When listening to the rain
My thoughts are empty.
Thinking only of what was
But is no longer
A certain aching
Fills my heart like the rain drops.
When I think of you.
When listening to the rain
My thoughts are empty.
Thinking only of what was
But is no longer
A certain aching
Fills my heart like the rain drops.
When I think of you.
Regardless, irregardless? Gardless?
Still working my way through game pass and I kinda wanted to save this because I kinda knew it would either be the best or a massive disappointment and it didn’t disappoint but which didn’t it disappoint in being the best or being a disappointment hmm, how many times can I mispell disappointment not caring because of the auto correct?
For awhile I didn’t really give a shit about this game because there is a notable dip in quality in my opinion between Metro 2033 and Last light but I still played them both over and over and I liked them. But I was sort of put off of Exodus because of the lack of hype around it and the negative hype because of the epic store bullshit. Which I know was entirely deep silver’s fault, which is why publishers should be totally done away with and all games companies should self publish like CD projekt red does. No fat cat ceo middle man they need to appease, they just make their own games and handle the shipping and marketing themselves and it seems to be going gang busters for them, they’ve just gone from strength to strength (if you ignore throne breakers haha).
I can safely say, resoundingly, Metro Exodus is… the best in the series and the perfect capstone ending for the epic saga of Artyom.
I dunno, I guess I was really worried that it wouldn’t be what I hoped because I was so invested in the series. I love Metro, it’s one of my favourite games, I’ve literally played the first two games over and over on every difficulty. So when I saw this it kinda made me worry because it basically looked like it was copying Far Cry, trying to be an open world sandbox game.
Oh yeah this game unlike the first two is almost entirely on the surface because they find out the world isn’t entirely fucked and there are some liveable spots so Artyom et Al set off to find one.
And yes it’s sort of copying from Far Cry but thankfully it reminded me of Far Cry 2 otherwise known as ‘the only good one’ but with less dated mechanics and gun customisation the max.
Some notably Yahtzi shit on this game for ditching the trading system for a crafting system and yeah, I understand why. Crafting systems are in everything these days and Metro sort of had a unique take on trade since your best ammo is also your currency and you can literally exchange ammo.
This game basically busts that wide open because you can literally craft bullets now, you’re printing your own money haha. But I see why they did it and I think it works really well and makes much more sense for the series in terms of immersion. Because yes shock horror, you can make bullets, they don’t fall out of the sky like in Zardoz, they are manufactured by people. And because the game is open world there aren’t little hub worlds with traders so having a crafting system where you can dismantle and reassemble your guns just makes so much sense, I don’t understand how anyone can argue with it. Why wouldn’t you just want a system where you can take an attachment from one gun and put it on yours in real time?
That’s literally one of the best mods in Fallout 4 right there haha. Fallout 4 is another comparison you can make to this game, as well as borderlands but it beats out both with I wanna say stronger writing but it wins just because it feels like the devs give a shit.
Borderlands has always just been cringe, tryhard humour from the oughts that a 13 year old might find funny. Fallout goes for that dark wry humour but Metro plays it straight, there’s some humour to break up the misery but it’s the most realistic interpretation of the end of the world out of the bunch.
And with that shift in tone you get real characters and a grounded believable story about people trying to have more than the dark tunnels of the metro.
I was really worried about this game because open worlds don’t or can’t really have the level of atmosphere you get in the claustrophobic tunnels of metro 2033. But somehow the open worlds environments in Exodus are dripping with atmosphere, some parts are dark and brooding and scary, other parts lonely and sad but when you look out at it you get the sense that it was once alive and real. It’s really gripping. Whereas borderlands and fallout are just full of locations with various loot junk to collect. That’s another thing about the crafting it’s very simple and unobtrusive, it’s not like Fallout where you’re on the hunt for tape always. It’s not annoying, it doesn’t get in the way of gameplay.
It’s not actually an open world game, there were semi open world sections to explore in the previous games and this basically expands on that. So you don’t have one big map you move around, you have two big open world maps, a swamp and a desert and then there are more linear levels like classic metro and a level in a forest that’s sort of a blend of them both. It’s linear but it’s such a huge map it has a lot of exploration. And exploration is really what makes a game like Metro really good, this balance of wanting to explore but also being terrified by what could be potentially waiting for you inside.
Metro sets itself apart from other post apocalyptic games in that it’s mainly stealth and tactics focused when you fight people. It has a really good stealth system that isn’t like a numbers based one like in an rpg like fallout but relies on light and sound like Thief. So you’re mostly lurking in the darkness with night vision goggles taking people out silently with a gas powered ball bearing gun.
