Review: Lost Planet 2

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Review: Lost Planet 2

Capcom's latest third-person shooter is a bit of a mess.

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I disagree that it wasnt made evident what you have to do in boss fights eg the train gun. You are given a map of the gun and labelled are the various parts. If it takes damage you are told where the collant towers are to fix it. If you are playing with AI they are pretty stupid yes but they occasionally load the gun for you. I thought it was incredibly easy to figure out though I do agree the AI is not fun to play with.

I'm dissapointed you didn't mention the pain in the ass 5 character choice where each level seperately or the abundance of the nom de guerres from the slot machine. No mention of the DNF in online gameplay either which takes away points earned from online battles if you happen to disconnect or exit in the middle of play.

I think the rating was fair but you missed some key points

EDIT: Just forgot to mention for those who missed it. Capcom actually neglected to add facial animations at all to this game because of all the players wearing helmets or masks. You don't notice it except for when you play as the bonus wesker or frank west costumes where there lips are sealed.

Sounds like something my friends and I should grab when it is $30. The demo didn't really give me an impression of how the game would play, though the boss fights part sounds about right. It was in a conversation with someone that had the game later that I discovered the boss in the demo can be defeated by leaping into his mouth and shooting at some sort of heart-thing, which none of us knew.

It's a shame there aren't more games with satisfying 4-player co-op, as it is something that could convince my friends and I to actually make the purchase. For example, if Jurassic: The Hunted, an overall shitty game, had 4-player co-op in its survival mode, we'd grab that shit easy. Fighting off waves of dinosaurs in a half-assed fortress is awesome no matter what the mechanics play like.

I do not understand why all the reviewers dislike this game so much. Me and a friend are playing through it co-op and it has been a blast. That may be for a number of circumstantial reasons (how good my ally is, how much I like the idea of killing giant bugs ect) but from what I can see this game is very enjoyable.

I will admit the story is weak, and the multiplayer in singleplayer action is sometimes real bad...but, I still enjoyed it

Mr Companion:
I do not understand why all the reviewers dislike this game so much. Me and a friend are playing through it co-op and it has been a blast. That may be for a number of circumstantial reasons (how good my ally is, how much I like the idea of killing giant bugs ect) but from what I can see this game is very enjoyable.

you have it on ps3? could I play with you guys if you do?

Mr Companion:
I do not understand why all the reviewers dislike this game so much. Me and a friend are playing through it co-op and it has been a blast. That may be for a number of circumstantial reasons (how good my ally is, how much I like the idea of killing giant bugs ect) but from what I can see this game is very enjoyable.

I shouldn't HAVE to play online to get a good gaming experience. The story could've been much better. And try playing split screen two player local. IT'S HORRIBLE. Trust me, the dislike for this game is well warranted.

I've got to stick with Penny Arcade's comment on LP2 reviews (http://www.penny-arcade.com/2010/5/19/):

The Apparatus is returning a nebulous result on Lost Planet 2, but most of the things I've read about the game are irrelevant to me. I happen to like the weird stories in Japanese games, and hearing that a co-op game is best played in co-op ain't exactly front page material. "We" have "said" for years that we want meaningful co-op experiences, but when they're delivered to us, they must give an impeccable single-player performance as well?

I also happen to disagree that a core group of friends is required. I am playing through extreme now, after having finished the campaign starting from easy upwards. The first run I played it entirely solo to get to know the maps and objectives (I hate being clueless in a MP game) and then started playing online.

You may call it sheer luck, but I always had teams that consisted of two types of people. Newcomers and those who know what they are doing and did so by communicating it to others using messages or their headset.

Apart from that, the game has been great fun for me. I got to know a couple of nice people and the experience of taking down the huge bosses on harder difficulties is really rewarding.
The acrobatic ninja-style grapple action and big weapons just complete the package.

I can see that this game is not for everyone, but it should at least be seen and rated as what it is. An online co-op game and not a story-driven single player experience.

Just for reference, I (still) play it on PS3.

I mostly agree with this review. If only works if you have a few buddies to help out, especially in the Train Episode.
Also, shouldn't you say something different in the video and not just repeat the lines from the text?

I disagree with you, the point aren't the characters, it's more focus on the factions, and I never had issues figuring out what to do or how to do it, not even the most complex boss battles (on my first playthough)

But, you have a point, you have to play this co-op (I don't see this as a big flaw, since I would've played it co-op anyways)

Bleh, got to be expected, most players on the escapist are relatively bad at video games. From what I can read at least, thats what I see. Some people who dislike or never played classic games that are considered master peice are rampant on this website... And Im not talking about the halo-quality-ish games.

