Review: Lost Planet 2

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Susan Arendt:
Guys, reviewers aren't God, and our reviews aren't the Holy Gospel of Games. We play a game and we relate what the experience was like in an attempt to give you enough information so that you can make an educated guess about whether or not you would enjoy playing the game. Your opinions will, at times, differ with ours, because sometimes something will just plain tickle your personal fancy. We're not trying to dictate taste to you, or tell you that you're wrong if you have fun with a particular title. We want you to enjoy games, and if you like a game that I don't, well, that's just fine by me, man. I'm totally cool with that. We give you our experience with a game, your mileage may vary. If online co-op play blows your skirt up, and you enjoy a robust challenge that requires multiple attempts for the full experience, then yes, you will undoubtedly enjoy Lost Planet because it's that kind of game. Not everyone is in that boat, though, and it's perfectly reasonable to be a bit disappointed that the sequel to a game with a strong single-player component has decided to ditch that in favor of required multiplayer. This is the kind of game that some players will take to heart, adore, and play the holy hell out of, while others give it a wide berth and move on. It's just that kind of game. In other words, pretty much everyone who's voiced an opinion about it one way or the other in this thread is right.

Susan, let me first say that I have a great deal of respect for you as a reviewer, I've enjoyed your reviews and have even picked up a game or two by your recommendation (The Path being one). I think it's great that you recognize the flaw in video game reviews being that they are entirely subjective and I propose that if the reviewers themselves recognize this than the issue should be corrected.

I've watched every single review on The Escapist, including Zero Punctuation, Movie Bob, and reviews like this, and every single time a reviewer gives a game a bad rap The Escapist's community seems to bite back and say that the game is NOT in fact bad. It seems to me that the reviewers and the community are almost always at polar odds with each other. What I suggest is this: give the community a more obvious influence on these reviews. An example of this would be to make the 'comments' pages attached to reviews bigger and more noticeable because of the dozens of gamers I know, I am the only one who actually reads the comments, and I know for a fact that everyone here is experiencing a similar situation. The community can vote on what comments are most relevant (with a 5 star system, or a like/dislike system, etc.) and the comments with the highest rating/most votes would be linked to - and readable on the review page. That way more people would actually read the comments on these things and then Escapist readers could be more involved with the magazine (generating more website hits) and ultimately giving less avid readers a more honest and objective review. The comments always seem to differ from the reviews and these comments definitely need to be more available to those who don't understand the subjectivity of reviews.

Also, I am going to paraphrase Greg Tito's review:

Greg Tito: "I don't like co-op. I really like it when games hold my hand like an infant. I need to be constantly reminded of what I am doing and who I am playing and what is going on, it could be because I am thinking about other games too much."

I don't mean to disrespect, I mean to discredit.

This game's story isn't groundbreaking by any means but it is inventive. The dialogue is far from bad, but not life changing, the plot is unpredictable enough to be interesting, without being convoluted, and the characters although nameless are interesting and human (as compared to the dick swinging, bullet-eating, high-fiving super soldiers of all other comparable titles)

The gameplay is damn smooth, fluid, fun and there is a ton more to do in this game than others, for example: Every VS (mech) handles differently, each with their own unique (but similar) controls and moves and fighting style, some fly, some transform, some walk, some roll, some shoot, some slash, all VS weapons are interchangeable on-the-fly, some seat 3, some seat 8, some even combine MEGAZOR style. Now the VS's aren't the main staple of combat, they are always available but are not always the best tactic in combat. There are many points in LP2 where passing up a VS for a stealth approach will save your ass, and your teammate's ass(s). There is a huge variety of weapons including: Full auto machine guns, semi auto machine guns, energy guns, shotguns, flame-throwers, revolvers, pistols, akrid-launchers, gun-blades (yeah, you heard that right), snipers, plasma rifles, plasma cannons, rocket launchers, homing launchers, homing lasers, gatling guns, VS rifles, laser lances, and the list goes on and on. Weapons that VS's can use; soldiers can use by hand. Oh yeah and you can ride Akrids online (THERE'S A GIANT SCORPION xD). And this game is more than just data-posts, data-posts are just the checkpoints in the game. This game has HUGE replayablity as each level has multiple paths and even taking the same paths is a lot of fun because the game has 'GJ awards' which are awards in the form of rankings (D,C,B,A,S) and special moves/tactics, you are notified when you have done something particularly well (or not well at all) like killing a boss particularly quickly, or collecting a lot of T-ENG or killing a boss with a particular strategy. You are awarded with credits and EXP for completing 'GJ awards' which can be used to purchase emotes, name suffixes, weapons, character parts, and abilities (which alter your play style). I can't stop playing this game because I love collecting new character parts and weapons to customize my character.

