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Author Topic: Tomb Raider Anniversary downloads for 360  (Read 2188 times)
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metallicorphan
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« on: June 18, 2007, 07:53:15 PM »

if you have Tomb Raider Legends then from this september you will be able to download the first two of four episodes that are Tomb Raider Anniversary...costing 2400 points for all four
from teamxbox
tomb raider anniversary 360

'Eidos Interactive Ltd., part of SCi Entertainment Group, one of the world's leading publishers and developers of entertainment software, is pleased to announce that the latest Lara Croft adventure, Tomb Raider: Anniversary, will be released on the Xbox 360(tm) video game and entertainment system from Microsoft, initially in the form of downloadable episodic content which will be available for purchase to owners of Tomb Raider Legend on Xbox 360.

This is the first time ever that the serialization of a full retail game will be available for purchase through Xbox Live(r) Marketplace. The game will be available in four episodes; Episodes 1 & 2 will be available in September, with the next two episodes arriving shortly afterwards. A full retail version is planned to be released for Xbox 360 later in the year.

"We have created this version of Anniversary specifically for digital distribution as episodic content. This is part of our strategy to grow our presence in online and digital distribution as we believe there are huge growth opportunities arising from this delivery format and we intend to capitalize on the increasing demand for digitally downloaded content," said Jane Cavanagh, Chief Executive, Eidos. "Lara has always been at the forefront of technology and this world first initiative with Microsoft really highlights that fact. Ultimately we also intend to make the title available at retail so that it reaches the maximum possible audience."

"We're continuing to break new ground in getting incredible gaming experiences in the hands of consumers," said George Peckham, General Manager of 3rd Party Publishing, Xbox, Microsoft. "We're excited to be able to deliver one of the most well-recognized franchises in video game history with Lara Croft Tomb Raider: Anniversary to our more than six million Xbox Live members worldwide in the form of episodic content."

The market for digital download of core PC and console games is expected to exceed $289 million by 2010, with Games on Demand services topping $104 million (ScreenDigest). Microsoft's Xbox Live online gaming network can already boast over 2.3 billion hours of online gaming (this is equal to 95 million days or over 260,000 years) since its launch in 2004. Xbox 360 owners have activated more than 5 billion points (over $60 million) on marketplace with over 135 million downloads since the launch of Xbox 360 in 2005.

Inspired by the first Tomb Raider videogame, originally released in 1996, LARA CROFT TOMB RAIDER: ANNIVERSARY is a totally new adventure for Lara, faithfully preserving the elements which made the original Tomb Raider such a classic (selling over 7 million copies worldwide). The Tomb Raider series is still one of the best selling videogame franchises of all time with over 32 million copies sold and two major feature films released, starring Angelina Jolie.

Tomb Raider: Anniversary has also launched on Windows as part of Microsoft's Games for Windows initiative, offering reliability, compatibility, and full support for play under Windows Vista(tm).

Lara Croft Tomb Raider: Anniversary will be available on Xbox 360 - episodically - from September. The Games for Windows(r) and PlayStation 2 versions have now been released worldwide, with both versions currently at No.1 in the UK and Germany in their respective charts, and No.1 in France on PC. A PSP version is due soon and a Nintendo Wii version is in development.

In order to access Lara Croft Tomb Raider: Anniversary downloadable episodic content for Xbox 360, players will require a Lara Croft Tomb Raider Legend disc. The episodes will cost 2400 Microsoft points for all four episodes, and will be released in two separate launches. Episodes 1 & 2 will be released in September and episodes 3 & 4 will follow shortly afterwards. The Croft Manor level will be free to download with both sets of episodes. Additional Tomb Raider Anniversary downloadable content will also become available for purchase on Marketplace to support the launch of Tomb Raider Episodic such as picture packs and theme packs.'

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« Reply #1 on: June 18, 2007, 09:26:29 PM »

A good idea (as its the same price as its counterparts), but terrible execution as it requires another game to actually play it (due to it using the engine and/or texture assets from the game).

