Has Wii Sword Play Arrived? [Red Steel 2 Impressions]

I picked up Red Steel 2 yesterday on a lark. I had intended to wait until mid-summer to acquire it. Weakness set in. Here are some initial impressions:

  • This is a “feel good” game. You’ll understand when you execute finishing moves with your katana.
  • Calibration and finding a control scheme that is right for you is a pain. I had to move my sensor bar below the TV, adjust the sensitivity, and experiment with how I hold the wiimote and nunchuck. you don’t really hold it like a sword–at least for me being a lefty.
  • Speaking of nunchuck, what a pain.  Ours tends to disconnect with a little bit of motion. This game encourages you to use full arm motions. Get ready to get used to the connecting wire reaching it’s full length when you swing.
  • No left handed support? Thanks, Ubisoft. I guess reversing the animations and code for the motion controls is just too much for approximately 10% of the world. I enjoy being discriminated. (Of course, this happens in a LOT of Wii and DS games anymore.)
  • Once you get it all figured out and are comfortable with a control scheme, this game really gels. The motions of the swordplay is precise and at least feels accurate–at least there’s more movement options than just swing. Oh, and this game wants you to really swing. For me, standing is not an option.
  • The gunplay/swordplay works really well.
  • The Borderlands-like cel-shaded graphics are a hoot.
  • Sound and music fits perfectly.
  • The bad guy’s lines and voice work is over the top. Think the old Lucasarts game, Outlaws. It’s funny and not annoying–yet.
  • Maybe one of the most intense openings and cutscenes that have appeared in a videogame in a long time.
  • The Asian samurai/western outlaw setting works well. I want to know more about this universe.
  • Some of the initial boss fights are a blast. Inventive.

Is the game worth $50? I cannot say for sure right now. Nitpicking aside, I’m certainly having fun with it. If you don’t have a MotionPlus controller and would like one but not want Wii Sports Resort, you may want to pick this up in the bundle.

Runes of Magic: First Impressions

At first look, I automatically thought this game would be a World of Warcraft copy. After spending a decent amount of time on this game and getting to level 33 I feel I know enough to give some impressions to everyone

First things first, the game is free! Yes, FREE!. Now of course there are micro transactions because after all they do need to make some kind of money off of the game, but you don’t have to buy anything and can still have a good time. The only race you can have is human at the moment, they will be adding elves soon.

pic-786There are 6 classes: Knight, Warrior, Priest, Mage, Scout, and Rogue with two more on the way (Warden and Druid). You pick two classes one primary and one secondary I’ve been playing a Scout/Rogue. (fyi – all I hear about the scout class is that they are underpowered and nerfed all the time. I’m not sure I can 100% agree but I do see where some of the frustration with the class comes from. I do know I am looking forward to trying the new classes, as are a million other people… Back to the post.) You get all of the skills of your primary class (all of the general and class specific skills) and for your secondary class you can only get the general skills. Which leaves you with sometimes either pointless skills from your secondary class or really helpful and necessary skills.

The graphics are more than sufficient for a free game. The armor and weapons actually look like the picture in your inventory(one of my favorite aspects a game if done right.) and the variety is pretty plentiful once you get into the higher levels.

The only complaint I have right now is that the installation/download/update process is long and horrible. Especially since I’ve reinstalled Windows XP after trying the Windows 7 RC. (I should make a post about it.)

There is so much more to go into detail about this game, but I’ll leave that for another post. To wet your whistle I’ll leave you with a trailer.


P.S. If you play or get started I’m on the Osha server and the Name of my Scout/Rogue is Ookami.

First Impressions Galore

Yes, this is a video game blog and yes, we do play games. Honest! Here are a few I’ve played in the last few weeks.

Unreal Tournament 3

This was my first game from GameFly. I’ve never been an Unreal guy but I gave UT3 a try nonetheless. It wasn’t a bad game, I just don’t think it was for me. I gave the single-player campaign a try, but it turned out to be a series of multiplayer matches, only against bots. There was an over-arching story going on there, but I couldn’t follow it. Having Ice T narrate didn’t help things.

I gave the online play a try, but it was total mayhem. The games we played (I tried multiplayer with my bro-in-law) were just total chaos. It simply wasn’t fun. Jumping into other games resulted similarly. If I’m going to play an FPS online, I’ve already invested enough time in Halo 3. I sent UT3 back a couple days after it showed up.

Space Invaders Extreme

After reading Nat’s review, I had to give it a try. This game is a blast. The re-imagining of Space Invaders was done perfect. The sound and music was great, very reminiscent of Meteos. I love the way the rhythm was worked into the mechanics of shooting. Very slick stuff. I definitely give S.I.E. the thumbs up.

Top Spin 3

Top Spin 3 is hard. I haven’t played a tennis game since Mario Tennis on the Gamecube, which isn’t a fair comparison. TS3 is no Mario Tennis. It’s complex, its moves and controls are deep and the gameplay is over my head. Nevertheless, it looks great and plays fun.

I still wish I had some Mario-like powerups (I’d like to shoot a tennis ball through a cannon, Donkey Kong style) but it wouldn’t feel right. I should have a review of TS3 up soon.

So that’s what I was playing. Now that I beat GTA IV, I feel like a big weight has been lifted and I can get back to playing games scatter-shot like I did before.