We booted up Dead Island last night having had it delivered in a timely fashion by the excellent ShopTo, however we were immediately disappointed by the game as it lacks any local co-op options what so ever! After all the hours of fun we’ve had playing the likes of Borderlands, Gears of War and Left4Dead split screen, whilst also joining up with others online this came as somewhat of a shock. The only other game to let us down in this way in recent years was Red Dead, however given that’s more of a single player game with added multiplayer modes it was less offensive.
I’ve taken the step of emailing DeepSilver over the matter but I’m doubting we’ll get much of a response. Here is the contents of that mail:
Hello, my wife and I have been looking forward to playing Dead Island together since seeing the trailer, and have had the game on pre-order for some time. Well it arrived last night to our home and we booted it up expecting to find the same sort of co-op fun we’ve enjoyed over countless hours in other largely multi player games like Borderlands, Left4Dead 1&2, Gears of War, the Halo series, and so on. We were immediately let down by the fact that the was absolutely no split-screen option! Whilst we have come across this before in other games, most recently Red Dead Redemption, they have always been largely single player games and so we can forgive them somewhat. But in a game squarely focused on multi player it seems an absurd oversight!
I realise that in the minds of many the idea of same room multi player is in decline, but the number of couples who game together is on the rise and so this is a market that really shouldn’t be over looked. Obviously this is an extreme long shot, but I don’t suppose there is any chance of Split screen being patched into the game? Would imagine retro fitting it would be difficult, which to be honest only adds to the surprise that it wasn’t considered earlier in the development cycle. Looking forward to hearing an explanation of why this was not considered a requirement for a modern multi player game. Should we get any kind of response I’ll be sure to share it.
Annoyingly we tested the game out a little in single player and it looks like it would have been a very fun game for the two of us. How such an option can be overlooked in a world where the number of gaming couples is on the rise is a mystery to us.
Edit : After reading through the majority of responses here the main point people have is that I should have done my research on the game. This I can not argue. I made an assumption based on an expectation I myself created, based on other games I've played, that a split screen mode would be core to a co-op game. I assumed a dev would want to allow you to play with other people in whatever way you would choose to encourage you to play. It would appear we've just been lucky in our choices of games in recent times to have not run into this problem before.
Another point was that it comes across that I am 'attacking' the devs or sounding like I was tricked into buying a game I wouldn't have otherwise bought. That was not my intent. In fact what I've seen of the game is very promising and we will be playing this a little online, and then a lot more later when we are comfortable with the price of a second copy. If anything it's the promise of the game that made me care enough to contact them about it. Had it have looked like a broken game we would have just walked away.
I guess we had just fallen into a pattern of buying a copy of a game, playing splitscreen, and then if it proved to be 'a keeper' then investing in that second copy. Something we have done many times in the past couple of years In future we will be more cautious!
Originally posted on our Blog: http://playtogetherstaytogether.co.uk/?p=470
I'm not one for marathoning a game usualy. I'm far more likely to just dip in for one to three hours on a work night, leaving the weekends for some multiplayer fun in Gears or L4D. However this past weekend saw a change to that. With Linda out of the house on Saturday for a chocolate making workshop, the results of which were divine, I loaded up Batman: Arkham Asylum. The Last Save Loaded for this was dated January. January 2010! Had it really been so long? And why had I stopped playing? I recalled really enjoying the game, but I think Linda saw me playing, started her go and for some reason I never jumped back on when she had finished.
So here we where, over eighteen months later and I powered up the XBOX to continue my story. Having been so long I elected to ignore the old save game and start over, probably a wise move as the combat system in Arkham Asylum, whilst wonderfully executed, takes a little while to get into the timing of so those early battles helped rekindle the muscle memory for the combat. Deciding to focus, as I usually do these days, on just getting through the story I only picked up Riddler trophies I saw out in the open and had to walk past anyway, and so I made quick progress through the gameplay I had already seen. Starting at around 11:00 I was probably past my previous stopping point by 13:00, which was surprising. I can only assume I way taking a lot more time looking for clues and secrets on my first play.
