Sometimes, it's just easier to take the half-assed approach in life. Why tidy all of that crap clogging up your room when you can just stuff it under the bed? Why bother putting yourself through six years of baffling questions and migraines on Lost when you can just read a synopsis of the ending on the nets? And why go to the effort of designing an original, inventive game character when you can just borrow ideas from other developers or stick a shiny pair of shades on your protagonist? Below, you'll find some of the worst offenders of this noble, half-assed philosophy
Making a half-assed appearance in: Super Mario Galaxy 2
We really feel guilty over typing even a single negative syllable about Mario Galaxy 2. After all, the damn thing is probably the greatest platformer ever made. Still, its so-so simian deserves a right royal shoeing for his phoned-in design.
Just look at that lazily created banana muncher. His art style doesn’t even match the rest of Galaxy 2’s colourful cast. OK, so we can just about accept he’s a generic ‘edgy’ character, who’s been so cynically produced he makes Poochie from Itchy and Scratchy look like a bold expression of inventive expression. But at least make him look like he fits in with the rest of the fat Italian's universe.
Above: Spot the odd one out. Hmmmmmm...
The Shigger would be rolling around in his grave if he saw this shit. If y'know, he was dead and… eh, probably hadn’t given final approval on the Chimp’s design.
Making a half-assed appearance in: Star Wars: The Force Unleashed
Irony truly is a cruel bitch. The thing about Starkiller’s appearance, no matter how half-assed the final version may appear, is it probably took months of redesigns and meetings to get this guy approved. Uncle George is notoriously picky about the characters that get inserted into his galaxy far, far away and it’s likely LucasArts had to run loads of version of the samey Sith by him.
Too bad all that effort still ended up with him looking like a generic extra from the prequels. Honestly, his design just smacks of risible, committee approved, money man thinking. Han Crewcutkiller has been purposely programmed so he offends no one. And his full on evil outfit seen in the Sith Ultimate Edition is even more uninspired. Seriously, it’s just Vader with Boba Fett’s helmet.
Above: Now that's some creative thinking
It’s not that he’s a terrible character, it’s just… we don’t know how to finish this sentence. He’s basically Luke, if he’d been forced to have an Imperial haircut, then had all his personality removed by one of those scary-ass things with needles the Empire use on the Death Star.
Making a half-assed appearance in: Deus Ex: Human Revolution
Ooh, guess who’s just seen the Matrix… ten years too late. Human Revolution will no doubt be an incredible game. But is this really the best Eidos Montreal could come up with on the character front? The shades, the skin-tight black clothing; it’s clear Jensen is rocking some serious Keanu envy.
There’s nothing really wrong with the guy. It’s just the fact he looks so knowingly ‘cool’. As if the developers have just gone through a massive checklist of things that would appeal to teens in their bedrooms who can’t quite grow chin hair yet.
Above: You said it, Adam
Designer facial hair? Check. Mysterious scars that’ll make him oh so alluring to futuristic space wenches? Check. A pair of surgically attached shades that must be worn at all times? Hells yes. Thankfully, we’re confident Adam’s game will show infinitely more imagination and ambition that his generic design.
Making a half-assed appearance in: Singularity
Anyone, remember that Alyx Vance chick? She was pretty awesome, right? Strong, independently-minded and she looked great in a tight pair of science jeans. So why shouldn't other devs just copy Half-Life 2’s brainy beauty when they need to come up with your own heroine?
Above: And we are done. Who wants a margarita?
Well, that’s exactly what developer Raven seemingly did when making Singularity. Kathryn (who saves main character Renko) could pass for Vance’s sister. Alright, so maybe not a sister. But at the very least a whiny second cousin with a bit of an accent. We’d call shenanigans, but then again, Singularity is pretty much just a poor man’s Half-Life 2, given a quick dab of BioShock paint.
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