"Condemned: Criminal Origins"
SEGA doesn't make game systems any more, but it still makes great
games; when "Condemned: Criminal Origins" came out last fall with
the launch of Xbox 360, I knew that I would pick it up whenever I
signed on the line to pick up a 360.
My mistake in all of this was not realizing that this game is one
of those stealth horror games, which I can usually get into...but,
as almost all of the combat is hand-to-hand combat, there are even
more scares due to this format than I had expected. That can
make a game more fun, but sometimes, it takes a little self-pumping
to get myself excited to fire it up again and again, because on each
level, you have to get accustomed to walking from room to room on
the map, waiting to get jumped by a guy with a pole, while you try
and fight back with an axe or whatever else is lying on the floor.
As an FBI agent charged with tracking down a killer, you spend
each level running around deserted alleys, sewer systems, shuttered
office buildings and the like to catch the killer.
Unfortunately, this game has so little story (and what little there
is really blows) that its initially-cool "investigation" system is
nothing more than an area-specific chance for you to hit the
investigation button and take a picture of some evidence, or
highlight footprints or blood with your UV light. And that's
it, maybe once a level. The ongoing story didn't have me
hooked at all, and after a while, it gets tiring to wait for your
character to get attacked, because all you have is the world's worst
flashlight to light the hallways (and, it's nighttime, so 95% of the
game is played in the dark) and a melee weapon. Enemies have
the strange ability to use a gun with a full clip, reload
infinitely, and when they are killed, you pick up the weapon and
it's got three bullets left in it.
After six levels, I just didn't want to play it any more.
But, the experience is harrowing at times, just not interesting
enough to play through to completion.
Feedback? Comments? Salma Hayek's digits?
Bellview Rating System:
"Opening Weekend": Buy
this game right away, and don't ask me any questions as to why
that's a good move. A game experience that will almost
guarantee repeated controller abuse, lots of ManScreaming and high
resale value, you will assuredly play this bad boy for months on end.
after games have been out for a while, they drop in price slightly,
or can be bought for slightly cheaper in combination with other new
games. Usually, that's about $40. You'll feel good
getting the game for this price, since it isn't quite
run-out-and-get-it-right-now good, but it has enough game in the box
for a few weeks' worth of enjoyment.
game is not too bad, but you'd be better off buying it used from
either half.com or eBay. You also might let a friend buy this
game, let s/he beat it, and then try to buy it from them to make
them feel better. Yes, this does tend to feel like "Sloppy
"Rental": Like my
cousin Ron, you should always rent games that you aren't sure about
first, to make sure that your $50 is going towards something
worthwhile. For games in this category, this is the maximum
amount of money ($5) and/or time (3-5 days) you'll need to either
gain satisfaction from the game, or beat the game in its entirety.
Rental-rated games are also sometimes perfect for a weekend when you
are going to be at home on your ass, with some time to kill.
Games like this should have never been released. If you play
this game for any reason, you will regret every second of the
experience. Further, if you can get this game for free, don't
do it, because even for FREE, it will still be a negative experience