Resupply: Platinum Trophy/1000 Gamer score Got the bug to catch em all

Resupply is going to be my opinion piece format. Keeping with my silly shooter motif these topics are really just about trends, thoughts and general game, comic and movie related questions. As the first in this series I thought it would be interesting to talk about the Platinum/1000 gamer score bug that some people have and how I have reacquired after many years of not caring.

I am sitting on my ship looking at the armory, looking specifically at my enemies killed number in Helldivers This game has been out for a while and has been a fun diversion from other games, because that’s how I take a breaks from gaming. You may be wondering why this particular star is important, as most of the time game kills are either a frivolous number that mean nothing, or part of an easily achievable trophy/achievement such as ‘get 10 pistol kills’ or similar low kill tasks. My problem is I need one hundred thousand kill’s to get a single trophy, which in turn gets me my fifth platinum trophy.

To some the trophy/achievement grind is stupid, and means nothing in the grand scheme of things and that is partially correct. Your Gamer score doesn’t really get you anything valuable in the real world, and your trophies don’t give you a discount on games you have achieved a platinum on. So why does a portion of the gaming population strive to complete a game in such a manner, could it be competitive nature between friends/clan mates or maybe its a leader board race for those who are near the top and want the prestige that can be awarded to ‘the top elite’ in situations like this.

Playstation Trophys

As a primarily PlayStation player, I have been investing myself heavily into the trophy hunt as of late. As mentioned above, I only have four platinum trophies so I will never be a part of the ‘top one percent’ leader board on psnprofiles and that’s okay. My re-ignited passion for trophies actually came from the Kinda Funny community as people kept posting their progress on new games that have come out over the past year. The bombardment of platinum’s had the, potentially dire, effect of looking at the games I own, and seeing what trophies were easy to get. Then I started looking at the games coming out that I wanted to play anyways and figure out how increase my total from one, at the time, to as many as I could.

A close friend of mine plays primarily on the Xbox One, and he suffers from the same type of compulsion. He started grinding out the games he owns on that system once we started talking about our respective consoles achievement type system. With an impressive backlog of games as well not only on Xbox One, but Xbox 360 he is continuing to bump up his score 103,812 while my Gamer score for the Microsoft console is a mere 27158.  Each ping of a trophy, or pop (blip?, chirp? I don’t know what that sound actually is) while we game together in the same room is a subtle reminder that one of us is falling behind the other in this completely arbitrary way. It get’s even worse when we are playing the same game on the same system and one of us has a trophy/achievement the other does not.

achievementsscreen

All this positive nature aside, there is still the hum-buggery of trophy/achievement lists that are f-ing ridiculous. Witcher 3: Wild Hunt is a primary example as some of the trophies are incredibly tough to get, such as the gwent related trophies or trying to get the achievement ‘My Kung Fu is Stronger’ from Mortal Kombat. The easy answer here is to “not care” about those particular games, but there in lies the rub as you are invested so heavily in your experience that you frustrate yourself by trying to ‘finish off’ that game.

This long-winded blathering all circles back to my current predicament of the one hundred thousand kills for my Platinum trophy in Helldivers. As much as I enjoy this game, I start to get burnt out of an experience, and now I fear that I may turn my love/enjoyment into disgruntled bitching. I am twenty-three thousand kills away, and I can get roughly two hundred kills every ten minutes, and if my math isn’t completely off, that is another 11.5 hours (roughly) of gaming to get this damned trophy.

So as I finish this off, I am queuing up another planet to launch into, as this one has a retaliation mission which can double my kills in roughly the same time. Wish me luck and thank you for reading.

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Iron Titans vs Immortal Men: Captain America Civil War Re-Review **SPOILERS**

**This post contains spoilers to the movie Captain America Civil War. I will be talking about the movie plot, major scene’s and specific character arcs we see in this movie. Please give this movie its due and watch it in theater’s — SPOILERS**

Joyous. If I had to sum up my experience of my three viewings of Captain America Civil War with a single word, it would be joyous. As a huge comic fan and a huge fan of comic book movies I was looking forward to this adaptation of the comic sharing the same name. Civil War is the third in the Captain America solo films, making this the cap, no pun intended, to an incredibly trilogy. Some have been trumpeting “It’s Avengers 2.5” which I think is an unfair comparison but not without its merit.

