The Richie Report: The Creepy Gigolo’s Payday

“lynch the multiplayer”
Hello readers! It’s only been a month since we last caught up and tons has happened. Aside from lots of interesting news about the incoming next-gen consoles, we’ve also had a fucking stack of games, son. A STACK! August be crazy. First up (on the consoles, you should know by now that I can’t be fucked with PC stuff) was Payday 2 – a game, which I’m reliably informed, is a bit like Left 4 Dead meets Reservoir Dogs. That sounds brilliant (well, apart from the Left 4 Dead bit) and I quite like a bank heist now and again. Say what you like about the risible Kane and Lynch, the multiplayer mode was fab.

Alas, Payday 2 is one of those games that really needs to be played with online buddies while being exactly the sort of game that your buddies won’t buy until it costs buttons. I’ll be keeping an eye on this one but the reviews are somewhat above average if not spectacular.

“funny Dangermouse violent Tom”
When it comes to cartoons, there was a hierarchy to these things when I was growing up. From best to worse the list goes like this;

Best: anything funny (Dangermouse), violent (Tom and Jerry) or both (Roadrunner)
Next best: anything tied into a good toy line (Transformers, Thundercats, He-man)
Bad: cutesy bullshit by Disney
Worst: anything from Europe that involved two people running past the same fucking lamp for five minutes.

So, Disney Infinity is about as relevant to me as world poverty and twice as depressing. The game, a sandbox platformer (whatever the fuck that is), has caught some decent reviews but with many reviewers noting that the DLC situation with the game is a tad ridiculous with everything in it seemingly costing extra money. So, yeah have fun with that.

With any luck, that deranged yeti will eat the head of the brown Matey Bubblebath guy and steal his cutlass, then maybe disembowel the guy from King Of Queens before he gets to the office fancy dress party. Then kill itself.

“it comes to sheer enjoyment”
Anyway, fuck all that. Saints Row IV hit the shelves in August and it was a great addition to the series. Far from being a cookie-cutter sequel, Saints Row IV introduces significantly-different gameplay from its prequels and plays more like Crackdown than GTA, which is a good thing. You can’t go wrong with Saints Row and, with GTA V just around the corner, Volition have decided to put fun before polish and have set a very high bar for Rockstar when it comes to sheer enjoyment. Even if it is all a bit too crashy at times. Still, I’ll take huge fun over technical prowess anyday. That’s why EDF is the best shooter out there and Two Worlds is the best RPG.

As ever, the set-pieces and humour are more outlandish than any other game and some of the music choices are sublime. It certainly kept me entertained for the entire story. The obligatory sandbox grind elements afterwards a bit less fun but this is still a strong challenger to Remember Me for my game of year so far.

“less riding”
The Bureau is that X-Com game that was announced a while back that turned the whole thing into an FPS. Syndicate tried a similar trick and I’m hoping it cost a few developers their jobs, and ultimately their lives. There was less riding on The Bureau though as X-Com fans have already received a well-respected remake but nobody was psyched to play this game and, as expected, The Bureau reviewed rather less well than a GMA nominee.

Ubisoft do concern me. It seems like all their games are basically the same thing these days with all their recent games featuring that daft thing where they project your mission objectives onto any available surface for no particular reason. It’s all very stylised, but ultimately Ubisoft seem to be focusing on style over substance. So, I’m not hugely looking forward to Splinter Cell: Blacklist (as evidenced by the fact that I’ve owned it for ten days now and still haven’t played it) but Conviction wasn’t that bad so I’ll give this a go soon. In the meantime, all the reviews seem very positive but so were the Tomb Raider ones and that was a bag of old wank so what the fuck is a girl to do?

The main reason for not playing Blacklist isn’t just that Ubisoft bore me beyond tablets, but also because I’ve had Killer is Dead stuck in my disc tray for the last two weeks. It’s by Suda 51 which means it’s a stylish, violent slash ‘em up. Unfortunately it’s about as generic a game as you can get when you strip away the over the top Japanese elements, and it corrupted my save a few days ago which set me back three days in my efforts to max out all the achievements. It can be fun though, especially when you skip all the cutscenes.

The save... it's gone! Quick, over-react! You know... like women are supposed to in Japanese culture while I gaze off into middle distance looking strong and silent, like I'm supposed to.

The main issue with it though is that it’s full of bullshit Japanese creepy sexism. My missus saw me playing through the gigolo missions (where the objective is literally just to leer at women before giving them a present and knobbing them) and now we’re only speaking through our lawyers.

