Monday, March 30, 2009

Xbox 360 - Fallout 3: Operation Anchorage

Fallout 3 - Operation Anchorage DLC

Operation Anchorage is downloadable content to be used with Fallout 3. You download this content from Xbox Live Marketplace. The cost is around 800 credits, that I remember paying. Of course, the cost of these packages may change from time to time, so you should check before you buy.


This expansion effectively adds about 2-4 hours worth of play (one quest worth of play) to Fallout 3. So, it may not be worth the extra money... unless you need armor and weapons. Effectively, this addon gives you reasonably strong armor and a good assortment of heavy weapons. So, if you're early into the game and the only thing you have is the vault jumpsuit and that weak pistol, this expansion is worth the play value early on.


You must hop into a virtual reality simulator and defeat the 'commies' in a simulation of the takeover of Anchorage. Once you defeat them and complete the mission, you will be rewarded with a cache of weapons and armor.


This is a reasonably short addition to Fallout 3. It may be worth the money if you need the extra weapons and armor. I have personally found the armor to come in quite handy in finishing up other quests. But, your mileage may vary.


Because this is just an expansion, you will need to read Gamezelot's Fallout 3 review to get the full score for Fallout 3.
  • Expansion Score: 6/10 (not long enough, limited benefit)

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Xbox 360 - Resident Evil 5

Resident Evil 5 by Capcom

While I really wanted to like this game, I don't. Because there are so many problems with this game, I will make this one short and sweet. I loved Resident Evil 4. RE4 is not a 10 star game, but easily a 9 and easily one of the best shooters of its time. On the other hand, Resident Evil 5 is awful. This has to be one of the WORST shooters I've played in months.


Why they ever added a partner to this game, I'll never know. However, when your partner dies, so does your game. This aspect is HIGHLY annoying. Get rid of the partner. It is not necessary and only serves as another means for your game play to end prematurely. It's hard enough to keep your own character alive without having to constantly baby another AI character at the same time. At least give the gamer the choice to or not to have the partner. BTW, for this same reason, I hated the multi-character system in Left 4 Dead.


While you're running around trying to avoid being zombie food, the game makes you to pick up health manually (press a button) and then expects you to run through a myriad of MENUS to get to the point where you can even APPLY health to your character. Stupid, stupid stupid. Who designed this game? At least PAUSE the game to allow the gamer to go through a ton of menus. Since when do people run through a series of menus to drink (or spray?) anything in Real Life?

Note, you can assign health to a 'hot key', but by the time you're in the thick of the game, you can't easily do this. Remember, the menu system is real-time. So, if you pause for even couple seconds to run through the menus, the zombies are on top of you. You simply do not have time to do this. Worse, there are only about 3 health pickups on the level with the 100 zombies.

At least with ammo, your character will reload IF you attempt to fire your gun, your gun has run out and you have ammo in inventory.

The menu system is horrible. Absolutely rotten. Why is it even there? You're trying to play the game, but the game forces you to stop what you are doing, fumble through a series of menus to get to your health spray and then to apply it. Inevitably, you end up giving it to your partner or something else stupid before it does as you want. Worse, if you're in a menu and a zombie grabs you, it takes you OUT of the menu so they can maul you. It's not like this is the first time a shooter has ever offered health pickups as part of the game. So, what was the point of burying the health down about 3 levels of menus? Either apply the health immediately when you pick it up or pause the game so you can fumble through the menus to get to it. Keeping the game live while trying to fumble through a series of menus is completely assinine design.


This game is so completely frustrating, backward and stupid, I don't know what to say other than don't waste your money. Unless you actually like being frustrated constantly, this is not the game for you. There are so many better shooters (F.E.A.R. 2 Project Origin) out there, don't bother spending $60 for this.

Capcom Take Note

Whomever you hired to make this game, you need to find someone else. The gaming system presented in this game is completely worthless. You needed to take it back to the drawing board and start over. Note to other developers, if you want a game to NOT model your shooter after.. this game is it.

Inconsistent Franchise

Clearly, Resident Evil 4 is an abnormality in the RE series. It took a completely different approach at gaming than any other RE games. Prior to RE4, the RE games had static camera placement with lots of sequence style button pressing to get you through the level (think of Umbrella Chronicles, which is newer than RE4). I never liked the static camera games.

Resident Evil 5 tries to make nice between the old school RE games and RE4. So, it appears the designers tried to compromise by combining both old and new styles of play together into RE5. Unfortunately, it doesn't work. Instead of being solve-a-mystery game with a play style that forces the gamer to actually think strategically to get through each level within RE4, Resident Evil 5 is a straightforward run-in-with-gunz-a-blazin' game. No strategy, no thinking involved. It's just you against the zombies and no way to stop and think about it. In fact, they don't want you to stop and think about it. Think of Dead Rising and you get the idea.

If there was ever a franchise of games that can't keep things together, Resident Evil is it. With each new game, the designers seem compelled to reinvent the wheel. Instead of actually improving upon an existing wheel, like Resident Evil 4, they recreate it. For this reason alone, this franchise needs desperate help. Considering the last Resident Evil movie, it shouldn't surprise me at all with this game.


This game is horrible. The design of it is not anything like Resident Evil 4. So don't even think of it in the same way. Resident Evil 5 forces you to use an AI partner that you constantly have to baby, who takes ammo away from you and who is constantly in your way as you walk. Then, combine that silliness with a menu system that is completely frustrating. All of these issues compound to make this game problematic right from the start. I could tell that without even getting into the first level.

Once you actually get into the game and start killing zombies, it's not fun and it's not satisfying. It takes at least 4 bullets to kill each zombie (even with head shots) and there are hundreds that you need to kill with about 4 clips you find around the level. In other words, there is not enough ammo. So, all you end up doing is running around the level trying to avoid being killed. There is nothing challenging, fun or exciting in this. Once the zombie boss appears that has the huge swing axe, all you can do is run. Neither bullets nor the knife will kill this thing.

This game is basically the complete opposite of Resident Evil 4. Capcom completely botched this game into an extremely poor quality shooter that doesn't even deserve the name Resident Evil.


  • Sound: 3/10 (average)
  • Graphics: 8/10 (looks reasonably good and textures are well done)
  • Gameplay: 2/10 (horrible game play)
  • Story: 5/10 (average)
  • Controls: 1/10 (even though the button placement is ok, the menu system is torturous when combined with the gameplay)
  • Bang-to-buck: 0/10 (I don't even want to play it through once)
  • Play Value: $5 (buy it on clearance or rent)
  • Overall: 3/10 (and I'm being generous)
This is easily a contender for Gamezelot's 2009 worst game of the year award.