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121  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: Marvel: Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. on: April 09, 2014, 03:09:33 PM
I read a recap over at Collider. Sounds cool, though the whole idea that they intentionally made the show arguably milquetoast and dull because they needed to wait for Cap 2 to release first, so that they could then flip a switch and unveil the "real" show is... a remarkably peculiar way of doing/marketing a TV show that's supported by advertisers who can't be happy if the show was purposely made in a way that was going to shed something like 12 million viewers since its high-rated premiere before they could say, "Woah, this is the REAL show! Come back!!!"  icon_neutral
122  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: Marvel: Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. on: April 08, 2014, 11:15:53 PM
I'd watch but my procrastinating staff writer's gonna keep me here at work too late. Like George Clooney-as-Batman-said:
"This is why Superman works alone."  Roll Eyes icon_razz

I'll count on you allies to give me a confidential report in spoiler codes or via PM. Don't worry about spoiling it for me, just wanna know what happened.  icon_smile Yeah I should stop being a Captain America-like fossil who doesn't have a DVR.  icon_razz
123  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: [movie] Captain America: The Winter Soldier confirmed on: April 08, 2014, 11:01:07 PM
Well shucks. Wish they'd given these pins out at last Thursday's double feature event.  icon_frown icon_razz

Captain America: The Winter Soldier pins
http://instagram.com/p/miamCNnrmF/
124  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: [movie] Captain America: The Winter Soldier confirmed on: April 08, 2014, 02:46:30 PM

Quote from: rittchard on April 07, 2014, 06:13:49 PM

I love the Cap/Bucky dynamic (talk about a bromance that survives the test of time!), was hoping for more but it looks like that will be addressed in the sequel.  

As for Chris Evans, one of the rumors I read was that in the comic Bucky takes over as Captain America after Steve Rogers dies, so they could play on that in the 3rd film, i.e. kill off Chris and have Sebastian Stan take over for future sequels.  

Spoiler for Hiden:
Also loved the Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver teaser.  So I see that's how they are getting around the "mutant" issue, they are totally going a different angle.  Kind of sucks for hardcore Marvel fans, but it seems like we'll never get to see the X-Universe mix with this one.
Yeah I liked the Cap/Bucky stuff.  Bring your own! I was going to gab about it but I guess I shouldn't assume everyone here knows their story.  paranoid icon_smile

Stan taking over would for sure make sense IF Marvel wants a different take (Brubaker did a whole bunch of Cap comics with Cap thought to be dead and Bucky as a darker, edgier Cap. Cap eventually got revived, and Bucky returned to his Winter Soldier persona, ostensibly as a good guy. Though I think I read Marvel recently cancelled the Winter Soldier comic.

Who knows what things will be like by 2017 or 2018 when Evans is presumably in Avengers 3 and finishes his contract? Downey Jr. finished his contract with IM3 but afik did signed up for Avengers 2.

Hugo Weaving in interviews back in 2012 (http://spinoff.comicbookresources.com/2012/10/15/captain-americas-hugo-weaving-doesnt-want-to-return-as-red-skull/) sounded sour about his Red Skull experience in the first movie; despite signing a Marvel contract for multiple films, he said he's not interested in reprising the role and doesn't expect Marvel would try to force him to do something.

Director Joe Johnston apparently signed a two-picture deal with Marvel. Clearly he's not returning for Cap. In interviews in 2011 he sounded very excited about The Winter Soldier but that's not happening. So perhaps they're not really going to use JJ again unless they found a comics property that's more in his wheelhouse.

The point being contracts aren't sort of stone tablets.  icon_smile It's possible for an actor to re-up once the initial one's over (Downey Jr.), for an actor to just decide one's enough in spite of the number of movies the contract was for (Weaving), or it's possible to sign a contract for multiple and the studio decide that one time was enough (director Johnston).
125  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: [movie] Guardians of the Galaxy on: April 08, 2014, 12:55:51 PM
First clip - this is an extended look at the Raiders of the Lost Ark-ish sequence with Chris Pratt/Starlord glimpsed in trailers:
http://collider.com/guardians-of-the-galaxy-clip/

The MTV link takes a closer look:
http://www.mtv.com/news/articles/1725642/guardians-of-the-galaxy-exclusive-clip.jhtml
126  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: [movie] The Avengers 2: Age of Ultron on: April 07, 2014, 10:17:47 PM

Quote from: Turtle on April 04, 2014, 11:25:23 PM

I suspect some Avengers might have smaller roles in 2, just due to the nature of the story. But frankly, if there's anyone I trust to manage an ensemble cast that large, it's Joss Whedon. Not because I'm some superfan of his, but rather that he's proven himself very capable of directing shows with large ensemble casts.
While I don't know what to believe, Joss has told folks The Hulk and Hawkeye will get more extensive storyline stuff this time around. Hawkeye spent most of Avengers walking around brainwashed, and Hulk/Banner was of course much fun perhaps in part because he just Was and Avengers didn't have to burn time on a mini origin story. I'd suspect as a scientist Banner might have reason to be more involved with fighting Ultron.

Since teaming up opposites like Cap and Black Widow worked so well in Cap 2, I could see why mixing different personalities and um body builds  icon_smile like Hulk and Hawkeye might be cool.

Given the varied location filming, I'm wondering if they'll -- perhaps like this season's Walking Dead -- have the characters working in duos here and there, and then eventually coming together. The motorcycle rider in the video in Korea is presumably a Black Widow stand-in.

I'm kind of eager to see how Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch work with the rest of the team. Like if Quicksilver held Cap and his shield up and ran with them like a supersonic battering ram.  icon_razz
127  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: [movie] Iron Man 3 on: April 07, 2014, 08:42:31 PM
Interesting Twitter Find. While it's a survey form handed out at a Captain America: The Winter Soldier screening, look at the list near the end.  Bring your own!

