Ladies and gentlemen, give a warm applause to a new feature here at TVGB — Latened Reviews. Good, and now hope you don’t see it too often — you see, Latened Reviews will contain mini-reviews of titles that we just couldn’t get reviewed within a normal timeframe, mostly because the arrival of review copies was simply delayed for one reason or another. But, these are games that are still relevant to gamers’ buying decisions so without further ado, we present our first edition of Latened Reviews, starring Alone in the Dark and Dragon Ball Z: Burst Limit.
Alone In The Dark (Xbox 360). This game has been getting an endless amount of flak lately and while it definitely has it’s share of issues with quality and polish, I believe the Imperial Death March that plays whenever someone mentions this game is a wee bit overblown.
Lets start with the good stuff first. The game looks good. The graphics are solid for the most part with a lot of good textures and more-than-impressive fire effects. Flames will spread realistically on anything that burns and if you don’t have an extinguisher handy it will make your experience much more difficult.
The storyline on the other hand is just as cheesy as you can imagine and the characters are your stereotypical “hard-ass amnesiac” and “whiny broad”. The writing is, indeed, sub-par at best, but with a game where you find yourself fighting a hoard of demons whose only weakness is fire, you’re not going to be all that concerned with the character’s dialogue anyway. The controls are also a matter of concern as they try to do too many things perfectly and end up only managing to do the basic stuff decently, horribly aborting any additional functionality.
All the gripes against this game, while frustrating at times, doesn’t take away from the fact that it’s been a while since any game reminded me of Resident Evil on the PlayStation. That’s the kind of feeling it evokes from me and I know a couple of other folks who happen to share that same sentiment as well. Now, a lot of folks tend to look back on RE and RE2 with rose-colored glasses and forget that they both had sub-standard controls and convoluted stories that pave the way perfectly for a title like Alone In The Dark. Had AitD come out on the PS1, with controls and dialogue to match that system, it would have been a smash hit, but these days it seems the vast majority of gamers are getting a little high on the horse when it comes to “enjoying” their games.
That, in a nutshell, is Alone In The Dark. A title that falls victim to people who expect every game to be as polished and perfect as the big-hitters of today. AitD isn’t perfect by any means, it is far from it in fact. However, I managed to enjoy it just the same.