Resident Evil 6: notes from a dead project

Sometimes, things don’t work out.

Game People, the site I used to write reviews about storytelling in games for, has over the last year or so moved more and more away from text and got into video reviews on the Family Gamer TV Youtube channel.

As part of that, I’ve been attempting to do videos for the channel, with the plan to stack a few up and perfect the format before launching them as a little sub-strand within the channel. The schtick was that I was reviewing grown-up games ‘after dark’, which simultaneously suggests something more urbane and sleazier than me rambling at a camera about Arkham Origins but there you go.

photo (3)Unfortunately the plan didn’t work, out after months of tryouts and attempts. Light conditions in my house are incredibly poor in terms of recording the to-camera links, and setting up tripods etc meant I could only really film when I had the house to myself. Recording off-screen games footage was a mess, the camera never quite lining up with the TV.  The whole thing created a massive editing job for Andy at Family Gamer and, in one final crisis, I found that two reviews worth of my to-camera footage had bad audio recording because of some mess up with either my phone or the mic or both.

At that point we cut our losses.

While we’re still working on me doing something for the Family Gamer TV Youtube channel, probably closer to a Let’s Play format with me talking over directly captured game footage, the reviews I’d been working on are effectively useless. Still, I got the review copies, so it would be nice to belatedly actually talk about the games somewhere, right?

For the last couple of reviews I worked off pretty detailed notes, complete with annotations as to where in-game footage should go, and Andy Robertson of Family Gamer has kindly allowed me to run them here.

So, very belatedly and scrappily, here are my thoughts on Resident Evil 6:

  • Intro – Hello I’m Mark Clapham, I’m a writer and parent to a daughter, and I like to play games after she has gone to bed. Games that provide an alternative to an endless cycle of wholesome cartoons and stories in the day.
  • These are my late night reviews of games that are definitely not for the whole family.
  • With one exception that we won’t go into, you can’t get a more adult genre than horror, and probably the single biggest name in horror gaming is the Resident Evil series.

[CLIP: Resi menu]

  • Resident Evil 6 is the most recent instalment, and has been out for a while for Xbox 360, PS3 and PC. Unfortunately I can’t really recommend it as a horror game, especially one for busy parents to fit into their evenings.
  • If nothing else it’s a big game, trying to live up to the size and history of this long series with a globe-spanning plot that splits into three main storylines featuring characters from many past games in plots that echo those older games.
  • There’s Leon Kennedy from 2 and 4, dealing with zombies in a spooky old buildings There’s Chris Redfield from 1 and 5, having the more trigger happy battles with funny-headed mutants we saw in 4 and 5.

[CLIPS: Leon, Chris.]

  • More interesting are Jake and Sherry, children of different villains from the series, who provide something a bit newer to the series, including a more convincing romance than Leon’s bizarre infatuation with Ada Wong.

[CLIP: Jake and Sherry]

  • Oh yeah, Ada Wong’s in it too. She mainly does that thing with the zipline she does.

[CLIP: Ada]

  • Unfortunately, these old school characters don’t bring old school Resident Evil horror with them.
  • For the most part Resident Evil 6 tries to match current military action favourites like Call of Duty or Battlefield in terms of shooting, explosions, car chases, missile launches and sequences where helicopters crash into things

[CLIP: Opening action sequence.]

  • If that doesn’t sound much like an atmospheric horror game, you would sadly be right. Resident Evil 6 is way too big, too open, to really build tension, and mainly consists of boxy areas where you spin around strafing baddies with funny heads. There’s very little tension, just a wearying pile-up of set pieces.

[CLIP: generic shooty bit.]

  • It’s disappointing to sit down for some late night scares and instead encounter such generic action. In it’s attempt to be a blockbuster, Resident Evil 6 loses almost all the horror. If you have young teens who are accustomed to gore, you probably wouldn’t be too worried about letting them play this, as there are very few mature scares.
  • The sheer bloat of the game, combined with a terrible save system that makes it hard to keep track of when you can safely put the controller down without losing progress, makes this a hard game for parents, or anyone else who doesn’t have spare five hour gaming sessions to hand, to play.

