Friday, August 31, 2007

Over Hype

There are a number of clues, warnings really, that hint at the quality of a product, and should be noted before you even bother taking it off the shelf.
The first is straight out of Spaceballs. If said product bears the label; “[popular franchise] the [product]”, then stay away from it at all costs. [popular franchise] The Video Game was thrown together in 3 months and plays like a turd, while [popular franchise] The Chocolate bar tastes of equal quality. They ooze cheapness from every pore and reek the foul stench of greedy marketing groups (a scent that seems a cross between rotting fruit and public toilets).
Hype is the second warning as to the shoddy quality of a product, especially when said product is either a film or a game. More often than not, if something bares the words ‘Critically acclaimed’, you should treat it as toxic and not go near it (or, at the very least, be prepared to vomit uncontrollably or break out in a rash if you DO choose to ingest).
On its release, ‘The Blair witch Project’ was hailed as the scariest film of all time. When I first watched it, I was expecting to see something so terrifying, so utterly horrific that I’d either leave an irremovable stain on the seat or collapse in a fearful, gibbering heap….or both. An hour and a bit later and all I’d seen was a lot of shaky footage, twigs and a retard that films herself washing her hands.
‘Halo’ has been called “genre defining” and “the greatest game ever made” since its release. I’d not played it when it first appeared as I couldn’t get planning permission to install an Xbox in my home, but, in the last week I finally got ‘round to giving the king of console shooters a blast. What did I get for 8 hours play? A cliché story (evil aliens that take control of and mutate a host? Oh, no, THAT’s never been done before), levels so bland and repetitive that little glowing arrows had to be placed on the floor to prevent you from unwittingly going round and round in circles and then; back tracking. Lots and lots of backtracking.
And what the hell was that obstacle course at the end of the game all about?! How much more out of place could that actually be? They couldn’t disguise it to make it look just a little bit like it BELONGED on an intergalactic battleship?!
‘Halo 2’ is said by reviewers not to be as good as the original.
I think I’ll give it a miss.
Hype leads to disappointment. What you get in the end is never what you hoped for. Never waste time on something that has been built up and up. Always go on reputation as that’s EARNED, not fabricated.


The Blade said...

Even though I liked both Halo games, I've got to say... You've got some excellent points. I've seen things that evrybody loves but I think thier crap. And your right, some levels did get very repeatative.

Kyle Miller said...

If my son is any indication, the true draw for Halo is the multi-player component. That being said, I'm not surprised to hear that single player isn't all that.

Linoth said...

Halo can actually be a bit more fun in the storyline if you can get other people to play with you. The grenade ogre tactic in the first Halo can be a blast, the idea being one player hangs back from the enemies, sticks a plasma grenade to their buddy, who charges into the middle of them. Then respawns. And does it again. And when you run out of plasmas? Kill the mule without letting him run and pick them off his corpse.

But yeah, otherwise it's essentially Counter-Strike all over again. If an FPS full of swearing fourteen year olds is your bag, I suppose it's fun. I didn't enjoy it all that much.

Mark said...

Planning permission, ha.

Dohickey Jones said...

Halo was OK, heavily over-rated, but to be fair that was just Microsoft trying to compete with the hype juggernaut that is Sony. LAN multiplayer in Halo is unbeatable fun.

Halo 2 - bleurgh.

Richard said...

I agree with you, Halo was a over hyped game, but many people have said it already. Although I must say that some over hyped games can actually be good games, I found my time playing Metroid Prime on the GC to be worth it, even after hearing so much hype about the game.

Of course the not so hyped games that are nuggets of gold in coal mines, that many people miss out simply because another game is getting hyped on. System Shock and System Shock 2, for the time they came out were one of the best FPS I played, combining atmosphere with a highly interactive surrounding, and System Shock 2 had multiplayer co-op through the whole single player campaign, a feature that is indeed fun, but many games just don't seem to grasp.

I recommend anyone who never played these games to try them out.

M said...

I did really enjoy Halo - though a large chunk of my brain snapped straight into fanboy mode after seeing that it was set on a bona fide (albeit mini-sized) Ringworld - but I agree that it wasn't exactly too ground-breaking. A well-made game, but ground that's been covered before, repeatedly.

I do think that it's fairly safe to assume that anything involving Hayao Miyazaki or Pixar is going to be just as good as the hype predicts, though. Aside from that, your rule holds.