Survey handed out by Marvel to viewers after 'CAPTAIN AMERICA 2' screenings
https://twitter.com/SuperHeroReport/status/453171038117826560/photo/1
128  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: [movie] Captain America: The Winter Soldier confirmed on: April 07, 2014, 05:35:28 PM
fwiw, Marvel confirmed the earlier rumor it scheduled Captain America 3 (currently untitled) for a May 6, 2016 release directly opposite DC/Warner Bros.' "Superman vs. Batman."
http://marvel.com/news/movies/2014/4/7/22279/captain_america_to_return_to_theaters_may_6_2016

It still seems unlikely both would keep that date. The U.S. has only so many theaters and it seems unlikely both would want to battle it out for their 3,900+ theater screen share or risk a competing mega summer release cutting into its box office numbers.

imho, too many entertainment blogs are overreacting to a Chris Evans comment a while back. Which seemed more that he loves working with Marvel and might consider in the future limiting his acting jobs to his Marvel Universe work and not actively pursuing other acting work so much, and then trying outside of that to focus more on directing. Which everyone headlined as, "Chris Evans wants to quit acting!"  icon_razz

He did a lot of backtracking on that in interviews last week. Clearly it's not how he meant it be construed. icon_smile Though I wouldn't blame Evans after finishing Avengers 2 and then a short turnaround for Cap 3 (rather 2 years later than Cap 2, rather than 3) for simply wanting a break. He's still only about 32.
129  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: [movie] Captain America: The Winter Soldier confirmed on: April 06, 2014, 09:19:08 PM
Didn't want to disappoint you guys -- I saw it a fourth time today  retard at a Regal Cinemas RPX. The double header was at AMC ETX, and the Friday evening and Saturday afternoon shows were at AMC IMAX. All 3D.

My take is:
-Regal RPX is hands-down the crispest, brightest of the 3D showings; however (I maybe mentioned before), their leather seats squeak like David Lee Roth's leather pants. It's awful. You literally cannot MOVE one centimeter without this horrible leather squeak. The Dolby Atmos sound is excellent. People just don't seem sold on RPX's higher price as with IMAX though so most of the time the RPX showings aren't very crowded, even opening weekend.
-IMAX was awesome in sound and just sheer massive scale. But it seemed slightly dim and blurry during some scenes.
-ETX, which I usually love, also seemed somewhat dim and blurry. The Dolby Atmos sound was great.
Guess what I want is an RPX screen/projector quality with IMAX scale and sound.  Bring your own!

My older brother caught it, said it was a "good movie," but he'd rather see Wes Anderson's "The Budapest Hotel" multiple times instead. He also thinks Prometheus is an "awesome movie." So... Roll Eyes icon_razz

I'll take my mom to see it on Saturday, probably back at AMC IMAX.

I don't think the 3-D is necessary. It pops a bit when The Falcoln is in flight and in a couple cases where Cap tosses the shield, but hardly worth the extra cost. I just really wanted to see it on the biggest screens and in my area they just don't show it in 2-D on large screens.

For me Cap 2 is like Star Wars, The Empire Strikes Back or Raiders of the Lost Ark in terms of that I just enjoyed everything (characters, set pieces, stunts, fx, humorous bits) on multiple viewings even if some of the suspense and surprise was of course gone. It's like, I feel better after watching this movie (and those movies). Which is pathetic I guess and maybe bizarre given the more ramped up violence in this. I spent a lot of time in Army Base theaters in South Korea in the early 1980s watching those aforementioned movies, trying to ward off being homesick for Virginia, and I'd just feel both drained and happy at the end of the movie. It was like hanging out with old friends. Similar with The Winter Soldier. icon_smile

fwiw, it's estimated to top the $96 million mark this weekend (record for April and almost 50% better than Cap 1 in 2011). Will be interesting to see how steep the 2nd weekend drop is. Not much in the way of other big releases until The Amazing Spider-Man 2 in early May.
130  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: Godzilla to return to American shores on: April 06, 2014, 08:33:23 AM
Having sat through the latest Godzilla trailer three times in three days (twice on IMAX) during my Captain America: The Winter Soldier saturation viewing  drool, I can say it seems to have the right feel on the one hand; on the other hand, parts of it felt like a jazzed up Cloverfield (though Thanks God Godzilla isn't going the hand-camera route), for better or worse.

It doesn't help that ALL summer movies now are looking to obliterate the world in some way, so the trailers for Godzilla, Transformers: We Can't Stop Making ThemTM, and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: The Michael Bay Reboot Nobody Asked ForTM, and Spider-Man: Marc Webb Tries to Cram Every Villain in Spidey's Universe into One MovieTM and X-MEN: Days of Future Past We're All Such Sad Miserable X-Men We Have to Send Wolverine Back to the 1970s To Make Us Sing Kumbaya Around an Apocalyptic FireTM Bring your own! We put the fun in funeral practically mushed together into one gigantic clanging mush of universal obliteration.

Now I'll probably go see at least two or three of those, but it's almost as if all the summer movies are borrowing from the same directors' playbook. I'm not sure Guardians of the Galaxy will work for mass audiences but at the very least, it seems to be truly trying something different.

Anyway, Godzilla seems to have the right tone at least and an almost Jaws-like building of foreboding. imho, that's the way to do it. Hopefully they'll pull it off.
131  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: [movie] The Avengers 2: Age of Ultron on: April 04, 2014, 07:32:35 PM
South Korean videos of some footage of Chris Evan's stunt double as Captain America, during on-location filming in South Korea. They've done some filming at a massive bridge over a river there, and on some local roads in South Korea too. Seems like with the varied locations (South Africa, ItalyEngland, South Korea etc.), Joss really wants to make Avengers 2 very global in scope, and well, that could also be helpful at the box office. I'm sure folks in the various countries participating in the filming will enjoy that.

4 New Videos from the Set of AVENGERS: AGE OF ULTRON Feature Captain America
http://collider.com/avengers-2-set-videos/#more-324134
*Nothing earthshaking, it seems like Cap has crashed into a small car's windshield and sort of sits upright on it during this footage. The thinking seems to be that the readhead driving a motorcycle could be Scarlett Johansson's stunt double.

You can get an idea of Cap's revamped costume, which to me seems like sort of a mix of the Avengers' costume's color scheme on burlier material closer to the final costume at the end of the first Captain America movie. imho, the issue with his Avengers' costume is -- even if it gave Evans as an actor more comfort and freedom of movement -- that it just made Cap look too scrawny.  icon_smile
132  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: [TV]Rosemary's Baby - NBC Mini -series on: April 04, 2014, 06:10:49 PM
How do you guys feel about this new "turn a movie into a TV series that's just telling the movie's story over again" trend with this and the Coen brother's Fargo?

I can understand taking movie characters and telling a story that continues (going back to M*A*S*H, or even The Courtship of Eddie's Father). And I can understand when a book's made into a movie and a network wants to go back to the source material for a different take in TV form (a la The Shining).

I saw Fargo when it opened in 1996 and quite liked it although I had no idea what to expect when friends dragged me to see it then. I just don't see how it lends itself to a TV series.

But I'm stupid. I'd rather just see Captain America deflect a 20 mm rotary cannon's bullets off with his shield.  drool

I like Zoe Saldana so I guess any reason to see her more often is good, right?  Fabulous
133  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: [movie] Captain America: The Winter Soldier confirmed on: April 04, 2014, 02:54:02 PM

Quote from: Victoria Raverna on April 04, 2014, 02:27:24 PM

For those that have watched it. Is it suitable for 9 years old?