Meh

We ask for co-op games designed around it. We get it, and we whine about how the solo sucks. Gamers are a picky bunch, aren't we.

Onyx Oblivion:
We ask for co-op games designed around it. We get it, and we whine about how the solo sucks. Gamers are a picky bunch, aren't we.

Hey, I tried to play it as a co-op game, but the matchmaking either sucks or there aren't enough people playing.

If the latter is true, then maybe it's just not a very good game.

I loved the first one, yet this one... was a meh. It was well made but I dislike people and I do not want to be forced to play with others! The SP was fuckin terrible alone mainly because you will die like 55 times an episode because your AI teammates do nothing...

Anyway it was a giant meh and even a blegh.

Greg Tito:

Onyx Oblivion:
We ask for co-op games designed around it. We get it, and we whine about how the solo sucks. Gamers are a picky bunch, aren't we.

Hey, I tried to play it as a co-op game, but the matchmaking either sucks or there aren't enough people playing.

If the latter is true, then maybe it's just not a very good game.

probly cus ugot it on X-box the matchmaking suck 'cus on the PS3 I get into a game of 'bout 10 people non co-op and 4 (including me) co-op in no more then 30sec's and playing it on single player isn't that hard I got through all of it on my own on normal and when I went online I ended up with 3 new freinds so all in all I liked what I got.

Greg Tito:

Onyx Oblivion:
We ask for co-op games designed around it. We get it, and we whine about how the solo sucks. Gamers are a picky bunch, aren't we.

Hey, I tried to play it as a co-op game, but the matchmaking either sucks or there aren't enough people playing.

If the latter is true, then maybe it's just not a very good game.

I never had a problem to find a group in standby with at least two human players in under 2 minutes. It was a bit slow the week after launch, but that's not a big surprise as most people either tried to play through it alone first or had not unlocked enough episodes, yet.

The only things that do suck about the matchmaking is not being able to join an ongoing session and something like a proper party system that can be managed in and outside chapters.

Of course, maybe you just picked a bad time for it instead of concluding that this reflects on the quality of the game.

Sorry, but I have seen plenty of matches every evening over the last two weeks that I can't leave that statement without a comment.

Well like the first Lost Planet, I'm not surprised at all it's kinda meh.
Well my extra 50 dollars is going to Alpha Protocol.

My problem with the game isn't that it's co-op. Co-op games are good, fine things. It's that the last one was decidedly not co-op and this one is almost entirely multiplayer. I'd imagine quite a few people that were fans of the last game and don't really play online got this and are sort of cursing some parts of it.

Just another reviewer who tries to hold up LP2 to some cookie cutter shooter standard instead of realizing that design choices were made to make the game exactly as they said.

#1 Story

LP2 designers stated specifically that they lessened the importance of the story as a design choice. Why? Because the game is made to be played multiple times in whatever chapter order you want. When you build a game like this story must take the very back seat because in replay it becomes superfluous. Why dock something points when they accomplish what they set out to do.

#2 Clarity in objectives

Almost every review harps on some idea that the game doesn't tell you what to do. I'm not sure what game you played but if you can tell me where you found it confusing maybe I can help you. There is no point in the game where you are not given specific instructions in the form of an in mission communique with the exception of the final boss, only because the final battle doesn't tell you where exactly to shoot. Perhaps as gamers we are too trained to assume that every game needs gutter rail instructions to hand hold us at every turn.

Now one thing the game does fail to tell you is all the hidden or alternative ways to accomplish missions. That's something you learn playing the game multiple times. Again it was designed specifically to be played over and over without losing impact on multiple playthroughs.

#3 Vital Suits (VSs)

It's funny that everyone thinks the VSs are the best part of the game when they're just another game mechanic you learn to use over playtime. Did you know that VS had a sawblade when you played through the first time? Did you care? Probably not because you wanted to get through that mission to see the next. VSs are just another aspect of the game to learn and not the be all end all of the game. In fact most players will stay on foot in subsequent playthroughs because the custom weaponry you get (from playing the game multiple times) are loads more fun. That brings me to...

#4 Custom Gear

Not a single reviewer says a word about LP2's weapons and custom gear. No one mentions the Femmes Fatals and I find it odd that you'll never hear a word about the confetti shotgun, akrid launcher or the cloaking device. It's probably because THEY NEVER PLAYED THE GAME MORE THAN ONCE.

