There were a few games I had planned to review, but after losing all my progress when I deleted my profile and having pretty much made the decision to ditch the formal reviews, I just never got around to them. Over the next week or so, I’m going to roll out a bunch of posts and talk about those games that got missed. Lost Planet being the first of the bunch.
Last May during E3 2006, we were treated to a taste of Lost Planet in the form of a demo which I revisited once or twice a month until the game was released. Yes, it was that good! Lost Planet was one of the first games that really looked and felt “next-gen” to me. It’s absolutely gorgeous – everything from the character models to the ugly ass alien bugs to the scenic snow-covered landscapes are insanely good looking. From beginning to end, the single player campaign is packed with massive explosions and crazy action that keeps you on your toes. All without dropping a frame. That was one of the most surprising aspects of Lost Planet to me. There is so much going on at times and the screen can be filled with enemies and smoke and fire and it doesn’t slow down in the least. It really makes you wonder why games like Tony Hawk’s Project 8 run like absolute garbage most of the time.
The single player campaign is a lot of fun. There are a couple spots that get a little tedious, but for the most part, I enjoyed myself the first time through. I’ve seen a lot of complaints about it being too short, but I didn’t think so. I felt it was a good length and a lot of ground was covered from start-to-finish. There’s a ton of cinematics between each mission and some times right in the middle, which get kind of boring. The story is decent, although I had a hard time taking some of the characters seriously. Capcom really needs to get some fresh character designers in their studio. I’m fucking sick of seeing their typical young, helpless blonde with ridiculously huge cans. I complained about this in my Dead Rising review as well – someone at Capcom needs to read my blog. 😛
My only real complaint with the single player experience is the lack of checkpoints. Again, something we’re familiar with in Capcom games as of late. Through-out the game, there’s these “data posts” you enable which give you energy and point you in the right direction. You would assume these would act as checkpoints, but they don’t. Even in the first level, you could play for about 10 minutes and make it half way through the level, but if you die, you’re starting way back at the beginning. I had a buddy over the other night and he was checking it out for the first time. He was shocked to find himself back at the start after dying and quickly gave up on it. We fired up Gears of War and rocked some dudes online instead.
The multiplayer end of Lost Planet is a pretty unique experience. Most of the game types are similar to those you’ve seen in other games. The only one I really had fun with was a control point style game play where each team is trying to capture all of the data posts on the map. A lot like the Battlefield games, but it plays out quite differently. The player’s movement is a lot slower than what we’re used to and you have a grapple that lets you reach great heights very easily. So, while you run, turn and jump slowly, you can swing up out of harm’s way in an instant.
I’ve slowly been re-playing the single player campaign and collecting all of the Target Marks as I go. What a tedious task that is! There’s these over-sized coins strewen through-out each map which earn you achievements if you find them all. But they’re not at all in obvious places and you pretty much have to cover every inch of the map to find them. Even then, they’re pretty hard to find. I totally printed out a walkthrough and have it beside me while I play. 😛
All in all, Lost Planet is a great single player experience with some pretty fun multiplayer action to be had as well. Lots of great moments and some absolutely huge bosses.