But then the game switches up completely when encountering mutants who can see in the dark and then it becomes like a fps survival horror as waves of these hideous creatures try to take a bite out of you in the pitch blackness. So it has this nice way of turning the tables on you and keeping the game fresh, one minute you’re the cat the next you’re the mouse. So the gameplay never gets stale because it’s constantly shifting.
And it’s even more so in this game because the levels have such variety. In the first one you’re being hunted by a weird religious cult that hates technology and worships a giant catfish that will eat you if you cross it’s path on the water. The next you’re in a mad max desert fighting slavers, there’s also a linear level that was almost like a haunted house ride in this bunker. Then you’re in a forest fighting pirates and a giant bear then the game pulls you back to the frozen tunnels of another metro.
I keep making these comparisons to Fallout and Farcry but really I think the best comparison would be putting it side by side with Red dead redemption 2. That might sound weird but I do that because it’s as if everything red dead tried and failed, Metro succeeded at.
Red dead wants to create this kind of close nit family vibe for the gang where you stay at the camp getting to know everyone and then fall in love with them and go on missions. But the game design and the writing just make that impossible because there are too many characters really and the camp is kind of boring and pointless and they wont let you run for some reason and all the characters aren’t very likeable.
In contrast in Metro you get these interludes between levels where you’re on the train and people basically talk at you because you’re a silent protagonist even though Artyom has a voice actor because he talks over the loading screens. But it’s just how all the other games went for the sake of immersion, Metro is all about immersion, you can play it entirely hudless unlike red dead where you literally need the minimap to complete missions just to know where the game wants you to stand.
On the train when it’s moving it’s just so atmospheric with the sound of the train and the wind and the scenery outside and then the characters tell you about themselves, their hopes and dreams and you just can’t help fall in love with them because they feel real and relatable and likeable.
John’s son is a character you can interact with in red dead 2 but I never felt like he was a real kid, I never really gave a shit about him or thought he was real. But there’s this little girl you meet on the first level who comes with you and her mother called Nastya and she has to be the sweetest child character in any game ever. I literally fell in love with her, she was adorable and when she asked me to get her teddy bear I didn’t even think about it as the fetch quest it was I was just going to get Nastya’s teddy bear because I liked her and she called me ‘Uncle Artyom’.
The characters are just so endearing and strong even though they live in hell and they could die at any moment. The characters in red dead are two dimensional and unlikeable and the tone can’t decide whether it wants to be serious or tongue in cheek rockstar style and it just falls apart because you don’t like the characters and can’t take them seriously.
Another thing to point out is neither game really has villains, red dead 2 kind of has the pinkerton guy but he was so forgettable, dutch and the blonde guy kinda. But in Metro they try to steer clear of having generic villains because it’s trying to be like the real world. So although you encounter a crazy cult leader, he’s not wholey evil and his followers are just lost, you feel justified letting them live, you don’t want to kill them, I actually felt bad when I had to gun two down instead of knock them out.
And there are these nice points in the game, once I encountered these two cultists, a father and son talking about the cult and when they saw me they both drew their weapons and metro is the kind of game where getting shot at that range will kill you in a few hits so instinctively I should have gunned them down but I hesitated and so did they and then they lowered their weapons and talked to me instead and then we parted ways. It’s just amazing a game like this can have that nuance where you can lower your weapon and disengage. There was another point later on where you’re in the forest being hunted by these weird forest people and I snuck up on one of them in this field and he turned around and I saw he was unarmed and he asked me to lower my weapon and I did and it turns out he was just a farmer with a rake I almost beaned in the melon. And because I showed him I wasn’t a threat he helped me out by showing me a way through his village without having to hurt anyone and I did that.
It’s a game that succeeds in not only making you care about your companions but about the npcs in general and it makes them seem so much more real as a result.
It also ties into the ending you get whether you’re just murdering people indiscriminately. Which I wont spoil but it’s great and I got the good ending and it was just the perfect ending to the series, I wouldn’t dream of getting another ending, I won’t even look it up on youtube haha. It just sucks you in and by the end of it you’re just begging that everyone lives and has a happy life where they can be free and not get gnawed on by mutants.
It’s also the most beautiful metro game, which is not surprising because there wasn’t a lot of competition until now haha. I could literally just sit and stare out of the train window in this game for hours, the scenery is so great. Hauntingly beautiful.
Looking at the Metacritic scores now and red dead 2 is way higher and all the negative reviews are about this game having bugs haha. Seriously this world deserves climate change haha.
This is not some shitty game crunched out by interns as an excuse to make another online game to shill microstransactions, Metro has never had multiplayer, I don’t think you even need to be online to play it. It’s a lovingly crafted single player game made by people that obviously love the series greatly and it shows.