For reasons unknown, there is a new Lost Planet game. Why on Earth this series – the dullest one Capcom have – is being kept alive is beyond me but if, for some reason, you’re a fan of this bullshit, Lost Planet 3 is averaging out at around 60% in the reviews. Which isn’t a good sign. It could have received 99% and I’d still rather lose my nose to frostbite than play it.

“jism that’s enough”
Last up is Diablo 3, which is getting a lot of praise and is described, by some people at least, as being better than its PC counterpart thanks to the controls. It is certainly doing well in the reviews and may be your best bet for some co-op RPG larks on the consoles given that Sacred 2 was about as user-friendly as your average Parisian and Dungeon Siege 3 was so little fun that it should have been called Austrian Dungeon Siege.

With GTA V due out in just a matter of days, I think my Killer is Dead trade-in money will be going on Diablo. But we’ll see. It all depends on whether I believe the GTA V reviews (when the embargo is finally lifted). Given that GTA IV got higher scores than Keith Chegwin on a breathaliser, I’ll probably wait to see what actual gamers say about it rather than wading through a sea of journojism.

“Microsoft’s piss”
That’s enough of talking about games that I mostly haven’t played yet, let’s have with the actual news. It’s been an interesting month when it comes to gaming hardware, thanks mainly to Gamescom – Germany’s answer to E3.

The one company who really needed a good Gamescom was Microsoft. After their disastrous showing at E3 and the following months of PR disasters and policy flip-flopping, Gamescom was a chance for the ailing corporation to repair a public image so battered, you’d think it was the Scottish national dish. So what did they do? They did a tiny behind-closed-doors presentation where they announced literally fuck all that was good. It was mainly about FIFA. If you pre-order an Xbox One, you get a copy of FIFA 14. Which is great if you’re a cunt.

Hilariously, Microsoft’s piss-poor excuse for all this was that they didn’t want to stream a conference because it would make the watching audience feel like they were ‘watching a party they weren’t invited to.’

Only person Microsoft actually remembered to invite to the venue was Carl, but he works there.

“satisfy the honest German”
Sony at this point are getting by by simply not being as shit as Microsoft, and so they followed up with a proper presentation. Two hours of good news about games, PlayStation Plus, indie and even a few nice announcements about the PS Vita all wrapped up with a release date for the PS4 was enough to satisfy the honest German volk in the audience and most people watching from home.

Since Gamescom, Microsoft have announced that the Xbox One is hitting UK shelves a week before the PS4. Every little helps I guess.

Not that any of this matters as the PS4 is getting an exclusive Earth Defense Force game. So that settles the debate about which console to get.

I think Nintendo were there somewhere. I just can’t care anymore. They have since announced a hilarious revision to the 3DS, provisionally titled the 2DS. It’s a 3DS with no 3D option and no clam shell case. I used to own something just like it in the 80s actually.…m-space-06.jpg

Sony have also managed to get in on the daft hardware revision action too with a new PS Vita. While it adds 1GB of internal storage and improves the battery life, it replaces the phosphorous-bright OLED screen with a regular LED one, presumably to keep costs down. The Vita’s screen is a thing of loveliness so I’ll stick with my original one thanks. Oh, and the new one comes in different colours or something.

“gun down Mexicans”
But that’s enough about me. What have you been playing recently?

  1. Saints Row IV – good choice. It’s lovely.
  2. Tom Clancy’s Splinter Cell: Blacklist – Another chance to gun down Mexicans or Chinese people presumably.
  3. Final Fantasy XIV: A Realm Reborn – Another awkward chance to see Japanese developers guess at what feelings are.
  4. Disney Infinity – If you’ve got kids and an infinite wallet, then this is a game.
  5. Minecraft: Xbox 360 – the virtual equivalent of getting hopelessly addicted to Lego for two months and then getting really bored of it.
  6. Rayman Legends – landmine has taken my arms, taken my legs, let me in a life of heh-ellllll….
  7. Madden NFL 25 – Madden? I was furioussen!
  8. Call of Duty: Black Ops II – no way! I shot that guy in the head. I totally shot that guy in the head. That’s bullshit, man. Game’s broken, man.
  9. Payday 2 – what? I don’t know anyone who bought this.
  10. FIFA 13 – seriously… 14 is out next month, you dolts!

That’s August done. I liked it. I give it 8 out of 12.

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One Comment

  1. Sly Reflex says:

    Dungeon Siege 3 has to be one of the worst games of this gen. I’ve nothing good to say about it. It’s a shit sandwich where the breads main ingredient is the sobs of molested children. Horrific.

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