Review: Shadow Complex

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Review: Shadow Complex

Think you've already played a game like Shadow Complex? Think again.

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sorely tempted to get this game.

Seems like a good game. I've seen the demo and it looks fun. Although it looks suspiciously much like Super Metroid in terms of game play and the map. But that's just observation, doesn't make the game worse... I hope.

Some nice tounge in cheek Footnote there. Yes, I got it, and kudos for remaining Neutral on the subject... till that point...

I downloaded this game after seeing it get a 4.5/5 in Gamepro. It isn't too often that an XBLA game will get that sort of review and I had to check it out. Not disappointed in the slightest.

I honestly didn't like this game. I don't know why, because I love retro platformers.

It just doesn't feel right, but then my friend said "Play it for a few hours" so I went for it, and after that It still didn't feel right. I also think the story is hilariously bad. I guess its just the controls for why I swiftly put down the controller at my friends house, but none the less, I will not be buying this game.

It's a great game, actually. Easily on a par with the old platformer shooties of days gone by, and without the convoluted level structure of the Metroids and Castlevanias of the world.

There are some downers, mainly the Bosses who are generally not so interesting to fight. The standard troopers are a lot of fun, though, and there's plenty of interesting set pieces.

The star of the show is the superb control over the character, the very interesting powers he acquires and the proverbial Shadow Complex (the base) which feels well realized and quite naturalistic.

One thing I'll say, there isn't really a problem in saving most of the times - you can enter any of the save rooms along the way and... save. I rarely found myself having to replay more than one or two rooms, and in fact the game is rather good about allowing you to save before something dangerous comes along.

Well worth the money if this is your kind of genre.

If you're going to mention that Orson Scott Card is against gay marriage, I think it would be fair to mention things like he's a prolific, excellent sci-fi/fantasy writer. He wrote Ender's Game. If that was all he ever did, he would still be deserving of some respect; suming him up as a guy fighting against gay marriage is like referring to Thomas Jefferson as "that guy who endorsed slavery."

I agree with Giantdragon. What do Card's views on gay marriage have to do with the quality of the game that is being reviewed? I would expect more integrity and less sensationalism from an outfit like The Escapist. Card was hired by Chair to pen a novel about the polarization of the nation between the Left and Right from the perspective of a conservative. The developer had to be aware of Card's religious and political views going into the project. Regardless of anyone's opinion on the topic of gay marriage, the topic has no business in a review of a game that has nothing to do with it.

Shame it isn't on Pc, it looks like a lot of fun.

The plot was once of the most ham fisted and awkward things I've seen in a game in years. It's constantly badgering you to rush somewhere then tells you go exploring and find grenade containers. Not to mention the protagonist's insecurity after he goes on massive killing sprees.

Kudos for mentioning Card's homophobia. No one wants to acknowledge the big ugly elephant in the room with that one and I'm glad it's getting attention. Since he's so adamant about declaring the evils of homosexuality, he won't mind if people start bringing it up his views more often.

I'll separate the artist from his work when he's dead. Alive, I can still hold him accountable.

janiak:
I agree with Giantdragon. What do Card's views on gay marriage have to do with the quality of the game that is being reviewed? I would expect more integrity and less sensationalism from an outfit like The Escapist. Card was hired by Chair to pen a novel about the polarization of the nation between the Left and Right from the perspective of a conservative. The developer had to be aware of Card's religious and political views going into the project. Regardless of anyone's opinion on the topic of gay marriage, the topic has no business in a review of a game that has nothing to do with it.

It wouldn't be such a big issue unless if he didn't use the funds raised by his scifi work to actively promote the war against gay marriage. That means that buying one of his works is actively funding anti gay campaigns. Its the same reason you shouldn't buy Conflict Diamonds. Your consumption directly supports something that's vile.

Wandrecanada:

janiak:
I agree with Giantdragon. What do Card's views on gay marriage have to do with the quality of the game that is being reviewed? I would expect more integrity and less sensationalism from an outfit like The Escapist. Card was hired by Chair to pen a novel about the polarization of the nation between the Left and Right from the perspective of a conservative. The developer had to be aware of Card's religious and political views going into the project. Regardless of anyone's opinion on the topic of gay marriage, the topic has no business in a review of a game that has nothing to do with it.

It wouldn't be such a big issue unless if he didn't use the funds raised by his scifi work to actively promote the war against gay marriage. That means that buying one of his works is actively funding anti gay campaigns. Its the same reason you shouldn't buy Conflict Diamonds. Your consumption directly supports something that's vile.

