Bulletstorm review
What Bulletstorm was everyone else playing?


Bulletstorm is one of those games that just about everybody hyped up to kingdom *bleep*ing come. From gamers to developers and especially to "professional" reviewers, nearly every single person who is into this hobby is having a massive wank over those game. Well, I played through it, and unfortunately, I'm not sure what everybody is cumming in their pants over. I pretty much saw this as a gimmicky yet generic first person shooter. I wanted to like this game.. I mean, when it's a birthday present, OF COURSE YOU'LL WANT TO LIKE IT, but I never could. It never did anything overly exciting or excellent or, really, anything that even came close to kicking ass. It just rolls around in a puddle of its own shit! Well, it's not THAT bad... I mean, it's not broken, but as a first person shooter, there are MUCH higher standards than there would be for, say, an RPG. So fanboys, wipe those tears, because I'll explain my side of the story without being overly biased and explain why it isn't that great. Okay? Let's go!

The story is that you gun down your old general's ship because a few years prior, you learn that you're not killing people threatening the peace; you're really killing innocent people who expose your group of assassins for the bad guys they really are. As retaliation, your ship ends up getting blown up, most of your crew are dead, and the only other crew member that survived is now half Japanese man, half robot. Both of you are now on a quest to get off of this planet and finish the general off.

Yeah, pretty much typical first person shooter stuff in which not much of a story is told. I'll live. Games that don't place too much importance on story tend to turn out pretty damn good too - look at a lot of old school games, for instance! The only problem in this regard is the HUGE amount of potential it had. I mean, your male companion is half robot and half Japanese dude! SO MUCH could've come from this scenario, but it's reduced to brief shit and some jokes, and then back to shooting alien scum. Whatever. So what it does is take cues from Duke Nukem and Serious Sam, in which it's not very serious. Excellent. I love it when a game is able to have a joke with the gamer. Unfortunately, most of the jokes are bloody *bleep* jokes... okay, I get it, it's supposed to be like a bunch of epic brofists or some shit. I, myself, couldn't really get into it because they were basically the only sort of jokes they told, but I guess if you had some pot, then this could seem pretty funny in a "hurrr he said *bleep*" kind of way. Like, I don't expect it to be like a British sitcom, but variety is the spice of life, and unfortunately, it.. blows.

Oh, and if a story is supposed to be bad, then take it away and craf it into something that's supposed to be good. Seriously, saying something like "oh it was intended to suck ass" is a real cop out and makes you or the writer you're defending look like an incompetent storywriter.

The game plays like generic first person shooter #79437348967397. I mean, it's not like we don't have enough of these games, no! I remember when I saw images and previews that made this game look like the best first person shooter ever made with no exceptions. I remember the reviews went on about how it's a damn good game. Yet here I am, playing what feels like a generic first person shooter... well, I'll give it this - you have a gun that fires drills and *bleep*s everything in sight up as long as you have enough drills! Other than that, the weapons are of the usual rifle/shotgun/sniper/explosive variety. Yes, there is a power shot thingo that amplifies your shots, but they're either powerful laser shots, fiery shotgun spread shots, or explosive sniper bullets... sounds cool, yeah, but it's not that much more useful than the regular shots, except in rare situations. Really, Bulletstorm doesn't do much that you wouldn't otherwise see in Call Of Duty or even Serious Sam - in fact, it feels like I'm playing Serious Sam, with the same ridiculous "loudly charging into the player" AI and "unserious" tone, except it's like I'm playing a shitty version of Serious Sam, and that's no good.

Bulletstorm's campaign is a deadly fusion of too easy and too short. Even on very hard mode, the only reason you'd have trouble is because of cheapness - from zillions of enemies surrounding you with explosives to getting hit from behind. Other than that, the enemies are so stupid. I guess it makes sense because they're from an unsophisticated planet or they're just ruffians (and oh god, a joke about this game's unsophisticated attire is just too goddamn easy, that I won't even bother making it), but at the same time, it just makes victory seem so... shallow. It feels like a self esteem seminar for kids where the person is trying to convince the kids that they are special just the way they are. It never feels earned! You could just come in and rope your enemies in - oh yeah, you get a plasma leash that can lasso enemies - and maybe slide and shoot them with your rifle or shotgun, or just come in and blow them up, or lasso them and kick them against a wall. No matter what, it's never truly difficult, even on very hard mode. Oh, and the game is about four/five hours long. At least this snoozefest doesn't last too long, though it felt like it lasted ten hours because firefights and cutscenes can drone on at times.

Here's where everyone is acting like the game is "original" - the skillshots. Basically, you have to do some tricky shit in order to rope more points than just playing it like Call Of Duty or something. This could've been REALLY cool, except for the fact that most of these skillshots are only done like once or twice - either because they're situational or just because it's better to grab enemies and slam them into walls or use explosives to kill them all - and realistically speaking, you're doing the same four skillshots over and over and over again. It's fun at first, don't get me wrong, but after slamming your one hundredth enemy into the wall, or kicking your fifth mini boss's head in to the point of it exploding, it gets really *bleep*ing boring. Ultimately, you're only pulling off the same 3 or 4 skillshots over and over again. I hope that, like me, you game on your bed... you'll be falling asleep so often, you might as well be comfortable doing so!

