Thursday, November 11, 2010

More armor, less cleavage

Okay, time for a real post.

I only realized that Vanquish was by the same studio that unleashed Bayonetta onto the world after I looked them up on wikipedia, but having learned this everything about the game suddenly makes more sense. I liked everything about Bayonetta that had nothing to to with the titular character. It was only fun if I ignored that gratuitousness. Vanquish is down right tame in comparison, with a protagonist trying very hard to be Snake, right down to smoking between every fight and complaining that he never gets to finish one. I am not going to say that the actual combat in Vanquish is better than Bayonetta. It is not as deep and a little more friendly to mashing out rocket launcher shots. But I will say that Vanquish was much more fun simply because it was much less in my face about everything little thing it did. It is proof that you can have a relatively frantic action game without filling it with t&a and still make fun to play.

There were much more difficult modes to go through, including God Hard which I unlocked after finishing it on normal, but such personal abuse does not hold my attention. I walked away from Demon's Souls because it was hard for no reason beyond being hard, so I am certainly not going to subject myself to games modes designed to drive revenue towards replacement third party controllers. Work and life are full enough of stress, I don't need to add more in my few hours of daily leisure time.

Which makes me wonder why I still play Street Fighter. Nothing angers up the blood like losing to flowchart Kens. I can't blame them for using tactics that work, though, and it is no ones fault but my own for not simply slowing down my own game and punishing blocked flaming srk's. There are plenty of fireball spamming Ryu's out there, too, but I ran into a completely different kind last night: a turtle Ryu. As soon as the match started he hit down back and sat there, throwing out a fireballs at annoyingly safe intervals. This is actually a reasonable tactic to use on Blanka, as as soon as a Blanka player gets impatient (not that that ever happens to me....) he will beat himself with unsafe moves. Sure enough after half a match of doing nothing I got reckless, attempted hop in throws, and was punished accordingly. Next time I was smarter, got a life lead, and turtled him right back. It was at this point that I realized this Ryu player was not nearly as good as I gave him credit for: he had no other plan. He was a toothless Ryu, incapable of mounting his own offense even when I started coward crouching under fireballs. It was still not at easy fight, but I did win and it was a good test of my nerves. Doing nothing only works when your opponent is afraid of you doing something. Without conditioning an opponent to hesitate you are just wasting everyones time.

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