Now granted I know you're on a schedule to review games and you can't sink 40 hours into every title so you try to get through a single campaign play and drop the game for some other game you're more interested in (I'm going to assume Red Dead Redemption here). Fine I get that. I also get that if you want to do well at your job you need to put some time into doing it properly or face criticism of your work for that lack of full coverage.

This game's review has caused me to lose more faith in almost every reviewer I've read than any other failed game in the past and that worries me. Does it mean that reviewers are falling further and further towards the mainstream gaming population? Are they falling away from objectivity into the swirling mass of corporate marketing hype that leaves all non conformist games like LP2 stepped on and crushed?

PS: I know what everyone said about Mirror's Edge (omg non standard controls it's crap game!) and I worry what will become of Brink in the mess of military shooters that will bracket it's release. Please for the love of all that's holy don't measure it's quality by the standards of another game if it's not trying to be that game!

Hammith:
My problem with the game isn't that it's co-op. Co-op games are good, fine things. It's that the last one was decidedly not co-op and this one is almost entirely multiplayer. I'd imagine quite a few people that were fans of the last game and don't really play online got this and are sort of cursing some parts of it.

I think that this is part of the problem, why change the series direction with the sequel?

Wandrecanada:
It's probably because THEY NEVER PLAYED THE GAME MORE THAN ONCE.

How can you say that a game is supposed to be fun only after a certain number of hours invested? A game should strive to be fun no matter how it is played from the moment you boot it up. If it isn't fun, then maybe it's not that great of a game.

Is that such a crazy concept?

Also, I'm not sure that peppering multiplayer games with incremental rewards is necessarily a good thing. Is a game that supports an addiction model, a la FarmVille, really a better designed game or just one that preys upon those drawn to addictive styles of play?

Read this: http://www.escapistmagazine.com/articles/view/issues/issue_255/7594-The-Player-and-the-Pusher-Man

It shouldn't be left to trial and error to figure out that you have to bring the shells to the gun, load them, then turn the gun to point at the big bug.

This took trial and error... seriously? Doing it *well* requires some learning but from the very start you've got giant bullets, a giant gun, and a giant thing covered with enormous glowing weak points. It's grating that the review's filled with little nitpicks like this, or the open-ended sounding questions about the setting that are actually answered in cut-scene events and dialog as you go along.

At least you refrained from pointing out the control scheme for being "archaic".

As for being fun from the start, driving robots and shooting huge guns at horrible alien bugs rocks pretty hard. Knowing I could be doing it *better* makes me want to get my practice on instead of being a turn-off. Different strokes for different folks.

Well, despite the game not living up to the hype that has been created by their insane and most awesome 4-man Co-op, I still enjoy the occasional demo mission with my friends. It's always fun to blast something so big with friends who actually TALK.

Greg Tito:

Wandrecanada:
It's probably because THEY NEVER PLAYED THE GAME MORE THAN ONCE.

How can you say that a game is supposed to be fun only after a certain number of hours invested? A game should strive to be fun no matter how it is played from the moment you boot it up. If it isn't fun, then maybe it's not that great of a game.

Is that such a crazy concept?

Also, I'm not sure that peppering multiplayer games with incremental rewards is necessarily a good thing. Is a game that supports an addiction model, a la FarmVille, really a better designed game or just one that preys upon those drawn to addictive styles of play?

Read this: http://www.escapistmagazine.com/articles/view/issues/issue_255/7594-The-Player-and-the-Pusher-Man

No sorry, I cannot disagree more. A game needs to be fun no matter how its played? So stealth games should still be fun if you ignore the stealth and just shoot everyone? NO. A multi player focused game should behave differently than a single player focused game.

And really? The fact that you can play the multiplayer to unlock new weapons automatically makes this game farmville? Are you serious? Unlocks aren't automatically there to addict you, sometimes there are just extras. A bone for the enthusiast. Farmville, WoW and other addicting games don't offer extras in the same way. You have to keep coming back to those games every day to keep up. In WoW if you miss a few days of gameplay you end up waiting several more days to get tier gear you need to progress thru raiding, in farmville you have to come back several times a day to care for your crops. They want you to keep playing. In this game you just play as much as you want, have fun and sometimes unlock some fun extra. Don't cry "LOL FAMRVILLE" if you don't know what your talking about.

daedrick:
Bleh, got to be expected, most players on the escapist are relatively bad at video games. From what I can read at least, thats what I see. Some people who dislike or never played classic games that are considered master peice are rampant on this website... And Im not talking about the halo-quality-ish games.

Meh

Who are you referring to? People in the community or on the staff?

