Archive for category Resistance 2
WHAT HAVE THEY DONE!!
When I first entered Resistance 2 online multiplayer, it was a bit of a shock. Having spent 100s of hours playing Resistance online, I had (mostly) fond memories of my time playing CTF, Meltdown, Assault and Breach. None of these modes are present in R2 which was a big disappointment for me.
I was thinking to myself WTF have they done and initially I hated it. I didn’t enjoy Core Control or Skirmish and I felt the maps were far too big, giving players way too many hiding places and favouring snipers.
There was also the feeling that as a beginner to the Competitive side of things, the odds were heavily against you. You can’t select region when you play ranked games, so you get put up against NA gamers who have had the game for almost a month longer than Europeans and have leveled up to Supreme Commander. This has allowed them to unlock the LAARK and Pulse Cannon (both are unlocked as Berserks) and other very useful Berserks such as Invisibility (which you get when you reach Level 12).
It simply felt like it wasn’t a fair playing field at all and far too many times I was killed by an invisible opponent or someone that self destructed killing themselves and killing or badly damaging anyone within the blast radius. Very irritating.
Luckily I persisted with Competitive mode and my opinion changed for the better
There are initially four game modes in Competitive. Hopefully Insomniac will add more modes like they did with Resistance somewhere down the line because I don’t think four is enough to keep things fresh and varied in Competitive.
You have Core Control, which is basically CTF only without the flags. The main difference here is when you grab the core, you lose the ability to shoot, so you’re a sitting target (or a moving target once you start sprinting) unless you drop the core. If you drop the core it stays where you dropped it, so if you encounter some trouble, you can drop the core, safe in the knowledge that if you survive you can pick it up and continue back to your base.
I initially played Core Control more than the other modes but soon got bored of playing with randoms who didn’t have a headset and seemed to want to do their own thing.
Skirmish feels very similar to online co-op because your objectives switch during the course of battle. One minute you’re asked to “Swarm the beacon” (Chimerans says SWARM apparently ) then you could be made the Primary target and be asked to survive or defend the target for a set period of time, or “purge him” (Chimerans also say purge too ) if your enemy has been made the primary target.
At first I hated Skirmish but I gave it another go after getting sick of playing Core Control and it’s now may favourite mode to play. You’re constantly on the go and the battle to take or defend the beacon can be epic and great fun. Team work is also more present in Skirmish and when it’s 20+ players involved it can be amazing fun seeing different battles kicking off on different parts of the maps.
Some players still use this mode as if it’s a TDM but you can counter this by concentrating on completing the objectives and winning the round.
Team Deathmatch and Death Match are pretty standard fare. I’m not really a fan of those modes. I prefer to have objectives to aim for rather than just killing for the sake of it.
Another key difference between R2 and Resistance in the Team Objective modes is that there is only one round. You no longer play two rounds, one as a human and one as a Chimeran. Instead it’s just the one round as whichever race you’re assigned to play as.
This is actually not as big a problem as it could’ve been thanks to the Berserks, which I will cover next.
GO BERSERK. IT’S YOUR DUTY
When you start off, you have a limited number of useful Berserks to choose from. One of the most useful Berserks is Ironheart. This greatly reduces the amount of damage you take from small arms and grenades. When you see your opponents covered in a glowing red ball, it means they have activated Ironheart and should therefor be avoided unless you outnumber them by at least 3 to 1 or have the LAARK or Pulse Cannon Berserk activated to deal heavy damage to them.
I’ve often taken out 2 or more enemies after activating Ironheart but have also been quickly killed by 3 or more enemies all shooting at me at the same time. It’s best to activate it when you see no more than two enemies nearby and are confident of taking them out before your gauge depletes. Unless you want to get a couple of kills before dying of course.
At level 12, you unlock the Invisibility Berserk, which makes you invisible (sorry to state the obvious) and is very useful for sneaking around the map and taking out unsuspecting enemies. You only show up on the radar and become physically visible if you fire your weapon. This can be very useful if you are hunting the Primary Target in Skirmish.
There are also some very useful Berserks that affect all nearby allies such as Advanced Radar which shows all enemies locations on the map and Ring of Life, which activates an aura that regenerates the health of all team mates that are within the circle of the aura.
