Outlast – Quickview

Beware of green tint and shining eyes.

Outlast is one of the many horror games that have been cropping up in the past decade that focuses on the survival aspect rather than the gore aspect of horror.

I will start by saying that my knowledge of horror games is quite limited and really specific, but I have an idea of what to expect of a horror game: fear, anxiety and anticipation.

Fear is very hard to get to with games, but the anxiety and the anticipation of events is strong and very pulling in many of them.

Though Outlast was not the first game of its kind that I played, it is the most recent, so it’s fresher in my mind.

To start off, very well presented game. From a technical point of view, the mechanics of the game are very well introduced in the opening moments of the game. The controls are one of the most important aspects of any game and this game controls very well. It gives that versatile feel where, when you are running, you feel quick and when you are crawling, you feel slow. It sounds like something all games do perfectly, but it’s not.

So, navigating the game is a pleasure. How about how it sounds?

It sounds great. It has to. Most of the game is hanging on the fact that you have to see and hear things very carefully, so the sound montages are very well done. It’s easy to get lost in the maze of the Asylum and it only gets worst by the sounds coming from all around you indicating dangers you were not truly aware of until the last minute.

Unfortunately, sound is not essential to this game, sight is. With the very well placed mechanics of using a camcorder to record your adventure and the night-vision as a must-have tool, having your camera up and fresh on batteries is essential. Nothing worse than finding yourself short on batteries in a portion of the Asylum where lighting is minimal and monsters are at their fullest alert.

That is not how cameras work.

So, all in all, playing this game is fun. This includes my favorite part: the story.

It starts simple enough and creepy to the brim. It’s a good beginning to a horror story, but like all games, it makes a turn that is unexpected but at the same time, to be expected. It’s a horror in the modern age, it’s going to be a twist, because no one knows what is horror anymore.

Apart from a change in story that breaks some of the horror, Outlast is very nice horror game, thought it overuses its formula of one big monster per region, one puzzle or one item to acquire and then move on to the next area of the game to find another big monster, collect another key item and move on to the next area.

The formula mixes at the end, but it’s not much better, honestly.

The end of the game itself is… interesting, not to be spoiling anything. I would say this is the type of game you have to play to give your own opinion. Is it worth the buy? Definitely.

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Perfume: The Story of a Murderer – Quickview

Scents, bodies and murders.

This movie is twelve years old.

Twelve. It’s been a long time and I had not even heard about it. And if you haven’t either, I suggest you go and watch it.

I am not a big fan or art movies or indie movies or drama movies, for that matter (more on that in the future), but this? This is great. This is amazingly beautiful and hypnotizing.

On movie nights at home we share the choice privileges in my house and this time it was my girlfriend’s choice, which meant a german movie about a french person in the 18th century. Of course.

So I give in and just sit my ass down and watch. The attention to details in this movie is fantastic. The photography is amazingly well done and the rhythm of absolutely everything is just perfect. Every step of the way you can follow what’s happening and it’s just a joyful ride from beginning to end.

Technically speaking, this movie is above average, even if it was not the best ever, it is worth calling attention to the most technical aspects. The colors, the light, the camera positioning, the music, the cuts. Everything in this movie has an ideal place and the director nailed it every single time. Props to Tom Tykwer, whom I’d never heard of before this.

Then we have the actors. The main character is played by a man that is still unknown, seeing as how he is now the new Q in James Bond. It’s interesting to say the least. Ben Whishaw is fantastic as the titular murderer and manages to render a unique idea for the character. Then we have some heavy-hitters like Dustin Hoffman and Alan Rickman who bring a very nice balance to the show. It’s great. Unfortunately the ladies, though central to the plot, are a bit obscured here and that is disappointing.

The story itself is incredible and you simply must see it through to the end. I was slightly disappointed by the finale, but nothing is perfect. It is entrancing, though.

So, go ahead and watch this movie. It’s time well-spent. Go for it.

Go on, go all in.

The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim – Quickview

Tim wore it better.

This game sucks.

I remember all the hype after it came out. It was the greatest fantasy game ever made, it was incredible and awesome. It was incredi-some. It was everything all gamers ever wanted from their fantasy. I was really looking forward to playing this game. I bought it on sale, got myself a computer that could run it smoothly. And after about one hour, I said “Well, this is bullshit.”

But why? You must be wondering. How can someone with such surefire taste for games and movies have such low esteem for such an epic game?

This is a problem I have with this game alone for a very specific reason. You can’t kill everyone. Sure there would be no game if you killed everyone, but then why let me attack everyone if I cannot kill everyone? What’s that? You still don’t understand? Ok.

I played Fallout (A Bethesda property now) when it first came out and played it as a good guy, scratching and crawling my way through the game. Meanwhile, my brother just assumed he could murder everything he could set his sights on to and it worked. He practically murdered half of the game’s population and managed to get a “good ending”. Meanwhile, I was still struggling to find the goddam water chip. At no point did the game jam on him. He just raised Hell and did what he had to then went back home.

Then we have another game, let’s say Divinity 2 (I’m currently playing this game as of this writing) and I absolutely cannot attack characters the game does not tag as targets. Only little monsters and other people that are clearly enemies can be attacked. More than once I’ve swung my sword onto innocent people to no effect. The Gods of Video Games make my powers harmless to the NPCs. Limited, but still logical. I can’t attack everyone, so I can’t kill key characters by mistake or intentionally.

This game was the bomb. Atomic bomb.

Along comes Skyrim, boasting its open world and I think “I’m tired of this Jarl thinking he can command me around.” and swing the sword. I manage to defeat his guards, and get him down but no button mashing will kill him. My only option was to run away and realize, with a rage in my soul, that I cannot kill key characters. The game doesn’t even give me the courtesy of a game over screen telling me an important character died. Nope, they are immortal. Eternal like the songs of Michael Jackson.

I don’t care about the mods, I don’t care about the graphics, I don’t care about music, playability, how big the game is or whatever else. DON’T DO THIS SHIT! If I can attack a person, let me kill them. This is worse than a DM on a tabletop RPG dropping a roc bird on the entire party just to prove a point.

This game sucks.

I hate this douchebag.