This film does four things that put it leaps and bounds ahead of many other comic book films. The first is character motivation, the second is story flow and the third is humor and the fourth is clearly action. Character motivation has always been one of the strong suits in Marvel movies, and in Civil War they crush it. Steve Rogers is ever the tree, rooted in his moral compass and will always act for the good of mankind, Tony Stark racked with guilt, depression and a dollop PTSD trying to save not only his friends and teammates, but himself by putting the Avengers in check with the Sokovia Accords, and both T’Challa and Zemo follow an arc of vengeance, burning with the rage of family lost yet pursue it in completely different ways. The Russo brothers flesh out these motivations and make you not only care about the characters, but also believe them and their struggles with parental themes, loss, and losing control.

While nearly flawless, there are still spots of shaky ground. Our Villain, Helmut Zemo, starts off strong with his plan as he explains his process and knowledge to a hydra agent he has captured but his second and third act sections rely heavily on suspension of disbelief and coincidence. Is this a game breaker? no of course not, but when you have a film of so many positives you can start to easily pick out the negatives, as minor as they be. Another minor gripe is actually Hawkeye, as we don’t really get his motivation in general besides a throw away comment of “I owed ya”, which again is a minor gripe. The ending of the movie is also a point of contention for me, as we have this divide at the end of the last fight, and that blow gets softened by the letter/phone that Steve leaves for Tony.

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Tied in closely with the motivation is the story and how it flows. Each of the plot points weave together in a fantastic tapestry, that again merges together loss, vengeance and brotherhood. Vengeance is a very strong theme throughout the movie as we have characters who seek it for family and react to that motive of vengeance in such different ways. Black Panther on the hunt for his fathers killer, while Iron man throws away a friendship for his blinding rage but the standout vengeance story arc for me however is Zemo. I loved how he puts his plan into motion, and while convenient, really enjoyed the chess match/mastermind tactics he uses to turn the Avengers on each other. My favourite moment is when Zemo fades into the shadows as Iron man, Captain America and Winter Soldier start fighting, showing that a man with his mind, not a super villain with powers or weapons or evil super soldiers, can crush earth’s mightiest heroes. This greatness is compounded when he is sitting outside and has a quite yet powerful conversation with Black Panther and you feel his anger, his sadness, and his malicious intent to break a team of super heroes apart for a simple concept; “you killed my family and there were no consequences”.

Let’s move onto something Marvel has been doing well for a while and that is humor. The balancing act that the Russo brothers do with Comedy, Action, and Dialogue are some of the best yet, comic book or otherwise and I will give you a perfect example. . . . Spider-man. He maybe has twenty minutes in this movie, and nineteen minutes and fifty-five seconds he destroys it. His awkwardness, and quips really stand out as phenomenal pieces of dialogue. matched only by Paul Rudd’s Ant man. Another stand out comedic presence. The awkward fan-boy attitude when he meets cap, just like Spider-man, the hilarious dialogue throughout the fights, and let us not forget Giant man. Action aside Giant man is just fun and really makes the audience connect with him in every scene.

The airport scene aside, which is where Ant man and Spider-man primarily reside, there are scores of small humorous moments that are shared between all characters and while I cannot name them all, I will give a shout out to the few that stick out for me. The first and second come from Ant man and Spider man when he, Ant man, turns into Giant man and begins to lay a beat down on Team Iron man. Not three minutes later, Spider-man throws out an Empire Strikes Back reference and pulls a snow speeder maneuver to knock down Giant man is hilarious. My third stand out comedic moment, which is actually my favourite in the entire movie is when Steve kisses Sharon Carter as the team gets their gear back. As Steve turns around he see’s Bucky and Sam both slowly nodding with the “yeah buddy, get some” smirk on their face and I nearly died from choking on my drink.