I'm thinking of taking my niece to watch it. She loves Avengers but think that the first Captain America a bit boring.
Well, it's PG-13 still but, I would call it a "hard" PG-13 in terms of the violence (lots of shooting, lots of people getting shot, lots of people getting punched/kicked, fair amount of blood, explosions etc.), but not language (couple cuss words) or sexual content (none to speak of).

And yeah it's true, I'm maybe not the most objective customer.  icon_smile However, I did find Thor, Iron Man 3, others more in the "OK" department. Iron Man, Cap 1 (in the minority there I think), Avengers I had more enthusiasm for than most of Marvel Studios' other stuff. fwiw. I dug the Russos' more visceral style while still enjoying their appreciation for certain characters/situations from the first film.
134  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: [movie] Captain America: The Winter Soldier confirmed on: April 04, 2014, 12:49:07 PM

Quote from: Ridah on April 04, 2014, 05:17:32 AM

I literally fell asleep during the first movie, I'm hoping I stay conscious for this one.
Who’s strong and brave, here to save the American Way?
Who vows to fight like a man for what’s right night and day?
Who will campaign door-to-door for America,
Carry the flag shore to shore for America,
From Hoboken to Spokane,

The Star Spangled Man with a Plan!
================
zzzzzzzzzzz....  We put the fun in funeral  icon_smile

Ahem. I don't guarantee anything -- esp. for folks just jaded about comic book movies in general or who just don't find a guy using his shield 101 ways compelling.

However, if you were impatient with Joe Johnston's initial take getting through the "skinny Steve's a great guy!" portion to reach the action/combat stuff, you may dig the Russo brothers' take that doesn't waste much time on "Steve's a great guy."

If you thought Johnston's film didn't make Cap enough of a "bad ass," then as a couple guys leaving the theater ahead of me said, "They did a much better job in this film of making Cap a BAD ASS!"  icon_cool and perhaps you'll enjoy that.

If you dig the hand-to-hand combat of The Bourne Identity and The Raid (cited as inspirations for this), then you'll likely get kicks out of it here with a comic book layer over it. And some amazing vehicular stunt work the Russos said was inspired by stuff like The French Connection and the John Frankenheimer-directed Ronin (look it up on YouTube; I never saw it in theaters but has some amazing car case stuff).

While the movie has a looooooooooud finale, I'm happy to report it doesn't involve:
-A megalomaniac in a giant robot suit (Iron Man, The Wolverine)
-Armies of robots or bad guys in robot suits (Iron Man 2, Iron Man 3)
-Hordes of aliens or alien monster robots (Avengers, Man of Steel)

So there's that too.  icon_smile The finale aside, I think many folks will find the focus more on stunt work (close-in, almost all done by the actors themselves afik) and amazing vehicular stunt work vs. CGI and green screen everywhere, refreshing. And it's not just punch-punch-punch because Cap's shield, the Winter Soldier's mechanical arm and Black Widow's gizmos all add in that comic book Flair  icon_cool

With the Falcon, Mackie's wonderful and fun, it's just, the jet pack stuff HAS to be CGI or him on wires in front of green screen with CGI added later. I can say they seem to have done a marvelous job of making that pretty seamless. I didn't constantly think "Oh I can see that's CGI Mackie!"  icon_smile
===========
As far as where this stands for ME, I'd put it right up there with Avengers and Iron Man. Ask me again after the IMAX show tonight with an opening night audience.  icon_smile

I don't even want to sniff around the "Marvel universe implications" of the movie even a little bit, not even in spoiler codes. I'm dying to discuss one particular aspect but let's wait at least a couple weeks.  paranoid icon_smile

As far as 3D goes, it was required for the double feature (Real 3D). Although I usually like Real 3D and ETX at AMC, I found the image more blurry than usual and was adjusting my 3D glasses frequently (I used a lense wipe on my regular eyeglasses, I don't think that was it). We'll see how the IMAX 3D is tonight. While I would probably recommend a 2D show, many theaters only play 2D on smaller screens and for sure I'd recommend seeing this on the biggest "bad ass" screen you can get to.  icon_smile
135  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: [movie] Captain America: The Winter Soldier confirmed on: April 04, 2014, 03:48:05 AM
And here we go...  icon_smile Bring your own!


*All my photos of the pass make it look 1,000 times more awesome than the glossy little laminated cardboard that it is.  icon_razz If you love watching Cap use a shield in every way imaginable, you'll have so much fun with this movie. It saves his life in every way imaginable. It's practically another character in the movie.
I want one!  The Weghted Companion Cube will never threaten to stab you.


The Stuff. God, they made us sit through 25 minutes (!) of summer movie trailers before the Winter Soldier really started, at close to 8:30 p.m.


The poster, while not unique, is a full-size one and massive. I need to get around to getting some simple poster frames for it and my two from 2012 (Dark Knight Trilogy, and Indiana Jones marathon posters).

They held a brief trivia contest with more unique posters and Captain America-themed 3-D glasses between the movies. I knew a couple of the answers but ultimately just held my tongue.
136  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: [movie] Captain America: The Winter Soldier confirmed on: April 04, 2014, 03:36:42 AM
Just got back. Fun seeing The First Avenger on a massive ETX screen again.

The new movie? Loved it.  icon_biggrin If you found the first film's fight scenes not visceral enough, BOY, you are in for a change on this one.  icon_smile

Not everyone loves handy cam stuff, and they do quite a bit of that in the fisticuffs, but I didn't have a problem following things, and it definitely puts a lot of oomph.

Awesome set pieces, that at the moment are all boggled throughout my brain.  icon_smile All sorts of interesting hooks from the first movie so it really was cool to have just seen that again first. I was truly surprised, more than once, in spite of everything I'd read online.

Applause at the end for quite a while, and a lot of enthusiastic chatter as we waited for the mid-credit and post-credits sequences. Those don't quite appear in the order I expected them to, fwiw.

Will post pix of the lanyard pass and poster in a bit.
137  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: [movie] Captain America: The Winter Soldier confirmed on: April 03, 2014, 06:24:43 PM
And while we're playing, "I don't understand so-and-so," I don't "get" the Helicarrier concept.

So, why is it a good thing to have a massive flying aircraft carrier where everyone's gonna die on the helicarrier and/or on the ground whenever the engines conk out or are destroyed in battle?  saywhat I mean, when an aircraft carrier's engines die, the ship, you know, floats. If they built orbital stations (with thrusters so they could adjust the orbit as necssary) where air/spacecraft were based, I'd actually more buy that area. Heck, giant blimps would make more sense.