Here is a video that will give some more tips and info about Berserks:
Yesterday I covered the Campaign mode in Resistance 2, so today it’s the turn of the online co-op side of things.
I know Henning is big on split screen and wants to know how well the split screen co-op is faring but that side of things does not interest me. I haven’t tried it out so I can’t really comment on any of the issues people may have with split screen co-op.
Hmm, I’m not quite sure where to begin with online co-op, what I can say is it is a lot of fun, let down by poor structure and some niggles.
TEAMWORK IS NOT AN OPTION, IT’S A NECESSITY
As you may know by now, there are 3 classes to choose from. Soldier is the bad arse with the Wraith, best suited for the front lines blasting at anything that moves. He also has a very handy shield which not only protects him but also allows his team mates to stay behind the shield and shoot through it to damage and kill any enemies.
Spec Ops is the guy that provides his team mates with ammo and you will run out of ammo. A lot. He can also do massive damage with his electrical orb attacks and is armed with the Marksman as his primary weapon.
Medic is responsible for healing his team mates. He is armed with the Phoenix. His main attack is to drain the health from the enemies which is what he needs to do in order to heal his allies with the secondary fire. You won’t get as many kills playing as a Medic compared to the other two classes but using the Phoenix from afar allows you to avoid taking heavy damage.
You must have at least 1 person covering each class in co-op. You simply won’t survive long enough playing with less than two other people or with you all being the same class. I’m not saying it’s not possible to do co-op without the 3 classes covered, I’m just saying it is extremely hard to do so and you will be far better off making sure that all 3 classes are taking part.
Team work is also vital. You have to put aside personal glory as a Medic or Spec Ops and keep an eye on your team’s health and ammo needs, rather than aiming for kills. The Soldier is the guy that is best suited for racking up the kills but the other Classes play a vital role in completing each mission. It’s incredibly satisfying when 3 of you work together to complete a mission.
I found this while playing with Trieloth and Rodders9. Although I was the Soldier and racking up the kills, there was no way we could’ve progressed without Trieloth and Rodders maintaining ammo supplies and topping up each others health. Both got their fare share of kills too but the sense of achievement from working as a team was very satisfying!
It helps to have headsets so you can yell out “Medic!” or “Ammo!” when you are low on either, although sometimes randoms in the squad seem oblivious to your requests.
BRAVO INSOMNIAC, BRAVO
One thing that really stands out with online co-op is the sheer amount of action that you take part in. The amount of enemies that you are faced with really is astonishing, especially considering there are up to 7 other players taking part at the same time, yet there is no slowdown or major graphical glitches that I noticed while taking part with 7 other players.
There is a difference in the quality of how the enemies look and move compared to the Campaign but it really isn’t that big of a difference and certainly does not lessen the experience or make you feel like you’re playing a watered down version of the main game.
Compare this to something like GRAW2 which took a big drop in visuals when you played the 4 player co-op missions and that had way less going on in it than what you will see in Resistance 2 co-op.
The missions are varied enough initially and you are constantly on the go (much like the Competitive mode; Skirmish which I now really enjoy) moving around different points on the map. It keeps you moving and the action is always close by. Some missions will involve you defending AI allies, while others will have you taking down mini bosses with super health bars like the Titan or Elite Grims.
As you may or may not know, I was one of the few people that championed the greatness of Resistance: Fall of Man. It may not have set the world alight but it was the first game that introduced me to online gaming and through that, I met and made some great new friends. The game was pretty awesome fun too, offline and especially online!
Reminiscing aside, I’ve been mightily looking forward to Resistance 2 since it was announced. Now that I’ve put some serious hours into the Campaign, Co-operative and Competitive modes, I’ve came to the conclusion that as an overall package, Resistance 2 is fantastic value but it does have some flaws.
I’ll go through each mode separately, each with their own post, starting with the Campaign:
I enjoyed the Resistance single player campaign but not enough to replay it again. This was partly because I actually played online before even completing the 2nd level. I hopped between the different modes but never really got into the story, I was more interested in finishing the campaign so I could fully concentrate on the online multi-player.
For Resistance 2, I decided to prioritise the Campaign mode, making sure I finished it, before getting stuck into Co-op or Competitive. I absolutely loved the Campaign! I started out on Difficult mode and I had the most fun I’ve had with any FPS for a long time. The action was superb and hardly let up for the entire experience. For sheer action and mayhem, the Campaign mode was just fantastic fun.