It should've been cheaper IMHO due to this.
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« Reply #2 on: June 18, 2007, 09:30:45 PM »

I know $30 is the same price as the discs in stores (though by then they'll have come down in price, probably), but that still seems pricey for some reason.  Perception, I'm sure.  None the less, I'm leaning toward this over the Wii version just for graphics and familiarity of controls.  I don't like the idea of not having a solid disc, though.

I think a lot of people are going to balk at the idea of having to purchase TR:L to get this, though (especially since it doesn't seem to be available at EB now).  It is a good game, and folks should have it, but it seems sneaky to force folks to pay what'll be $20 on top of the $30 for what is a new budget game everywhere else.
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« Reply #3 on: June 18, 2007, 09:32:12 PM »

I wasn't sure if I was going to buy this version or the Wii one.  As it stands now, I don't own the Legends disc anymore, so I would have to wait for the retail 360 release.  Guess I will have to see which version to go for, but it definitely won't be the downloadable one.
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« Reply #4 on: June 18, 2007, 09:57:34 PM »

Guess I'll wait for the retail release.  I have zero interest in downloading the content. 
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« Reply #5 on: June 19, 2007, 01:28:00 AM »

Good concept, poor execution- why wait until September?  Did Sony lock up a temporary exclusive?  And the TR: Legend thing is a poor decision because, as good as it is, it's only about 8 hours long with no multiplayer so I imagine quite a few people have traded it in.  Never mind the fact that TR: Legend was also on PS2, PSP, and PC and more than half of the 360 userbase has bought their 360 after TR: Legend was released.  Of course, there will be a separate retail release later but that's promised "before the end of the year" so it's looking like another six months for that to happen. 
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« Reply #6 on: June 19, 2007, 01:58:59 AM »

Quote from: Kevin Grey on June 19, 2007, 01:28:00 AM

Good concept, poor execution- why wait until September?  Did Sony lock up a temporary exclusive? 

it's available for the PC right now, so if they got an exclusive it would only be for consoles.  They probably needed time to tweak it for the 360.
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« Reply #7 on: June 19, 2007, 02:45:23 AM »

Quote from: CeeKay on June 19, 2007, 01:58:59 AM

Quote from: Kevin Grey on June 19, 2007, 01:28:00 AM

Good concept, poor execution- why wait until September?  Did Sony lock up a temporary exclusive? 

it's available for the PC right now, so if they got an exclusive it would only be for consoles.  They probably needed time to tweak it for the 360.

That's how it often works- PC "doesn't count". 
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« Reply #8 on: June 19, 2007, 05:14:58 AM »

i have tomb raider legend,and i am keen to play anniversary...but i still really need that bigger hard drive to be released here...i still want to download the call of duty 3 maps.....so as it stands,i would rather wait for the disc version to be released,otherwise i would just go right ahead and download them
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« Reply #9 on: June 19, 2007, 03:12:59 PM »

Has there been any information about how long after the download the disc will come out?  I missed the retail version info in the press release.  That's probably the way I'll go, too, unless we're talking more than a few months.
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« Reply #10 on: June 19, 2007, 03:15:59 PM »

Quote from: Bullwinkle on June 19, 2007, 03:12:59 PM

Has there been any information about how long after the download the disc will come out?  I missed the retail version info in the press release.  That's probably the way I'll go, too, unless we're talking more than a few months.

Press release just says "before the end of the year"- with the downloads hitting in September it sounds like a 2-3 month window.

Since the second content pack probably won't be released until Ocober, I would guess November for the retail disc. 
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« Reply #11 on: June 19, 2007, 07:18:28 PM »

This game is beautiful and tons of fun on my new PC. It loads in the blink of an eye.

However you want to get it, for whatever system you want to get it, just make sure you get it!
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« Reply #12 on: January 14, 2009, 06:47:03 PM »

I can't find an 'impressions' thread for the 360 version, so I'm just going to post my thoughts in this one.