Helicarriers seem like an utter crock of an idea, although I have no doubt a savvy defense contractor - Tony Stark?  icon_cool - could convince government officials these flying death traps made sense for S.H.I.E.L.D.  icon_razz
--------------

I did finally found some less than positive reviews last day or two but the worst called it "very ordinary" or "yet another comic book movie," and in the end, seemed hardly "fanged" reviews.

Also, that EW critic's Winter Soldier review may have been his last. EW apparently laid off critic Owen Gleiberman (been there for decades) and a half dozen other staff writers yesterday.

138  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: [movie] Batman vs Superman (Man of Steel 2) on: April 03, 2014, 05:32:54 PM
The breathless reciting of a "site repeating another site's supposed reporting based on third hand rumor" elsewhere is that some villain "kills" Clark Kent in the movie. So I'm thinking Superman breaks his own neck.

Superman: "You've got to be stopped!"
Clark Kent: "But I'm you!"
Superman: "Hmmm... there's nothing else I can do!"
Clark Kent: "But I'm wearing a turtle neck sweater!"
*Superman wraps his hands around his own neck*
*CCCRRRRRAAAACKKKKKKKKK*
The End
*Cue the Hans Zimmer bongo drums*

You gotta admit -- it seems like something Zack Snyder would do!  saywhat icon_lol
139  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: [movie] Captain America: The Winter Soldier confirmed on: April 03, 2014, 05:04:25 PM
I think, as an over-analyzing, underqualified movie/box office pundit like myself, the key questions with the Winter Soldier:  smirk

-Can a Marvel Universe movie without Robert Downey Jr.'s star power and international box office appeal make mega bucks like the Iron Man films and Avengers did? Or just "good but not great" (Cap 1 and the Thor and Hulk films).

-Will it make mega bucks overseas? It has apparently made $75M plus so far in limited international release.

-Will it inspire more people to tune into Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. before its ratings slip further into a black hole?  icon_neutral

So naturally, my co-workers who NEVER want to do anything after work invited me to dinner tomorrow, but I already got my IMAX ticket for a 7:30 p.m. show tomorrow (Friday) too. Oh well, the things I do for Marvel!  Bring your own! Leading to my last question:

-Will I regret buying another ticket, for the IMAX show tomorrow night when I don't even know if I'll like it???  icon_razz Just about 7 hours to go.
140  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: [movie] Captain America: The Winter Soldier confirmed on: April 03, 2014, 03:31:59 PM

Quote from: Scraper on April 03, 2014, 03:14:53 PM

Although I've only seen Thor: The Dark World once so that one may move up or down depending on subsequent viewings. Too me the real stinker out of the bunch is Iron Man 2. Cap 1 was ok, but I felt like the first hour was slow and then the final showdown with Red Skull in the plane was a real letdown.
It sounds like you'll be pleased with the Russo brothers' more visceral fights in The Winter Soldier, just from what I've read and the clips I've seen.  icon_smile They've said the idea is he hadn't really had any hand-to-hand fighting training to speak of in the 1940s so it'd make sense he fought in a basic brawling style just using the Super Solder serum strength. The idea in today's world is he's boned up on all matter of hand-to-hand and martial arts, and learned other ways to use the shield (both in hand-to-hand combat and as a boomerang-y projectile weapon).

While I loved the Cap film, I felt like Johnston/Marvel should've hired Dale Dye (consultant on Saving Private Ryan, Band of Brothers) for a day just to put some reality into the mass WWII battle stuff near the end. It looks like 200 extras running in random directions (think the "assume your crash positions" sequence in the comedy Airplane icon_razz) or storming a trench in World War I, against Hydra who use disintegrator ray guns for cripe's sake.

Yeah it's a comic book but I just think a little bit of realistic cover fire, flanking positions etc. and dialogue would've been good there. But non military history buffs I guess wouldn't care.  icon_smile
141  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: [movie] Captain America: The Winter Soldier confirmed on: April 03, 2014, 03:09:11 PM

Quote from: Scraper on April 03, 2014, 02:16:27 PM

Blackjack I'm curious what rank you would give all the Marvel U films. Ironman 1-3, Cap, Thor 1-2, Avengers, Norton Hulk (I didn't miss any did I?). 1 being the best.
Hmmm, what's tricky about rankings is "what I think is best made" vs. "what I enjoyed the most," and sometimes that doesn't match up with me.  icon_smile

I actually didn't see the Norton Hulk film in theaters. Most would say Iron Man 1 was the Most Important Marvel film in terms of "establishing" the Marvel Universe on film successfully, and leaving bread crumbs (i.e., introducing Nick Fury and Coulson) for what would become The Avengers. If IM flopped and fans didn't give Downey Jr. his one last chance comeback, probably Marvel would've had to scratch the other movies or downsize them.

Anyway, I guess in terms of my enjoyment, I'd rank them something like:
-Marvel's The Avengers
-Iron Man
-Captain America: The First Avenger
-Iron Man 3
-Thor: The Dark World
-Thor
-Iron Man 2

Technically, the Avengers and Captain America are the films I saw the most times in theaters (four each).

I had mixed feelings on IM3 even if I saw it three times. I thought reducing Iron Man's armor to a bunch of remote control drones was a mistake even if it was an "evolution" -- i.e., if Tony Stark has no "skin in the game" (isn't really in the suit), then to me it loses the risk and excitement of the concept. But hey it's not the first "third movie" that maybe tried too hard instead of remembering its first iteration's charms.

I was surprised how much I liked Thor: The Dark World, but didn't really feel any itch to see it again.

Thor and Iron Man 2 have not aged well for me. If they come up on cable TV now, I barely pay attention. I can still dig seeing Iron Man and the first Cap film on TV. I realize many folks here and critics didn't really warm up to the first Cap film. Some found it boring, others only liked the "skinny Steve" portion of the movie, and perhaps that part was more to director Joe Johnston's strengths.

It sounds like those folks will enjoy the second film much more, and yet it sounds like I will too. It sounds like the Russos and the writers have made Cap more dangerous/interesting, while still letting him have his ideals, and without turning him into a brooding neck-breaker.  icon_wink I'll know in about 9 hours.  icon_smile

(Norton Hulk N/A for me as I didn't watch it in theaters; and really have not ever watched it all the way through)
142  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: [movie] Captain America: The Winter Soldier confirmed on: April 02, 2014, 09:02:21 PM
fwiw, EW's critic weighed in with a B+, mostly very enthusiastic, just finding it too long (2 hrs. 16 minutes). While it reads more like an "A-," I've given up trying to understand how reviewers of anything translate their verbiage into a school grade or number rating.  confused It gets tricky with EW (owned by Time Warner I think) because sometimes an entire movie review there (imho) seems to bash something left and right and then they give it, say, a "B-," as if they're afraid to rate something too low.
====

btw, you DON'T have to see the double feature tomorrow to see The Winter Soldier. Looks like it's debuting in most theaters tomorrow (April 3) at 8:30-8:45 p.m. in most places.