[CLIP: plodding about.]

  • A lot of these design flaws are because the game is angled heavily towards online co-op, which is a bit tricky for those of us who don’t have the time to have long co-op sessions. Also, multiplayer doesn’t lend itself to slow burn tension, and prioritises fast action, if not fast game session.

[CLIP: action]

 

  • One casualty of the online friendly action is any of the background detail that used to make the worlds of previous Resident Evil games come to life. There are no documents to read in-game – though you can read some from a juke box in the extras menu – no audiologs, nothing to stop and look at. It makes the whole game disappointingly shallow, and fails to build any real atmosphere. There are also very few puzzles, as that would presumably slow the game down by requiring thinking.
  • It’s a shame, as Resident Evil 6 is a really beautiful game, with gorgeous visuals and sound. then, but shallow, expecting nothing of the player but to run and shoot. There’s the odd genuinely good quiet bit, like a drive through a city shrouded in poisonous fog, but these are few and far between.

[CLIPS: blue fog?]

  • Ultimately Resident Evil 6 is a long, repetitive game that feels even longer and more repetitive due to the way the plots intersect, meaning that if you play all three campaigns – and with a lot of unique settings and scenes in each you’ll want to – you’ll fight certain boss battles, which were dull first time around, again from a different angle, which is kind of structurally clever but also boring and annoying.
  • In the end, while it has a lot of gloss and explosions, Resident Evil 6 is too unwieldy and bloated to recommend, to the extent it took me over a year to find time to complete the thing.
  • Please follow the FamilyGamer TV Channel on Youtube for more of my reviews, as well as reviews of games for those difficult times when the children are awake.
  • You can also follow me on twitter at @markclapham. Good night.

 

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June 26, 2014. Tags: , , , , . Uncategorized. Comments off.

“… about 70,000 hostiles…”: Announcing Resident Evil 6

Resident Evil 6 has been announced, and I have a lot of thoughts. Guess it’s time to remember I have a blog, then.

I have to admit that when the teaser posters showing a 20/11/12 release date leaked earlier tonight, I instantly doubted them. Capcom, going from first announcement of a core Resi title to release in less than a year? Surely not – remember that first Resi 5 trailer that came out in September 2006, two and a half sodding years before the game’s release?

But no, at 10pm GMT this went live confirming the date and showing a lot more than early gameplay footage or proof-of-concept FMV:

Now, in terms of scheduling Capcom have only shaved six months off the four year wait between Resis 4 and 5, but in terms of announcing and marketing 6 they’re taking a far tighter, more aggressive approach, sitting tight through the first two years of development then hitting us with a barrage of visuals and a date.

That November date is a statement in itself. Resis 4 and 5 launched between January and Spring, relatively lean times for game releases when a major franchise title can make a big splash. Resident Evil 6 will be thrown straight into the competitive pre-Xmas market, when major franchises battle it out in the most lucrative period of the year, albeit one where smaller name games can easily get lost.

It doesn’t look like Resident Evil 6 is in any danger of getting lost amongst the big names, or being two low-octane to make a splash compared to this year’s Call of Duties and so forth. The launch trailer lays out a globe-spanning blockbuster that abandons the tight geographic progression of the last two installments in favour of something much bigger, more varied and dynamic.

There’s a lot going on in there as well: old favourites Leon and Chris, both playable; an American town overrun by zombies (replicating the series most popular setting, the Raccoon City outbreak without having to timewarp back to 1998 again); head-splitting mutants from the last two games in a neon-lit Chinese city; a big Nemesis type baddy with very sharp hands pursuing a couple of other characters in a bleak urban landscape; oh, and the whole thing opens with a fantastic, dramatic set-piece where Leon has to shoot the zombified President of the United States through the face.

