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The Vertical Slice's Reviews
I have so much to say about the game, yet so little at the same time. I went into this game really wanting to love it, to find a worthy entry in this medium on the subject matter, but the bottom line is there’s not much to like here. It’s underwhelming on all accounts.
Batman - The Telltale Series - Episode 5: City of Light is boring and finishes off before it even gets good - leaving me fairly dissapointed at the outcome of the Season. On the other hand, I did like the new folds it brought to Bruce's relationships with the people who surround him - as Bruce or Batman. Those relationships aren't the key to this Season Finale unfortunately, but Telltale did do a pretty good job at making what you do get out of it entertaining. I hope Telltale gets a Season Two of Batman - The Telltale Series, because I'd sure like to see more.
I truly wanted to like this game. I was really excited to play it. I very much enjoy these kinds of games. However, what we get here, is just a mess. About a third of the way through I had to start forcing myself to the end. For every good thing, there were 10 bad ones. An exaggeration, of course, though you understand what I mean.
All things considered, I really wanted to enjoy Telltale's first outing into the comics with The Walking Dead: Michonne, but right now, given the tone deaf story, deadpan characters, lack of any choice and length, I feel comfortable in saying that you should hold off on playing this episode.
The Witness is a very interesting game, when you first hear the premise for it. You're just a person going around an abandoned island, solving puzzles, and learning the story along the way. How that is portrayed is wonderful, but the execution is downright sloppy.
Star Wars Battlefront is a game for the casual shooter fan. No one ever planned an attack, no one ever talked. So, if you're going into this game expecting a Star Wars skin on Battlefield, expect to be dissapointed, as there is no aspect of team play in this game. While I like a game I can just hop into every few months, I expected more from a franchise that I basically grew up with.
At the end of the day, I can’t really say I wasn’t heavily disappointed with what Nebulous offered me. I was excited to throw down, but once I did, I found myself bored, frustrated, and sad, often at the same time. Not good. I was hoping they’d fix some of the issues with patches post launch, and while I did see at least one come through, it didn’t do anything I could notice. Such a shame, because this could have been a huge hit with me. Maybe they’ll fine tune it even more by the time VR hits, but, I’m not jumping on that bandwagon, so this has to be it for me. /sadface.jpeg
Batman: The Telltale Series — Episode Two: Children of Arkham is ultimately dispiriting, as a follow up to the amazing Season Premiere cliffhanger and fails at following that up with a sorry payoff to Episode One. A lot of the Episode feels rushed and underutilized, making it nigh impossible to dive back into the dichotomy of the mask of Bruce contrasting with the true face of Bruce, Batman. The vision for the Season does become quite clear after this Finale, but as a standalone, it fails to stand on its own two feet.
Song of the Deep will keep you in the deep for about six hours, which gives it time to be bad, just not a total trainwreck, and there are many things I really enjoyed in this game. Merryn, the voice acting, and just how gorgeous the game looks are all a welcome change from these AAA games that rely on gameplay over graphics, and the sense of wonder that is present in 2 of the 3 narrative arcs is really wonderful, but it's hard to shake that the game doesn't know how to deliver on its' promises.
Paranautical Activity is a fast paced first person shooter with roguelike elements that feels like someone tried really hard to recreate Doom, but was really into Minecraft, and wanted to just make it over reliant on PC design. If you don’t like games that punish you, chances are you won’t like this game. If you do, you’ll find yourself playing this game multiple times through, trying to 100% the entire game. If none of these things interest you, just listen to the soundtrack. It’s pretty great.
So, while the initial thrill of basically flying around Medici sounds fun, the story and the new mechanic of the Bavarium Wingsuit don’t really do much for me, given that most of the encounters I thought were really cool took place within very tight spaces, which isn’t very conducive to using a wingsuit in.
Aside from Telltale's usual "I don't want to fight, but you're making me" scene, New World Order is light on the Bat-beatings, with subtle hints about what may happen to our Caped Crusader in Guardian of Gotham. It ends on one amazing cliffhanger with huge reveals that are sure to have you talking for weeks after finishing it. The twist was a grand one that I genuinely have to applaud Telltale for. Good job.
This is definitely a game. What do I mean by that? Well, this isn’t a “cinematic experience” a lot of games are going for these days. This feels like a game when you play it, not like you’re playing through a movie with gameplay mechanics tossed in. There’s a lot to like here, from the gameplay to the ideas presented, they just all aren’t executed extremely well at the end of the day.
You’d probably guess this game isn’t a home run. It’s really just a bunt you planned out and managed a single. Which, in baseball, is fine in certain situations. In this situation, I do think it’s fine, and I do feel like I will revisit this game every now and then during this baseball season to scratch that itch I feel when the summer nights are long. I enjoyed the game in small doses. R.B.I. Baseball isn’t trying to blow your Sox off (har har). It’s taking a very minimalistic approach to the national pastime, and for some people, that’s all they’re looking for. This series seems to be doing exactly what it wants to do, and that’s recreate the classic game for modern times. If you’re a casual baseball fan, or just a casual baseball game fan, this very well could satisfy that itch. If you’re looking for incredible graphics, realistic animations, lots of game modes, etc., I hope you have a PS4, because that’s the only way you’re going to get that near perfect baseball experience. Otherwise, especially on Xbox One, this is all you’re going to get.