I'm actually a bit disappointed how few folks bought tickets for the double feature I'm attending. From the seating diagram it doesn't look like it'll be even half full. We're all kind of clumped, front to back. Probably the price ($27) and the hour (5:30 p.m. on a weekday), so I can understand it.

And of COURSE three people decided to get seats directly in front of me. I didn't think anyone would want to sit that close.  icon_smile  I guess the advantage with the theater not full is I'll have some room to reposition if necessary.  Bring your own! (AMC switched to all assigned seating at this particular location)
143  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: [movie] Captain America: The Winter Soldier confirmed on: April 02, 2014, 05:19:17 PM
Collider's critic (he didn't attend the uber-early screenings) weighed in positively. Seems relatively spoiler-free. Goldberg hates many movies but did quite like the first Cap movie so it seems to bode well for me, in that respect, that he embraced the second film so much.  icon_smile Though I've disagreed so drastically with a lot of his past takes.

Collider's review:
http://collider.com/captain-america-the-winter-soldier-review/#more-323475
Quote
Directors Joe and Anthony Russo have never helmed an action movie before, but here they come off like old pros.  They’ve upped the game in clever ways like showing how Rogers’ super strength would work against regular people (e.g. he hits much harder), and they could probably write a book titled “101 Ways to Use a Shield”.  The action is wonderfully choreographed, the pace is terrific, and they’ve found a tremendous asset in Sam Wilson/The Falcon (Anthony Mackie), who’s not only a great character, but also provides some nice variety alongside Cap and Black Widow.
...
Marvel has not only proven yet again that there is no template for their movies, but also that there’s no template for good superhero movies.  Each character has to be taken on his or her merits rather than being forced to appeal to a vague notion of what a popular superhero should be.  Some audience members may think they want dark, brooding, and desperate, and that’s fine for some characters.

But it’s more important to recognize that audiences need and deserve a different kind of hero.  To recognize a hero who reminds us about the greatness of being honest in a world of dishonesty, of being compassionate in a world of selfishness, and of being brave in a world of fear.

These values combined with top-notch filmmaking make Captain America: The Winter Soldier not just my favorite Marvel movie; it’s one of my favorite movies of the year.
=============
Just a comic book compilations aside -- Comixology put several Captain America volumes on sale through April 7 for just $3.99 each. This includes Volume 1 of the two-volume Winter Soldier set; a couple other Cap volumes written by Ed Brubaker (including the one where Steve Rogers dies... yeah I know, the usual marketing schtick, right? Roll Eyes); and a volume of the pulpier "Marvel Comics NOW" iteration of Cap. Those are pretty steep discounts so I grabbed most of them last night.
144  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: [movie] Captain America: The Winter Soldier confirmed on: April 02, 2014, 04:34:32 PM
Here's a couple new action clips from the movie. I don't consider these plot-point spoilers per se (these are longer versions of sequences glimpsed in trailers) but if you feel like you want to see the big action set pieces "cold," then Don't Watch These Videos. I enjoyed them -- it's clear the writers and the Russo brothers have found fresh things for Cap to do with his shield.  icon_cool

Two Action-Packed Clips from CAPTAIN AMERICA 2
http://geektyrant.com/news/two-action-packed-clips-from-captain-america-2
*Although I was concerned about the Bourne Identity inspirations in terms of hand-held cameras for fighting scenes, it seems like they also like to pull back to normal, non hand-helds so that you don't lose track of where the characters are. Well, in that one scene anyway.  icon_smile

*The "kicker" guy is a real-life mixed martial arts dude in his acting debut, I believe, not familiar with his name.

*The second one I guess was posted by a Korean TV station thus the Korean letters. I don't think it's dubbed or anything; the one enemy character is French, maybe?
145  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: [movie] Captain America: The Winter Soldier confirmed on: April 02, 2014, 04:31:25 PM

Quote from: Scraper on April 02, 2014, 02:28:52 PM

Quote from: Caine on April 01, 2014, 04:38:48 PM

I'm with you on the cinema experience Blackjack.  Some movies are just perfect for the big screen.  

I'm the opposite, I hate the group movie watching experience. The one exception has been the Hobbit movies in 48fps 3D. Man do those movies look amazing when watched on the proper screen. Even then it has nothing to do with the group experience, if I could I would watch it in the theater all by myself.
OK, if you see The Winter Soldier, I'll be sure to sit next to you, burp and fart continuously throughout the movie while checking scores on my ESPN app on my iPhone at full brightness while having a speakerphone conversation about how awesome the movie is.  Bring your own! Cabbage Patch
146  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: I'm worried....where is Ceekay? on: April 02, 2014, 03:49:48 PM

Quote from: Gratch on April 02, 2014, 03:18:49 PM

Quote from: Soulchilde on April 02, 2014, 02:30:47 PM

I think Hark and a few others have been in contact with him, but from the gist of my thread is that he is taking a break, but is okay

He's fine, I've pinged him a couple times on FB.  Said he just needed a break for a while.
Well, since CeeKay doesn't find me worth responding to, I'll waste no more breath and Steam stalking on him. *Fist Shaking* icon_razz

Glad he's OK.  icon_smile
147  Non-Gaming / Forum and Site Feedback / Re: university blocking gamingtrend on: April 02, 2014, 03:46:34 PM
I think Ron mentioned he's heading out of country on a biz trip soon but I'm sure he'll want to know about this and appreciates your pointing it out.  icon_smile

A moderator will probably move this over to the forum and site feedback section: http://gamingtrend.com/forums/forum-and-site-feedback/
148  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: I'm worried....where is Ceekay? on: April 02, 2014, 04:23:02 AM
In tonight's thrilling episode of "Stalking CeeKay on Steam," we learned that over the past week:

Quote from: Steam activity
CeeKay has added Batman™: Arkham Origins Blackgate - Deluxe Edition and Goat Simulator to their wishlist.
...
CeeKay now owns Batman™: Arkham Origins - Season Pass
...
CeeKay achieved Sleeping Dogs™: Sharpshooter - Shoot out a cop's tires while fleeing in a police chase.
...
CeeKay achieved Metro: Last Light (7 various achievements, blah blah)
...
CeeKay achieved BioShock Infinite: (various achievements)
Hmmm, goats and Batman....  confused
149  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: [PS4, PS3, Vita] Helldivers (Starship Troopers with friendly fire) on: April 02, 2014, 01:49:41 AM
They demoed Helldivers at a games trade show March 28-30 in the UK called EGX Rezzed:
http://www.egxrezzed.net/

Saw many raving Tweets from folks who attended the show and couldn't get enough of playing Helldivers  icon_smile

Here's one w/ a photo:
https://twitter.com/MixedBagGames/status/450322084515020800/photo/1
Quote
#helldivers is really awesome. Four players, friendly fire, alien bugs to squash. Great works @arrowheadgs
I'm sifting around Twitter and the Rezzed site to see if there are any useful Helldiver tidbits of interest.