In short, it looks epic, mixing and matching elements from across the entire series in a way that looks both atmospheric and action-packed, and which looks likely to enthrall both loyal series fans of myself – of whom there are many – and a general audience.

It looks entirely capable of going toe-to-toe with the big beast franchises of the current videogame landscape, and to be honest it should be: Resident Evil is one of the biggest, most recognisable names in games, one with wider pop culture impact (as much as we may bitch about the quality of those movies), and it’s only right that the next major game in the series should be a blockbuster to match the Modern Warfares and Assassin’s Creeds that dominate the pre-Xmas charts.

It looks fantastic, and frankly I can’t wait.

Mark

For more of my ramblings on the Resident Evil series, have a look at the Storygamer archive.

January 20, 2012. Tags: , , . Uncategorized. Comments off.

Nemesis’ll Fix It

Nemesis,

We’d like to go after anyone threatening to continue production of Torchwood. Do you know who we mean?

Yep, those are the ones.

Thanks, Nemesis!

July 31, 2011. Tags: , , , , . Uncategorized. Comments off.

Avoiding the PAX pox

As stated in today’s Penny Arcade, games events can be a virulent source of disease. However, they’re also supposed to be friendly, social events, so recoiling from any contact with your fellow attendees, covering your face with a wet cloth whenever they threaten to breathe on you, might be considered rude.

How to stay healthy, while not being outright insulting? Simple, cosplay one of these three game characters:

1. Zombie in FEMA fictional analogue for FEMA environment suit, from Left 4 Dead 2

one size fits allThese popular nuisances from Valve’s second multiplayer zombie shooter have the advantage of combining all-over protection – what keeps germs out more effectively than a government issue envirosuit? – with being a very lazy costume to assemble. Simply slap on some grey face paint, pull on the suit, and you’re ready to go.

Of course, not every aspect of this outfit is ideal. It’s probably immensely expensive and difficult to buy this kind of suit, and if you do, expect to answer lots of questions from local law enforcement about exactly why you feel the need to protect yourself against chemical weapons in a suburban area.

Also, it looks a bit sweaty in there. Expect to boil in the bag if the aircon  fails again.

2. Hunk, from Resident Evil 2 and numerous spin-offs.

Hunky monkeyA fan favourite. If Boba Fett proved nothing else, it’s that nothing provides a greater identification figure for the hardcore fanbase than a masked man with no visible personality who seems to have nothing to say in any given social situation.

Odd that.

Anyway, Hunk is your everyday gas masked special forces dude, and as such is interchangeable with all manner of other games protagonists and baddies. Expect to be mistaken for a Helghast, someone from Modern Warfare, a SWAT guy… OK, it may be a bit generic. In fact, you wouldn’t be that different from…

3. Artyom, or pretty much anyone else in Metro 2033.

Hey, I know you! I'd recognise that cracked lens anywhere. A newy, and not too dissimilar from the Hunk mercenary type character above, but the various tunnel-dwellers from the far future of oh-shit-I’ll-probably-live-long-enough-to-see-this-shit-for-real have a couple of advantages as cosplay templates.

For a start, as it’s twenty years after the apocalypse, there’s no need to worry that your second hand army surplus duds are going to embarrass you. Whereas Hunk and his ilk always have military standard, spotless black gear, these guys make-do-and-mend, so you needn’t worry about how mismatched all the army surplus you bought for cheap looks. Wear and tear is authentic, in this case.

Also, and this is what puts this outfit above the rest, is that most of those other mercs wear their gas masks all the time, whereas a key game mechanism in Metro is the need to take your gas mask on and off depending where you are.

So, in this gear there’s no need to choke away beneath a mask for the entire con. Simply sling it around your belt, enjoy the show floor and, whenever you see someone particularly sniffly heading your way, make a big show of shouting about a gas attack in a Russian accent while putting the mask on. Job done, post-con-illness largely avoided.

Of course, none of these outfits will prevent the ill-effect of drinking your own bodyweight in overpriced alcohol in the hotel bar. But that’s another problem altogether.