Once I finished it on Difficult mode, I went straight on to Superhuman, which is a clear sign of how much I enjoyed the experience because I rarely play through games a 2nd time, especially straight after I had already completed the game.
One thing I will say about the difficulty in Resistance is that, well it isn’t actually that difficult. I never really had much trouble on either Difficult or Superhuman. In fact I only died around 47 times on Superhuman compared to roughly 78 on Difficult. OK, I knew where most attacks would come from and wasn’t surprised as much but the enemies weren’t that much tougher on Superhuman compared to Difficult. The Boss encounters were pretty much the same too.
The checkpoints, which I really liked, help to keep the game flowing and lowers the frustration factor of dying from surprise attacks. They probably contribute to making the game more accessible but at the same time lessening the difficulty factor. Whether you view that as a positive or negative is down to your personal preferences. I see them as a positive however.
CHIMERA, CHIMERA, CHAMELEON
The action was fast paced, with some great set pieces and the checkpoints make sure you never get punished for any surprise deaths (which can happen a lot first time through). There are some truly jaw dropping moments. When you first see the Golden Gate Bridge with the Chimeran battleships filling up the sky, it was definitely a moment.
Another stand out moment for me was my first encounter with a Chameleon. After it had decimated an unlucky soldier, I knew the next stage of the level was going to be a tense affair. I stuck right up to the right side of the level with my back against the trees and moved slowly making sure I had both sides and front covered for any impending attacks by the Predator like Chameleon. Not that I was particularly successful surviving my first attack from a Chameleon.
It was such a sharp contrast to the previous all guns blazing style that I had adopted in previous Chapters. You simply couldn’t go charging ahead if you wanted to survive, well you could but on your first play through you’d just be begging the Chameleon to seal your doom.
I thought that stage of the game was a nice change in pace to the previous levels. It made you wonder where the hell the next attack would come from and forced you to play more cautiously.
There are also some exceptional set pieces where you just can’t help but shout out obscenities as you blast away at enemies that out number you by at least 10 to 1 (that’s if you’re lucky).
One thing that Resistance 2 does really well is action packed gameplay. There is hardly any dull moments where you are wandering around aimlessly wondering where you should go or what you should do. It’s all about giving you crazy guns and throwing hordes of enemies at you while calling you names and slapping you around the face with a rubber glove!
Some people may not like the linear levels but they do keep the pace at a high level and removes any need to backtrack, unless you’ve ran out of ammo from blasting Chimeran scum. Again, I view this as a positive which enhanced the fun factor for me.
CHOOSE YOUR WEAPONS, SIR
One thing I loved about Resistance were the weapons, with the ability to choose between different weapons in the game, once they were added to your arsenal.
In R2 you can only carry 2 weapons at a time so you have to think about which two guns will suit your needs for the battles ahead. Sometimes you make the wrong choice, resulting in death, but there are plenty of weapons left around the battlefield after you’ve cut down the Chimeran pests.
Often you start out with weapons that the game knows will be perfect for the situation ahead if used properly. This could easily be viewed as the game holding your hand a little too much but you do have the choice to use other weapons when you stumble across them. And you will literally stumble across them.
As with the Ratchet & Clank games, Insomniac really do make the weapons the star of the show. The various weapons are what makes Resistance 2 so much fun. Old favourites like the Carbine and Auger are present while the Magnum is a great addition to your arsenal. One shot is usually enough to kill most standard Chimeran foot soldiers on Difficult but on Superhuman, you will definitely use the detonator more to deal extra damage.
Other weapons like the Splicer won’t make any Top 5 Weapons of Resistance 2 lists. They are all great fun to use though. Using the Splicer on onrushing Grims can be so satisfying when you see their limbs flying everywhere.
OK, I’m just going to do a brief overview of how Resistance 2 stacks up compared to Resistance with it’s community options.
Resistance was the king of online games when it came to having a superb infrastructure for playing with your friends online. It had an excellent Party system, great stats pages for keeping up to date and comparing stats with your friends and rivals etc. It had an Ignore List too so you could avoid any of the scummy little spawn killers and LAARK whores that popped up in Resistance.