And here's a bigger honking photo. Includes some diagrams of how the PS4 controllers are setup for the game:
http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-aKkrmDez3eE/Uzc8mf6D1KI/AAAAAAAAA7A/ZDnDxnF0HIg/s1600/1396097499155.jpg
150  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: iOS games for a long flight? on: April 01, 2014, 10:30:11 PM
Since I'm nattering on to myself about the new $3.99 PC version of Meltdown (old-school, cartoonish, isometric, tactical arcade shooter) on Steam, you can try the $1.99 iOS version and let me know how it plays. It's cross-platform compatible, so you might even end up playing co-op with me.  icon_cool
https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/meltdown/id722231663?mt=8

I love it on PC, have no idea how well it controls on iOS/Android.
151  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: I'm worried....where is Ceekay? on: April 01, 2014, 07:33:12 PM

Quote from: Knightshade Dragon on April 01, 2014, 06:43:02 PM

I've not seen him for four months now.  I'm getting worried.   Does anyone know what's going on with him?
He's on my Steam friends list, and he's regularly attaining achievements in various games, so he's physically fine, I assume.  icon_smile But CeeKay hasn't responded to my PMs in Steam or here at the forums, and that really isn't like him. We don't ever get to actually play in games together (co-op or otherwise), maybe we're not even online buds per se, but usually he has been a bit chatty with me if I check in with him. These days? Nothin'.

That's not to say the new wife might not have pulled a Misery on him, broken his gameplaying fingers and locked him in the basement while she plays. *laughs nervously* paranoid

Now for my part, I mentioned in the other thread I've done some long sabbaticals here and there, after my cat Molly died in Sept. 2010 for a long time, and couple times since as I just fell out of love with gaming for long periods. So I could understand his absence if it was something like that, but something doesn't quite jibe when we know he's gaming regularly and yet ignores messages and the forums and what not.

Clearly... it's Putin's fault!  drillsergeant
152  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: [PC/Android] Meltdown (tactical arcade shooter) on: April 01, 2014, 04:47:23 PM
Meltdown April 1 Update Change Log (no, not an April Fool's Day joke  icon_razz)
http://steamcommunity.com/games/268220/announcements/detail/1711673317702722833
Quote
1.45 Patch Notes:

Gameplay:
-made bullets faster
-characters are safe from projectiles while dodging [presumably grenades, mines etc. will still damage you when rolling]
-characters are safe from projectiles while pushed back and on the ground [I think "on the ground" may refer to when you've been knocked down by an explosion and are "on the ground" for a second or two-bj]

Graphics:
-tweaked motion blur effect to be less intense when zooming in
-added self shadows for characters on "Very High"/"Ultra" settings
-improved effects rendering pipeline
-added SSAO on "Ultra" settings

Multiplayer:
-re-made connection process to be more solid and less error-prone
-improved gamestate syncing
-improved player connect/disconnect events

Other:
-prestige bug fixes
-save bug fixes
-achievements bugfixes

This version is not backwards online-compatible with previous versions, you cannot play with people on version 1.4 [Steam auto-updates, even during Early Access, so it shouldn't be a problem on PC. icon_smile-bj]

Oops, I missed an earlier post (March 24) explaining the above changes in more detail:
Quote
We also want to change some of the core mechanics going forward:

-making the bullets faster, this way you might have to use cover more and also optimize the online lag a bit

-biped characters will be in a cover state when dodging or when pushed back from a explosion and sitting on their backs, bullets and rockets will fly over you when dodging for ex.

-characters to not take state effects (pushback, heavy damage flinch, electrocute, catch fire) when their shield > damage to take, this way you can mitigate the explosion push backs but enemies with shields will also have the same benefits.
I had mildly kvetched there wasn't really to this point much compelling reason to fire from cover, especially in co-op, once you've upgraded the weapons. We'll have to see how the changes go over with the "run and gun" crowd, though mostly I could be lumped in with that crowd too.  icon_smile

The "shield" means your gradually regenerating force shield, which I guess the robots have to some degree too.

Oh, rep posted more info on the splitscreen local co-op (PC) mode planned to release as an update in May. This will include an "Arcade mode," where you choose from pre-equipped characters. The idea being you can't log into multiple accounts on one PC in Steam so they don't want you to be forced to have one veteran character and up to 3 noobs.
http://steamcommunity.com/app/268220/discussions/0/540736781173690980/#c540737414399177932
Quote
We will add a new "Arcade Mode" for local split-screen, here you will have pre-made characters (like in all arcade games) that will feature different weapons, skills and armors combinations from the "Normal Mode". "Arcade Mode" will not feature the Shop section from the "Normal Mode", you will only be able to choose the pre-made character you want to play.

We will have about 10 pre-made characters to choose from.

Coins/Chips/1Ups will be shared between the "Normal Mode" and "Arcade Mode" and in "Arcade Mode" you can unlock new characters by using Coins/Chips.
153  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: [movie] Captain America: The Winter Soldier confirmed on: April 01, 2014, 04:16:57 PM

Quote from: Turtle on March 27, 2014, 02:50:36 AM

Do movies have review embargoes? Because early reviews can still just be flawed.

That said, all impressions seem to be positive overall, and I've been astonished at how Marvel has generally kept their movies at a certain level of quality. Well, perhaps the Iron Man sequels had issues, but Thor 2 was a very good fun movie.
The studio put an embargo (except for Tweeted impressions below a certain character number limit) on reviews from the early screening events some weeks ago. That's long since lifted, though many major media outlets prefer to wait until the actual release date (April 4, the double feature screenings at 8 p.m. April 3 notwithstanding).

I already bought an IMAX ticket for Friday, 7 p.m. too. Ironically, paying for the Double Feature triggered my AMC Awards card bonus, so I put $10 towards the IMAX ticket to make it more reasonable ($8.50).  Bring your own! With the first film in 2011, the audience only truly seemed into it (applauding, cheering, etc.) at the Friday opening night screening. I like to be a part of that.

