Monday, August 13, 2007

Burned Again

The frustration continues to mount for me in my quest to find just one fucking playable game. Today I traded in some junk, including Rayman Raving Rabbids and Marvel Ultimate Alliance, both of which I did not enjoy, and got the Harry Potter game for the Wii. The reviews I read were all very favorable, citing exploration as being a big part of the game, and the use of the Wii remote as a wand as a great control.

Not so. I came to a point where George and Fred Weasley explain some spells to Harry and Ron, and you have to execute them to continue. The first one, no problem. The second one, I tried for about a half an hour and simply could not get.

The spell is aptly named Stupefy. The action involves thrusting both the Wii remote and the nunchuck controller forward simultaneously. In spite of having no trouble at all doing any of the other spells so far, this one could not be done. I tried several stances, all kinds of twists, I tried accomodating for lag, and had no luck.

On the screen, all my attempts barely made Harry's arm move at all. Thus, my fifty dollar investment in this piece of crap has yielded about a hour of playing. This year, so far, there have only been three games - Zelda Twilight Princess, Super Mario World, and Wii Sports - that I have had any fun with. Everything else I've played has been utter shit.

I'm not having fun in Ultima Online. I have Guild Wars : Factions but cannot get into that. Metroid Prime for the Gamecube is an exercise in frustration, having few save points and absolutely sinister design (example - having two henchmen appear immediately after a sub-boss battle, before you can save, is insane. The people who designed this game are clearly expressing their absolute contempt for gamers).

I have some great DS and GBA games, but for fuck's sake I just want a modern, good looking game I can play on a nice big screen and enjoy. Why is that so much to ask? Overall, the Wii has been a major disappointment, and there really is no relief in sight.

I ask myself - maybe I'm so "middle - aged" now that my time with videogames has passed. Maybe I just can no longer keep up with what gaming has become.

But then I remember that I have beat Resident Evil 4, the entire King's Field series, Phoenix Wright Ace Attorney, Medal of Honor Frontline, Beyond Good and Evil, Paper Mario : The Thousand Year Door, The Legend of Zelda - The Minish Cap, and Super Paper Mario, all in the last two years. And I've played almost all the way through The Legend of Zelda - Twilight Princess.

If a game is designed well by having sensible game play, good controls, and a low frustration factor, then I will get into it and enjoy it. Lately, though, I cannot find such a game to save my life. Couple that with my tight budget and limited play time, and you can see where all this frustration is coming from.

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