Zero Punctuation: Condemned 2: Bloodshot

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Thank you so much for the great review again.
I am so impressed, how you manage to increase the fun by the, um... illustrations. This very simple set of basic shapes are all that is needed, I feel like in a monthy python X deluxe-paint (amiga) rambling. This time that crown poking the eye and the atmosphere-picture as well as the illustration of "realistic melee-simulation" really ads an extra level of fun.

I wonder, why I never had this cult-problem with silent hill. They explained everything but the whole story didn't stop to be creepy. Maybe because a lot of the riddles where so damn unlogical and twisted - throughout the whole game.

But Broken Sword III was so very bad that problem :D

Exactly what i felt when i played the game, i never got his power to blow peoples heads up with his voice. I mean, what?
Really awesome review as usual : >

Doctor Panda:
i'm not suggesting this is particularly erotic or anything but the fact that it managed to slip past the "whatever it is, we're against it" team without even the slightest hint of a complaint amuses me no end.

Not so much.

The scene is absent from the US version.

As always, brilliantly constructed. I like the reviews with Yahtzee actually in them. I think those are because he doesn't have 4 extra hours to finish editing but it adds personality, the very essence of a Yahtzee review. Let's see you review something like Lost Odyssey or how about GTAIV day & date?

[Heh, I've never played Condemned (2) but Indigo Prophesy was mentioned, soo... TANGENTS]

First, I can understand the annoyance you might feel with any explicit explanation to Condemned where the ambiance is largely based on being in the dark, but are you people (i.e. the ones who have commented about it in this thread) serious about Indigo Prophesy?

It made no attempt to have a realistic plot. Let me review what you learn in the first hour (if you're a slow gamer, but not dense) of Indigo Prophesy:
The main character was controlled by some hooded figure who seems to be performing a ritual in a room full of candles. The stab wounds precisely cut the arteries to the heart, and this kind of murder has happened before.
So we've already set the bar at some sort of paranormal serial killer - where can we go from there?

Anyway, I might as well (since I registered) take the opportunity to spread the gospel to adventure gamers: go get The Longest Journey, now. The _only_ argument I've heard against it so far is how long it takes to get into the story, but come now, it's an adventure game - go play CS:S/Halo if you want instant gratification.

GloatingSwine:

Doctor Panda:
i'm not suggesting this is particularly erotic or anything but the fact that it managed to slip past the "whatever it is, we're against it" team without even the slightest hint of a complaint amuses me no end.

Not so much.

The scene is absent from the US version.

So, is there more than what we saw in the Steam version then?

For the love of god yes. I need a ZP t-shirt or I will come down with Indigo Prophicy Syndrom

I want a ZP t-shirt, but not with the words "ZERO PUNCTUATION" in giant letters. I just want a yellow T-shirt with the Imp on it.

Cults seems to be pretty popular. Lets not forget Resident Evil 4, and the plot to take over the world via the president via the president's daughter.

Or Yahtzee's own games. But the Order of the Blessed Agonies was pretty sweet.

I doubt this will be read by many, or considered, but I think this wasn't one of Yahtzee's better reviews.

For starters I would point out that all of the evil cult stuff was in the original Condemned. Indeed unlocking the FBI files on this was the reward for succeeding with the various collection subquests. The files have been typed out and put on Gamefaqs. What's more the superman stuff was in the first game too, one of the big moments in the game is when they pull out the medical file in the Library and reveal that Special Agent Thomas has a number of superhuman abillities such as increased bone density and such which is why he is so tough.

What's more Yahtzee is 100% wrong about the ending of the game. The duel with Seriel Killer X is *NOT* the ending. The ending takes place when you find out that SKX was driven over the edge by the supernatural stuff (which is a big part of the final desician). You leave the house after this and wind up fighting a demon thing by pulling metal out of it's body, and then once the driving force is dead your given the option of killing or sparing SKX given the revelation.

