Dishonored… A few notes…

So, recently I’ve had the privilege of playing a bit of Dishonored, and while the game looks good, and has some good gameplay reminiscent of Metal Gear Solid. There are a few qualms I have with the game. One being, the AI isn’t perfect, but I can forgive that. I’d like an Autosave feature that saves after each objective completed, including optional objectives, or say entering a different part of an area, an autosave should happen.

Pointing out during load screens as a hint that you should save often, didn’t bode well for me and as such, pissed me off, because I forgot to save, and ended up at the beginning of the mission, in the boat to the Distillery District. So about an hour of gameplay progress lost, due to a lack of an autosave. We live in 2012, every game should have both auto save and manual save with multiple save files, to ensure things work out properly.

Positives, so far –

Blink: very cool and very helpful magic trick allowing you to move 10-15 feet in a single bound. This is very useful to getting to the tops of buildings, rather quickly. It would be nice to use this without having to use the left equipment slot for the left hand.

Mechanical heart: Kinda cool, helping in locating relics and bone charms, but when the item is found, I kinda feel it shouldn’t have to be equipped in order to pick up said object. Also for listening to secrets to levels.

Dark Vision: Kinda like the detective mode in the Batman Arkham games, very useful for tracking enemy movements and seeing through walls, and later on for detecting items in rooms.

Varying weapons for combat: dual wielding is one of my favourites for melee and projectile weapons, crossbow with multiple attachments, and a gun.

Different types of assisting items: like disabling trip wires, mechanical devices, and mines.

Graphics may not be on the level of detail like that of Crysis, but the game’s graphics are very well done, with nice palette choices and good enough detail so that people and cities look interesting and beautiful in the better looking cities and landscapes.

Load Screens:  VERY FAST, some of the best load times I’ve had in a very long time.

Celebrity voice overs: (some of the more famous ones).

Susan Sarandon (Rocky Horror Picture Show) – Granny Rags

Lena Headey (300, Terminator series, Dredd) – Calista Cunrow

Carrie Fisher (Star Wars) – (No name) Alternate Street Speaker

Chloe Grace Moretz (Hitgirl from Kick Ass) – Lady Emily Kaldwin

April Stewart (South Park) – Empress Jessamine Kaldwin

John Slattery (Howard Stark from Iron Man 2) – Admiral Havelock

(Full cast list available on IMDB, Wiki, etc, etc.)

These are just some of the things I’ve noticed with Dishonored from my time playing it and researching the cast. As Brent had me run it and during one of the cut scenes with Admiral Havelock, I was like “Hey, that’s Howard Stark from Iron Man 2.”

So, this is not a review, just some observations and thoughts on the game so far.

Looper

So this one will be a shorty, as I have another blog in me lined up to follow tonight.

this poster fits the movie better than others.

So, on Tuesday, I went with Brent to see Looper. I happen to enjoy the movie, because it deals with one of my favourite science fiction sub-genres… time travel. This kind of time travel story, is one I know from previous science fiction concepts, and it works well. Star Trek had also performed a similar paradox movement, with Next Generation’s finale. I didn’t know quite how the movie would accomplish the paradox, but as soon as the third variable to the story appeared, where the paradox laid, that’s when I started to realize what was really going on, instead of just Bruce Willis trying to survive his younger self. As you may have guessed from the trailer as this is no spoiler, the mob controls time travel devices to send people back in time, to when killing and disposing of people was easier. Things go askew when some of the people sent back are in fact the older versions of the killers, in this story, Loopers. Willis and Gordon-Levitt, as you may have already guessed from the trailers, are the same man, just 30 years apart.

The theme in this movie has been seen before, it’s just the execution varies, it’s very well paced, and thought out. The writer keeps you guessing for some parts, while falling on old pin points throughout to keep things going. You get tidbits of information as the movie progresses, showing you what the final events will happen. An idea happens part way through, and then as we get closer to the final scenes, that idea grows and becomes huge. You’ll see what I mean when you see the movie.

The movie is shot and cut extremely well, giving us good angles and showing us all of the action necessary, one nitpick though is one action scene that I wanted to see, but was never shown. Maybe they’ll put it in  the DVD and Blu-Ray extended cut, if there is an extended version. You’ll see what I mean in that regard when it comes to the Jeff Daniels character. I can see a bright future for the director, as this is a big win for him in terms of a movie, should he continue being a director.

Both versions of the main character Joe, have different depths, the young one is very much an older soul inhabiting a younger body as it were, as his choice of clothing is reminiscent of the 50’s, but he drives a car of the 90’s, and goes clubbing to have some social interaction with his fellow loopers. While the older one has gotten to the point in his life where he’s trying to save his own past and future, because he’s found something to fight for, something his past self had yet to experience.