One thing I would recommend though for full immersion and I do this with all the metro games, change the language to russian, you’ll thank me. There’s nothing less immersive in my opinion than hearing americans doing shitty russian accents. Steve Blum couldn’t even be bothered to do one for the whole game so there’s just a random american character in the order haha. Change it to russian so you don’t need to hear him phone it in haha.
Two thousand words jesus, ok you get it, I liked it, there, go play it, I definitely will be doing so many more times, it’s a gaming epic.
I don’t wanna be
wanna be your cigarette
or be your ash tray
You never asked me
I don’t put myself out there
I stay tucked away
I was a loner
I let you in after all..
Until I met you
Bit of a trolly title, yeah well it doesn’t get much better from here on out.
So for once I’m reviewing a game that isn’t like ten years old because I got gamepass for two whole pounds for two months so I thought I’d start with the big boy of xbox.
I did review the last game and I thought it was kinda bleh, I’m not a huge fan of Gears games really, I find them sort of bland and boring chest high wall shooting galleries. Four was pretty much that with a loose plot that was sort of pointless and toothless with uncharted reject characters.
I’m happy to say almost everything in Gears 5 is better. Not the tank controls, you still feel like you’re moving a fridge through waist high custard getting caught on every crag in the environment. But now you get to stare at some curvaceous lady ass while you do it.
Yes this is the gears where you get to play as the affirmative action hire Cait and she was surprisingly not annoying to play. I thought this was a distinctive sign that Gears was getting woke but I was pleased to be wrong, there’s very little wokeness going on. It’s mainly done as a device of developing her in the main plot line as well as giving JD a more rounded arc off screen. Because you play him in 4 and he’s basically a boyscout and you reprise him at the start of 5 and then *no spoilers* some shit goes down and JD basically doesn’t want to play anymore and takes his ball and goes home and you get to play as Cait. I kinda wish she was faster but it’s fine, she has a pretty decent ass, not as good as some warframe’s though haha.
I was really enjoying the story actually, that was until I realised I liked it better in FEAR. Yeah the main plot line is basically ripped directly from FEAR. Little girls, evil secret labs and super soldiers, classic.
They did improve the gameplay in some elements like I think they moved the chainsaw function on the lancer to the reload button instead of the melee button so now you hold down reload to use the chainsaw as an alt fire. This leaves the melee button open for your knife and takedowns as well as actual melee weapons you get in this game, all two of them… wow. Also you can move with the chainsaw better because your thumb can stay on the stick.
Yes there are like a handful of new weapons, only like two of which don’t completely suck, those being the new Lancer GL, which stands for ‘grenade launcher’, I know right first you get a chainsaw now the newest innovation is it shoots grenades, what will they think of next? Toothpicks? An easy bake oven? Grenades having their own button and not having to awkwardly equip them to throw???
But it’s pretty good and pretty rare in the game but only has three grenades which sucks but this is the first gears game to have explosive ammo boxes to recharge all explosive weapons so now carrying a boomshot is actually viable. I was actually carrying the rare relic boomshot that had a three shot clip for awhile until a glitch made me it fall through the floor when I tried to get more ammo for it. Although if that hadn’t happened it would’ve just got lost as part of the story stealing your weapons which it liked to do quite a few times, once right before a really annoying boss fight.
The next new weapon that didn’t suck was the talon which is a pretty good machine pistol. Then there’s the claw (really original names) which is an assault rifle which sucks, then a mace from these new enemies called wardens I think, then there’s the all mighty pipe which is only on one level. There’s also like a freeze gun too which is ok.
Now I happen to think melee weapons in gears isn’t a bad idea because they do decent damage, stun lock and have good range and pair that with Jack’s skills and you can have a solid build if they didn’t have ammo, durability I guess, they run out and can’t be reloaded because they’re not guns so you’re literally left with your she-dick in your hands when they’re gone.
But I just touched on the best part of this game, the real star of the show; Jack.
The actual advancement that made me enjoy the game, that made a gears game actually interesting and fun for once instead of just a chest high shooting galleryfest. Was the little robot dude that you can upgrade with all sorts of neat gadgets and powers, really he steals the show. And in my opinion this is rpg elements done right in a non rpg game. Where as it’s done so wrong in games like farcry where it just breaks the game and makes it tedious because it’s just shoved in there. I don’t mind rpg elements in rpgs, I don’t mind stealth elements or fps elements in rpgs but I hate it when rpg elements are awkwardly shoved into shooters just because you can do it. It’s just always shitty and pointless and annoying.