I'd caution players against viewing Shadow Complex as "one of Card's works." While it serves as a bridge between two of Card's novels, the game was written entirely by Peter David. I can't speak to the financial arrangement between Card and Chair, but it seems silly to me to punish what is proving to be a promising young game studio for the views of one of its business associates. The fact is, you're not always going to agree with the people you work with.

And janiak, you're absolutely correct: Card's views on gay marriage have nothing to do with the quality of Shadow Complex. If you got a different impression, then you're probably confusing this with another review.

Then why even bring it up in this context?

janiak:
Then why even bring it up in this context?

Because other gamers have made it an issue, and I wanted to affirm that while I'm aware of Card's views on the subject of gay marriage, they didn't color my perception of the game.

Jordan Deam:

janiak:
Then why even bring it up in this context?

Because other gamers have made it an issue, and I wanted to affirm that while I'm aware of Card's views on the subject of gay marriage, they didn't color my perception of the game.

I can't imagine why it would. The fact that I am aware of the political leanings of the State of Idaho certainly doesn't color my perception of a baked-potato prepared in New York, either.

Extrapolating from your reasoning, it would seem that you have a very low opinion of the intelligence of your readers.

I was think about Dling this and that just sealed the deal.

janiak:

Jordan Deam:

janiak:
Then why even bring it up in this context?

Because other gamers have made it an issue, and I wanted to affirm that while I'm aware of Card's views on the subject of gay marriage, they didn't color my perception of the game.

I can't imagine why it would. The fact that I am aware of the political leanings of the State of Idaho certainly doesn't color my perception of a baked-potato prepared in New York, either.

Extrapolating from your reasoning, it would seem that you have a very low opinion of the intelligence of your readers.

Did you click the link in the "offending" text? There have been numerous articles on the subject, not to mention forum campaigns to boycott the game. A single clause acknowledging those concerns in a two-page review doesn't seem out of hand to me, but I understand it's a sensitive issue.

Enough about the politics, though. What did you think of the game?

Really fun game. Wish they made more games like this!

Jordan Deam:

janiak:

Jordan Deam:

janiak:
Then why even bring it up in this context?

Because other gamers have made it an issue, and I wanted to affirm that while I'm aware of Card's views on the subject of gay marriage, they didn't color my perception of the game.

I can't imagine why it would. The fact that I am aware of the political leanings of the State of Idaho certainly doesn't color my perception of a baked-potato prepared in New York, either.

Extrapolating from your reasoning, it would seem that you have a very low opinion of the intelligence of your readers.

Did you click the link in the "offending" text? There have been numerous articles on the subject, not to mention forum campaigns to boycott the game. A single clause acknowledging those concerns in a two-page review doesn't seem out of hand to me, but I understand it's a sensitive issue.

Enough about the politics, though. What did you think of the game?

Worth every penny. And to those that may shy away due to Card's views: They do not appear in this game at all, nor was he the writer of the game. Card was tapped to write the Empire novels which occur alongside Shadow Complex. If you want to keep money out of Card's pocket, boycott his books. By boycotting this game, you are only keeping yourself from one of the best expressions of the art to come along in a long time.

I just want to iterate that I agree to the quality of Shadow Complex, but I wanted to explain why some gamers find putting money towards any IP he might make profit from disagreeable. A specific example comes from a gay reviewer from a prominent review site, who managed to reconcile the two simply because he got a free reviewer copy of the game. While highly praising the game for what it was he also acknowledged that some gamers would find it difficult to support the IP.

You have to really separate the game from the source to understand the comments. I'll simplify the notion using extreme examples. What if Call of Duty 4 was published by Blackwater?

I don't really like 2.5 D games but if I had to get one this would be it. I liked this review but I just don't feel you said anything negative that makes me wary of hidden problems. I also loved the Jesus Lizard reference.

I did not read this review. I got about 2 sentences in and am currently downloading it and will be playing it all night.

I played the demo and thought it was kind of meh. I might download this if I wasn't so pressed for cash, but as it is, I'm choosing between this and the new DLC for Mass Effect.

Good game! I especially liked how the designers made getting some the hidden items a test of 'lateral' thinking. But my favorite thing was the foam. It's AWESOME stuff. I was reminded of Magic Sand when I was using it, and some of the weird stuff you can sculpt with it. When I got unlimited foam towards the end of the game, I was making foam sculptures everywhere I went. Ah, such wonderful childhood memories...

