PSA: Tron Evolution Is Not Tron 2.0!

tron-evolution

I know that the title of this post seems pretty obvious, but it is a mistake that I have made.  Tron Evolution came out on Xbox One backwards compatibility recently.  Then Microsoft gave it away as part of Games with Gold.  I love Tron, so I was pretty excited, but only because I got Tron Evolution by Propaganda Games mixed up with Tron 2.0 by Monolith Studios.  Imagine my disappointment.  Tron 2.0 is a well made First Person Shooter/Platformer while Tron Evolution is a bad third person movie tie-in.

This mistake is even more embarrassing because Tron 2.0 came out way back in 2003 and Tron Evolution came out in 2010, so this is just starting to show how old I am when I am getting games separated by seven years mixed up.  Oh well.  The take away is don’t bother playing Tron Evolution.  It is not even worth it for free.  On the other hand if you do get a copy of Tron 2.0 (on Steam I am guessing since who has their original Xbox setup anymore) it is worth playing.  Don’t make the same mistake I made.

Titanfall 2: A Game Without Titans In It…

Titanfall-2

I was supper excited to play the Titanfall 2 Open Multiplayer Tech Test this weekend, but after this weekend I am less enthused to pick up the game.  Before I get too far in to this I should say I am all for developers changing up their games.  No one wants to play the exact same thing over and over again, but in most cases the changes Titanfall 2 has made have not been for the better.

First up and most bizarrely it seems that Titanfall 2 really hates Titans.  Instead of having a timer to get your Titan you have to earn them by doing things in the game, like killing other players or completing objectives.  Which is fine, but it takes forever to gain enough points to charge up your Titan meter, so if you are playing Hardpoint mode where you have to take different locations on a map and hold them and you are having a bad round you may never even get a Titan.  In fact the best way to get a Titan in Hardpoint is to just camp at the location closest to your spawn point and get points for ‘Holding” the Hardpoint.

Things are a bit better in the new mode Bounty Hunt where you get money for killing AI controlled players and Titans, and then you have to try and rush to different locations to bank your cash.  You can also kill other players and steal their cash.  Because you are always shooting something the Titan meter fills up much faster, so there will always be a couple of giant mechs around.

The problem is that the Titans in Titanfall 2 have been majorly nerfed.  They die much quicker, and they do way less damage.  They are also locked out of important areas.  You can’t take control of any Hardpoints while in a Titan and you have to get out to bank your cash.  In other words even though you spend a lot of time getting your Titan it may not be worth calling it down anyway.

The maps in Titanfall 2 have also gotten much worse.  In the original Titanfall the maps were very vertical so you could use your pilot’s advanced movement to get around.  In Titanfall 2 the maps are flat.  So you mostly just run around and then use your grappling hook once you are close to a building for a speed boost.  They are like Battlefield maps, but you don’t get the jeeps to make them fun.

Granted all of this is based off of a few hours with a small subset of what the game has to offer, and I didn’t play the Pilot versus Pilot mode, but I am assuming that would not fix this game’s lack of Titan problem.  If the Tech Test is indicative of the final product I will probably skip Titanfall 2, and I loved the first Titanfall.  There is still a lot of time until October, so a lot of things can change, and maybe the modes and maps I want to play just haven’t been show yet, but this test was really disappointing.

The Tick Is Back! Check Out The First Scenes!

As you can see in the video above The Tick is back and better than ever.  What about Arthur you say?  You can see him in the video below!  Best Amazon series ever!  Well it may not be, but I choose to believe it is going to be awesome!

Sherlock Holmes And The Case Of The Never Ending Loading Screen!

sherlock-holmes-crimes-and-punishments

Way back in March the game Sherlock Holmes: Crimes and Punishments by Frogwares was given away as part of Microsoft’s Games with Gold program.  I had been meaning to give it try since then, but there have been way too many things to play.  I am happy to report that it is a pretty good modern adventure title, but just be prepared for a lot of loading.  Seriously, you may need to get a book.  A Sherlock Holmes novel perhaps?

Taking its queue from the classic Sir Arthur Conan Doyle novels on which Crimes and Punishments is based, the game is split in to six different cases.  Each one with clues to find and chumps to make look stupid as you bring up things they thought they were hiding.  Also nodding to Fyodor Dostoyevsky’s novel Crime and Punishment, when you wrap up a case you can choose whether to imprison the perpetrators or take pity on them and set them free.

Like most games in the adventure genre, Sherlock Holmes: Crimes and Punishments involves a lot of walking around and looking at things, touching things, and talking to people.  The more you look and touch, the more options you get when you talk.  To help you look for stuff there is a Holmes vision that turns everything gray, but then highlights things you may have missed in yellow.  Also when you talk to people you get to slow time and check them out all over so you can make those Sherlock Holmes snap deductions, like that they are a poor son of a rich man who now works as a fish cleaner.  That is by far my favorite part.  There are a few little mini-games as well that Frogwares uses to try and break up the monotony of all the looking, touching and talking.  Some are good, and some are not.  Luckily they are all skip-able.

My second favorite thing is the way Crimes and Punishments lets you piece the clues together.  You go in to Holmes’ brain and make deductions, but some decoctions have multiple conclusions you can make, and based on those conclusions you can then make your final judgment.  Once you accept this judgment a very Sherlock Holmes-y cut-scene will take place with him explaining everything.  What is even better is that it saves before this cut-scene, so if you have all the clues you can watch them all.  The downer is that the loading takes so long that you may not have the patience to do so.