After finishing Tomb Raider: Legend last month, I decided that I enjoyed it so much that I decided to move directly into Anniversary.  It was a good decision, too: on the whole, Anniversary is a longer, larger, more expansive version of the exploration and puzzle solving that I liked so much in its predecessor, with better graphics and a superior framerate to boot.

The levels in Legend often felt like obstacle courses where ledges and grapple points were conveniently laid out to provide Lara a single route to her destination.  Anniversary really opens that concept up, with much more expansive environments where different objectives can be tackled in any order.  I'd say the smallest level here is at least 50% larger than the average level in Legend, and when you successfully work your way through a five or six huge interconnected puzzle chambers to complete your task, there's a great sense of accomplishment in figuring it all out.

I think the level design here is really stupendous.  It's amazing to me how often I'd enter a new room, have a careful look around at the walls and floors and movable objects, and instinctively see what needed to be done.  There were only two points where I really got stuck: once in the dreaded Damocles room because the game never tells you that Lara can do a perpendicular wall jump, and once because I stupidly overlooked a slightly hidden passageway.  In a game with such elaborate environments, the fact that the solutions always feel intuitive is a real testament to the skill of the developers. thumbsup

It's a good thing, too, because although the game recommends checking Lara's journal for hints, her thoughts always turned out to be hilariously vague.  "There must be a way out of this room," she writes.  Wow, thanks for the tip, Lara: I actually thought this was an inescapable crypt and the designers ended the game with you clawing at the walls and slowly starving to death. Tongue

Even though its a much larger game, Anniversary initially feels like it has a lot less plot development than Legend did.  The two ops guys who spend most of that previous game calling Lara up to deliver plot exposition aren't around, so the narrative really only infringes on the action during concise cutscenes that bookend the four major levels.  The difference in tone is striking, with a greater sense of independence and isolation as Lara makes her way through some abandoned old catacomb.

I wrote in the Legend thread how much I enjoyed that game's moral ambiguity.  Lara Croft may be the protagonist, but she's certainly no heroine...and, based on what we're shown, you could probably argue that she's practically a villain in her own story. icon_eek  Well, even though I was disappointed to find that Anniversary is a mostly-unrelated prequel to the storyline in that game, I was really impressed that they took the opportunity to provide a lot more backstory on how Lara came to be the way she is.  Her motives here may be altruistic -- certainly more than in Legend -- but the choices she makes in pursuing her goal take a profound toll on her sense of personal integrity. 

This is a story about betrayal, vengeance, temptation, and the deep compromises a person is willing to make when the stakes are high enough.  And, when tied together with Legend, it's shows that once a person compromises one principle, it's gets so much easier to start losing sight of the rest.  It's *incredibly* well executed, and I freaking love it! nod

I already own Underworld, having picked it up as part of Toys 'R Us B2G1 Free sale, but I think I'd like to take break and try playing something completely different for a while.  Maybe something like Star Wars: Republic Commando or Ratchet & Clank: Deadlocked....

-Autistic Angel
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« Reply #13 on: January 14, 2009, 07:05:37 PM »

Underworld is a great cap to the trilogy (and given recent events at Eidos and Crystal Dynamics probably the last of this iteration of Lara) and nicely merges not only the stories of Legend and Anniversary but the gameplay as well.
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« Reply #14 on: January 14, 2009, 07:55:41 PM »

Quote from: Autistic Angel on January 14, 2009, 06:47:03 PM

It was a good decision, too: on the whole, Anniversary is a longer, larger, more expansive version of the exploration and puzzle solving that I liked so much in its predecessor, with better graphics and a superior framerate to boot...

I'd say the smallest level here is at least 50% larger than the average level in Legend, and when you successfully work your way through a five or six huge interconnected puzzle chambers to complete your task, there's a great sense of accomplishment in figuring it all out...

