you chose that path. The only drawback to the gameplay is the less than "Halo exciting" fighting. If the developers can create future games with heart pounding battles and with the immense size of Morrowind watch out!
Graphics: Most of the visuals in the game are excellent but to compensate for the regularly changing environments gamers will notice unusual fade-in processing of distant objects when exporing open spaces. It is rarely distracting after you get used to the effect and it keeps the game from having to use "loading" sections.
Audio: There isn't a whole lot to say about the Sound of M:ES3. It is an RPG so you will hear custom music to effect the "mood" of different situations. The game does not allow the use of saved MP3 tracks during gameplay. Overall the sound of the game is above average but not mind blowing.
Suggestions: 1)Improve excitement level of battles in future releases of the Elder Scroll's series.
2)Possible XBox Live ascpect or online based game. At least allow for online download of additional "Expansion Packs" like those offer to the PC gamers.
3)Create more expansive cities in future games.
4)Add more creature variety to help the game stay interesting after hours and hour and hour of gameplay.
Overall Score: 10.0 / 10