Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Rise of the Argonauts: Great Sound, Crap Game

I got into this game because I love Greek mythology. It's good to make your version different, after all if you make your satyrs and centaurs look exactly like someone else's you're simply copying theirs. However, the satyrs here are clear rip offs from Warhammer Beastmen and the centaurs are obviously ripped straight out of World of Warcraft. While the story here isn't bad, and the visuals are quite good, there are several factors in Rise of the Argonauts that I severely disliked.

First though, the good parts. The sound for this game is excellent, from the clash of weapons, the sound of armour as you walk, the ambience in the surrounding environment and the awesome score by Tyler Bates. This game certainly has one of the best game soundtracks I've heard. The fast-paced action combat is good too, especially the slo-mo execution moves as an enemy's torso is sliced in half and blood spatters. However, the sound and combat is pretty much all that's good about Rise of the Argonauts.

The lengthy, tedious dialogue sequences really bore the player and although you have choices about what response to give, this is nothing like Mass Effect. The character animations are a complete joke, as Jason says every line practically in the same pose. The only real thing that moves are his eyes and mouth. Pathetic. This is a horrendous job of dialogue in a game.

This game's level design is absolutely shocking. It is becoming the norm in many games to have some sort of minimap to indicate where you should be going. If its clear, or open world, it's not as necessary. But this game's levels are so confusing and badly designed that a minimap is essential. Yet there isn't one, instead you have to constantly go back to the menu to check the map, which is a true horror to behold. The symbols are miniscule, and the quest objectives are utterly primitive. Also, the levels themselves are often so dark its hard to even see where you're meant to go next.

The third factor which I think detracts from this game is the poorly designed and hellishly frustrating boss fights. While the combat is good, the boss fights are a complete farce. There's barely any indication as to how you're actually meant to win the fight, and even then they're very difficult and require replaying again and again and again. The battle with Medusa is especially horrible, as the camera draws out and you can barely even see your character sometimes. The final boss forced me to put down the game in disgust as the thrown spear lags so badly, sometimes doesn't even work and there's no indication if it actually did anything at all. I must have thrown at least 20 spears to no avail and that was on the first section of that end boss fight.

The last thing to critique on Rise of the Argonauts is the bugs and glitches which detract massively from the game, removing all fun and causing the player to replay whole scenes of dialogue (which is a complete waste of time.) This game seems unfinished and barely any effort went into it.

Verdict: With terrible dialogue, horrendous level design, poor gameplay, along with a bunch of bugs and glitches Rise of the Argonauts is one of the worst games I've ever played. I would never recommend it, especially as there are much more worthy games out there. I'm giving it a 5.

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