If Frogwares could have found a way to cut down on the excessive loading times Sherlock Holmes: Crimes and Punishments may have been a must play for fans of the adventure genre.  As it is, it is still pretty good and worth a look since it usually can be found for cheap.  I am enjoying the feeling of being the Master Detective, I just wish that there wasn’t so much down time, but maybe they were just trying to give us more time to think about the case.

TK-436 Puts The War Back In Star Wars!

Star Wars fan films continue to be amazing, but TK-436: A Stormtrooper Story has got to be among the best.  This short flick manages to take the Star Wars Universe in a somber direction I didn’t think was possible.  Great job!

Shmee Visits Zootopia!

zootopia

Disney Animation Studios is on quite the roll.  They haven’t released a bad movie in quite some time, and Zootopia continues this streak.  Somehow the folks over at Disney managed to make a poignant movie about racism, but still have it be cute and charming.  Zootopia is a great movie, and one that can be seen by the whole family.

The film follows a bunny named Judy Hopps (Ginnifer Goodwin) who becomes Zootopia’s first rabbit cop, but she soon finds out that the world isn’t the wonderful place she hoped it would be, and tensions are running high in the city between Prey and Predators.  Her first big case could make things even worse.  Hopefully her new friend a sly fox named Nick Wilde (Jason Bateman) can help her navigate the big city.

A bad movie would have fumbled this story and made it too preachy, or even worse, insulting, but Zootopia’s writers managed to get just the right tone while still getting their point across.  I like how they made sure that the main characters were not immune to the problems the city had, but instead they had to overcome them.  Too many kids movies make the main characters perfect, so nothing is learned.

Disney Animation and Pixar continue to be the gold standard on finding great voice talent for their films.  While other studios chase big stars, so they can advertise their star power, Disney just gets the right people for the job.  Bateman and Goodwin are very good, but the rest of the cast is wonderful too.  Though I am a sucker for anything with John DiMaggio in it.

The animation in Zootopia is amazing.  Disney Animation Studios really brought this animal city to life.  I loved all the different districts, and how all these different animals interacted with one another.  It made Zootopia feel like a real place.  It was just great work all around.

Zootopia is a good family film that was made by a studio that has really hit its stride.  The only reason that I could find for not recommending this film is that it has a couple of quick scary parts, but my two year old made it through with flying colors.  Zootopia is so good you should watch it even if you don’t have a family.

Things Get Dramatic For Rogue One: A Star Wars Story!

The new trailer is out for Rouge One: A Star Wars Story (that title is so awkward!) and it is great!  This one is much more dramatic, and it gives a good feel for the story.  Oh, and you know who is back!!!!!!!  Only a few more months!

Shmee Picks His Black Manta!

black-manta

I am going to have to apologize up front.  Usually when I cast a character I have five choices, but with so many people already making either Marvel movies or DC movies I had to narrow my list down to three because everyone was already in something else.  Still with the announcement that the Aquaman’s most well known villain Black Manta would be in the new Aquaman film, I had to voice my opinion.  Here are my top three choices for Black Manta:

3: Denzel Washington

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I know that he is 61 and he will be 62 by the time Aquaman starts filming, but he would add some weight and star power to the picture, and Denzel can do anything regardless of his age.  Put him in the suit and I wouldn’t stand in his way.

2: Jamie Foxx

jamie-foxx

His last outing as a superhero villain did not go well in The Amazing Spider-Man 2, but he is a talented actor, and playing a more serious villain like Black Manta would play to his strengths.  He could definitely throw down with Jason Momoa.

1: Michael K. Williams

MichaelKWilliams

The fact that Michael K. Williams is not already working on a major comic book movie is crime, but he would be perfect for Black Manta.  If you doubt his acting chops check out Boardwalk Empire or The Wire and you will be sold.  No one would be safe underwater with Michael K. William’s Black Manta on the loose!

Those are my three choices for Black Manta!  What do you think?  Who would you pick to play opposite of Aquaman?

This Is The Akira Fans Have Been Clamoring For!

Akira 28 from Brad Kremer on Vimeo.

It seems like Hollywood has been trying to make an Akira movie for forever, but the fans, as always, are around to show them how it should be done!  While the CGI could use a little work, the above video was gorgeous and it makes me want to run out and watch Akira again.

With The Casting Of Key Justice Society Characters The CW Is Indeed Shaping Up To Be DC’s Earth 2!

Stargirl

According to IGN actress Sarah Grey is now the CW’s Stargirl on Legends of Tomorrow.   Stargirl is a key member of the Justice Society of America.  If you don’t know who Sarah Grey is here is a headshot for you:

sarah-gray

Now I know nothing about Grey’s acting talent, but what is exciting is that my hope of the CW becoming DC’s live action Earth 2 are coming true.  Why do I say that you ask?  The Justice Society is the Justice League from Earth 2, so if they are going to be Legends of Tomorrow’s primary superhero crime fighting force that means the CW is owning its second Earth status.  Which is great.  I am all for the TV series being the timey wimey crazy DC earth.  Not to mention if they are officially Earth 2 it still leaves the opportunity open for a TV/Movie meet-up! They are announcing more Justice Society characters as they get closer to Legend’s second season, and I can’t wait!