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Forums > Contributor Zone > Zipp's ROTW: January 9th

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Author: zippdementia
Posted: January 10, 2010 (12:07 PM)
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Ugh. I have been sick in bed for three days. I can't keep anything down and am all around pretty miserable. That said, this week's ROTW was a bit of cheer in my drear. Some very good reviews came in and many of them were for games I have a history with or feel very strongly about in some way. There was no review this week that was glaringly bad. I had to resort to kicking some reviews out for grammar or spelling issues and then, with the remainder, seeing who had made the best arguments in the most presentable fashion.

Here's the three who made it.




Radical Dreamer's Baten Kaitos review

This review was made of justice. Baten Kaitos pissed me off because it was such a good game destroyed by so many stupid little mistakes, such as the voice acting which really is about ten times worse than even Radical Dreamer makes it sound. I'm sure you can find the opening video on youtube, just look it up. It's terrible.

I have no major complaints about this review. It does read a little dry at times. Phrases like "it excels at being an interactive experience relative to its counterparts" excite the English Major in me but can also sometimes sound a little contrived, like there had to be a simpler way to say that.




Lewis' Eternal Darkness review

I'll be upfront. This was not my favorite review of the week. I didn't really like the editorial style of the review and the whole Red Faction bit, for me, just doesn't work. In fact, very little of this was actually a review of the game and more of it seemed like Lewis blogging about... stuff.

But hey, it's good stuff, and I like his points about the Survival Horror genre, which I feel is one of the hardest for games to do right. And even though I didn't like the style of this piece, I do like that Lewis had the gumption to give something new a try.




The week's winner is suskie's Infamous review

INfamous seems to be a good game to review. I'm not sure I've seen a poorly written review for it on the site yet.

Suskie hit two good reviews this week, with it being a tough call between this and ODST. I choose this one over ODST because I felt that this review had a stronger throughline. There is one thing that interests most people about INfamous and Suskie takes the moral system here and explores it in depth while at the same time avoiding the easy trap of judging the entire game based on this one facet. After reading it, I feel like I have the details I wanted about the choice system but also a good understanding of how the story and controls handle.

And it's all done without wasting space or being overly snarky. Good job on this one, Suskie.




That's it for this week. Good to see so many reviews hit the boards, I enjoyed reading them all and there was a lot of variety this week to choose from.

I'll leave myself to my misery here and not give a grand closing statement except to say that you can expect another of Randxian's Chicken Dinners next week.


Note to gamers: when someone shoots you in the face, they aren't "gay." They are "psychopathic."


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Author: radicaldreamer
Posted: January 10, 2010 (03:10 PM)
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I think probably the simpler way to say it is something like "it has better gameplay than most other JRPG's," but 'gameplay' is a term that I try to avoid for the most part. As it is, I still used the term anyway in the review just because it can be hard not to.


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Author: Suskie
Posted: January 10, 2010 (08:53 PM)
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Thank you very much, Zipp! Glad you liked the review.

I'll now request 1000 HG points. Thanks.


You exist because we allow it. And you will end because we demand it.


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Author: aschultz
Posted: January 11, 2010 (12:42 PM)
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These are good choices--it was interesting to see you acting as a phantom "4th judge" for the Alpha Olympics contest. I wanted to comment earlier but didn't want to spill anything.

Hope you feel better soon.


My principal said, 'Emo, Emo, Emo.'
I said 'I'm the one in the middle, you lousy drunk!'
-- Emo Phillips


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Author: Suskie
Posted: January 12, 2010 (04:32 PM)
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Ahem. Points. Please.


You exist because we allow it. And you will end because we demand it.


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Author: woodhouse
Posted: January 12, 2010 (07:58 PM)
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I've just awarded your 1,000 points.


Buy -> Opium!


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Author: Suskie
Posted: January 12, 2010 (08:10 PM)
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Thank you, sir.


You exist because we allow it. And you will end because we demand it.


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Author: zippdementia
Posted: January 13, 2010 (12:16 AM)
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Aschultz: I was fairly brief in my comments this week because of the sickness (which is passing, thank the goddess). But I'm kind've glad it ended up that way, because I pretty much would've ended up iterating much the same things the judges did.

Radical Dreamer's review almost won it this week for me, but I think you hit it on the head when you mentioned that it went a little overboard in terms of length and was a little too "listy," in that it jumped from paragraph to paragraph without much of a through line except that there were things the game did right and things it did wrong. A stronger throughline that dealt maybe more directly with how awful the story was might've held the attention better.

As for Lewis' review, a part of me didn't want to give it a place this week because I was as frustrated by the judges by its arrogance and tendency towards tangentials. However, if there is one thing I can appreciate, it is a piece that makes intelligent observations on a genre and I really did feel like Lewis nailed some of the survival horror issues that developers struggle with so much, even clearing up some questions in my own mind about the genre. Now if only that could've been kept a little bit more focused on specific points about Eternal Darkness and stopped veering off into side stories about Red Faction and gaming conventions (which I have to admit came off as sounding a little bit like putting a resume into the review) I would've been all over it as an ROTW. I don't want to analyze Lewis' writing over much, because that would be annoying of me, but I do know that he does a lot of writing now as editor for Resolution and related works and I wonder if that editorial voice doesn't nag at him while he's writing reviews, which are admittedly another genre of writing than editorials.


Note to gamers: when someone shoots you in the face, they aren't "gay." They are "psychopathic."


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