Game: "Lost Planet: Extreme Condition"
System: Microsoft Xbox 360
ESRB rating: T
Review rating: 4 stars
The wait is over. Players around the world can now traipse across the frozen tundra blasting alien creatures and space pirates in Capcom's epic shooter, "Lost Planet: Extreme Condition."
This Xbox 360-exclusive title not only oozes with style, but also features fantastic online and offline game play. "Lost Planet" could stand on its own with its awesome infantry combat, but a wide variety of menacing, 15-foot-tall robots (mechs) are also available to pilot. Some can hover and fly, while others can transform into speedy land vehicles. All are heavily armed. In addition, weapons can be swapped out for others from a unit's default arsenal, resulting in on-the-fly customization and nonstop fun.
|'LOST PLANET: EXTREME CONDITION' - Players around the world can now battle space pirates in Capcom's 'Lost Planet: Extreme Condition.' CNS Photo courtesy of Capcom.|
|FROZEN FIGHT - 'Lost Planet' could stand on its own with its awesome infantry combat, but it also offers a wide variety of air and land vehicles to pilot. CNS Photo courtesy of Capcom.|
|'PLATYPUS' - The fact that everything in 'Platypus' looks as if it were made of clay gives it an interesting look, but it isn't enough to carry an entire game. CNS Photo courtesy of Mumbo Jumbo.|
|GAME OVER - 'Platypus' strives to emulate the 1980s arcade shooter experience, and that might be its downfall. CNS Photo courtesy of Mumbo Jumbo.|
Since characters spend most of their time in the frozen wastelands of the planet known as E.D.N. III, they wear a special protective suit, fueled by energy from fallen enemies, at all times. This suit will regenerate a player's health when damaged, but if its energy is depleted, the player will die.
Too bad the single-player adventure is a bit short, but there's plenty of online multiplayer goodness to satisfy any action fan. Up to 16 players can battle over the Internet, but what makes this game special is the ability to pilot mechs online as well as run around as infantry.
No two games are the same as players scramble to grab available mechs and/or support their teammates by blasting enemies to kingdom come.
Buy it, rent it or borrow it from a friend. No 360 owner should miss "Lost Planet."
Publisher: Mumbo Jumbo
System: Sony PSP
ESRB rating: E
Review rating: 1 1/2 stars
Featuring Claymation-style graphics and side-scrolling shooting action, the underground PC hit "Platypus" blasts its way onto Sony's PSP. But just because it was popular in 2005 doesn't mean it'll stand the test of time.
In fact, "Platypus" is nothing more than a straight port to the PSP with no new features. And the archaic game play is nothing short of maddening.
The fact that everything in the game looks as if it were made of clay gives it an interesting look, but it isn't enough to carry an entire game.
One of the major problems is that enemy clay bullets don't stand out very well on the screen, and sometimes even pass behind clouds. Because they're so hard to see, dodging dozens of them at a time is a needless exercise in futility.
While I applaud "Platypus" for being one of the only shooters not set in space, the backgrounds are incredibly repetitive and uninteresting. Not even the special weapon pickups are the slightest bit exciting, and they can't be powered up or have their levels raised. As a result, there's little incentive for the player to finish the game.
"Platypus" strives to emulate the 1980s arcade shooter experience, and that's its downfall. No one wants to play a game that would have been mediocre 20 years ago.
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4 stars - Must have
3 stars - Pretty good
2 stars - So-so
1 star - Don't waste your time
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Entertainment Software Rating Board (ESRB)
T: Teen (13 and older)
E10-plus: (Everyone 10 and older)
M: Mature (17 and older)