I think the level design here is really stupendous...  In a game with such elaborate environments, the fact that the solutions always feel intuitive is a real testament to the skill of the developers. thumbsup

The difference in tone is striking, with a greater sense of independence and isolation as Lara makes her way through some abandoned old catacomb...

This is a story about betrayal, vengeance, temptation, and the deep compromises a person is willing to make when the stakes are high enough.  And, when tied together with Legend, it's shows that once a person compromises one principle, it's gets so much easier to start losing sight of the rest.  It's *incredibly* well executed, and I freaking love it! nod

i've gotta ask, since you never mention it: you are aware of the fact that anniversary is an extremely straight-forward remake of the first tomb raider game? & that most of your praise is properly directed at core design, who made up the whole thing from scratch smile ...
« Last Edit: January 14, 2009, 07:59:17 PM by semiconscious » Logged

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« Reply #15 on: January 14, 2009, 08:01:40 PM »

So as someone who hasn't played any of the three - what order should I put them in my Gamefly queue? 


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« Reply #16 on: January 14, 2009, 08:08:56 PM »

1.  Legends
2.  Anniversary
3.  Underworld

1&2 can be swapped (and Anniversary comes first chronologically) but I think that order works best in terms of developing gameplay. 
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« Reply #17 on: January 14, 2009, 08:10:36 PM »

Quote from: semiconscious on January 14, 2009, 07:55:41 PM

[i've gotta ask, since you never mention it: you are aware of the fact that anniversary is an extremely straight-forward remake of the first tomb raider game? & that most of your praise is properly directed at core design, who made up the whole thing from scratch smile ...

After watching some youtube vids of the original Tomb Raider as well as reading various comparisoins between the version, there were far more changes to Anniversary in terms of level design than I initially thought.  I'm not sure I would go as far as saying it was an extremely straight-forward remake. 
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« Reply #18 on: January 14, 2009, 08:16:13 PM »

Quote from: Kevin Grey on January 14, 2009, 08:10:36 PM

Quote from: semiconscious on January 14, 2009, 07:55:41 PM

[i've gotta ask, since you never mention it: you are aware of the fact that anniversary is an extremely straight-forward remake of the first tomb raider game? & that most of your praise is properly directed at core design, who made up the whole thing from scratch smile ...

After watching some youtube vids of the original Tomb Raider as well as reading various comparisoins between the version, there were far more changes to Anniversary in terms of level design than I initially thought.  I'm not sure I would go as far as saying it was an extremely straight-forward remake. 

well, the heart, soul (& guts) of the character, story, levels & major puzzles are all to be found in tomb raider, &, while there've obviously been tweaks & adjustments here'n'there in anniversary, i don't think 'extremely straight-forward' is all that inacurate, to that extent... but i could be wrong smile ...
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« Reply #19 on: January 14, 2009, 08:26:32 PM »

Quote from: Kevin Grey on January 14, 2009, 08:08:56 PM

1.  Legends
2.  Anniversary
3.  Underworld

1&2 can be swapped (and Anniversary comes first chronologically) but I think that order works best in terms of developing gameplay. 

Done!

Thanks.
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« Reply #20 on: January 14, 2009, 08:38:29 PM »

I liked Legend more  ninja

Personal preference really. I like more story (or at least interaction, like you got with the radio calls in Legend) in my game and get a little restless with complicated puzzles. I remember I somehow managed to get through the Cistern level in the PS1 Tomb Raider without a guide and was dreading that level in Anniversary - I think they made it a little more straightforward this time around. I liked the paths that they offered in Legend that were pretty easy to recognize but still fun and challenging to execute. More like Sands of Time or the original Sly Cooper if any of you have played that game.