Condemned 2 went multi-platform so it had to retread some of the same ground for newcomers. But ultimatly it had to move forward from the first game, everything that occurs is a logical extension of events from the first game. It gets more over the top since your moving from a "what is it" phase to a bit more understanding and direct confrontation with the problems rather than the effects.

Now it CAN be said that a good mystery is entertaining. Many good mysteries fail when the payoff isn't worthy of the suspense and build up. Perhaps Condemned 2 failed here (and I suspect it's the middle child of a trilogy with the most over the top confrontations coming in the end of a trilogy), but ultimatly media that thows unanswered questions at the viewer/gamer/listener without any payoff is among the worst that there is. Notice that "Lost" has been slipping a bit due to this problem. Not to mention that other game series like "Blood Omen"/"Soul Reaver" have been heavily criticized for exactly that.

Pacing is important, and I think in general Condemned has done a decent job of pacing the evolution of the story. Perhaps the mystery elements to begin with were better written, but that's an issue for the writers rather than with the progression itself.

My biggest problem with Yahtzee's review this time is that unlike other ones, it's entirely obvious that he is sounding off without knowlege he claims to have. He's claiming to have played and beaten Condemned 1 to make comparisons to Condemned 2, but it's obvious he hasn't as what he claims is the finale isn't the finale, and certain elements that he claims the first Condemned was better for lacking were always present. Including a big, fat cinematic scene talking about your Protaganist being a bit more than a normal human.

A trip to Gamefaqs would have uncovered some of the "payoffs" from collection in the form of the files that kind of spell out the Lovecraftian occult elements, and the existance of a cult.

>>>----Therumancer--->

That was extremely good. Also extremely fast-paced - ouch.
LOL @ the baguette (I'm a 12 year old boy in my head, oh yes), the ending musical choice, the Indigo Prophecy Syndrome (of which you did an extremely accurate description) and cardboard-Mulder.

Alstan:
I'm the only one who thinks Condemned 1 is overrated for the people who say is underrated? I mean it was:
1st-zapp
2nd-hit
3rd-walk back till your tazer is charged
4th-repeat the 1st point
You don't even need bullets from those paper-made fire weapons. Ok, the first half it was really good and it's scary, but the second one you don't even need to hit anyone, some of your rivals just die with your super-hyper-xray-long-range-vision-tazer.

You're not the only one. Condemned was one of the most hyper-repetitive and mindless games I've ever played. Assassin's Creed shares the top-spot with it.

First time poster, hey all \o

OK, first of all, congratulations on a magnificent and most hilarious report on Condemned 2 (which I can't wait for it to reach us, "The PC Master Race"). You nailed the worst two points of the first Condemned and I have to agree with the "scream of death" being a bit too stupid for something like Condemned, BUT!

As others have already said, and correctly, Condemned 1 already mentions a Cult! And you don't even have to read the special reports by collecting the Metal pieces. When we are talking to Rose (I think that's the woman's name) at the cafe, after all the "kill or not to kill SKX" (compassion award for me!), she says they have discovered it was some kind of cult that was behind all that, she even mentions being a 200 old or so. I can't really blame the C2 team for resuming their previous plot :)

Halfang:
People at university is looking at me in strange manner because I laughted so much.

Creepy. I think they are serial killers. Or something.

If you get a pipe and a tazer people will still looking at you in strange manner, but you're going to laught much more.

This was a fine review. Insightful and entertaining from start to finish. For a moment there I almost forgot he reviewed Peggle.

Sure, people can moan about accuracy regarding Condemned 1 all they want, but you still didn't shout and bloody well cause people's heads to explode.

While there was subtle allusions to the cults and whatnot, they did a Bioshock (or is it the other way around?) and realised: People find out as much as they want to. There was supernatural twists and whatnot in numero Uno, but the solution was still TO PULL THE GUY'S *self-censor* JAW OFF!

/testosterone-injection

And, of course, there's the whole "who's the insane one?" angle. Unreliable Narrator has been better than Deus Ex Machina Cult for years now.