The badness doesn't end there - the replay value is extremely low! Bulletstorm has so much confidence in its campaign and skillshot gimmick, that it has a mode dedicated to small sections of it, and you have to score lots of points in order to get the best out of this mode that they call Echoes (and what I mean by get the best out of it is that you can get some trophies/achievements (unfortunately NOT Steam achievements, only Xbox achievements and PS3 trophies) for getting high enough scores and 3/3 stars on each level). So if you were okay with piss poor AI and cookie cutter level designs (so much so, that it's not even worth describing), then you're in luck here! But if you don't have a hard on for gimmicky and genericness, then you may be in luck with Anarchy mode, which is basically "kill waves of enemies with up to four players" with an emphasis on gaining points and working as a team. I'll admit, this could've been bloody awesome, but only if you're playing with four players. Any less, EVEN WITH THREE PLAYERS, and it just feels empty, like you absolutely have to have four players or else, it's boring as hell. It's tricky to explain... I guess the best way to put it is that four players cover more ground, thus ending waves quicker. That's what Bulletstorm is as a whole - end things as soon as possible, but you shouldn't want that from a game - you should want it to last forever... or as long as humanly possible, anyway! It extends to the fact that, well, that's it. No deathmatch, no capture the flag, no NOTHING! God, those modes could've been really interesting with the plasma leash and skillshot gimmick! Buuuuut I bet it might've sucked, anyway. That's just how the game is, though - sounds great on paper, but it's anything other than that in execution.

Like, I get it, it's supposed to be one of those games that's meant to just be fun.

It only gets worse, people - the graphics *bleep*ing suck. Seriously, it looks like a PS2 game. The textures, when they decide to load that is (because, you know, textures don't like appearing instantaneously, even though that's how it's been since the beginning of whenever textures in video games were invented), don't look much more advanced than what you'd see in something like Project: Snowblind, a game released in 2005. The character models don't really look right, either. They look like animated mud sculptures with colored clothes. Oh well, at least the framerate is mostly good (some lag here and there though) and the colors are actually not too bad... at least it's not just brown and grey, unlike Gears Of War! HAHA

Sound design... well, wow, what a relief - something that isn't crap! Unfortunately, it's nowhere near good. The soundtrack, when you can actually hear it, is nothing more than background noise. No ambiance to enhance the mood, and no hooks to make it catchy. It's literally background noise! I can't even point anything specific out, because it's so forgettable and almost non-existent. The sound effects sound kind of thin, like there's no bass or treble for the gunfire. The only decent sound effect is the sound of heads and bodies and dicks exploding, and only because it's the closest thing to satisfaction you'll get in this game - the satisfaction of blowing their heads off, even when they weren't really able to fight back. Then you hear the voice acting, and wow, I really don't know what is up with the forced tough guy/chick and smartass Sargent voice acting, but these guys could do better. Just feels like they came in for money and nothing else.

Gameplay: 2.5
"Kill with skill", huh? If "skill" and "originality" is defined by lassoing enemies with the AI of a Serious Sam enemy (which is a bull charging into a red object) and then kicking them into walls or shooting their dicks to death, then originality and skill is dead. Generic first person shooter, that's what this really is, and we got enough of that shit. Online is crap, too - it's just horde mode from Gears Of War + skillshots. *clap clap* A DEATHMATCH MODE WOULDN'T *bleep*ING HURT!

Controls: 3.5
Not bad I guess... except for the fact that when you try for the context sensitive stuff, it doesn't work half the time.

Story: 1
It's one of those "don't take me seriously" "stories" full of one liners and barely any development. Sadly, the characters are unlikable outside of said one liners and the potential for an awesome story is never met. How disappointing!

Graphics: 2
I'm not sure what game the "pros" were playing, because the game looks like shit. Looks like a PS2 game with all these textures that were ripped right out of Ratchet And Clank: Going Commando. Oh, and there's pop in. Excellent. Love waiting for PS2 quality textures to load up. Character models look a fair bit muddy as well.

Sound: 1.5
The voice acting and soundtrack blow ass. Voice acting sounds like it was done by folks who just wanted their money. Soundtrack sounds like bland and inoffensive background music that does nothing.

Lastability: 2
After beating the easy ass 4 or 5 hour long campaign, there's the crappy online mode, the crappy Echoes mode, and skillshots you would've missed. Yawn.

Funfactor: 2
I will admit, this was fun at first... and that's where all of the two points comes from, because afterwards, this game gets really old, really boring and really *bleep*ing generic.

Bottom line:
Bulletstorm is... well, it's not complete shit, but there's really nothing that appeals here, unless you're like 12 years old or something. Like, I get it, it's supposed to be fun, but technically speaking, it could've been much better, and even in terms of funfactor, it gets bloody old real bloody quickly. If you like this game, fantastic - just don't get bitchy at me if you think I'm horribly wrong here.


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