In Mike Doolittle's review of Crimson Skies, although he had many splendid things to say about the game, I was surprised to see a rating that was just above average. Perhaps I tend to immerse myself in a game world too deeply, from reading the backstory to wondering what experience the designers expected me to have as the roguish pilot Nathan Zachary. What I found at the end of my journey was a far richer experience overall than Mike gave the game credit for.
Comic fans will geek out at numerous points (none of which will be spoiled here), but even newcomers to this alternate reality will find things to love thanks to a richly crafted story courtesy of a group of former X-Men writers. Because of this, the game genuinely feels like an X-Men story instead of just generic videogame plot #32654 with X-Men characters in the mix.
Game Description: The Brotherhood of Evil Mutants has freed their leader, the diabolically intelligent Magneto. An unprovoked attack on mutant-kind by a secret Sentinel army compels Magneto to plan his most maniacal scheme yet. He intends to use his mutant superpowers to shroud the Earth in cosmic debris, blotting out the sun and plunging the globe into eternal winter. From this chaos the Brotherhood will emerge to reign supreme over humankind. As the Sentinels continue to wage worldwide mutant genocide, the X-Men must confront Magneto and save the earth from certain destruction.
But despite such overwhelming expectations, Halo 2 is essentially a bigger, badder version of the first—nothing more, nothing less. It refines and expands upon many of the original's strongest concepts, stumbles over a few repeated missteps, and offers an experience distinctly similar to the first that fluctuates between modest tedium and prodigious epic.
Game Description:Halo 2 continues the story of Master Chief, the heroic super-soldier who defied the invading alien Covenant and survived. The Covenant leaders within Halo are angry at this unheard of event. To save face, they launch an invasion of our planet. Earth's defenses are breached, and we're all in danger—unless Master Chief can lead a small military squad to victory against Covenant forces, in all-out guerilla warfare!
Crimson Skies: High Road to Revenge arrived with so much hype and fanfare that it's easy to forget that, at one time, it was nearly vaporware. After a dismal E3 showing a couple of years ago and tepid feedback from testers, Microsoft made the decision to halt the title in mid-development and start from scratch with a new team of artists, writers and programmers.
Game Description:Crimson Skies: High Road to Revenge combines thrilling aerial combat with the swashbuckling style of a Hollywood action-adventure movie. Set in an alternate 1930s world of gunship diplomacy and sinister intrigue, Crimson Skies: High Road to Revenge lets gamers pilot powerful aircraft against nefarious air pirates and behemoth war zeppelins. As the daring air pirate Nathan Zachary, leader of the infamous Fortune Hunters, players take off on a high-flying adventure, filled with daring escapes and damsels in distress.
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