About Fahrenheit (honestly, 'Indigo Prophecy'!? What were they thinking!?), of course it got silly, but then it was supernatural from the off. The important distinction is that supernatural does not necessarily indicate 'The Cult did it'-based poor plot resolving, and 'supernatural' can be done well. Still, alas... the epic-length QTE fight was quite good, though.

P.S: As I said in the ZP-tees thread, Cry Mich Ein River for the win!

Well I can safely say that this review was much better planned and thought out than the previous two. The humor was back, the yahtzee wit was as high as ever, and the cruelty that I've come to love hath returned as well.

Although I'm not sure if you will ever be able to top the Turok review.

However, I cannot say as much this week because I have not played either Condemned game, and I prbably never will (the violence isn't my taste in video games)

The Anonymous Mr P:
Sure, people can moan about accuracy regarding Condemned 1 all they want, but you still didn't shout and bloody well cause people's heads to explode.

While there was subtle allusions to the cults and whatnot, they did a Bioshock (or is it the other way around?) and realised: People find out as much as they want to. There was supernatural twists and whatnot in numero Uno, but the solution was still TO PULL THE GUY'S *self-censor* JAW OFF!

/testosterone-injection

And, of course, there's the whole "who's the insane one?" angle. Unreliable Narrator has been better than Deus Ex Machina Cult for years now.

About Fahrenheit (honestly, 'Indigo Prophecy'!? What were they thinking!?), of course it got silly, but then it was supernatural from the off. The important distinction is that supernatural does not necessarily indicate 'The Cult did it'-based poor plot resolving, and 'supernatural' can be done well. Still, alas... the epic-length QTE fight was quite good, though.

P.S: As I said in the ZP-tees thread, Cry Mich Ein River for the win!

I'm glad someone else brought this up, or I was going to have to break Ben Croshaw's heart. (Or whatever is left of it) First up, funny review. Very Funny. Notice though I didn't say good. Thats because you went from paying out a game for obvious flaws to being downright hypocritical. Yes, your Chzo Mythos series ends with... you guessed it, a CULT! 5 Days a Stranger didn't start with an obvious twist to a Cult or Sect. Neither did 7 Days a Skeptic. It was only Trilby's notes, and 6 Days a Sacrifice that we saw this Cult. Hang on, that means your series has Indigo Prophecy Syndrome as well, you've become what you have always hated! (Dramatic Music) Duh Duh DUH!

I'm sorry for that, but it needed to be said.

I loved Indigo Prophecy (Fahrenheit as it was called here in Aus) because it was an engaging experience. The reason he was able to pull superpowers out of his arse, was because he was superhuman after falling of the pedestal at the amusement park. I mean, how could a normal human survive that? (And I'm sure the shaman in the other realm gave him some juice.)

I haven't played Condemned 2, or 1. But if I do decide to get a 360, I might just pick this up.

So please Yahtzee, be extra careful what you say, you dont wanna look stupid infront of everyone right? Remember the flak towers?

At least you still make me laugh, maybe thats why you went kinda hypocritical, maybe you wanted someone to see your mistake. Made it all the more interesting. If thats the case, nicely done.

Sounds like another victim of 'comic book' syndrome. Problem is that while videogames have become somewhat mainstream they aren't cool. So while Average Joe may enjoy them, it's still only the lonely geeks who go so far as making them. And we know they all read (and enjoy) comic books. All except you of course Benjamin.

As usual, frakking awesome

I shouldnt have turned around... you were right... the killer was really pissed off...

Seriously, I was fine with Indigo Prophecy. Sure, it got supernatural, but they properly eased into it.

...until the end boss, which was COMPLETE AND UTTER WTF WHIPLASH WHY DID THEY DO THIS!?

sigh.

Even Condemned 1 properly ramped it up to the very end. (Which was rather supernatural.) I wasn't surprised at the throat beam due to the X-Rays in Condemned 1. I'm good with a game going bonkers. However, it has to at least have some FEEL like you're helplessly grounded in reality, watching in horror as everything goes wrong and absolutely praying that you get through it through sheer luck alone.

