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Portal 2, MHFU, The Kingdom and Doctor Who

Brad Gallaway's picture

Portal 2 Screenshot

So I've been playing Portal 2 for the past couple of days.

I won't spoil anything since I know that most people are only getting their copy just now, but I will say that so far (I would estimate I'm about 3/4ths of the way through) it's pretty much what I expected.

On the plus side, the portal gun is as fun as it ever was, and dialogue is consistently humorous, in addition to there being a lot more of it this time around.

On the minus side, I have to say that the game is starting to feel a little too long for me and the repetitive pace of puzzle after puzzle is a bit much. It's pretty exciting when the game takes brief detours away from the puzzle rooms—I'm hoping that I will get to see more of that kind of stuff before credits roll.

I probably won't say anything else about it until after I finish the game (and I won't be doing the main review either, that honor goes to the cool and collected Richard Naik) but I'll be curious to see how the game is ultimately received once the initial heatwave has a chance to mellow out.

I took a quick glance at a few reviews, and to be frank, I think the first round of inevitable 100s on MetaCritic are being just a bit generous.

In other games news, I think I'm finally hitting the burnout point in Monster Hunter Freedom Unite.

I genuinely wanted to go the distance in the game's hardest difficulty (G-Rank) but it's pretty clear that the developers have heavily slanted things towards group play. While it's possible to go solo, I'm rapidly losing motivation.

As an example, I consistently run out of time trying to defeat one particular G-Rank monster that I've killed dozens and dozens of times beforehand. There's nothing different or special about it, it just has tons of defense and tons of life, and even after 45 minutes of hitting the damn thing in the face with a giant hammer, it still won't go down.

I'm sure that if I had three partners with me we could make short work of the thing, but it's more than a little annoying to be utterly defeated by this creature’s stats when I've proven perfectly capable of taking it down in the other difficulty levels.

I've heard from some sources that the next Monster Hunter game has drastically changed the level of difficulty at the end in order to make it more playable for solo gamers, so I think I'm probably just going to pack it up for now and call it good. Leave the memories unsullied, as it were.

I'm still available for MHFU co-op play though… if you need a squaddie to team with, send me a message.

While I was up at night feeling ill recently, I started watching Lars von Trier’s The Kingdom on NetFlix. I had heard tons about it, but I have to say that it isn't quite what I expected.

Basically, a hospital is built on top of some kind of spooky ground and ghosts are beginning to cross over and cause problems. It's a fine premise, but the series (so far) feels more like a medical ensemble show than a traditional horror story. That's not necessarily a bad thing, but I will admit that I was looking forward to a few more creep-outs and chills than I've gotten.

To be fair, the series is broken up into two seasons and I think the program lasts for eight or nine hours, in total. I've only seen the first two episodes, so there’s still plenty of time for things to build up and get crazy.

Just a quick reminder that the new season of Doctor Who will be starting shortly. For the first time ever, it will air simultaneously in the UK and the US starting on April 23rd courtesy of the BBC/BBC America.

Am I excited? You have no idea.

Category Tags
Platform(s): Xbox 360   PS3   PSP  
Series: Portal  
Genre(s): Puzzle   Shooting  

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Portal 2

I finished Portal 2 a couple of days ago, but what you wrote here is pretty much how I feel about it.

The whole idea of the portals is still fun as hell, and the writing is as clever and hilarious as it ever was, but it definitely started dragging on a bit towards the end. There's a lot of new elements to the puzzles, which is appreciated, but at the end of the day, that's all you're doing, puzzling puzzling puzzling, and it gets kind of old after a while.

I thought that the 2 or 3 hours for the original was exactly the right length, and I was not sure whether the concept was strong enough to carry a full-length $60 game. In the end, I did feel it was slightly too long, and I also agree with your assessment that reviews sites are giving it perhaps a bit too much credit.

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