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Nobody's Hero, Part 2: I beat H.E.R.O., which, unsurprisingly, does not lead to me becoming one

After a few false starts over the course of a week, getting my score into the 3-4 hundred thousand range, then getting controller-throwingly furious at abruptly losing half an hour's work when I got myself killed, I was almost ready to give up. After a particularly dispiriting series of losses I had the classic "1 more game" moment at Midnight on a Wednesday. This would, naturally, prove to be an unbelievably stressful decision.

Nobody's Hero, Part 1: A tale of obsession on the most insignificant scale

H.E.R.O. Box Art

So, some background to start. H.E.R.O. was an especially beloved game from my childhood, largely because it was my game. I'm sure anyone with siblings will recognize the phenomenon of shared game consoles and playing time, and the special joy that comes from having a game that is not only one's own property, but that holds no interest for siblings, so playing it offered a safe haven free from fights over controllers.

The seven fundamental flaws of Dead Island

Dead Island Screenshot

I covered this a bit in the review, but it's important to reiterate—leveling up implies things to the player that Dead Island doesn't deliver. Extra health is meaningless, extra damage is meaningless—over the course of the game zombies will always take the exact same number of hits to kill, so all the experience I'm gaining doesn't seem to serve any purpose.

L.A. Noire's problems finally reach their end

L.A. Noire Screenshot

There are three missions on the game's Vice desk, and two of them are ruined, as mentioned before, by the newspaper-related cut-scenes that spoil all of their key plot details. The third mission, while more satisfying than the other two, is fundamentally undercut at the writing stage based on a problem at the scripting stage: The writer/director doesn't seem to understand how gambling works, at all.

L.A. Noire has more problems

L.A. Noire Screenshot

It's not unusual for game developers to take their inspiration from other, better established media. There are roughly fifty games about some version of Indiana Jones, after all. It is, however, a little on the strange side to see a game lift content so thoroughly that lawyers could very well get involved. Even Deadly Premonition, which was noted far and wide for its similarities to television series Twin Peaks, was smart enough to merely use that show as a jumping-off point.

L.A. Noire has problems

L.A. Noire has problems

Many, many, problems. So many, in fact, that I couldn't risk talking about them in my review of the game lest I completely spoil the story for anyone who hasn't played it yet (and still wants to). Over here in the blog section, however, I'm free to be as spoiler-y as I want, so I've put together an article detailing some of the ways in which the game doesn't measure up.

The six reasons why Earth Defense Force 2017 is a better game than Halo 3

Earth Defense Force 2017 Screenshot

Way back in 2007 I played a game about humanity fighting a last, desperate battle against an overwhelming alien threat. It was a crushing bore, and a review of it that reflected that opinion proved slightly controversial. Just weeks later I played a second game about humanity fighting a last, desperate battle against an overwhelming alien threat, and was far more impressed. Since no one cares about Halo 3 any more, and a new Earth Defense Force is coming out, I thought this would finally be an appropriate time to publish an article comparing the two games.

Dan's Unsurprising Ten for 2010

Deadly Premonition Screenshot

It's the beginning of the new year, which means it's time to look at the high points offered by last year's games. So, without any further ado, let's get listing!

Deadly Premonition.

That's it. Play it ten times.

How Games Should—And Shouldn't—Be Designed (Deadly Premonition is the Game of the Year, Part 11)

Deadly Premonition Screenshot

I have been accused of being a chauvinist for the cause of Deadly Premonition—that my love for the game eclipses any ability to think critically about its flaws. I don't believe this is the case, and I'm happy to admit it that the game is loaded with flaws.

The Benefits of Virtual Carpooling! (Deadly Premonition is the Game of the Year, Part 10)

Deadly Premonition Screenshot

In the last article I skipped over yet another fascinating detail of the game's story, but not without cause. I've previously discussed just how voluminous the game's supplemental material is, and how it's profoundly worth it for the player to take the time to fully explore Greenvale—there's one problem with it, however. In order to see everything, the game absolutely must be played twice.

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