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Tycho / on Wed, Jun 15 2011 at 12:00 am

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American McGee’s back, and Alice along with him; it seemed like an incredible opportunity to relive the days of yore.

I mentioned that Starhawk appeared to be taking some cues from Section 8, which was cool, but also kind of strange because one doesn’t get the impression that Section 8 has many adherents, let alone true acolytes.  When I saw in a recent gameplay trailer that players are also choosing spawn locations dynamically from orbit - another fairly distinct Section 8ism - it became less interesting and more weird.

I dig the single player hook, almost to the point of excavation - but the level of appropriation here is such that my eyebrows have begun to assume a bizarre configuration.  Everything is built on (or from) everything else, I understand that; I have an archive of appropriated works here on this website which you may peruse as evidence.  This entire paragraph is based on other people’s shit.  Also, someone else invented this computer.  So now I’m using someone else’s shit to write about someone else’s shit.  But Timegate did some really cool things with Section 8, a game that recently got a second chance at life.  When you see that stuff, and find them novel, I just want people to know where those things came from.

Child of Eden is beginning to emerge as a reviewable entity, and thus far it’s hauling in something approaching scoremax.  It’s often called the “spiritual successor” to Rez, but you or I are in no legal danger, and we aren’t going to end up in jail merely for saying true things.  This is Rez II.  The one you wanted, but could not conceive, and knew the universe would never let you have.

Rez, like all rail shooters, is a form of shmup; don’t be tricked by the camera position.  The reason I mention it is that shmups are games about iterative improvement and quantifiable performance, which for the serious player means yes controller and no not controller IR beam body detectoids.  That stuff is cool, and it’s neat; E3 has charted a course for Kinect in novel interfaces and hybrid usage with traditional controllers.  Switching weapons by switching hands?  Intrigued by it.  Let me see more.  But in some other game, perhaps; the sequel to Rez has arrived, after all, and we must afford it every welcome.

(CW)TB out.

painfully exact

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