But this is really good and it’s not like your character from the previous game loses all their skills (the skills you never had) you just get a new robot you need to respec and I love the build system. Because it’s less like a character creator and more like build system where you can swap out upgrades on the fly and experiment with builds and powers you like. You don’t need to use all the skills and you’re not encouraged to, you can just use the ones that work for you. And there’s a good selection of skills, you can turn invisible and start knifing people which I loved. You can flashbang and freeze enemies, stims make you invulnerable, shields, electric traps and scanners. There are cool down timers on each type of skill so you can’t spam them and break the game, so you have to use them tactically and put some thought into your gameplay style. It added a much needed level of strategy to the combat I appreciated greatly.
The characters seem a little more fleshed out and less like Uncharted knock offs and some of the emotional content was pretty effective with the great facial capture, the campaign is nice and girthy, its not too long but feels satisfying (oo err misses!).
Ok now that’s I’ve licked it’s balls time to rip it apart haha.
My first real criticism about the game, not having played the last God of War game because I don’t have the sonyitus, I can’t really say it’s copying God of War, despite the fact JD literally get’s a Kratos make over, complete with bald head and beard and a kick ass scar on his face and funky robot arm. Obviously setting up for when you play him in Gears 6 in which he’ll get his skin bleached somehow probably and start carrying around an axe and a child.
He also sort of becomes much edgier which he sort of forgets towards the last act, which kinda sucks, I wanted to see a more edgy less ‘just nathan drake in gears of war’ JD but alas. They could’ve done more for his arc, hopefully they’ll build on it more in the next game because it felt like there was too much focus on Cait, which was necessary, the story was about her and her family but I hope they build more on JD’s arc in the next game because that seemed really interesting and it went nowhere.
The first thing that jumped out at me as a problem in this game is the free roam sections, they’re basically just filler. Which is fitting because this whole game is basically filler for the next game. But really the driving sequences are completely pointless and just there to waste your time. And I’m not saying that to shit on this game, that’s the case for most open world games.
Now this isn’t an open world game, there are like two small open world sections you can drive through and do little sub-missions. Now I say sub-missions, I mean optional missions because they’re all the same. The open world part isn’t like a sandbox like you would get in something like farcry or gta with lots of stuff to and enemies to fight and challenges and exploration. The open world in this game is just longer hallways between action set pieces, that’s all, it’s just filler. Because the sub-missions are just ‘kill all these swarm’ and there’s nothing else going in the map, it just serves to connect these different action set pieces.
They’re like ‘Go check out what happened to this water tower, we lost contact with them blah blah blah’ and the character like winks ‘It’s definitely not going to be another fight with swarm, you know the only enemy in this game’.
This is what I mean when I say this game isn’t one that can have sub-missions because they’re the same every time, they’re all just going to be fights with the swarm, there’s literally nothing else they could be. I mean what else could it be? The spanish inquisition? There radio just broke, they all went out to buy cigarettes? What’s the point in having sub-missions when they all just devolve into ‘fight more swarm’ like yeah what have I been doing in the main missions? Why is this optional? Well I did them because they unlock upgrades for Jack but I just feel like it’s really fucking contrive filler. You could’ve just taken it out of the game and put the upgrades into the story campaign and it would’ve been the same and knocked off an hour or two of the game.
Like how do sub-missions work in any other game? Look at something like fallout you go to a place and talk to someone and it has it’s own story which probably ends up with a fight but sometimes not, who knows, it could be anything but it literally can’t be anything else but a fight in this game because it’s not an rpg it’s an action game. The mechanics literally won’t allow for any other outcome. It’s basically just a kind of lazy way to copy other popular games, which I really think is unnecessary, this game is good enough to stand on it’s own.
Another thing that annoys me is how only the lancer has an alt fire? Why does a game entirely about the guns have such boring guns? You made a new type of button press to use the chainsaw why not have alt fires for every gun? Why bring in relic rare guns when this game treats guns as entirely disposable and you can’t really save them except on the skiff when you’re driving around which you can’t access in story missions.
I kinda wish it had a dead space 3 style gun upgrade system where you could combine guns so the second gun would be the alt fire. How epic would it be to have a kit lancer where instead of a chainsaw it’s alt fire is a cryogun or a flamethrower or a gnasher? I just wish more thought went into the guns. Why would you copy God of War, a game that has no fucking guns and not copy something that has a basic crafting system? Why not let us have an upgrade system where Jack can store guns or you can store more than two guns on your back or carry more ammo? Why the fuck can’t Jack carry ammo? Sure he can fetch it but he can’t carry any on him??? Why allow you to store guns on the skiff and not Jack? You know the robot with you at all times instead of the skiff you only use to get around the map.
That’s pretty much my only gripe with it, it’s an ok game, it didn’t blow me away but it didn’t leave me unsatisfied, I liked the characters a lot more, I found myself caring about them and really enjoying the gameplay this time around. A part from that one boss fight with instant kills where it took all my good weapons before it started and had homing attacks that stun locked you, that sucked balls.