And oh yeah, the game glitched and didn't give me my achievement for finishing the game.  icon_evil

I know a lot of people like the more "explorey" Tomb Raider, though.
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« Reply #21 on: January 14, 2009, 09:11:23 PM »

I will see what I like.  I don't always like these types of games but I loved Uncharted and am loving Prince of Persia so I hope one of these three will satisfy my itch for more of that type of gameplay.  I just need to finish Prince of Persia!
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« Reply #22 on: January 14, 2009, 09:19:21 PM »

Legend is probably the closest to Uncharted and PoP. 

I'm assuming that you are referring to the latest PoP?  Did you play the three PoP games from last generation?  All are worth playing if you like this kind of gameplay (though SoT is the only one that is backwards compatible for the 360). 
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« Reply #23 on: January 14, 2009, 11:17:50 PM »

Quote from: semiconscious on January 14, 2009, 07:55:41 PM

i've gotta ask, since you never mention it: you are aware of the fact that anniversary is an extremely straight-forward remake of the first tomb raider game? & that most of your praise is properly directed at core design, who made up the whole thing from scratch smile ...

I knew that Anniversary was a "remake" of the original and that it was helmed by Toby Gard, one of the lead designers of the original game, but since I don't think I've ever played more than fifteen minutes of the original, I don't know how faithful it is.

I'd be really surprised to learn, however, that all the spelunking in the original Tomb Raider was just an elaborate backdrop for the story of Lara's first
Spoiler for Hiden:
murder.  

Anniversary *really* underscores that moment.  You, the player, need to pull the trigger, you need to do it three times, and once the deed is done, Lara recoils from the body in horror and tries to scrub the stigma from her hands.

Then Kold congratulates her for it.  He's the hulking psychopath who slices open his own palm with the hunting knife he's planning to use to disembowel her.  "It's so good, isn't it?  Gets even better.  Can't explain it to people...they have to feel it."

Natla directly references it, too.  After Lara refuses her offer of immortality -- a prize which costs only "a few insignificant lives" -- Natla condemns her hypocritical self-righteousness.  "That blood on your hands!  Do you believe it was spilled for the good of all man!?  Or for your own selfish desire?  Look inside yourself, Lara: your heart is as black as mine!"

In most games, these might just be throwaway lines where the bad guys are just taunting the good ones.  In this case, when you consider how these events lead into Legend where Lara seems so cavalier about killing anyone who stands in her way, I think they really illustrate her diminished sense of humanity.

I don't know because I didn't play them: did the original Tomb Raider games have such a dark sensibility about Lara's character development?  

On a similar note, it's too bad there's no way to listen to the developer's commentary without replaying through the levels.  I listened to a couple entries in the first level and they're pretty interesting, but I don't really want to replay the whole game right now....

-Autistic Angel
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« Reply #24 on: January 14, 2009, 11:28:05 PM »

Anniversary was only 22.99 at amazon today so I ordered it.  I played the original back on the PS1.  Looking forward to trying out the remake.
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« Reply #25 on: January 14, 2009, 11:59:46 PM »

Quote from: Autistic Angel on January 14, 2009, 11:17:50 PM

I don't know because I didn't play them: did the original Tomb Raider games have such a dark sensibility about Lara's character development?

well, no - she kinda pops right out of the chute fully developed smile (ie, every bit as ruthless as she's ever been). which was/is fine by me - while i don't have a problem with finding out 'why a character is the way they are', as often as not i'm just as happy imagining it for myself, & that's pretty much how it worked for me for the early trs, which i really enjoyed (i replayed the first one a few months before i played anniversary)...

the efforts in the last few games to 'humanize' lara have been okay, but, for me, basically unnecessary - but, as i mentioned in the underworld thread, i suppose it's inevitable with a character that's been around so long, & lots of people do like it, so what do i know? smile ...


but, yeah, other than the touchy-feely stuff, & bits of improvisation, i'd say tr:a's pretty damn true, over-all, to the original experience - both the level & puzzle design in tomb raider, much (most?) of which is imported intact, really is every bit as awesome as in tr:a. &, by having ambient background sound in place of music most of the time, the original creates that amazing sense of isolation even more effectively than tr:a, imo...
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« Reply #26 on: January 15, 2009, 03:16:06 AM »

Quote from: Kevin Grey on January 14, 2009, 09:19:21 PM

Legend is probably the closest to Uncharted and PoP. 

