Welcome to another edition of the Game Ranter Banter. Five of our writers take a few minutes out of their busy schedules to give their opinions on some of the most compelling and controversial recent news stories of the game industry. This week, the Game Rant team discusses Link’s lack of a voice in Skyward Sword, problems with the Battlefield 3 beta, bad decision surrounding X-Men: Destiny, the story of the next Assassin’s Creed, and a chance of Marcus Fenix making his way to Mortal Kombat.
Our readers are as knowledgeable and opinionated as our own writers, so here is the place for all of you to discuss these stories as well as any others that may have piqued your interest throughout the week.
Give Link a Voice
This week I wrote about The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword and how new story details were released. Now, the story in the game may be a little far-fetched compared to what we are used to in the previous Zelda titles, and that’s all well and good, but what really bugs me is the fact that it looks like the game takes a step backwards in the graphics department.
Twilight Princess had some pretty great graphics and although the cel shading in Wind Waker is a whole different story, I don’t think Nintendo was trying to go for any different of a look than it had in its previous game. Skyward Sword looks like a compromise of design between Wind Waker and Twilight Princess. Why can’t we see an adult, epic Legend of Zelda game that pushes itself outside the norm to today’s graphical standards?
Also, why haven’t Link or any of the other characters ever had voice actors? Twilight Princess was the perfect opportunity to finally give Link a voice and the developers opted out. In one way, I could see that it could ruin the uniqueness of the character, but on the other hand, Link needs to get with the times. Could they be too scared to see how audiences would react to the character if his voice was not as they had depicted in their heads?
If you could pick one celebrity/famous character to voice Link, whose voice would you choose for our famous green tunic hero?
Battlefield 3 Concerns
Electronic Arts launched the Battlefield 3 open multiplayer beta a few days ago, only three weeks before the game releases. What significant changes can be made to the game in 3 weeks if the beta proves there are issues?
Funny enough, the beta is proving that there are issues and some gamers are becoming very vocal about their concerns. Not only are many players experiencing frequent errors and connection issues, and loads of bugs when the game does work, but on the Xbox 360 and PS3 console versions of Battlefield 3, the game simply doesn’t look that impressive. In addition to a user interface which seemingly restricts the ability to put together a squad with friends, the single map available doesn’t even feature vehicles, which is one of the game’s selling points vs. its competition.
The PC version is also not running smooth and while it’s only a beta and it’s only been a few days, if this is foretelling of what to expect from Battlefield 3 on the consoles – or if some users believe it to be even if it’s not true – then Call of Duty has an opportunity to earn some big-time positive buzz if its multiplayer beta works without a hitch. Why didn’ EA do what Epic Games and Microsoft did with Gears of War 3 and launch the beta months earlier to allow time to make significant changes?
It seems like with superhero titles these days, developers struggle to get it right, especially with characters that are a member of a team (i.e. X-Men or Avengers). The game that brings this problem to mind most recently is X-Men: Destiny, a title that takes no risks, and delivers no rewards, and is a perfect example of how developers get it wrong.
Typically in multi-character superhero titles, players are presented with two options: either you can play as several of your favorite recognizable canon characters, in some sort of team-up scenario, or you can play as someone new and merely fight alongside them – the latter of which, in the developer’s mind, keeps the player away from sweating bullets when forced to choose between Iron Man or Captain America, which is a win in their book but not ours.
Can’t we simply play as fan favorites like Gambit and Wolverine? Is it so much of a risk to present a player with a difficult choice that, dare I say it, might make them want to play the game more than once? Anything is better than playing as the rejects, especially when players have no customization of their hero.
Tragic Ending in Sight
This week we got to see the Assassin’s Creed Revelations extended trailer and in it we finally get to see what happens to Ezio at the end of that amazing cinematic E3 trailer and why he’s going on this quest back to the homeland of the Assassins.
There is no doubt that the AC story is one of the best in gaming today. The writers have done an amazing job at engaging the player in an open world environment. This is something many gamers hope the developers can pull off in Batman: Arkham City.
There’s been one thing that’s been bugging me, though. The writers claim that they’ll answer 7 of the 10 lingering questions fans have about the series. This is all fine and dandy but I feel this won’t do much for the fans since Assassin’s Creed Revelations will probably generate 7 or more major questions about the series. This new trailer alone generates a handful of questions which we hope will be answered in the game.
Like a good episode of Lost – or a bad episode depending on how you look at it – Assassin’s Creed Revelations probably won’t bring all of the closure fans are expecting. Sure it will end the story arcs of Ezio and Atair, but if Ubisoft plans on keeping this series alive, they’re going to have to hold back to keep fans hanging on. Let’s just hope it doesn’t end in a similar fashion as Lost did – that would be tragic.
Sting Like a Scorpion, Rise Like a Fenix
Ever since a recent Twitter exchange between Ed Boon and Cliff Bleszinski regarding the potential use of Gears of War‘s main protagonist Marcus Fenix in Mortal Kombat, fans of both series have been overwhelmed with wishful thinking. Many were quite surprised when Kratos was announced as a PlayStation 3 exclusive, and Xbox 360 fans waited in bated breath for the reveal of a 360 exclusive character — none was ever announced.
If Marcus Fenix does appear as a playable character (be it in the form of DLC for the current Mortal Kombat, or in the next installment), NetherRealm Studios couldn’t pick a better exclusive character for Microsoft’s home console. Gears of War 3 made a huge splash when it hit late last month, and it’s probably the only video game on the Xbox that actually has a similar level of violence that Mortal Kombat has become famous for.
I think it’s safe to say that Marcus Fenix, or another representative from the Gears of War universe, will eventually appear in Mortal Kombat. The only real question is whether or not that will happen in the latest Mortal Kombat, or if Ed Boon and Cliffy B will save it for the next game.