I guess the review was funny but I'll never know because he reviews only games that I have never played. Plus, I don't use Xbox 360, PS3, Wii, or whatever they come up with. Enough with the stupid consoles. I guess he does this because consoles are a bigger par of the market but then again, console users are not exactly the smartest people around, so this stunt is kinda useless.

elpresidente:
, console users are not exactly the smartest people around.

No we just can't afford a thousand dollar gaming PC which needs to be constantly updated. Back when I a had a PC capable of playing games on it, my computer ran into problems every time I installed a new game.

I have a 136 IQ with a nine point margin of error putting me near the second standard deviation.

Pseudonym2:

No we just can't afford a thousand dollar gaming PC which needs to be constantly updated. Back when I a had a PC capable of playing games on it, my computer ran into problems every time I installed a new game.

But you can afford a three/four hundred console with fifty pound games? Methinks thou doeth protest too much. PC's are cheaper, faster and can run much more than many consoles. Consoles only benefits are the weird little games, massmarket effect and consistency.

[I have both]

Ah, there's the hate-filled Yahtzee that I love.
In a heterosexual way.
Without cocks.
Hard ones.
No.

Pseudonym2:

I have a 136 IQ with a nine point margin of error putting me near the second standard deviation.

image

Back on topic:
I didn't find this review that funny, but I must say that it had really good arguments and I think that's important. So, good job on this one.

Sylocat:
I just want a yellow T-shirt with the Imp on it.

Me too, I'd buy 6 of those in a second.

"Bum smash" XD Reminds me of Sunday school where we'd yell out "Bible bash!" when the priests argued.

Did any get creeped out when the Yahtz mentioned YOUR house?

The Anonymous Mr P:

About Fahrenheit (honestly, 'Indigo Prophecy'!? What were they thinking!?)

To be honest, the name Fahrenheit doesn't have much more meaning than Indigo Prophecy at all, unless the main character is some sort of American meteorologist. In fact, Indigo Prophecy might be a better name, since it gives you a bit of warning up the upcoming cults and magic, etc mentioned before.

On the flip side, Fahrenheit is a cool name because it reminds me of Fahrenheit 451, which was an awesome book.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fahrenheit_451

I'm pretty sure 'Fahrenheit' was referencing the little-mentioned cold-wave that went across the world because of the whole prophecy business. It was just a little colder than average at the beginning. By the end it's freaking apocalyptic.

The Anonymous Mr P:
I'm pretty sure 'Fahrenheit' was referencing the little-mentioned cold-wave that went across the world because of the whole prophecy business. It was just a little colder than average at the beginning. By the end it's freaking apocalyptic.

In that case, please allow me to salt my words before I eat them.

Hey, my IQ's 134, and I'm a console user, too! Way to make sweeping generalizations, there, Mr. President.

On-Topic:

Maxpayne5th:
I'm glad someone else brought this up, or I was going to have to break Ben Croshaw's heart. (Or whatever is left of it) First up, funny review. Very Funny. Notice though I didn't say good. Thats because you went from paying out a game for obvious flaws to being downright hypocritical. Yes, your Chzo Mythos series ends with... you guessed it, a CULT! 5 Days a Stranger didn't start with an obvious twist to a Cult or Sect. Neither did 7 Days a Skeptic. It was only Trilby's notes, and 6 Days a Sacrifice that we saw this Cult. Hang on, that means your series has Indigo Prophecy Syndrome as well, you've become what you have always hated! (Dramatic Music) Duh Duh DUH!

I'm sorry for that, but it needed to be said.

I loved Indigo Prophecy (Fahrenheit as it was called here in Aus) because it was an engaging experience. The reason he was able to pull superpowers out of his arse, was because he was superhuman after falling of the pedestal at the amusement park. I mean, how could a normal human survive that? (And I'm sure the shaman in the other realm gave him some juice.)

I haven't played Condemned 2, or 1. But if I do decide to get a 360, I might just pick this up.

So please Yahtzee, be extra careful what you say, you dont wanna look stupid infront of everyone right? Remember the flak towers?