But overall it’s a really good, well made game well worth the whopping price of two pounds for gamepass which I will cancel at the end of the two months haha.
I’m really biased because I love all Jim Jarmusch movies he sits in this perfect spot between David Lynch absurdity and almost gritty boring realism of I don’t wanna say Tarantino because I already said this about S. Craig Zahler. But I don’t know how to describe his movies, they’re weird but never so weird that they’re unbelievable or downright farcical… until now haha.
He sort of makes weird semi-pretentious movies about nothing but they’re all really watchable and have great dialogue that just keeps you hooked even when nothings happening. Like watch a movie like Down By Law and tell me Jim Jarmusch is a wizard or something, it’s literally just a movie about three people talking in three different sets, that’s it but it’s so watchable and good and I can’t even tell you why. I’m sure if I went back to my film studies class I could tell you why haha.
His movies always really stand out and he doesn’t really have one genre he basically does them all and none at the same time. I mean what would you call Ghost Dog? Is it a samurai movie? A gangster movie? An action movie? It’s all these things and none of them.
I liked the Dead don’t die for a lot of reasons, mainly because it felt like a classic zombie movie or a fifties b-movie. The town that it was shot in was sort of the star of the show for me really, it’s just a really picturesque slice of middle america you only really see in old movies.
The movie feels really real in it’s setting which plays off how ridiculous the movie is and how dead pan the jokes are delivered. Because there are a few jokes but none are really played for laughs, there’s a lot of fourth wall breaking and poking fun at other movies. Like it has this really on the nose political environmental message intended to make fun of how unsubtle the messages are in Romero movies. Basically I guess fracking causes zombies, it’s never delivered seriously, it’s just a gag and for a minute I thought there was a joke about Trump supporters but there’s never any teeth to it where you feel like it’s barbed. It just feels like a prodding, its funny and light and the Trump supporter is played by Steve Buscemi.
So there’s pretty much no other director on earth that could assemble a cast more eclectic and fantastic as this. Tilda Swinton plays basically a parody cross between the bride from Kill bill to an elf from lord of the rings. She’s a scottish samurai mortician, I mean I’m just imagining her getting the script and just saying ‘Yes’ instantly.
Bill Murray, Adam Driver, Selena Gomez of all people, Danny Glover, Tom Waits, Iggy Pop, RZA.
It’s just a great cast for a movie that was really good, like there’s a lot of effort that goes into this movie, it starts off like an old good zombie movie with a long build up of all these different groups of people as the zombies start to roam. It does a really good job of setting up the town it just sort of falters at the end in my opinion, it’s already like an hour forty which is a good length but I think it could’ve done with being the full two hours.
Some of the subplots didn’t really end in a satisfying way and I think a little more time would have fleshed out the ending a little more. I just think the ending came too soon because I was really enjoying the world it’s created and I could’ve stayed in it a little longer. It kinda makes me wish Jim Jarmusch would make his own Twin Peaks and just create this world we could get lost in.
Just checking rotten tomatoes and yes everyone hates it but I liked it and I get that Jim Jarmusch doesn’t really make movies to be good, he just makes movies period. He must’ve just been driving through this town once and liked how it looked and wanted to film a movie there and was just like “What kind of movie haven’t I done?”
I dunno how to feel about it honestly because it’s probably the only thing close to a good zombie movie we’ll ever get and he wasn’t even taking it seriously. He made it just to take the piss out of it as a concept and I love it because it’s literally the type of thing I would do and have done haha.
But it’s just such a well executed movie by incredibly talented people it’s almost sad that it feels wasted but I also think that’s kind of the point. He wanted to get these amazingly talented people together just to make some silly fun schlock and it’s great.
Even if you’re not a fan of Jim Jarmusch, you’ve never seen one of his movies before just watch this, you’ll have some fun at least watching Tilda Swinton decapitating the living dead in a little smart car before she goes back to her home planet, *spoilers* as if it matters haha. The movie has no story but it doesn’t really need one the characters and the town are just so likeable you just want to get lost in them. Well I did haha. I said I was biased, I love Jim Jarmusch movies and shitty zombie movies and this is both.
This review kinda sucks, can’t really get to the core of the issue. I just like this movie and I think it’s necessary, it like sits in this nice little gap between Zombieland and Shaun of the Dead and old school zombie movies like Zombi and Night of the living dead and totally sort of wrecks Planet Terror or grindhouse or whatever that crap was called.
I dunno, I get why people would hate it but just go see it for yourself, there’s nothing quite like it. Say what you want about Jim Jarmusch movies, you will be entertained whether you like it or not.
If you didn’t like this movie fuck you, that’s all I have to say, end of review.
Haha ok no, might’ve been a little hasty there.
