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We always kind of suspected the companies behind necessities like clip-on baseball bats for Wii Remotes would do anything to make a buck, but it wasn’t until the advent of Game Boat that those suspicions were confirmed. Proudly advertised as “de facto the first accessory for the peripheral which doesn't need any,” the Game Boat serves no purpose other than to occupy floor space and extract cash from the wallets of extremely unimaginative Kinect owners.
In case this is your first time seeing Game Boat, the image above tells pretty much the entire story. It’s an inflatable raft, designed for jumping up and down in while playing exactly one of the five minigames that make up Kinect Adventures. And if Kotaku’s Stephen Totilo is to be believed, it doesn’t even do that particularly well. It’s too pathetic to be angry at, really, but the thought of even one clueless parent picking up a Game Boat in the misguided belief that Kinect Adventures needs it to work is so infuriating, we can’t help but call this out as the biggest horseshit peripheral in a market already choked with ‘em.
The game isn’t out yet, but the advance news of paid DLC really got to us. We can deal with endless SSFIV costumes, but we can't stand knowing we'll be paying extra for game-changing characters the same day we buy the damn game. We don’t mind shelling out for DLC down the road, but gouging gamers for content that’s clearly already on the disc is foul.
The non-fighting, giggly girls frolicking at the beach games of Dead or Alive have never pretended to be anything other than a shameless exercise in gravure lady gazing. No one's really in it for the volleyball. Dead or Alive Paradise lost even more of the unnecessary pretence to gratuitous eye-boggling, dropping a bunch of the minigames from the console versions while getting an all new Private Paradise mode. This mode took the art of vigorously appreciating the form of a woman made of graphics to hitherto unknown levels of pervertery.
Effectively, the “exclusive” Private Paradise mode enabled players to watch the girls at their leisure as they swam in shallow reefs, climbed trees in secluded hideaways and many, many other exciting activities enjoyed by the DoA lovelies while clothed in only the most flimsy of fabrics. The real genius, though, is that the footage of Kasumi and friends indulging these island exploits plays over and over. On a loop. Meaning no buttons to press. Meaning hands free. Meaning you could watch them until you became exhausted. Meaning you could have a wank of your Johnston.
Imagine for a second that A) you had a child and B) said child had been kidnapped by a serial killer. You’d definitely do everything possible to save your kid, right? Nah. If you’re a parent in Heavy Rain, you’d totally be having shoehorned, stiffly-animated sex. After all, there’s boners to activate.
We expect anything from Team Ico to take several years. Both ICO and Shadow of the Colossus were delayed, but once they were released, both captured our hearts with some of the best gameplay and silent characterization the medium has ever known. When Team Ico’s latest outing, now called The Last Guardian, was revealed way back in 2008, we didn’t want to wait one more second – based on the team’s stunning record, we needed the game now.
Merely knowing the game was in development made 2008 a tough wait. The 2009 teaser trailer pulled more than a few tears out of our crusty, jaded eye holes and all but convinced us Guardian will be the PS3’s finest achievement. Surely it’ll launch in ’09? Oh, no, 2010? OK we can wait one more year. Nope! Now it’s “late 2011,” which is still intensely vague and subject to further delay. Go on, try pushing it back again. Tease us one more time. See what happens.
It’s been years since Jim Lee did one-handed push-ups at E3 2008 promoting DC Universe Online. It’s been even longer since SOE first announced plans to work with Warner Bros on an MMO set in the DC Universe in 2005. The game has finally received an official release date for January 11, and they’d better mean it this time.
Like we mentioned at the beginning of this shameful debacle, Bayonetta’s Stone Award is the ultimate “eat shit and die you loser idiot” thing you could ever hand out in a game. It’s like having a teacher write “F lol” on some homework you thought was just fine. Adding insult to injury doesn’t even come close.
But what is the Stone Award? Like most titles from Platinum Games, Bayonetta hands out awards that are based on your performance. Obviously the goal is to get the highest rank on each level, which given our years of experience, shouldn’t be too hard on Normal. Nope, cuz ‘netta is truly cruel and repeatedly gives you these statues of a fat guy slipping on a banana peel. Look, we expect to get our asses kicked, that’s part of the game. But does Super Meat Boy spit in your eye ever time you lose? No, and constantly equating our seasoned game skills with clumsy, perpetually falling corpulence made us want to cry.
Despite its kiddy looks, Galaxy 2’s late levels are some of the most challenging in Mario history. Now we’re cool with seeing a Game Over screen before choosing to continue, but does Nintendo’s fat, dopey, purple watchdog of personal health have to ask you EVERY TIME if you want to take a break? We’ll tell you when we’ve had enough!
A character disappears in a cutscene or falls through a level; that’s fairly acceptable in this day and age, not unlike a boom mic falling into frame in a Hollywood production. But game breaking shit that defeats the purpose of the very atmosphere the game is trying to present? Totally unacceptable. The “patch it later” philosophy was barely acceptable before every console came standard with hard drives and net connections, but now that new games have a much smaller window for success, the amount of pro bono beta testing put upon paying customers rose to embarrassing levels in 2010.
Above: Herp deh durp!
Assholes exploiting glitches in Black Ops is certainly infuriating; however, balancing it quickly has almost become part of the multiplayer process. But a fast paced game like Bayonetta hitting PS3 with crippling framerate issues and agonizing load times nonexistent on 360? A dynamically-defined, open-world RPG like Fallout: New Vegas corrupting saves? Was a broken replay system and denying you your painstakingly collected bandages part of Super Meat Boy’s general sadism?
Above: Derp deh hurp!
Dude… you guys had a QA team, right? Why the goddamned holy hell were widespread, experience-ruining snafus left up to early adopters paying full price to discover on launch day?! Patch, smatch – core gameplay should take precedent over hitting a release date. Failing to fix obvious flaws so crucial to a specific experience is not only conflicting for reviewers like us, who have to weigh such oversights in their final appraisals, it’s absolutely toxic to early word of mouth.