Mark

March 26, 2010. Tags: , , , , , . Uncategorized. Comments off.

Story Gamer

OK, one of the things I’ve been working away at recently (as opposed to bothering to write this blog) has come to fruition:

I’ve joined Game People, a group of writers taking different, offbeat approaches to games reviewing. There are haiku game reviews, reviews from a family perspective, and most famously Rebecca Mayes’ song reviews, as seen on Charlie Brooker’s Gameswipe last year.

Luckily for the world’s ears, I won’t be singing.

Instead I’m doing Story Gamer, reviewing games from my perspective as a fiction writer, talking about the conscious narratives in games as well as the stories that emerge through playing. It should be fun, and scratch the games-writing itch with more editorial discipline and focus than the epic, unstructured screeds about Fallout 3 I allowed myself here.

Unfortunately, the format of the site requires a profile photo, featuring my many chins. The wife kindly took a few shots last Sunday, with me posing in front of various bookshelves (story gamer, see?). One of the outtakes is my profile photo here, but the one that fit the narrow space properly was posed in front of a load of Doctor Who books. In a rather half-hearted attempt to make it look a bit more varied, I shoved a couple of other books (including one of my own, for sheer narcissism’s sake) and the Ace Attorney games on there as well:

Thrilling stuff.

Marinating myself in my own personal cliches, my first review is of Resident Evil 3: Nemesis, a game that has an almost entirely unwarranted status as a sacred text in my poor deluded eyes.

I’ve got a lot more of that kind of thing coming, including games which have no zombies in them whatsoever.

Thanks to Game People editor-king Paul Govan for inviting me to join. This is going to be fun.

Mark

January 26, 2010. Tags: , , . Uncategorized. Comments off.

Stop! Hammer Time! (Tomb Raider Underworld again, this time for 360, and some other stuff)

I’m kind of rubbish at summer. While I don’t exactly fear the daystar, I do find the heat a nuisance and nowhere near the unalloyed, positive force that tabloid newspapers and their readers declaim every heatwave to be.

As such, I’ve been spending a lot of time indoors. A brief bout of Acheivement Fever*, and a renewed taste for the Tomb Raider franchise following completion of the rather good Anniverary on PS2 led me to finally complete Legend on 360, and while I was on a roll revisit Underworld for the 360 as well. Legend is notable for having most of its peaks in the second half of the game, unusual for the TR series which tends to pack its big moments up front and then descend into a bit of a slog later on. Instead, Legend has some great later stages – the very concept of the Cornwall level is witty and well-thought through, a nice spin on the series, especially when Lara gets in a forklift and demolishes a corridor of traps with it.

Underworld plays a hell of a lot better on this, it’s lead (along with PS3) format as opposed to the cut down PS2 version I reviewed a while back. It’s actually not as different in terms of level layouts as I would have thought, and the extra enemy types are not that big a deal. Aside from the big changes – some of the PS2’s interminable motorbike sequences replace cleverer sequences in the big boy’s version, like a wonderful underwater section in the arctic, for instance – it’s really a question of execution. What were dull grey corridors on PS2 are, with the souped up engine of a current-gen console, sinister and spectral environments dripping with moisture, the dim light barely illuminating the lost realm of the ancients. Tomb Raider has always thrived on isolation – its why Legend is undermined by its chatty supporting characters always blathering over Lara’s headset – but Underworld, at least in this form, is the first to be actually spooky in places. There’s a dash of the Mountains of Madness in the ancient, desolate ruins Lara finds, and a bit of Clive Barker in those echoing corridors. It’s a lot better game in this version, and I’m quite tempted by the two DLC levels. Eidos are promising a full scale revamp for the next one, but here’s hoping they don’t leave it too long.