I totally understand that many of my online pals prefer to wait for VOD, BluRay etc. and watch on their 100" mega plasma-LCD-LED-quasarphasar TVs in their mancaves. It's just, there is something really transcendent with a big audience that's really into a movie like this. Even if the guy behind you is kicking your seat, the guy next to you is farting, the gal next to you is chewing her gum loudly and babies are wailing throughout the theater, while everyone else busily texts on their smartphones that "Hey, I'm at the new Captain America movie!!!"  icon_razz

Cinemablend review out other day (5/5 stars):
http://www.cinemablend.com/reviews/Captain-America-The-Winter-Soldier-6771.html
Quote
One part tense 1970s-esque political thriller with very contemporary themes of government surveillance and pre-emptive strikes, and one part giant adventure with colorful heroes and spectacular action, the film is everything anyone could want from a comic book movie and will stand as one of the best of all time.
...
Captain America: The Winter Soldier is a spectacularly-made, tense, thrilling ride, and whether you go to the theater for the blockbuster action or the exciting story, you will leave more than satisfied.
Only consistent caveat I've read is some disappointment The Winter Soldier gets so little screen time or dialogue, given the movie's title.

They may well give Sebastian Stan a meatier story next movie but if his character's not going to get a lot of screen time/story in a movie subtitled, "The Winter Soldier," then when would he?  icon_neutral My observation is his messy eye black sometimes makes him look like Rocket Raccoon.  icon_razz

The movie's really important to Marvel/Disney in terms of proving they can release a comic book film outside the summer (May-August) and Thanksgiving-Xmas (Nov.-Dec.) time frames and still pull in massive box office numbers. Feige sounds in interviews like they're comfortable with two films a year and don't at the moment want to push their luck into three a year. If they can open up April as a release window annually, it gives them some breathing room from the cramped summer release date schedules.

fwiw, BoxOfficeMojo indicates it's already pulled in about $75 million or so in international release so far. Think it released in the UK, Australia and New Zealand, among other locations, last week.
154  Non-Gaming / Off-Topic / Re: The Walking Dead tap dances onto AMC for Season 4 on: March 31, 2014, 09:54:44 PM
*I assume the train car is where they fatten everyone up like Thanksgiving turkeys.  drool
*For a little bit I thought maybe the whole place is some kind of movie studio. The strafing on the ground was waaaay too precise, too obviously special FX squibs on the pavement so I had this idea briefly it was a bunch of wackos trying to make a movie during the apocalypse.  icon_razz

It was fun to have Andrew Lincoln finally on Talking Dead along with the showrunner/executive producer who thank God will return. We'll see how long that lasts.  paranoid Lincoln told EW that while he appreciated the extra time off this year, his wife eventually pushed him to go back to the set to see his friends and hang out. He loves to work and is pleased from that standpoint that next season calls for him to appear in a lot more episodes on a consistent basis.
155  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: [PS4, PS3, Vita] Helldivers (Starship Troopers with friendly fire) on: March 31, 2014, 06:20:50 PM
Helldivers was at this GDC but really didn't see any coverage on it out of the conference to this point.

Destructoid at least got to put in some co-op playthrough time before the GDC (includes a 28 minute video from a live broadcast):

Helldivers will let you play every combination of co-op imaginable (3/25 post)
http://www.destructoid.com/helldivers-will-let-you-play-every-combination-of-co-op-imaginable-272448.phtml
Quote
Before GDC, we were joined by some of the fine folks at Sony live on Dtoid.TV. Above is a video of us playing an early build of Helldivers with its Sr. Producer, Mark Rogers.
Still a bug hunt.  icon_smile
156  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: [PC/Android] Meltdown (tactical arcade shooter) on: March 31, 2014, 03:48:26 PM
The couple devs (Phenomenon) and their publisher (BulkyPix) are very friendly and active in the Steam forums. As far as impending updates...

Custom armors and helmets, w/ buffs
http://steamcommunity.com/app/268220/discussions/0/540735426714841521/#c540737414926338719
Quote from: BulkyPix
Well, armors and helmets will be added soon! They got a cool look and and will give you various buffs and effects slywink

About female character, yes, you're not the first one to ask. It should come soon too.

Dual wielding weapons is always awesome! But it would imply some modifications that are not neutral (animation changes for melee attack, for example and many more). That's a cool idea that could imply more work that one can imagine and the team is small (indie baby!) and there's a looooooot of work left to improve things with the massive community feedback.

Everybody works as hard as possible to deliver the best game possible. A new patch with many bug fixes is on its way.

Local co-op
http://steamcommunity.com/app/268220/discussions/0/540735426714841521/#c540736587297131231
Quote
Local co-op will be available in the coming weeks.
I think that's split-screen, not sure. Since the game plays very nicely with keyboard/mouse, and gamepad, it should be easy enough on PCs and laptops to play local co-op on.

Versus mode (deathmatch initially)
http://steamcommunity.com/app/268220/discussions/0/540735426714841521/#c540735426584809335
Quote
Versus Mode (Deathmatch, to start with) should be integrated during the Early Access period. Maybe late April/early May.
Since the game's based on annihilating massive numbers of enemies quickly, pvp would probably play quite a bit differently. Well, I guess differently in the way action RPGs play differently in solo/co-op vs. pvp.

He also mentioned 10 new levels were in development.
157  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: [PC/Android] Meltdown (tactical arcade shooter) on: March 30, 2014, 06:31:02 PM
Spent this morning in the Church of Twitch, editing some Twitch broadcast videos.  Bring your own!

I think you can see all my Meltdown videos at my Twitch profile:
http://www.twitch.tv/blackjackgt/profile
*Anything starting with "Meltdown Video" is a shorter highlight vid I edited down from a longer broadcast (the Highlights are permanently saved, whereas the regular recorded broadcast videos seem to get purged
*Sorry about all the video ads. Twitch has to make moolah, right?  icon_neutral I swear I'm not a shill for Tony the Tiger and Cheeze It.  icon_razz

Here are the individual video highlight links (you'll note bugs here and there in terms of the camera no longer following my guy; or sometimes a force barrier drops and it's a struggle to figure out why it won't lift open - presumably these are on the "to fix" list  icon_smile):

1-player on "Shield Generator" mission arena objective:
http://www.twitch.tv/blackjackgt/c/3979602

2-player co-op; leading into an assault wave arena objective
http://www.twitch.tv/blackjackgt/c/3979558

3-player co-op
http://www.twitch.tv/blackjackgt/c/3979442

4-player co-op on "Destroy the Guardians" mission arena objective
http://www.twitch.tv/blackjackgt/c/3979683