Greg Tito:
Also, I'm not sure that peppering multiplayer games with incremental rewards is necessarily a good thing. Is a game that supports an addiction model, a la FarmVille, really a better designed game or just one that preys upon those drawn to addictive styles of play?

Read this: http://www.escapistmagazine.com/articles/view/issues/issue_255/7594-The-Player-and-the-Pusher-Man

Collecting stuff isn't what makes FarmVille addictive, that stuff's been around for ages before it became a problem in the industry... where FarmVille hits you is the the back-and-forth social obligations that the game generates. You can't stop playing without having a crappy run-down farm and starving cows on your facebook profile, and dropping the ball for a whole bunch of real-life friends :\

The slot machine's fun and the random new weapon is a thrill, but nothing in there changes the fundamental gameplay, a character's default loadout is extremely reliable and effective. What's addictive about Lost Planet 2 is player performance; going for that elusive "perfect run" where you and your team are nonstop awesome for an entire mission, chapter, maybe even a whole episode, nobody suffers from some humiliating death, people rack up lots of Good Job awards, etc. There are so many possible strategies and approaches to try and you rarely play a mission back-to-back which prevents learning by rote repetition.

Is it so wrong when the fundamentals of a game are addictive like that? It's not gimmicks, it's not collectible stuff, it's like wanding to have a great race in Wipeout where you've got to play your end really well and just hope that nobody manages to sic a missile on you while you're making a hard corner and ruin a lap time. This is where Demon's Souls lost me, there wasn't enough of a random element - besides invaders - to replays, once you knew your stuff you could play the same area like clockwork.

Greg Tito:

Wandrecanada:
It's probably because THEY NEVER PLAYED THE GAME MORE THAN ONCE.

How can you say that a game is supposed to be fun only after a certain number of hours invested? A game should strive to be fun no matter how it is played from the moment you boot it up. If it isn't fun, then maybe it's not that great of a game.

Is that such a crazy concept?

Also, I'm not sure that peppering multiplayer games with incremental rewards is necessarily a good thing. Is a game that supports an addiction model, a la FarmVille, really a better designed game or just one that preys upon those drawn to addictive styles of play?

Read this: http://www.escapistmagazine.com/articles/view/issues/issue_255/7594-The-Player-and-the-Pusher-Man

I just wanted to say that this is not in any way a direct attack on you or your review but more a generalization of all reviews. And I never once inferred the game wasn't fun for me the first time through or that it was unfun during the first time or any iterative gameplay. It's just that the game's content is far greater than what you get in a single playthrough and that makes all reviews feel hollow or unfinished.

My question to you now becomes; Do reviewers using the argument that a game needs to be fun the first time through, think that games should ONLY be fun the first time through? Does your review process even venture into replay with any game by attempting to have a reviewer to play it a second time especially when the game's structure implies that it has replay value?

Full disclosure I did find myself frustrated at certain points of gameplay where I hadn't fully had time to digest the on screen instructions and fell into the trap of assuming a game would show me in some obvious fashion how to achieve the mission goals. It was only by moving forward into the game world (read: simply moving through the map in an obvious direction) that the instructions became clear. Only through iterative gameplay did I discover better and more complex ways to achieve those goals.

NamesAreHardToPick:

Greg Tito:
Also, I'm not sure that peppering multiplayer games with incremental rewards is necessarily a good thing. Is a game that supports an addiction model, a la FarmVille, really a better designed game or just one that preys upon those drawn to addictive styles of play?

Read this: http://www.escapistmagazine.com/articles/view/issues/issue_255/7594-The-Player-and-the-Pusher-Man

Collecting stuff isn't what makes FarmVille addictive, that stuff's been around for ages before it became a problem in the industry... where FarmVille hits you is the the back-and-forth social obligations that the game generates. You can't stop playing without having a crappy run-down farm and starving cows on your facebook profile, and dropping the ball for a whole bunch of real-life friends :\

The slot machine's fun and the random new weapon is a thrill, but nothing in there changes the fundamental gameplay, a character's default loadout is extremely reliable and effective. What's addictive about Lost Planet 2 is player performance; going for that elusive "perfect run" where you and your team are nonstop awesome for an entire mission, chapter, maybe even a whole episode, nobody suffers from some humiliating death, people rack up lots of Good Job awards, etc. There are so many possible strategies and approaches to try and you rarely play a mission back-to-back which prevents learning by rote repetition.

Is it so wrong when the fundamentals of a game are addictive like that? It's not gimmicks, it's not collectible stuff, it's like wanding to have a great race in Wipeout where you've got to play your end really well and just hope that nobody manages to sic a missile on you while you're making a hard corner and ruin a lap time. This is where Demon's Souls lost me, there wasn't enough of a random element - besides invaders - to replays, once you knew your stuff you could play the same area like clockwork.