Elsewhere, I’ve been continuing my catch-up with PS2 titles I missed first time around. Cold Fear got a bit of a slating on its release in 2005 for being a Resident Evil 4 knock-off with repetitive enemies and environments, but as far as I’m concerned Capcom haven’t capitalised on the strength of Resi 4‘s over-the-shoulder survival horror formula, so it’s good to see someone stepped in there.** Survival horror is a tricky genre to do without an AAA level budget, and even big franchises like Alone in the Dark and Silent Hill have been fumbled in recent years. As such, it’s good to see smaller teams trying the genre and getting things right. Darkworks, who most recently worked on the forthcoming I Am Alive, clearly approached Cold Fear with an intelligent sense of economy, with a tight storyline that sees you as a gun-toting coast guard exploring a mutant-infested Russian whaling ship and, later on, a mining rig.

Cold Fear doesn’t have the sweep and scale of a big budget game, but makes up for it by making you weave through the two main environments in different directions, opening different doors along the way. Thanks to tough enemies and some well-spaced savepoints, it’s also a bit of a challenge compared to more leisurely games in the genre. Most importantly of all, the mechanics are solid – the over the shoulder camera means enemies are occasionally difficult to see, but otherwise the controls work well, and the various water and weather dynamics are impressive even four years on. Trying not to get washed overboard as you attempt to shoot savage mutants, in a three way battle with gun toting Russian mercenaries, is the kind of challenging, scary experience that I look for in a survival horror game.

It’s not mind-blowing, but Cold Fear is a solid entry in the genre with enough unique qualities to be worth seeking out, especially now PS2 titles are so damned cheap. It’s not Silent Hill 2 or Resident Evil: Nemesis, but bloody hell, what is?

Mark

* Sufferers of Acheivement Fever will have occasional periods where they concentrate on playing games with steady progression and gamerpoint rewards, piling up a few hundred points per game until they pass some arbitrary milestone or otherwise snap the fuck out of it.
** Besides, its highly unlikely the resemblance is more than coincedence – the two titles were in parallel development, and the similar control system doesn’t feel like a last-minute bolt-on.

July 12, 2009. Tags: , , , , , . Uncategorized. Comments off.

MF, aye.

House of the Dead: Overkill is the sweariest game ever. Seriously. It’s also one of the funniest, and the most stylish titles.

And it’s on the Wii, of all things. Motherfucker!

Like all Sega’s HotD games, it’s an on-rails zombie shooter. The series is known for it’s ridiculous semi-English dialogue (‘Suffer, like G did!’) and cartoony splatter, and developer Headstrong have rather ingeniously taken this cheesy reputation and filtered it through the Tarantino-popularised grindhouse aesthetic. It’s an astonishingly clever move – instantly, stupid dialogue and stupid plotpoints become assets rather than flaws. The ironic humour undercuts any potential offence, allowing the developers the excuse to cut loose even by horror game standards – aside from the liberal swearing and gore there’s some sexist rambling (from the superbly stereotypical blaxploitation cop Issac Washington), references to redneck incest, a disabled kid turning into a big floaty head monster. It’s all so fantastically stupid that it’s hard to respond to with anything less than a grin.

(And bear in mind, I have *no* interest in all this grindhouse bullshit whatsoever. I hated Kill Bill Part 1, and I avoided any of the other nostalgic riffs by Tarantino and co to a B-movie adolescence that isn’t mine.)

While the aesthetic may cover up potential sins of plot stupidity, it’s visual execution is technically impressive and artful, the in-game graphics tinted and blurred like old film, complete with crackles and hairs in the shutter. Slo-mo sequences look under-cranked, while the music mashes old funk with more contemporary sounds.

There’s substance beneath the schlock as well: as on-rails shooters go this is a good one, well balanced and paced, with a steady stream of bad guys, occasional rushes and hectic swinging ’round from one group of nasties to another. The ‘waggle to escape’ dynamic is better executed here than in Resident Evil: Umbrella Chronicles, and in general this feels up there with Link’s Crossbow Training in terms of Wiimote shooting.

