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Average User Score: 4.0Jun 2, 2012Riding on the coattails of its predecessors, Diablo III ingenuously tugs at our most primitive and simple pleasures, and at its core, theRiding on the coattails of its predecessors, Diablo III ingenuously tugs at our most primitive and simple pleasures, and at its core, the game's fun in the same way that a slot machine is fun. As far as gameplay mechanics, the depth in character customization isn't really apparent until you reach around level 20, so you've initially got to stick with the whole click-fest drudgery before you can really experience all of what the game's got to offer. Also, itâ… Expand
Average User Score: 8.2Dec 4, 2011This is abridged. You can see the whole thing at http://resthard.blogspot.com before passing judgment here.
Bad Things Armor/Apparel (someThis is abridged. You can see the whole thing at http://resthard.blogspot.com before passing judgment here.
Armor/Apparel (some skill development stuff too)
Morrowind was great in this department, the way players could stack various pieces of unique armor (Left Gauntlet, Right Gauntlet, Left Pauldron, Right Pauldron, Cuirass, et-cetera) on top of clothing and stuff, enchanting each piece of apparel with enchantments to boost stats in myriad ways. Of all the things to streamline (to put it nicely), why this? I mean, Skyrim left a lot of crap in the game that really didn't need to be in it, so who's the guy who was ultimately in charge of determining where the line would be drawn in terms of content? It's okay to implement a bunch of amateurish combat finishing animations that add absolutely nothing to the game, but when it comes to apparel customization, four main pieces of armor's the limit. And one ring, players can only equip one ring at a time. Where's the sense in that? Give me the option to at least equip two rings without having to find or make a mod!
Say what you will about balancing the gameplay mechanics and player stats, this has nothing to do with it; otherwise, Bethesda would've spent more time fleshing out how skills are developed. The player can become, for example, a master-level blacksmith by making hundreds of leather bracers over and over again. Bethesda could have at least added milestones in skill development --you know, maybe a player would have to craft some specific armor set before he/she's able to move on to a higher skill level. But no, leveling skills, if that's something you're focusing on, has the potential to feel like a simple grind. And on this note, since when can mortals craft Daedric armor and weapons? Also, the fact that the components needed to craft more complex pieces of armor and weapons is so frighteningly simplified leaves me feeling unsettled. I find it hard to believe that with three, 0.1 stone leather strips and five, 1 stone ebony ingots, one can craft an elaborate piece of 38 stone ebony armor.
Despite what Bethesda says, the only thing that's been remotely updated are the combat animations, and even those leave much to be desired (there's zero finesse when it comes to fighting in Skyrim, in terms of both look and feel). Every fight can be handled in the same way. As it is with the entire game, and when it comes to doing battle in particular, Skyrim's made it so that players don't have to think. Even fights against dragons aren't all they're cracked up to be, as all the player's got to do is wait for a dragon to land before running up to it and assaulting it with a barrage of low-brow flurries. And why bother adding V.A.T.S. style kill animations if they all end up looking awkward?
The animations themselves lack a certain finesse, though this is something more of a personal feeling. Sure, the game takes place in Skyrim, but does everyone have to look like a barbarian when they fight, tactlessly swinging their weapons about like muck-raking savages? Adding variety to animations or, if nothing else, making the different attacks more cohesive with one another would work out better. Take a page from Dark Souls --that game's got some really nice attack animations -- excellent sense of weight, good timing, finesse -- and they all fit with one another; that is to say, I believe that my character in Dark Souls is capable of performing all of these varied moves with all of these varied weapons.
A few other things
Level scaling is back, and while it's a little more subtle than it was in Oblivion, it's still a huge drag. The field of view is claustrophobia-inducing; would've been nice to add an option to change that instead of needing to tweak .ini files. The seemingly blatant disregard to ensuring how different armor pieces stack with one another is unacceptable (for example, wearing a hooded robe with a mask makes my character's head disappear).
Morrowind felt like an immersive experience. Skyrim feels like a game and nothing more. As much as I'd like to explore the beautifully realized world of Skyrim, I know that underneath the nice veneer is a rotten core. I don't understand how games like Risen and Two Worlds II get metacritic scores in the 70's while Skyrim gets a 95.
The bottom line is this: For the $60 price tag and for all the hype surrounding it, I shouldn't have to settle. I should be wowed by Skyrim, and I'm not. I don't wanna have my hand held when I play a game, and I'm sick of being reminded about how lame my Skyrim experience is by its numerous quirks. Skyrim is a horrible ode to the direction in which the game industry is headed. Playing Skyrim makes me miss Morrowind.… Expand
Average User Score: 8.7Jul 15, 2011Call of Pripyat's oozing with atmosphere, the bullet physics are some of the best in any FPS out there (the nuances in bullet trajectories isCall of Pripyat's oozing with atmosphere, the bullet physics are some of the best in any FPS out there (the nuances in bullet trajectories is really apparent once you start customizing your firearms), and the dialogue is entertaining and completely believable while still being informative. Also, it's fun to explore the myriad mysteries the expansive and nicely detailed Zone has to offer. When your roll all that up, you get one of the most immersive and exhilarating gaming experiences out there.
P.S. Folk shouldn't compare this game to others like CoD and Crysis, 'cause it's got its own unique thing going.… Expand