Uncharted 2/Brutal Legend/Machinarium Smörgåsbord of thoughts.


 Pictured: A smörgåsbord.   
 Pictured: A smörgåsbord.   
 

 Smörgåsbord ( [ˌsmœrɡɔsˈbuːɖ]) is a type of Scandinavian meal served buffet-style with multiple dishes of various foods on a table. In Norway it is called koldtbord and in Denmark it is called kolde bord. Smörgåsbord became internationally known as Smorgasbord at the 1939 New York World's Fair when it was offered at the Swedish Pavilion's "Three Crowns Restaurant". It is typically a celebratory meal and guests can help themselves from a range of dishes laid out for their choice. In a restaurant, the term refers to a buffet-style table laid out with many small dishes from which, for a fixed amount of money, one is allowed to choose as many as one wishes. 

I know what your thinking, and yes, I am offered buffet style eatery everywhere I go. 
To be fair, I get my service after threatening patrons with a blunt weapon. Perhaps it's different in Sweden. Like a different culture or something. 
 
I tried to type this yesterday. Actually I did type this yesterday, but things didn't work out and the site timed out. 
There were many tears shed, and fictional wars regarding breakfast food was committed.  

 Vidiot's Brain Dump was established in 1823.
 Vidiot's Brain Dump was established in 1823.

Uncharted 2: Or, how to get mortally injured multiple times and survive?!


 I HATE Uncharted 2.
 
Sitting at a ludicrous 97% at MetaCritic, with many of the reviews written weeks in advance before the release of the game, my expectations for Uncharted 2 were high.
 
No, let me rephrase that. I set my expectations at: "I will be disappointing if Jesus does not jump out of the box" level. To my dismay the second coming did not begin when I opened my copy of Uncharted 2, I assumed that the game would break some spectral barrier when I put the game in my console. 
Instead it apparently silently installed, and then booted. 
 
I sat ready to pounce on this game. My critique radar was set a level I haven't set in years, and then in horror, I stared dumbfounded as this game proceeded to laugh at my expectations. As the opening train level continued, it then proceeded to educate me where my expectations should have been set. Then it mocked me more.
Then it took my money and spent it on drugs.
 
Okay, no, that last part wasn't true.
 
Okay, I don't hate Uncharted 2. I want to not like it though. I haven't seen a game like this in a long time, something with unbelievable production values coupled with some of the best pacing and refined gameplay I have ever seen. At first I thought I would complain about the cover system, how Drake sometimes still is a little roll happy and sometimes rolls instead of sticking to a wall. This does not break the game, it's a stupid nitpick. So that doesn't count as a complaint. I was then going to complain how the game used action movie cliches, but it's clearly trying to be an action movie. It's like getting angry at Lost Odyssey for being a Final Fantasy game. The game clearly knows what it's trying to be. It doesn't help me that the game has better writing than a majority of the action films from last summer. 
 
It's the best game I've played in a while. I realized halfway through playing that if I was going to find something to deter my developing opinion that it was a great game, it would be nothing more but a nitpick. I've read other complaints, more specifically how the levels are linear, which sounds more like a description of the game more than a complaint. Linearity in a game?! Say it aint so! Were going to start complaining about level linearity with Uncharted 2? 
Well there goes a few...genres..
 
A lot has been said about the games production values, and yes it's simply the best looking game I've seen in a while. I haven't felt overwhelmed by a games visuals in a long time, this game succeeded in just that.
 
Also, I would like to point out that the game has color. Yes, color. In this day of age, it's great to see a high profile game like this look realistic and have a color palate that ranges more than just gray, black and shit. I also like the anatomically correct looking characters, writing that doesn't have a bunch of cursing mascaraing as a "mature storyline", and a lengthy scenario that has a beginning middle and end.
 
Hand to hand combat is only relegated with two buttons.
 
Ah-HA! Why isn't this game like Street Fighter? No intricate combo's Drake? Wow! This game fails!

  Pictured: Drake not doing a hadouken  .
 Pictured: Drake not doing a hadouken  .
Actually the downgrade in combat works wonders in practice and makes more sense than the first game. I thought I wasn't going to break the satire, but I couldn't leave it there. I'll try harder next time, leave you with that statement and incite 50 page flamebait responses.

Brutal Legend- I'm so confused.

 
Where do I start with this game? 
Well for one, the developers have great respect for the subject matter of metal. The game almost oozes with a palpable fondness for it's context and source material. 
It's just too bad that the game doesn't know what it's trying to be from a gameplay standpoint.
 
I'm all for splicing genres, but in Brutal Legend's case it cant seem to find which genre is it's great at. The definition of being a "jack of all trades, master of none" really holds water here so far. 
 
Actually, that's not quite true. Brutal Legend's world has the common theme of being metal, but has a varied landscape. The hand-to-hand action oriented gameplay works just fine, as well as it's stellar presentation. These are all things that Double Fine has proven before it has experience with.
An open-world game, coupled with RTS elements are mechanics that Double Fine hasn't tried yet. They're pretty big mechanics. It's not just something you just jump into, let alone combine on your first try. It's inexperience. The same problem I saw with the first Assassins Creed, in which both games have similar problems regarding the lack of things you can do in the game's many side quests. 
 
But nothing too terrible has come from it yet. I haven't finished the game yet, (it's length seems to be a big problem.) and I'm curious to see where the gameplay goes. I've had a ton of fun with it so far, but it's problems are noticeable. 
 

Machinarium- The adventure game you haven't played but need too.


Along with Axel and Pixel, I saw this game at Pax and walked away greatly impressed. It's still great, and any fan of adventure games should check out this out. The world has a haunting, yet inviting look to it. Anyone who's interested in something different should check out the demo. 
 
So to reiterate:
  1. Smörgåsbord
  2. Uncharted 2 deserves the praise, even though I don't want to admit it because I have ego issues.
  3. Brutal Legend is a confusing game.
  4. You are a terrible, terrible person until you check out Machinarium.
  5. Smörgåsbord 
 So that's it. I'm still knee deep in games. I hope nothing else distracts me. Like Trine finally coming out for PS3 or something. HAH! Yeah, like that will ever happen!
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