Yeah so like every other sentient being on this planet I saw this movie and I was just like ‘why does this need to exist?’ And it seems that that feeling has permeated to the core of the entire movie watching world so deep that they’ve forgotten how to actually enjoy a fun movie. In fact they wouldn’t even know one if it slapped them upside the head with a giant’s dong.
I’m one of these complete plebs that hasn’t read nor has any desire to read the hellboy comics so I wasn’t particularly interested in the Ron Pearlman movies. I thought they were kind of ok, they were watchable, like if they came on tv while I was cooking or something I wouldn’t turn them off because I liked the practical effects or whatever. They were ok, pretty much anything with like occult nazis and I’m interested but I was never really blown away by the movies. They were just sort of middling monster movies that were castrated for children, where all the gore became gunge or something. Not having read the comics I can’t attest to what demographic they’re aimed at but I hardly think a comic about a demon spawn killing monsters is aimed at kids.
Which is kind of ironic because the biggest criticism I see about this movie is that it’s a cynical cash in on the franchise during the superhero craze dying down now. But it’s not even aimed at kids, it’s a hard swearing gorefest hard R rating so which ones are the cynical cash grabs again? The ones made pg-13 to sell mcdonalds toys or the ones where hellboy cleaves a giants head in two with a sword the size of a minibus?
I dunno, I feel like I’m taking crazy pills here, and if you swapped the original hellboy movies with this one in terms of the time period it would be Ron Pearlman getting his dick knocked in the dirt.
What I’m trying to say is like me everyone cynical prick (me included) and their grandmother was ready to hate this movie because super hero fatigue has set in hard and it’s here to stay and people were more ready to give the Pearlman movies a fair shake because at the time we were only getting the tip of the cape shit fuckening that was to occur soon after leaving us all feeling sore and deeply ashamed as a culture.
Because I’m sitting here watching this movie, ready to hate it every moment of it (and the beginning bit sort of sucked) but this funny thing starts to happen about the time where hellboy is fighting three giants straight out of trollhunter or attack on titan mano e mano; I start to have this funny feeling, this tingling sensation that some scientists have called ‘having fun’.
The movie is just fun as all fuck. It’s balls to wall action and gore and just bad ass. There are bits of this movie that just had me reeling, it was just so gorey and awesome looking I wasn’t sure what I was looking at. It blends practical and digital effects really nicely and I think the tone is really cool, where it’s kind of light hearted but then it’s as violent and as gorey as a horror movie, so you get almost a black comedy vibe from it.
The movie is a good two hours long but there’s so much going on it doesn’t feel like a slog and even when you reach the halfway point so much has happened the first half could’ve been it’s own movie. In some respects the plot is a little rushed and not amazing but it has a solid structure where at the halfway mark he’s confronting the main villain and not having what he needs to defeat her he has to go back and measure himself.
The main cast are passable, I don’t know what accent Daniel Dae Kim was attempting the girl is kinda bleh, and it kinda wreaks of diversity woke squad where the only white man on the team is red. But David Harbour is great in this movie. The worst part of the original movies for me was the hammy acting from Pearlman. I like him, I think he has a cool voice and someone thought he’d be a cool hellboy but I think he was too old to play hellboy even then and now it would be ridiculous. You need someone old enough to be a tough cool Ron Pearlman character but also young enough to be a kind of a punk kid sometimes. The bits where Pearlman is acting like a brat in the original movies is so forced and lame and his self loathing just felt silly, like he was doing a rainman impression. I think Harbour is a lot more realised as Hellboy, he brings a lot more consistency and personality to the role, I just felt like his interpretation was a more three dimensional character instead of just Ron Pearlman painted red. I felt like his struggle with his humanity was more potent and less shlocky.
I think the villains could’ve been better, I loved the changeling pigman he was awesome, when you first meet him it’s almost stomach churning the level of unbridled carnage he wreaks on people. You really feel like if you encountered this thing you would shit your pants. But Milla Jovovich as a villain was unremarkable, it was just Milla Jovovich being herself, she didn’t look particularly interesting, she was sort of too likeable as villain. But I guess the point of the story is that Hellboy is his own worst villain so it kind of makes sense that his villains aren’t as interesting as he is. Because the battle is between himself, either he gives in to his demon nature and conquers the earth or he beats his demonself and saves humanity from… himself.
Overall it’s just a solid fun, no nonsense, not giving a fuck movie I think will be a cult classic. And I don’t think it’s a cynical cash grab I think someone saw deadpool and logan and were like “Why don’t we do the hellboy movie we want to do where people say ‘fuck’ and get torn apart by a giant pigman in the most grotesque way possible?”