I'm glad to see someone else has seen Cliffy B's blatent anti-subterranian humanoid (we will not use their HATE name, Locust) sentiments. The audacity of such a racist game where these noble creatures are portrayed as world destroying monsters simply because they live underground, torture their prisoners and like the taste of the other other other white meat is sickening.

im a HUGE metriod side scroller fan, so i loved this game, one problem is the aiming, which is fine for everyone unless they're besides you were you just gotta hope the auto-target locks on to them.

orannis62:
I played the demo and thought it was kind of meh. I might download this if I wasn't so pressed for cash, but as it is, I'm choosing between this and the new DLC for Mass Effect.

Get Shadow Complex - it'll last you longer and the Mass Effect DLC is terrible. It's just arenas you've already fought in with various targets to meet - it gets old after 10 minutes (theres no mission or really any story element at all), and, as reviews have stated just really shows the blatant flaws in Mass Effects combat system.

D_987:

orannis62:
I played the demo and thought it was kind of meh. I might download this if I wasn't so pressed for cash, but as it is, I'm choosing between this and the new DLC for Mass Effect.

Get Shadow Complex - it'll last you longer and the Mass Effect DLC is terrible. It's just arenas you've already fought in with various targets to meet - it gets old after 10 minutes (theres no mission or really any story element at all), and, as reviews have stated just really shows the blatant flaws in Mass Effects combat system.

Black Lincon told me it was good and besides, you know me. How can I pass up ME DLC? So long as we aren't talking alternate paint jobs for the Normandy (what I picture as ME's version of horse armor), I have to get it. And yes, I'm very much aware of the fact I'm a fanboy.

orannis62:

D_987:

orannis62:
I played the demo and thought it was kind of meh. I might download this if I wasn't so pressed for cash, but as it is, I'm choosing between this and the new DLC for Mass Effect.

Get Shadow Complex - it'll last you longer and the Mass Effect DLC is terrible. It's just arenas you've already fought in with various targets to meet - it gets old after 10 minutes (theres no mission or really any story element at all), and, as reviews have stated just really shows the blatant flaws in Mass Effects combat system.

Black Lincon told me it was good and besides, you know me. How can I pass up ME DLC? So long as we aren't talking alternate paint jobs for the Normandy (what I picture as ME's version of horse armor), I have to get it. And yes, I'm very much aware of the fact I'm a fanboy.

You'll regret it. Let's just say I was shocked at how poor it was, possibly because they are working on Mass Effect 2. We are in a sense talking about Horse Armour because your getting next to nothing new, just timed battles in small environments you've already fought in. Oh and by the way I've sent you a fried request on Xbox Live.

Waiting for a steam release.

D_987:

orannis62:

D_987:

orannis62:
I played the demo and thought it was kind of meh. I might download this if I wasn't so pressed for cash, but as it is, I'm choosing between this and the new DLC for Mass Effect.

Get Shadow Complex - it'll last you longer and the Mass Effect DLC is terrible. It's just arenas you've already fought in with various targets to meet - it gets old after 10 minutes (theres no mission or really any story element at all), and, as reviews have stated just really shows the blatant flaws in Mass Effects combat system.

Black Lincon told me it was good and besides, you know me. How can I pass up ME DLC? So long as we aren't talking alternate paint jobs for the Normandy (what I picture as ME's version of horse armor), I have to get it. And yes, I'm very much aware of the fact I'm a fanboy.

You'll regret it. Let's just say I was shocked at how poor it was, possibly because they are working on Mass Effect 2. We are in a sense talking about Horse Armour because your getting next to nothing new, just timed battles in small environments you've already fought in. Oh and by the way I've sent you a fried request on Xbox Live.

I'll keep that in mind, but it's very likely that it will be a moot point, as, due to my situation I'd rather not explain, MS Space Bucks are hard for me to come by.

Also, cool. Don't be insulted if I don't accept it right away, I'm going away for a few days starting early tomorrow.

Giantdragon:
If you're going to mention that Orson Scott Card is against gay marriage, I think it would be fair to mention things like he's a prolific, excellent sci-fi/fantasy writer. He wrote Ender's Game. If that was all he ever did, he would still be deserving of some respect; suming him up as a guy fighting against gay marriage is like referring to Thomas Jefferson as "that guy who endorsed slavery."

But he was...

Just like Einstein was the guy with the funny hair.

I downloaded it and have loved playing it. Having said that I love the castlevania titles... althought the upcoming 3d adventure style CV fills me with dread.

I don't care about Cards views on homosexuality, the same way I don't care if the guy in subway is a member of the BNP, jus gimme my game/samij!

I don't see why people are complaining about Card's background; just talk about the game. We have more than enough threads already devoted to that controversy.

After seeing many reviews by Susan and Funk, it's nice to see other members add their two cents on games. Great review Jordan; nice humor throughout.

Hehehe, "like a Jesus Christ lizard".

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