In the months leading up to Bulletstorm's release, there was a constant wave of "this game is too immature" and "this looks dumb" that churned a little too hard in my stomach. It almost felt like audiences were saying that video games, especially those of the shooting variety, were not allowed to be *GASP* immature, raunchy, and goofball in nature. Sure, we like to stand on our pretentious soapboxes and claim that games are an "art", that we want to be "taken seriously". Oddly enough, this comes from the same group of people that...on a regular basis...find themselves posting internet meme pictures up, making dick and fart jokes, using a word like "Rapelay" for comedy, and generally are...immature.
However, there are going to be nay-sayers. There are going to be those that look at it as little more than "Duke Nukem reincarnate". They look at it as "bro'd out". They look at it with these judgmental eyes like they are somehow above it.
You will lay claim to your Last Guardian and Zelda...even your Modern Warfare and Battlefield...but in the end, the level of pretentiousness you show with this seriousness that you believe the industry must have in everything they do only shows that we've lost our way. Bulletstorm is less an interactive experience like many "games" we see and more of an actual GAME . There is a points system. There is the Echoes mode, showcasing leaderboards for those scores and grading your performance. There's the multiplayer, which is a cooperative match of "yo, shoot the fuck out of things and work as a team to achieve a certain score or it's kind of game over".
If anything, Bulletstorm does what other shooters have failed to do: it brings the "game" element back to shooting games. It gives you the story you need, but it excels in the gameplay you want. It offers a unique perspective on a genre that needs to remember its roots while still bringing some modern elements into the mix. Most shooters are self-serious, but Bulletstorm is self-aware.
If only they would've gotten rid of the thumb-sucking-pussy-behind-a-piece-of-cover-to-get-health-back mechanic and put in health packs or something of the sort (hell, make alcohol give me health back!), this game would've been a great throwback that still felt modern. Even without that, Bulletstorm is easily going to be in my top five games of the year when award season rolls around.
Thank you, People Can Fly.