It’s a no holes barred action gorefest like that isn’t possible today, legitimately I’m not being objective. I’m holding this movie up against the sterile cynical mass produced comic book prepackaged action shlock we get today like every marvel or in some regards even the John Wick movies that don’t really take any risks, they just set up action set pieces and then string them together with a loose plot no one cares about.
What I’m trying to say is I don’t think this movie was phoned in, I can tell when someone doesn’t give a shit and I can’t look at a single frame of this movie and say that someone didn’t love this. Even things as simple as the sets and some of the shooting locations I just had to stop and say it looked good. This movie looks good, it’s fun, it’s action packed, it’s not neat, it’s not clean, you can’t take your mum or your girlfriend to it, you can’t have soylent drinking thin bearded will wheaton ass motherfuckers soy smiling while they tell you how bad ass it is when thor was playing fortnite. There isn’t some forced shitty joke mandated by their corporate office to be instituted every ten minutes, this movie isn’t made in a factory. I think we’ve been so programmed by these factory farm movies coming out of the comic book industry we don’t know how to watch a movie not made in that mould. This movie fucking breaks the mould and takes a demon sized dump on it. Actually fuck it, I think I might start reading the comics just to see which was a closer adaptation. That’s how you know you watched a good comic book movie, where you actually want to go read the comics it’s based on. You literally can’t do that with marvel because there are like a million different versions of every character. You can’t walk into to a comic book store and just ask to buy a spiderman comic without spending a couple thousand hours on wikipedia first to decide which fucking spiderman in which timezone in which dimension.
Don’t take my word for it, watch it and make up your own mind, and I guarantee even if you didn’t like it, you’ll have fun with it. I’m looking at this through the lens of the previous movies and the castrated garbage we’re force fed daily from the comic book empires, and it looks good.
This review is totally just for me to get my thoughts out about this game because I left a really long review on the xbox game store and pressed back by mistake and it erased it all haha. So this is pure autism, I just have to review it to get it out of my head and never have to think about it again haha, ok here goes.
Broken Sword is one of my favourite games of all time, I say ‘game’ specifically instead of ‘series’ because there are five games now and only two are any good, the others are total shovelware. It was one of the first adventure games I played, on the gameboy advance I think and I played it over and over, it was just really cool to me to have this huge adventure on a handheld. The music, the characters, the writing the subject and history were all amazing to me so I played the subsequent games trying to recapture the magic of the first and almost none of them do sadly.
This game has been out for ages, but it’s one of those games that I buy purely for nostalgia and know will probably be shit so I don’t want to spend over a tenner to get it so I waited for a deep deep sale and got it for a fiver which is pretty much what it’s worth.
I’m not sure if it was released on ios but I was considering paying full price when I get a switch and I’m so glad I didn’t because it looks like a glorified phone game. I’m not one of these people who hated the shift to 3D with broken sword 3, I really liked that game, much more than the second one and I thought 3d with realistic graphics was the logical choice when dealing with the subject matter. A more mature tone is warranted when these games are all about cults and murder and ancient artefacts and crime.
But 5 isn’t interested in tone, it’s interested in getting your nostalgia bucks on top of the kickstarter money they fleeced out of people to make the ‘okayest’ broken sword ever. That’s right this was a fucking kickstarter project, another disaster from the website where dreams go to die or if not they kill themselves a few months later. Proving once again the public don’t know what they want and will pay to be involved in the production of their own disappointment.
Yeah so Broken Sword 5 abandons any idea of realism and it’s basically a cartoon with the animations and graphical style of a phone game. Some of the animations on your xbox avatars are better. Some of the cutscenes are laughably bad. Don’t get me wrong, I’m happy they went back to hand drawn backgrounds but the cell shaded characters was a terrible decision, they look terrible and it makes it all seem like a big joke.
The writing is also tonally really bad, broken sword is famously pretty funny even when dark stuff is happening but there’s a bit in this game where you wax a dead dog to wear it’s hair on your face to impersonate a dead man so you can dance with his drunk wife to get a key to her safe to seventies music while he’s in the room lying in a coffin. I’m not making this up, this happens in the game and fuck me, my brother walked in during the cringe inducing dance cutscene (which thankfully involves no qte) and I had to explain what the fuck was going on and honestly I’d rather have had him walking in on me watching a midget snuff film.
In the other games there was comedy elements but it never crossed the line into absurdity, you still took the game and the characters seriously which you should because it’s about murders and serious stuff, it’s not a my little pony dress up game. It used comedy as a break from the serious stuff, it was the levity that broke up the serious events and sense of danger, that heightened the tension in a lot of ways.
Comedy can be used to lower the guard of the audience to deliver a harder blow but this game is just fucking clown shoes. It doesn’t give a shit about the tone it just wants to have one of it’s villain be a Putin clone that sounds like the talking meercats on that insurance ad because it thinks it’s funny for some reason.
