Second Opinion: Silent Hill: Downpour

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Illustration by Pat Henzy

I read a lot of bad reviews about Silent Hill: Downpour… but every now and then I would run into a review that mentioned how much better than Silent Hill: Homecoming it was. Well, I loved Homecoming so when the game finally went down to under $20.00 at Gamestop I picked up a copy for Xbox 360. I’m only about halfway through the game right now so I can’t really review it, but I can say that I am totally enjoying the game. The game itself feels like a movie to me. Wandering around on the streets reminds me a lot of the original game. The camera angles bring back the “good old days” for me and remind me of what the Resident Evil games where trying to do back then. So far I have run into a ton of fun stuff. At two points so far I have fallen and found myself riding a deadly water slide where spikes and all kinds of things are trying to kill me, it is very reminiscent of the scene in Goonies when they have pretty much the exact same thing happen to them. There are a good amount of “Esher” like disorienting effects as well, look up and see endless staircases that twist and turn and wait…what’s that? Another room on the ceiling complete with a TV couch and table. Wow! The camera sways and pulsates during certain scenes and gives the game a very Nightmare on Elm Street fell. Exploartion is fun but can get a little slow at points, but every time the game feels like it is about to slow down you can except a chase scene in which a glowing orb (a portal to the afterlife?) chases you and tries to suck you in. Yes… the monsters aren’t as cool as in previous games, sometimes the load times are brutal and there are a few frame rate issues when too many enemies are on screen but the game is pretty damn fun other than those few issues. Combat feels about the same as in previous Silent Hill games, but then again combat isn’t really the main focus of the game. I am having a ton of fun playing the game right now and for under $20.00 I can’t help but recommend the game to anyone that prefers their games to contain a bit of old school fun and a couple of scares along the way.

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A Megaman Christmas

For Christmas this year I received the following gifts(I know, it’s a little late to be posting about the holidays. Too Bad). Battlefield: Bad Company 2, Castlevania: Lords of Shadow, and the Megaman Official Complete Works book. My Wife got me the Megaman Official Complete Works book and Castlevania. My brother-in-law gifted me Bad Company 2, which is a game that he plays nightly and I was interested in getting so that I could play on-line with him. Castlevania is a great game and I am really enjoying it (I’m only about a quarter into it).I am a huge Megaman fan and had wanted to pick up the Official Complete Works for quite some time. The book is fantastic, it contains tons of sketches, box-art, un-used promotional material and just about everything else that went into the creative process utilized in making the games. The book is 207 pages and every single page in the book is interesting. The book is filled with anecdotes by Keiji Inafune(the series producer) as well as stories from many other members of the creative teams. In Japan this book is about double the size it is in America, it contains what is known in the states as Megaman X Official Complete Works as a separate book. If you are a Megaman fan I would absolutely suggest you pick this book up.

The Shoal (and a Mario 3 and Megaman comic)

Recently I drew the character “The Shoal” from Timesplitters 3: Future perfect (I think he’s from Timesplitters 2 also). I made it in photoshop, I think it turned out really good:

I have also been working on a new comic about the N.E.S. classic Castlevania 3: Dracula’s Curse. I’m about 10 pages in so far and its turning out pretty good. Here are samples from two of the pages:

Since I’m talking about comics I will also list my two previous video game related comics. They were featured a few places (such as Capcom Unity). The easiest place to access them is from the Retrojunk.com page. I made them for that page so I think they are viewed the best on that website anyway. Here are the links:

Comic number one”Mario 3″

Comic number two”Megaman”

I warn you, the Megaman comic is almost 30 pages long (The Mario 3 one is only 10 though), so make sure you have some time to read when you click on them.