For the actual playing side it had an excellent system where you could choose squads so you could chat privately with your friends and clan mates, you could mute any individuals that annoyed you too and of course it was open mic so none of this PTT crap.
I’m going to have a quick look at the community features for Resistance 2 and will leave the actual competitive comparisons to a later date.
Under the Community settings you can view your Profile, Clan Options and Leader boards. I will mainly look at the Clan Options for now though.
So far so good. You don’t need to play a certain number of hours to create a clan like you do in other shooters like CoD4 for example (although as Emrah has reminded me in the comments, you can only have a clan tag in CoD4, not create a proper clan). There are also some very cool options for your clan.
Clan Config allows you to edit details about your Clan.
You can select between competitive or casual for your Clan Type. You can select which country your clan is from so if you’re from Taiwan or Germany or the UK you can select the actual country as opposed to the region. You can also select Europe if that takes your fancy too. You can also set the Invite Status to Recruiting, Open or Invite Only. You also have an option to change the announcement that will greet clan members or people viewing your clan. At the moment it is set to “Welcome to *Clan Name*”
There is a Roster where you can click on clan members and in there it has a boggling amount of stats. The stats detail information for Campaign (all difficulty levels too!), Co-operative and Competitive. They also cover stats for individual weapons, overall stats for kills, deaths, suicides etc, Ribbons and Medals earned and the number of Trophies you have collected.
This is also what you would see if you selected Profile in the initial Community page.
Invites allows you to see who has applied for your clan, who you have sent invites out to etc, both Personal and as a Clan.
There are also options to Search Clans and Disband Clan which does what it says on the proverbial tin.
Very impressive stuff. You can also go to MyResisistance.net for more options for your clan. I haven’t checked this out yet though.
Throughout all of this, a simple press of the triangle button brings up a list and by pressing R1 you can navigate a list of your Friends, Clan Options and Party Options. You can have up to 30 people in a Party too.
I’m not going to play online yet though. I’m going to play the Campaign mode first, then dabble in some online co-op with my friends before heading off into the competitive arena.
So far so good though. Resistance 2′s community features are a definite improvement over Resistance. I hope they have kept the squads and mute options from Resistance though. Can anybody confirm that you can choose between different squads and the option to mute other players in competitive games?
EDIT: To do what I should of done originally, here is more detailed info of how Resistance 2′s community options improve upon Resistance. Forgive me for being a little excited for what is my most anticipated game of 2008 and definite Game of the Year!
Pretty much everything I’ve written about is new and improved in Resistance 2. None of the above features where in Resistance and if they were they are of a far higher standard in Resistance 2.
In Resistance, you couldn’t check any of the online stats or options unless you signed in to Resistance online, which was completely separate from the story mode.
Resistance 2 pretty much links all 3 modes (story, co-op and competitive multiplayer) together (as you sign in when you start the game), so you don’t have to log into the servers and log out again to check stats or look at your clan mates info. It’s far more seamless and much improved over Resistance.
The layout of the stats is far superior too with the general presentation being of a far higher quality and not as dull as Resistance. Each category has their own pages, for example Ribbons and Medals are under the Rewards category, alongside Trophies.
In Resistance, you had to go to your profile then press a button and move through 2 or 3 separate pages to view your medals, ribbons and generals stats for weapons. These are all under your Profile but they are separated into categories in Resistance 2, rather than being crammed into 3 pages like they were in Resistance.
The stats under your personal profile go into far more detail too and cover a wider range of info. It now keeps track of how many suicides you have died from for example. I can’t recall them being in the Resistance stats. There are far more and I can’t name every single new stat that is now in Resistance 2 that were not in Resistance.
This is based off memory as I haven’t played Resistance in almost a year, so if I have some info wrong, then I do apologise.
Basically, everything that was present in Resistance has been refined to a much higher level and added to for Resistance 2 and the presentation is far easier on your eyes. It all gets a big thumbs up from me.
To celebrate the UK/Euro release of Resistance 2, I thought I would re-post a video that my clan mates and I made during the heady and legendary days of Resistance:
Special thanks must go to Samus for being such a charismatic and visionary director!
My copy of Resistance 2 has just plonked itself through my letterbox.