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Tycho / on Mon, Aug 24 2015 at 11:51 am

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The Ante

I really didn’t enjoy the small amount of time I spent with Toy Soldiers: War Chest and I’m not one hundred percent sure I’ll be back.

I don’t think the game feels good to play, and the game’s identity is diffuse to the point of obliteration.  It’s probably important to note that I was trying it on Xbox One, maybe that matters in some way.  It doesn’t look very good, the visuals can be muddy to the point of illegibility, and it doesn’t run super well.  The economy in this thirty dollar game starts looking like a F2P title really quick.  I legitimately wonder if the game wouldn’t execute its new identity - that of a clearing house for nostalgia - better as a freemium iOS title.  Reading that line again, it seems like I’m being a bad man.  I’m not trying to be a jerk, though.  Remember?  I’m the nice one.  Well, sometimes.  Depends on who you ask.  I’ve discovered that assholes tend not to like me.  But mainstream paeans like Legacy Brands travel far in that channel, and they have the licenses.

It comes up in the strip, too: typically I’m the one who has to lead the charge to give games a shot.  Making things is hard and I want to recognize that, but there’s fewer days ahead than behind, or whatever.  I gave them my money, they’ll have to content themselves with that.  I’ve decided I’m going to play fun games for a while.

For example: the CoDBlOps3 beta is just about up, and I’ll be Goddamned if they didn’t get a purchase out of it.  The last couple haven’t stuck for some reason.  I bought Tiger Woods every year because I had a good year with it one time, and then I bought it for a few years after because I wanted to get back to that year; I chased this ghost around the block.

Indeed, I have played Call of Duty games since they were primarily a PC phenomenon; I have played them long enough to be all “Uh oh, it’s a Treyarch year,” except now it’s Treyarch that routinely enunciates series excellence.  Deprioritizing melee kills and the addition of thoughtful new traversal has turned the pace down, which has allowed me entree into the game at all.  And going the “champions” route for characters - a la League - alongside the series’ traditional slots and perks grants a ton of variety and long-term expansion potential.

Kill Confirmed is the definitional Call of Duty gametype for us now; if we can fill out half or more of a team we’ll try other modes, Domination let’s say, but if it’s two or three of us I don’t think there’s a better way to play deathmatch.  It has the thing I liked about “Execution” in Gears also, and I’ve had many opportunities to namecheck Gears lately, but still: killing somebody is cool or whatever but it doesn’t mean shit here scorewise.  You have to commit something to claim those points, typically the meat of your torso, so the tags enemies and friendlies leave behind alter the terrain in a substantial, dynamic way.  It ablates the frustration of individual deaths because your friends can get your tags, which is one of the more incredible sensations, thought getting your friend’s tags and then getting the tag of the enemy that killed them must be considered the Super Burrito Plate of competitive interactions.


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