I'm assuming that you are referring to the latest PoP?  Did you play the three PoP games from last generation?  All are worth playing if you like this kind of gameplay (though SoT is the only one that is backwards compatible for the 360). 

I played them a bit but I tend to suck at these types of games and got frustrated easily. 


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« Reply #27 on: January 15, 2009, 03:22:39 AM »

I did the 360 download piece.  I got screwed on one achievement when I finished the first two chapters before downloading the second two chapters.  FWIW, they are currently $10 each (I think), when coupled with the discount live points cards from target that came to $16 total, which was well spent considering I had never played the original. 
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« Reply #28 on: January 15, 2009, 04:49:47 PM »

I didn't look at the Achievements as I played, so I was pretty happy to find out that I'd earned every one of the "Good Show" awards for passing the quicktime sequences on the first try.  Those seemed a lot easier than in Legend, maybe because there was a little audio cue to let you know a button was about to come up.

I also got all the "Defeat [Boss Character] Without Dying" Achievements *except* for the very last encounter.  For whatever reason, I just couldn't get the timing on the adrenaline shot right on the first try, so I had to try a second time.

Anyone who can get the "Complete [Whole Level] Without Dying" Achievements is freaking hardcore, especially on the last level.  The first two levels, yeah, you could probably ease your way through as long as you were really conservative with your jumps.  But that last one...the last half of the final level is one enormous insta-death trap!  It's a good thing Anniversary is so fast and loose with the checkpoints or it would have gotten pretty frustrating near the end.

I'm not going to go for any of the Time Trial Achievements, though.  Maybe they're really easy to get and I'm just lazy, but trying to race through every level as fast as possible sounds like the antithesis of fun to me.

The problem now is trying to decide what to play next.  I tried about an hour worth of Star Wars: Republic Commando last night and thought it was pretty poor: the weapons have a really weak sense of feedback to them, and I can't seem to adjust the sensitivity to something that doesn't feel wild and twitchy. 

Then I tried a little bit of Just Cause.  Maybe it's because I played Mercenaries 2 first (and completed it from start to finish with two different characters), but this game seems pretty lightweight in comparison.  I really only had enough time to complete two or three missions, though, so maybe it gets better once you unlock some more tools and activities.

-Autistic Angel
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« Reply #29 on: January 15, 2009, 07:27:02 PM »

just cause definitely pales when compared against current games, but part of the fun is taking over the islands for the locals.  it's very repetitive, but if you like the thought of exploring a huge chain of islands and can accept the limitations, it's pretty enjoyable.  note that i never retook more than half of the island and the associated story missions, but i got it cheap, so i don't feel too disappointed. 

it would be hard to go back after far cry 2 though.  JC doesn't have nearly as much attention to detail and lacks variety in the environments.
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« Reply #30 on: January 15, 2009, 09:45:52 PM »

Quote from: Caine on January 15, 2009, 07:27:02 PM

just cause definitely pales when compared against current games, but part of the fun is taking over the islands for the locals.  it's very repetitive, but if you like the thought of exploring a huge chain of islands and can accept the limitations, it's pretty enjoyable.  note that i never retook more than half of the island and the associated story missions, but i got it cheap, so i don't feel too disappointed. 

it would be hard to go back after far cry 2 though.  JC doesn't have nearly as much attention to detail and lacks variety in the environments.

But those environments are pretty stunning.  Agreed, it's an earlier next-gen game, so I'm sure it doesn't hold up, but it was pretty amazing at the time.  Also the device that let you hijack planes was pretty cool, once you figured it out.

Annoyingly, I hit some kind of hard crash in the game and couldn't continue.
Logged

That's like blaming owls because I suck at making analogies.
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