At least you still make me laugh, maybe thats why you went kinda hypocritical, maybe you wanted someone to see your mistake. Made it all the more interesting. If thats the case, nicely done.

I'm glad that someone else noticed this. This kind of ruined the review for me, too... :(

The_root_of_all_evil:

Pseudonym2:

No we just can't afford a thousand dollar gaming PC which needs to be constantly updated. Back when I a had a PC capable of playing games on it, my computer ran into problems every time I installed a new game.

But you can afford a three/four hundred console with fifty pound games? Methinks thou doeth protest too much. PC's are cheaper, faster and can run much more than many consoles. Consoles only benefits are the weird little games, massmarket effect and consistency.

[I have both]

I bought some bonds 5 years ago to afford the consul. All the games I bought were used and most of them under $25 (like Condemned which was only $17). Plus I don't have to buy $60 mouses or constant upgrades.

BLUEMANRULE:
As always, brilliantly constructed. I like the reviews with Yahtzee actually in them. I think those are because he doesn't have 4 extra hours to finish editing but it adds personality, the very essence of a Yahtzee review. Let's see you review something like Lost Odyssey or how about GTAIV day & date?

GTA4 day-and-date in Australia is going to be like March 2009, right?

Therumancer:
I doubt this will be read by many, or considered, but I think this wasn't one of Yahtzee's better reviews.

For starters I would point out that all of the evil cult stuff was in the original Condemned. Indeed unlocking the FBI files on this was the reward for succeeding with the various collection subquests. The files have been typed out and put on Gamefaqs. What's more the superman stuff was in the first game too, one of the big moments in the game is when they pull out the medical file in the Library and reveal that Special Agent Thomas has a number of superhuman abillities such as increased bone density and such which is why he is so tough.

What's more Yahtzee is 100% wrong about the ending of the game. The duel with Seriel Killer X is *NOT* the ending. The ending takes place when you find out that SKX was driven over the edge by the supernatural stuff (which is a big part of the final desician). You leave the house after this and wind up fighting a demon thing by pulling metal out of it's body, and then once the driving force is dead your given the option of killing or sparing SKX given the revelation.

Condemned 2 went multi-platform so it had to retread some of the same ground for newcomers. But ultimatly it had to move forward from the first game, everything that occurs is a logical extension of events from the first game. It gets more over the top since your moving from a "what is it" phase to a bit more understanding and direct confrontation with the problems rather than the effects.

Now it CAN be said that a good mystery is entertaining. Many good mysteries fail when the payoff isn't worthy of the suspense and build up. Perhaps Condemned 2 failed here (and I suspect it's the middle child of a trilogy with the most over the top confrontations coming in the end of a trilogy), but ultimatly media that thows unanswered questions at the viewer/gamer/listener without any payoff is among the worst that there is. Notice that "Lost" has been slipping a bit due to this problem. Not to mention that other game series like "Blood Omen"/"Soul Reaver" have been heavily criticized for exactly that.

Pacing is important, and I think in general Condemned has done a decent job of pacing the evolution of the story. Perhaps the mystery elements to begin with were better written, but that's an issue for the writers rather than with the progression itself.

My biggest problem with Yahtzee's review this time is that unlike other ones, it's entirely obvious that he is sounding off without knowlege he claims to have. He's claiming to have played and beaten Condemned 1 to make comparisons to Condemned 2, but it's obvious he hasn't as what he claims is the finale isn't the finale, and certain elements that he claims the first Condemned was better for lacking were always present. Including a big, fat cinematic scene talking about your Protaganist being a bit more than a normal human.

A trip to Gamefaqs would have uncovered some of the "payoffs" from collection in the form of the files that kind of spell out the Lovecraftian occult elements, and the existance of a cult.

>>>----Therumancer--->

This really deserves to be QFT. Ofcourse, that doesn't resolve Condemned 2's problem with the crappy 2nd half, especially the last 2 levels in wich guns are way more important wich fails for a game known for it's epic melee combat.

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