Although I agree wholly with your argument and it mirrors my own experience but I'd also like to add that Mr. Tito's opinion (and others with the same sentiments) are a clear example of what someone who has not actually experienced what the unlock system has to offer would assume it is. Again we're seeing people use the Modern Warfare/Battlefield persistent unlock system as a model to base those assumptions upon instead of actually testing it and realizing that it's not at all the same mechanic or design. It's a very different system and again, requires multiple playthroughs to dive into. This was a design choice to extend the life of the game without taking away from the core of the game. It's not superfluous but it helps keep the game fresh when you go into those additional plays.

To understand what I'm talking about you'd have to play it more than once... something I'm doubtful at this juncture we'll ever see out of a reviewer now that Red Dead has been released. Most have already written it off and thanks to many reviews so has the general gaming public.

Korten12:

Mr Companion:
I do not understand why all the reviewers dislike this game so much. Me and a friend are playing through it co-op and it has been a blast. That may be for a number of circumstantial reasons (how good my ally is, how much I like the idea of killing giant bugs ect) but from what I can see this game is very enjoyable.

you have it on ps3? could I play with you guys if you do?

I have it for the PS3. GT: squidward5580

And dammit you do not have to use the cannon to beat the worm. On either side of the coolants is 2 mounted guns per side. Use them to take out the glowing spots on both sides of it. Hit the coolants when needed. Takes a bit longer perhaps but it is the best way to solo it. I got the kill shot with a machine gun lol

Wandrecanada:
To understand what I'm talking about you'd have to play it more than once... something I'm doubtful at this juncture we'll ever see out of a reviewer now that Red Dead has been released. Most have already written it off and thanks to many reviews so has the general gaming public.

Hey, at least it's a step up that reviewers are playing games all the way through. Remember old SEGA games? They would go all out on design for the first level in the game and then just dump you on your face after that... Phantasy Star Online was the best of the worst of those. The first area was so beautiful, and every stage after that was just a bunch of box-shaped rooms and connecting tunnels.

I happily play a lot of games with mid-60's ratings overall on metacritic... especially if a game's reviews break down into a lot of love and hate. That's almost a sure sign of a game I can really enjoy. Lost Planet 2 is the first title where I've really felt mad about low review scores because of the multiplayer. I tried getting a clan together on Destructoid but the 4 or 4.5 it got there got a lot of people saying they wouldn't give it a try.

Vital Suit is 3 syllables, while VS is two. I guess the abbreviation is a little bit worth it?

Is this game worth it if you only play it with 1 buddy in splitscreen or is it a necessity to have 3 buddies with you?

WestMountain:
Is this game worth it if you only play it with 1 buddy in splitscreen or is it a necessity to have 3 buddies with you?

Splitscreen isn't the best experience for the game - there are some limitations like no appearance customization on P2 and no night vision - but it works well enough. One positive is being able to toggle 2x zoom (unless your weapon has a better scope) for the same size/detail as you're used to on a full screen.

Onyx Oblivion:
We ask for co-op games designed around it. We get it, and we whine about how the solo sucks. Gamers are a picky bunch, aren't we.

Yes, I'm sure the entirety of gaming is on both sides, rather than something like co-op fans being stuck with solo focused games crying out, and then when appeased by something like LP 2, a soloist stumbles onto it and says, "Why can't I enjoy this game in my usual way?" Y'know, a logical division along lines preference, illogically posited as representing all gamers' opinions everywhere.

Susan Arendt:

daedrick:
Bleh, got to be expected, most players on the escapist are relatively bad at video games. From what I can read at least, thats what I see. Some people who dislike or never played classic games that are considered master peice are rampant on this website... And Im not talking about the halo-quality-ish games.

Meh

Who are you referring to? People in the community or on the staff?

Both, and Im not trying to troll or being mean. From what I can read, or hear, most people on this website seem to be bad at video games. Sometimes its from thread on the forum or sometime its in an article like this one. Yathzee as well, doesn't seem like the best of the player, often complaining about game designs that are meant to be that way and, in my opinion, are perfectly fine.

Especialy complaining about difficulty, I mean, its refreshing these days to find an hard game in the sea of children friendly almost retarded video games that swarm the shelves of the stores. So everytime someone complain about a video game difficulty my ears squeak.

I mean, how much fun can it be to always fly trough content without chalenges.

That being said; Please dont hurt me! Think about my children! :O

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