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The real draw to this movie however is the fights. Whether battling Crossbones in Lagos, brawling out in a Bucharest airport or trading blows in a Russian facility the Russo brothers have put together some incredibly satisfying fist-a-cuffs. As alluded to in the humor section the fighting at the airport with all of our heroes is our main set piece. What makes this so incredible is that for seventeen minutes we see superheroes fight and yet we don’t get tired or bored with it. Why you ask? Well that’s because each character actually fights three or four fights. Captain America fights Black Panther, then Warmachine, then Black Panther AND Warmachine, and finally throws down with Spider-man. Each of these ‘mini-fights’ allow the viewer to stay fresh and light while still giving each character their own space and spotlight.Talking about these fight scenes doesn’t do them as much justice as actually seeing them.

Final thoughts for Captain America Civil War is you have a movie that fires on all cylinders and does so many things right. It’s hard to find any substantial faults in this movie and wets the appetite for not only Avengers 3 and 4, but reinvigorate’s for Suicide Squad, Dr. Strange and beyond. If you haven’t seen this movie, GO SEE THIS MOVIE. If you have seen it, well go see it again because it’s damn awesome!

Thank you for reading.

 

*note*

Some may notice this says Re-Review, and that is because I found my initial article to be poorly written and wanted to redo it. This may not be any better, but I feel like its more concise. Thank you for reading.

 

Your inner gentleman comes out to entertain in this most Foul Play

Our story begins with Baron Dashforth and his lovable sidekick, Scampwick, as they rest in their humble abode recounting their tales. Who are they recounting it to you ask? why the crowd directly in front of them as this is a play and our heroes are here to entertain.

Foul Play is a co-op side scrolling brawler made by Mediatronic and distributed by Devolver Digital. You are the star of this play, Baron Dashforth! That is unless you join someone else’s game where you will take over the roll of the plucky sidekick Scampwick. You are retelling Dashforth’s adventures to a full theater crowd and live for die, literally, by their applause and enjoyment of the show.

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The game is broken up into twenty two ‘plays’ which is their version of levels, and each play is broken down into five acts. These plays are all based off of classic movie themes such as the Mummy, the Wolf man, and Dracula. Interestingly though Baron Dashforth battles these creatures not just for their great plot device potential but, because he is a Daemon Hunter, each of the creatures is a daemon of some sorts. As you defeat the lords of the respective plays, you send them back into hell via portal which is a backdrop to the stage.

With your enemies clear as day, the crowd is your next real opponent. As stated above they are your health throughout the coarse of the game and much like Rock Band, where this mechanic seems to be taken from, if you get hit too often or do not attack enemies your health/crowd pleasure will fall to an eventual curtain call. The crowd responds in tiers as you perform throws, parries, and combo’s with an eventual standing ovation and collective hat toss which as we all know is the highest form of compliment at the turn of the 20th century play.

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Smooth aesthetics, great audio quality and fun dialogue queues aside there is one major issue this game has which its counter parts, such as Dragons Crown, do not suffer from as much and that is the repetitive nature of the games combat. While both games share a similar premise, Dragons Crown is a much shorter game for a single play through. Subsequent runs through the fantasy brawler incentivized you with loot and unique twists on level design while Foul Play’s only real reason to replay is to acquire charms you can equip between acts for small boosts.   Your attacks are basic and the combo’s quickly reach their ‘end game’ by the final act of the first few plays. Your enemies, while visually different function essentially the same, as the Boss’s are your real divergent characters and encounters. The nice thing about this though is the game gives you the nod/wink to character design and enemies as you go through with tongue and cheek text comments from both of our heroes.

For its faults, repetition will not cause a curtain call on this fun, light weight side scrolling brawler. It’s easy enough to play on your own as a  ‘chip away at it’ type game, or as a competitive experience to try and outscore your friend as you entertain not just the crowd, but yourself.

Thank you for reading.