The game is also split into two parts as some sort of retarded marketing scheme nobody asked for. The first part is basically a red herring and the second half is the main plot but they’re both kind of shit. Some of the puzzles are alright I guess, but some are fucking batshit and some make no sense or sounded cool on paper and were just kind of nonsensical in practice.
Like there’s one where you have to make a paperclip sticky by rolling it in jam and then sticking it to a bug who you use to bridge a circuit with the paperclip using biscuit crumbs to attract the bug because you can’t reach it yourself. Somehow I got this puzzle right away but I almost had to slap myself and just go ‘what the fuck was that?’I mean what were they thinking?
I can’t imagine how angry I would’ve been if I got stuck on it haha. But somehow I was in tune with the game’s broken logic.
Then there’s a puzzle where you have to decrypt a telegram with a substitution cipher. And it was pretty challenging so I used a hint. The hint system works like this, it gives you a vague clue, then another one and then it just fucking tells you answer.
And the hint told me that telegrams always end with the word ‘Stop’ and I was like ‘dat makes sense’ then I started thinking ‘who would know that?’ What child picking this game up for the first time would know how a telegram worked? And then I started thinking but how would you encode a telegram? And why would the ‘Stop’s be encoded? Aren’t they like that so they can be transferred between telegraph posts?
Then there’s this other puzzle where you have to translate this tablet with this key but none of the keys are on the translated part and it was an ok puzzle but some of the puzzles are so easy that to go from some of the puzzles to this was just like wtf?? The difficulty is just really inconsistent.
The storyline is total garbage the characters are pretty cringe, it’s about gnosticism this idea that god and the devil are equals keeping the world in balance. The writing is just unbearable, I remember combing through every line in the first games, in this I skipped most of it because I can’t stand the pauses between lines of shitty dialogue. Every line they do this irritating unnatural pause.
Also this sounds like a nitpick, but why can’t George run? I don’t give a shit if it’s not immersive that this patent lawyer is running all over the place, he can glue a dead dogs fur to his face but he has to walk around the room like he needs a stroller. I remember activating a puzzle and having to do it over and over and each time he had to walk between these two points and I just had to watch as he casually worked between these spots for no other reason than having a run animation would be too much of a step away from the nostalgia of the original.
Yeah his walking speed was also annoying in the originals, it’s ok to improve on things like that. But that’s the main problem with this game, it’s just trying to copy the original, it’s playing it safe in every respect. It just wanted to clock in make a bog standard copy of broken sword 1 and get it’s nostalgia cheque and punch out. There’s no innovations in gameplay or story. There weren’t even any fail states, in the original games you can die, you can fail and be murdered even in the gameboy advance version. In this you literally can’t fail and it even has some choices you can make that add up to nothing.
It sort of hints that you can choose between lucifer or god or keep the balance but it’s total bullshit there’s no choice, there’s only one ending, because they couldn’t be bothered to write any other endings and they’re already planning a sequel and can’t have an ambiguity in the canon.
The ending is totally pants too. You’re dealing with something that can kill a god and it’s just sort of the standard ‘oh we entered the cave then blew everything up and then run away dramatically’ bit.
All this build up to just basically a fart of an ending. It was underwhelming and I just couldn’t stand any of the characters outside of George and Nico, they were just badly written, none of the villains seemed very threatening, they were just cheesy and cartoony. There was no tension, no bite, no threat whatsoever, it felt like it was totally just aimed at kids. It was just meh, minimum effort with phone game tier puzzles.
It just doesn’t really go anywhere, you never learn about who created the painting the game is about or why, it’s all very surface level stuff, there isn’t a lot of history or depth to the story. In Broken sword 1 you felt the history and you felt like you were a part of the history and you were delving deeper into it but there was always mystery there like you’d never know the whole truth picking through the bones of the past.
I mean when it comes down to games like this you need to fucking bring it with the characters and the story and the puzzles because it’s all the game has. There are tons of games that have all those things as well as combat systems and dialogue trees and all this extra stuff. So when a game is so simple you really need to nail the limited things you have to offer. You can’t give a game a pass on it’s puzzles and story when that’s the game.
So overall if you’re a broken sword fan like me, get it, but get it for the right price, don’t pay twenty quid for this game, it’s not worth it in time spent or the quality of the game. Get it on sale, get a digital copy and save your money and think twice before picking up Broken Sword 6 because it’ll be more of this nostalgia gouging bullshit.
Also I was thinking back to the previous games and I realised I haven’t even played Broken sword 4 but I looked it up and it has the worst reviews of all the Broken sword games. So it’s surprising 5 came out at all and was as average as it turned out to be.