On the entry difficulty level there’s infinite continues, but the games hardly a pushover and a few retries will be required here and there. Not capping the continues is probably a good tactic to ensure the Wii’s more mainstream audience gets to see, with a little application, the full game story, while for the more hardcore there’s a large suite of unlockables, including harder game modes, awaiting.

In fact, there’s quite a package of extras here, with a jukebox to play those aforementioned tunes, some simple but well-designed minigames, a movie viewer and so forth. With unlocks and extras, there should be plenty to keep most players going, pepped along by the sheer silly joy of the main game.

This is good stuff. There’s a surprisingly strong showing for horror games on the Wii, albeit mainly of the on-rails kind, including the just announced Dead Space Wii exclusive (although the forthcoming Fatal Frame and Dead Rising titles for the platform should offer more freedom of movement). This is the most original, and distinctive, adult-oriented game on the Wii yet.

And by adult, I mean ‘consciously juvenile’. Bitch!

Mark

February 23, 2009. Tags: , . Uncategorized. Comments off.

Tanks for nothing.

I’ve been busy with a couple of things which have kept me largely offline for the last couple of days, and have cut into my blogging time.

Firstly, the pace of wedding preparations has picked up, and involved a couple of difficult nights of expensive dining to establish a venue for the wedding breakfast. It’s a hard life, I can tell you, especially when followed by Valentines Day chocs and cakes. Tough, tough life. It’s Ryvita and Special K for the rest of the week, I think.

More importantly though, as previously recounted I’m on X-Box Live for a month, a free month’s trial which will almost inevitably become a year’s subscription. My copy of Left4Dead arrived the other day, and barely a day goes by where I don’t manage to squeeze in a quick campaign, usually with Mr Lavington of Shiny Shelf fame. Having enjoyed playing the game offline, online was initially more of the same. It’s a great ‘the same’, with all the emergent situations that everyone else has been going on about for ages, whereby the combination of co-operating players and the super-smart AI Director create situations you’d never get in a more scripted game.

Today we stepped it up a notch, with another friend and his girlfriend joining the party. It’s the first time I’d played with an entirely human team, no companion AI (although one of our team did have to back out at one point, and it’s a great credit to the game to see the AI jump in their and get playing, seamlessly). An all-player team really ups those opportunities for the unexpected – the finely balanced AI players are never either mercilessly thick (as in any Resident Evil support AI ever) or inhumanly competent, instead hovering around, keeping their end up without either dragging you down or stealing the glory. An all-human team, however, will be beset by errors and prone to sudden triumphant moments of victory, and it’s all the more exciting. What a great game.

In between I’ve been getting back to Tomb Raider: Legend (super competent, a little too linear, not exactly the 360 state-of-the-art this far after release but nonetheless way ahead of the PS2 port of Underworld I recently played), and even a bit of FEAR (nothing to do with the sequel coming out, more because another of my Live friends has FEAR but not L4D, so I suspect it’s going to be the multiplayer of last resort with him for the moment).

Oh, and Apollo Justice: Ace Attorney arrived. And House of the Dead: Overkill for Wii, which I’ll be playing once I get down to the missus place, where my Wii resides. And while I’m down there, I’ll need to get around to playing more Trauma Center, and maybe turn my attention to the PS2 and Tomb Raider: Anniversary, and, and…

So yeah, a lot of games to get through. This could take a while.

Mark

February 15, 2009. Tags: , , , , . Uncategorized. Comments off.

News from sunny Kijuju


I first played the Resident Evil 5 demo just under two weeks ago, and have to admit to being initially underwhelmed, to the extent that I wasn’t really too bothered that I didn’t get to play it again for a week. My first impressions were that, while it had all the requisite Capcom gloss, the game’s frenetic melee gameplay, where you and your AI sidekick have to help each other out while fighting off hordes of enemies, was more irritatingly confusing than actually scary.