Drop-in co-op demonstration (leads into the above Destroy the Guardians video)
http://www.twitch.tv/blackjackgt/c/3979724

3-player co-op vs. The Barrager boss on Mission 10 *SPOILER* I guess, if you just started playing  icon_smile
http://www.twitch.tv/blackjackgt/c/3977706

NOTE: Every mission has at least one, sometimes two closed off arena objectives. A force barrier will drop behind your group at some point (comical if a member gets stuck on the wrong side and can't help) and ahead of it and you battle. So far, the variants seem to be:
-Defending multiple assault waves
-"Destroy the Guardians," which are some really nasty, high HP robot enemies
-"Shield Generators," which involves temporarily taking shield generators down to damage some mounted turrets while waves attack you
-Boss battles at Missions 10, 20 and 30

Might be others too and the dev duo promises more variety in future updates.
158  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: [PC/Android] Meltdown (tactical arcade shooter) on: March 30, 2014, 07:36:47 AM
Working up some Twitch highlight vids to showcase certain things. I might post to YouTube once I have a few edited.

Here's a fun 3-person group working its way to a showdown with The Barrager, the Mission 10 boss (one of three in Meltdown so far - mission 10, 20 and 30 each have a boss to battle in an arena):

Meltdown video: Battling The Barrager (co-op)
http://www.twitch.tv/blackjackgt/c/3977706
*I'm the blue guy without a name on him, using Heavy-MG and Grenade Launcher, w/ axe for melee.  icon_smile They're promising custom armor in an update at the end of this month, which should be fun.
*I try to conserve the 1-Up self rezzes for co-op games, at least until we see how the couple devs update co-op to hopefully be a bit more friendly to groups wanting to stick together.

*imho, the game plays mostly equally well with keys/mouse (w,a,s,d for movement; LMB for shooting; TAB for alternating your two equipped firearms; RMB for melee, spacebar for vaulting over obstacles) or with a gamepad. I found vaulting over obstacles a bit easier with the gamepad, but I prefer the free-aiming feel of a mouse even if I'm in danger of breaking yet another Logitech MX-510 from overclicking.  icon_razz

I've gotten my character to L49, leveling happens crazy fast. I don't know if it's relevant as in an ARPG per se. It just means you have most of the skill points allocated and a lot of weapons upgraded by that point. You can still play with single digital level players without messing things up, afik.
159  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / Re: [PC/Android] Meltdown (tactical arcade shooter) on: March 28, 2014, 03:11:28 AM
The truly bored may watch me play it via Twitch. Try not to laugh.  icon_smile

Blackjack's Live Meltdown Twitch Broadcast blah blah
http://www.twitch.tv/blackjackgt/dashboard#

The Heavy-MG is all kinds of awesome, just need to upgrade it a bit more. The Mission 10 Boss, The Barrager, is a spectacular, rolling robot ball, grenade tossing pain in the arse.  mad icon_razz
160  Gaming / Console / PC Gaming / [PC/iOS/Android] Meltdown (tactical arcade shooter) on: March 27, 2014, 10:48:17 PM
Steam recommended Meltdown to me the other day. I thought, $3.99 (4 pack for $11.99), PC port of an Android game. Must be junk. I thought wrong.  icon_smile It's so much fun in co-op already (they plan password protected server option and a lot of fixes/changes to make it a bit less frustrating when you die in co-op, it sounds like), I might stop fretting about Helldivers' release being so far off, for a while.  icon_smile

It's by a 2-person dev team, and here's the Steam page (in Early Access) fyi:

Meltdown
ttp://store.steampowered.com/app/268220/
Quote
Meltdown is a tactical arcade shooter featuring both singleplayer and intense online multiplayer.

Set against a captivating sci-fi backdrop, the action game invites players to follow its main character, Zed, as he tries to shoot his way out of the remote space station that he has been trapped on as a result of a system malfunction.

During the course of the adventure, players can collect loot and level-up their character as they make their way through randomly generated levels. They can choose to play single player or co-op multiplayer, while experiencing an engaging gameplay, matching their gaming skills and style.

Clear all the missions and run the prestige mode !

Key Features:
-Online Cross-Platform Co-Op Up to 4 Players
-30 Random Generated Levels
-3 Specializations (Specialist/Soldier/Medic)
-3 Big Boss Battles
-Wave-Attack arena challenges
Now to be fair, the randomly generated levels are sort of a generic sci-fi Legos set if you will. You'll recognize a fair amount of repetition, but the enemy variety is quite massive, and their tactics varied and devious. It has an automated cover-fire system (press against an object and you go into a squat). I do wish they'd fix it so you don't often "stay" in a squat when you move. Sometimes looks like everyone has a hernia and/or is imitating a gorilla.  icon_razz

You get a surprisingly deep and flexible weapons upgrade system and skills system. You get an SMG and shotgun to start. Later you can purchase a powerful pistol w/ laser sight, a grenade launcher, a flame thrower (not quite as flamey as I'd like but effective), heavy machine gun etc. Upgrades relate to things like ammo capacity, weapon's heat generation etc. I think you're limited to 9 points to assign down 3 vertical "trees," so you can't just have every upgrade, which makes for some neat variety/experimentation. You can reset the points to try different upgrade options.

While I wouldn't call it an action RPG per se, there is a lot of loot collection going on and for me and other fans it has that sort of addictive gameplay.

Currently if you die and don't have a "1Up" token, then you have to quit that session. And you complete a mission with a group, then the group's auto-disbanded at that point. I can cope with all that in single player but really don't think it's the way to handle co-op if you want to encourage folks to play with pals for more than one mission. The devs promise updates soon on that type of thing, and seem pretty active at the Steam forum on it.

Here's a fairly concise Twitch vid I took that shows off co-op pretty well I think.  icon_cool

3 Player co-op in Meltdown
http://www.twitch.tv/blackjackgt/b/514776561
*Starts during an arena "defend against assault waves" segment within a mission. The missions are just long maps and usually there's one "arena event" where you're enclosed by force fields into a limited area and have to tackle some sort of nasty mix of enemies.

The game doesn't use Steam Worx for MP, they say they want to keep it cross platform compatible so they have their own system. While it works well in terms of pick up groups for now, you can't right click a bud's name in your Steam friends list and invite them into a game, alas.

I'll post more stuff, in my typical over-excited fashion, after dinner.  icon_smile Hey it's $3.99 ($5.99 when released in final form). I promise if you have any interest in this type of old school game, or if you like stuff like Alien Breed or Alien Swarm, you'll probably have a good time with it.  icon_smile
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