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Assassin's Creed II
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I never finished the first Assassin's Creed since the story wasn't compelling enough to keep me ploughing through the repetitive gameplay. So I must ask myself, why did I pre-order the sequel without even checking any reviews?
The thing with AC1 was that it showed promise with its amazing open world and fun free running. I enjoyed the atmosphere so much that even if AC2 would not have any better story or game content, it would have to be incredible to experience 15th century Italy AC-style.
After completing AC2 (yes, I actually finished this one) I can say that I was right. The atmosphere was once again fantastic. And as I was pleased to find out, there have been many improvements to almost every aspect of the game - including the storytelling. My biggest relief was that Ezio doesn't engage into as lengthy and pointless and ever so boring tea time discussions with his victims as Altair did. He does still speak to them (unfortunately) but this time it's much more tolerable. Honestly, I could rant all day about how annoying the "You killed me but you don't see the truth" -speeches in AC1 were. Arrggh!
AC2 is still far from perfect but definitely an improvement. All in all, a good game.
+ Beautiful Italy+ You can swim (and dive in from rooftops, yippee!)+ Puzzles (from subject 16)+ A lot to do...- ...of which only 60-70% is interesting- Damn those Hollywood-cliches for making into these games- You still can't skip the cutscenes :(
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Two major problems with this game:1. Main storyline is way too short2. No variety in side missions
This makes me think that the developers ran out of time. It's a shame since they certainly had all the pieces for making a wonderful game.
Brütal Legend is not bad. If you are a gamer who happens to love heavy metal, it's safe to buy this. The soundtrack alone is almost worth the money. And the open world is stunningly beautiful and immersive (despite the simplistic graphics in general). However, this game if any should have been accompanied by an epic storyline - and I mean EPIC!
Pros/Cons:+ Game world / creatures+ Atmosphere / music+ Story itself / legend- Very short, yet repetitive- Slightly outdated graphics engine / some frame stuttering- Some "what am I supposed to do" -moments- Controls are not 100% smooth (but not bad either)
Assassin's Creed (Platinum)
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This is one of those games that have all the makings of a classic but for some reason fail to deliver a complete package.
Immersive atmosphere, fun gameplay mechanics and fairly interesting environment only go so far when the story is lacking depth and actual game content is very limited.
+ Atmosphere+ Oh what fun it is to jump from rooftop to rooftop+ Large cities (beautiful too)- VERY repetitious after a while- Slightly clichéd story around religious conspiracies (which leads to boring cutscenes)- Some bad voice acting here and there
I confess: I did not finish the game since it got so been-there-done-that, but I guess I was pretty close to the end anyway. I checked the ending from Youtube and it confirmed what I was forced to fear from the very beginning of the game. Assassin's Creed is not for those who want original storylines...
That said, at the current cheap price it is definitely worth checking out because of the fantastic atmosphere & fun gameplay. Just don't expect it to last forever.
The Wire: Complete Season 1 Box Set (5 Discs) (HBO)
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This series feels so real & warm that it can't be explained. Only Band of Brothers has had me this hooked on TV. Can't believe I only heard about this a month ago!
Currently watching the second season and it just keeps getting better. Finally something that doesn't underestimate the viewer.
Technical: First Season DVDs have a small image corruption at top of the screen. Luckily nothing too annoying. I bet this is not visible on majority of TVs as part of the image is covered by the edges anyway.
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It seems that they just pointed the cameras at Ferrell & Reilly and expected something funny to happen. What we get is about 100 minutes of random idiotism & over the top swearing.
Ironically, by far the best scene in the movie doesn't feature the obscene step brothers. Family singing Sweet Child O' Mine in the car is just hilarious. But this and the other few good scenes you can see in Youtube.
Honestly, I'm surprised how many here regard this as some kind of comedy masterpiece. Well, maybe I'm just old fashioned.
To Kill A Mockingbird: Special Edition (2 Discs)
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If you have read the book before seeing this film, you will most likely be a bit disappointed. It's loyal to the story but necessary compromises leave it a little empty. I guess this is the case with most adaptations of great novels.
And about the DVD itself: The "Special Edition" most certainly is not anamorphic widescreen (as also erroneously printed on the case). It's letterbox all the way :(