The characters and actors portraying them are extremely well done, making us believe that they are who they’re playing, as Bruno usually looks good in anything, and Gordon-Levitt is starting the same trend. Daniels is usually playing varying roles, to keep him from going stale, which is good. Blunt’s character in the movie to me feels necessary and what happens between her and young Joe, to me also felt necessary as it gives young Joe something to fight for, much like Old Joe has. Although Brent didn’t agree with me on a particular scene, I’ll leave that up to you guys, you’ll know when you see it.

In the end, while I could see the ending, I didn’t quite believe it until it happened. I don’t want to say too much, but I wasn’t expecting the ending to the dynamic of both Joes. This is a great science fiction movie, go see it before it leaves theatres, or at least give it a rent, definitely worth a watch.

Up next are some thoughts on the new game Dishonored.

Revolution – Catch Up

Just a shorty…

As the title suggests, I’ve caught up to the latest episode of Revolution. It’s definitely shaping up well in terms of one of the shows I’ll be watching for a while. You can kinda tell as things progress, that things are not always as they appear, people dying when you’re not expecting them. sometimes very emotional wrenching that I can definitely tell is meant to throw our minds and hearts into a vice and squish them. One major thing, that “Spoiler” threw me through a loop, Jeff Fahey! If any of you remember, he’s a pretty iconic actor from the late 80’s who has been in movies over the years, but most have flown under the radar as direct to dvd releases, but the role I know him best for is his performance as Jobe from The Lawnmower Man. Not to mention his smash performance in Machete. I was watching the episode he appears in and had to do a double take, going, “What the, Jeff Fahey?!?”

I figure write this now, as I just got caught up and the show is on hiatus for a couple of weeks, probably due to the US presidential debates, as NCIS didn’t have an episode this week, for the same reason. So I’m definitely looking forward to the next one, as the characters develop and become greater characters.

Note: I managed to catch a Tuesday night matinée for Looper, great flick, review to follow in the next little while.

Dredd 3D

Ok, so I’m a bit late on this one, although I did see it on the Tuesday following its premiere.  I’ve had time to mull over about what I feel on this one.

Dredd 3D poster

So, just a quickie. I apologise in advance, there will be some spoilers.

With Dredd in 3D, it’s actually something one should see in 3D, but there are a couple of issues I had with its 3D showing. The special effects department put an intentional film grain in the movie, as almost every movie made in hollywood these days is digital, so no film grain present. However, film grain can be added, see the Grindhouse flicks from Robert Rodriguez and Quentin Tarantino for reference.  The downside in adding filmgrain in 3D, it kinda takes away from the special effects of the drug scenes, where the 3D is strongest. The majority of the movie, where its the gritty world, where Dredd and his partner are, is very much a 2D setting, but whenever someone doses up on the drug known as Slow-Mo, you get a euphoric response out of the visuals, everything becomes more enhanced and beautiful. The part that literally made my eyes and brain cry out in pain was the film grain effect put in during those scenes.

After all this, it’s still a great flick, and does Dredd as a comic book character justice. There is some controversy that due to its similarity to The Raid:Redemption, people think it’s a blatant rip off, but with Dredd in it. Granted, yes, the basic premise to the building, and the villainess is the same, but the execution is very different. The Raid is by all accounts, a martial arts film, with the added bonus of guns and is exceptionally good. In Dredd, its more so about being an action film, with lots of guns. The plots are where things begin to differ, mainly in Why they are in the buildings. In The Raid, it’s a senior cop lies to a swat team to get revenge on the mob boss. In Dredd, it’s actually completely different, where Dredd and his new partner, choose to go there, because 3 murders have been reported and they go to investigate, only when they realize that a drug queen is in the building, and is the cause of the deaths, do they try to move forward and proceed with an assault on a room where one of the men responsible for the 3 deaths, could lead back to the drug queen.

The character development is different, with Dredd we see the tough as nails street judge take on a new partner, whom is borderline on failing, unlike in the Stallone flick, he gets partnered with a Rookie, whom had top scores in her class. This flick also incorporates much more science fiction and scientific methods to what has happened with the environment around them. In Stallone’s flick, they just happened to be there, and we don’t really know why things have decayed in the wastelands of the US. In Urban’s Dredd, we know right off the bat, during his monologue, why things are the way they are, and what has happened as a result of the land  being subject to ambient radiation from both the Sun and previous nuclear war. Granted some of it has a few clichés, but they’re forgivable due to the great presentation and acting done by Karl Urban and the rest of the cast.

The movie may not have done well at the box office on opening weekend, but its worth seeing, and if you miss it in theatres, give it a rent. It’s a great flick, don’t let the previous iteration sway you. Don’t get me wrong, I love the old one, because of its cheese, but this one is great on a movie goers level, you get high amounts of action, and a great story told exceptionally well and great visuals. Its win-win to me.

 

Side Note: I’ve been caught up in watching some of the shows returning this fall, so I haven’t been able to catch up just yet on Revolution, but will be doing so this week.