Gamespot + Lair = Ouch…
I don’t know why they got their knickers into such a twist. Anyone could have guessed that the first major foray into a game about flying dragons and aerial dragon combat wasn’t going to be perfect, but damn, those guys are pissed!
I didn’t think it was so completely terrible. In fact, I actually want to continue playing to see where it goes. Sure, I can’t play it with anyone because I look silly jerking and moving the controller around (and the Sixaxis is no cute Wiimote) but it was kinda fun to use the controller to fly a dragon. The story is kinda generic with two warring factions with different belief systems, but you definitely get the sense that your side may not be as good as they claim and there is most likely a traitor in your ruling class but whatever. I think the fact that you get to fly a dragon that shoots streams and balls of fire is cool.
I think “hardcore” gamers hate the Sixaxis. I admit, it sucks that you can’t turn that control scheme option off, that doesn’t really make sense, but why is there such a mad hate on for any new kind of gameplay? It really is kinda interesting to fly by moving the controller about, it’s that simple! I didn’t seem to think tight turns were a problem, but then again I used 180s alot to turn myself around when I needed to. That took a bit of getting used to because you have to jerk the controller up and hold it so that the command goes through properly but I adjusted. This whole camera issue they had in that review, well, I didn’t have any problems with the camera. Maybe I am just not technical about stuff like that but I didn’t have any problems focusing on where I was or what I was doing I just picked where I wanted to go or what I wanted to shoot at and then bam, done.
The whole mission gameplay is kind boring though. It reminds me of like a fighter pilot game with the typical “take care of this cargo ship” or “take out this many of their cannon ships before it’s too late” which is kinda meh. I would have loved like just flying my dragon through a sandbox world trying to discover the conspiracy and running into various bad guys I had to destroy or bases I had to hunt down on my own. This “we’re being attacked here let’s go” stuff is, again, meh. Yet I forgive all of this because I’m not flying a plane with guns and bombs I’m flying a dragon that shoots fire out of its mouth. Have I mentioned that already?
When Ianding on the ground, again I had no problem adjusting to the ground controls or the camera and my favourite thing to do was just run straight into a crowd of soldiers and swing the controller around to take them out with the dragon’s swiping move. Fun times! And as for targeting, again I don’t know what they’re talking about because I targeted whatever dragon I was facing with no problem and then slammed into with no problem. You can go into this flight mode where you line your dragon up with the enemy and then jerk the controller towards it and your dragon crashes into it. I wish there was a rumble pack for that but no biggie.
I need to play more to find out if it’s really that bad. Maybe they are right, maybe it is a horrible, horrible waste of time. I just don’t agree at the moment. I still want to continue with this game and that is huge since there isn’t alot to play on the PS3 for me right now. I want to continue with Folklore when the full game is released and I still have to check out Warhawk (but being multiplayer only is a bit of a letdown for me since I don’t have any friends that actually have a PS3…). For now Lair is fun to just hop into and play through a few chapters (missions).
Gamespot really annihilated the game in their review and though I respect that they should do that and game mechanics and technical specs are very important to alot of people (and the thirst for a fulfilling title on the PS3 is getting worse and worse) I just really think they could have eased up a bit. Seriously, if you like mission based flight games this one is no different you just need to relearn how to fly and get used to a movement based control system. This is only going to get more popular with future titles because Sony is super proud of their Sixaxis baby and want people to love it and the quickest way to get people to love it is to ram it down their throats until they have no other option but to enjoy it (or move to the 360).
After reading Gamespot you just have this hugely negative sense of the game in your mind. You feel like you hate it based on their words alone. That’s the sad thing. In this gamer world alot of people listen to reviews before trying things out for themselves. Being a gamer is all about play and enjoying yourself. Only you can decide what makes you happy in that respect, not someone else’s review. There are loads of games out there that get bad reviews but people still love to play them. You don’t have to play the blockbuster titles and nothing else.
I just think if you have a PS3 try it for yourself before listening to Gamespot. I think Lair goes have some drawbacks but it is a playable game. So try Lair for yourself before you go baaing alot with the rest of them simply because it’s easier to condemn and hate a game than to try something different.