The combat always entertained and the empowered feeling you get from being the Batman is spot on. Always wary of gun fire, but otherwise feeling smarter and quicker than all the enemies thrown at you. Not that I didn't hit fights were I had to strategise, to out think the AI trying several techniques until I found the one that worked for me. Or occasionally believing I was safe to eliminate an inmate on the stealth sections when I clearly wasn't, having to take to the rafters and leap about like a crazed fool until I lost them. But you always feel in control, that Batman knows what he is doing and will take them all down. And it's this that sets this game above others that try the same approach. Batman should feel like this, the confidence to handle whatever is thrown at him, the gadgets coming it at just the right point to help him along ultimately overcoming the challenges to see justice done. The fact that I now wish I knew more about the universe of Batman is testament enough to the power of what has been created.
And so, with only a brief break, when Linda returned, for food and for her to check out Bully which we've bought On Demand for the 360 despite only just buying it for PC last week and already owning it on Wii, I finished the game at around 00:40. I'd estimate my total playtime at around 9 hours which for me is a great length of a game story. I spent Sunday picking up all the Riddler clues and Arkham history titbits I hadn't come across during the story, a set of 3 teeth in the Mansion being the hardest to find so am left with only the challenges to master to get 100% however that might only be a dream. Whilst the combat system is fluid and fun, I am no master at it and probably never will be. Combo fights are not something I've ever been good at, one of the reasons that games like Bayonetta have little to no draw for me. But I already feel I've had my time with Batman well used. All I can hope now is that Arkham City is at least on a par. That will make me very happy indeed!
One of the hidden advantages of becoming so focused on XBOX 360 gaming of late is that I haven’t bought a truly new game for the PC in quite some time now. This has risen to the perfect chance to catch up on some older games I never got around to actually playing much at the time for various reasons, and actually knock some titles of my PC Pile of Shame.
Once such game is Republic: The Revolution. A strategy game of politics set in a fictional ex-Soviet Eastern Bloc country that is now controlled by a corrupt dictator whom you have sworn to overturn. The advantage this game has over a lot of older games, from the point of view of playing it now, is that it’s graphics settings featured a ‘Totality’ setting that was way beyond the capabilities of 99% of PCs available when it was originally released way back in 2003. This allows a modern day play through using graphics which still look decent, if lacking in some of the more whizzy graphical effects, however for a game such as it is they are more than serviceable. What’s amusing is this is pretty much the same thing that happened with Crysis, however there people called the developer out for creating a game so over the top graphically. Maybe they just needed to rename the settings from Ultra, or whatever it was, to ‘Future’.
The game runs on a turn based day, and each of your characters can perform up to three actions each day. Various tasks can be assigned such as Head-hunt, survey, investigate, however each person is only skilled in a couple of these, and indeed these skills can be leveled up as they gain success. My main character in the game always seems to excel in influence which is based on your responses to a series of questions at the start of each game, and I focused my original head hunt on a wealthy number two, leaving me somewhat exposed on the Force front, however hopefully I can make up for that later.
Once you start investigating the areas of the city you will uncover both people who you can attempt to recruit to your cause as well as location that can be useful for various activities just as interviews and rallies. And basically that is as far as i ever got with the game in the past. I had some weird bug on my old system which made the game eventually grind to a halt when in the 3D mode, however having been through 2 PC systems since those days I’m hopefully I might get to actually play the game properly this time, and at least get a real feel for it rather than just a taster.
I’ve always had the feeling I was missing something special with this game, it will be interesting to find out over the coming weeks.
(This entry was originally posted on my person blog Stex Toys)
There’s been the usual blow up and hoo-hah about the new paid for avatar clothing, and anything I’d have to say on the subject has already been said many times over around the net, so I’ll just summarise this with an example.
Can you pay money for someone to put art on your body? Certainly
Would I ever do so? Probably Not
Will I defend someone’s right to do so (within reason): Absolutly
That said.. anyone who buys any single item from the avatar marketplace forfeits their right to complain about The Sims Addon Packs!