Ten days later I got back to the demo, and played through the entirety of the Shanty Town mission, gritting my teeth and mastering the controls.* Having got to the helicopter rescue, I was getting to grips with the game but this was only deepening my misgivings – that survival horror is ill-suited to a game with an omnipresent sidekick, and that enemy and partner AI was laughable compared to Left 4 Dead, and indeed that compared to L4D on virtually every point RE5 was a polished-up Gamecube relic. I was preparing myself for the possibility that this might be a core Resi game that I didn’t like. Oh, I was also considering which version to pre-order even as I contemplated this prospect, because I’m a fan and I’m deeply broken, natch.

Well, today I played the demo again, playing through both scenarios in online co-op with a friend, and really quite enjoyed it. As a co-op game, it’s quite playable and fun, either taking out enemies from different directions, or taking turns to apply health spray or gather ammo while the other picks off enemies from a distance. So, providing I can find a co-op pal to help me out, I’m going to be able to play the game and get some fun out of it.

This doesn’t, however, mean that all is rosy and perfect. While the co-op is fun, and turns it into a good action game, Resident Evil 5 loses a lot of the atmosphere and unique qualities of the series in the rush towards the current urge to make every game an online, social experience. While Left 4 Dead brilliantly drops your ordinary joe players into the roles of four ordinary joe characters fighting for their survival, the tone of the Resident Evil series doesn’t survive the transition as well, even though on the surface they’re very similar ideas.

Resi is about mad plots and arch dialogue, and when played as co-op that atmosphere is effectively suspended by the pragmatic chat between the players. While it’s hard to take the cutscenes in these games seriously at the best of times, in a co-op game they’re just a half-watched bore that you chat through. Not to belabour the point more than I have already, but the Resident Evil games are another example of quintessentially single-player games, where you sit-down and absorb yourself in a wonderfully, gleefully, stupid and scary narrative. You can’t do that while amiablyb chatting strategy over a voice mic.

Resident Evil 5 looks like a slick action experience with a few jolts that should be good fun to play through with a friend. However, in trying to sell it to the Gears of War crowd, Capcom may well have lost a lot of what made these games so popular in the first place.

Mark

* While I understand that wrestling with the controls is a means of inducing panic and not a mistake, there’s always a period of settling in to the new system with every game, so that you can get to the point where it’s a tense struggle to turn and fire in time, not just a case of walking randomly into walls and trying to remember which button does what.

February 8, 2009. Tags: . Uncategorized. Comments off.

Have Your Say

Dear BBC,

I enjoyed your recent programme Survivors, a literary adaptation of the serious novel by the serious writer Terry Nation. However, there are some flaws which, if corrected, I believe could make the show better:

– This ‘virus’ that wipes out the population kills most of the people. However those people then stay dead, rather than rising again, ferociously hungry for flesh. This is unrealistic.

– There was a useful emphasis on the conservation of resources in a limited space, however no mention whatsoever of the importance of mixing different coloured herbs. This would have been a good opportunity to teach children key skills in the Reithian manner.

– The stuff with the lab at the end was good, however if their operation is not run by a guy with a blond crew cut who never takes his shades off even when in a darkened underground passageway, I am going to stop paying my licence fee.

– Max Beesley is a poor actor. Was Oded Fehr busy or something? I do not believe Mr Beesley could ever fire two guns at mutated hounds while jumping, and this broke the fifth wall of the drama for me.

– I see from the trailer that there will be some confrontation at a supermarket in the next episode, with Tony from Shameless as the antoganist. Perhaps this part would be better with a giant scorpion in the role? Or maybe Tony could take ten bullets then mutate into a huge leech, requiring three or foure hits from a rocket launcher to take down? Just a thought.

I hope you like these suggestions. If youy use them I do not want credit but would like the chance to pitch for the second season of Bonekickers please. My story would be about the Dead Sea Scrolls being found in Croydon.

Lots of Love,

Mark Clapham
http://www.shinyshelf.com
http://rollbackandmix.blogspot.com

PS At least someone knows how to do it properly.

November 24, 2008. Tags: , . Uncategorized. Comments off.

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