This game has WICKED graphics too, very detailed, and very organic. This game has some of the best environments in a video-game to date. The campaign takes place in jungles, deserts, tundra, under-water, outer-space, night, day, city's, villages, caves, bases, all over the places (see what I did there ;) ). This is the first game known to me with realistic jungles. It seems game developers like to make jungles flat-lands with a bunch of ferns and some trees; well LP2 like it's jungles THICK, diverse, and fore-boding. The jungle environments are nowhere near flat, the ground is never really the same height anywhere (play the campaign demo, you'll see what I mean) and gamers actually feel like they're in a jungle, you can't see through the bushes, and the trees get in your way and there's always a place to hide (or be hidden from).

The competitive online in this game is very well done, I've logged 6+ hours in competitive play and not yet encountered any balance issues, even against players who have already reached max level (99). All the gear one earns through campaign and online play (your character is the same in both) is useful when earned but not integral to gameplay. You don't have to have *insert weapon here* to put up a fight, combating experienced players is challenging only because they have stronger tactics and of course, experience.

Overall this game is FUN. And that's what matters above all else because THAT is why we call them GAMES right?

It's addictive, it's immersive, it's enjoyable, there's thrills, there's chills, there's laughter and adrenaline. This is what gaming is all about, this game is the pinnacle of FUN for it's genre.

antipunt:
From this review, and all the others I've read, it looks pretty ...bad

Think for yourself, try the game.

Makszi:

antipunt:
From this review, and all the others I've read, it looks pretty ...bad

Think for yourself, try the game.

No thanks.

If I were to try each and every game with a terrible review average, it'd be like shooting in the dark.

Is it just me or does this game look like steampunk but set in space, ok the military suits not so much but the other guys to have that feel to them // I think its all the brown that they used in making this game

I think I have Lost Planet around here somewhere which shows you how much I want to go out and buy the second one

-M

antipunt:
If I were to try each and every game with a terrible review average, it'd be like shooting in the dark.

Any game with real substance and direction is going to offend at least some of its reviewers. I think any game that gets unified critical praise either has some outside influence, or it's going to be a drive-by-committee pile of compromises that a gamer's going to have fun with once or twice tops and have no reason to come back to.

NamesAreHardToPick:

antipunt:
If I were to try each and every game with a terrible review average, it'd be like shooting in the dark.

Any game with real substance and direction is going to offend at least some of its reviewers. I think any game that gets unified critical praise either has some outside influence, or it's going to be a drive-by-committee pile of compromises that a gamer's going to have fun with once or twice tops and have no reason to come back to.

I agree with your point, and that's why I really emphasize 'averages'. You should never judge a game based off one review, or even merely a couple. You need a fair round estimate, and you need to eliminate outliers.

With that said, I've never, to date, enjoyed a game with a terrible review 'average'. Sure a great game might annoy a few folks, resulting in a couple of negligible outlier scores. But if everyone as a whole is hating on something...that's usually a sign that something's amiss.

Why the heck do they keep advertising about STUPID/RETARDED Dragons and dungeons or what ever the heck it is...

antipunt:
I agree with your point, and that's why I really emphasize 'averages'. You should never judge a game based off one review, or even merely a couple. You need a fair round estimate, and you need to eliminate outliers.

With that said, I've never, to date, enjoyed a game with a terrible review 'average'. Sure a great game might annoy a few folks, resulting in a couple of negligible outlier scores. But if everyone as a whole is hating on something...that's usually a sign that something's amiss.

It's not just the average, you have to take the distribution into account too. If a game scores 66% on metactritic and the reviews are all 6.6/10, I don't care because it's consistently meh. If a game scores 66% on metacritic because half the reviews are raving 10's and the other half are 4's demanding we kill it with fire, I would probably buy that over a game that scored consistent 80's or 90's because there's something there that goes beyond just being a competent game ... check out stuff like Killer 7 and S.L.A.I. if you want to see some real extremes.

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