Scott Pilgrim Demo Thoughts

As I’ve mentioned before, I am a big Scott Pilgrim fan. I own all 6 books and am looking forward to seeing the movie. The game though I feel is a bit of a let down.

I know that they tried to go for an old school mario feel mixed with old school side-scrolling beat-em-up gameplay, but I don’t really understand why they had to make the game look 16 bit. While I do think it’s cool sometimes to make games look older for the coolness factor, you can’t get away from the fact that this is much easier and cheaper to make, and I don’t think it’s necessary in this case.

The image you get on the XMB when you hover over the icon for the game is absolutely stunning. If the whole game had looked like that I may have been more interested, but the problems don’t end there for me. The gameplay seems very shallow and got very boring to me very quickly. The way you move around felt fiddly and the way you have to be exactly in the right place to pick up an item or hit an enemy is frustrating because it’s really difficult to line up and can cause you to get hit yourself.

I know that there are other moves that you can learn throughout the game as you level up, but for a player such as myself it doesn’t help to add anything extra to the game which is unfortunate.

Then there’s the lack of online multiplayer. This is a big problem, not solely because it prevents friends from playing anywhere but on the same couch, which is fun if you can do that, but you won’t be able to all the time. It’s a pretty poor excuse to say that the game should be played on the same room, because it should be a choice for the player to make.

There’s also no drop-in-and-out co-op which means that if someone wants to join, you have to return to the main menu which isn’t ideal. The other problem regarding the lack of online is that if you do have to play solo, the other 3 characters don’t appear as CPUs to help you and therefore the game gets pretty tricky even on the lower difficulty settings.

I think in the end the game will be fun to a fair sized group of people who enjoy the nostalgia of playing another old school looking games based on a modern property or fans of any 2D games. Obviously being a fan of the series will help although it wasn’t enough to make me buy it which is surprising.

If you haven’t played it and are curious, then there’s no harm in downloading the trial from the Playstation Store and giving it a try. You may find that you disagree with my thoughts or can accept the few flaws the game has.


Scott Pilgrim: the Perfect Comic to Movie Adaptation

Even the comic book movies that aren’t involving superheroes like 300 I don’t think really convey the comic book medium to the masses. A lot of people will watch them and not even realise where the material comes from, but with Scott Pilgrim, I think they’ve got the perfect balence.

The book is very comic-like but the way it’s presented is so cinematic at the same time. The story is told amazingly well and the lack of colour doesn’t hurt it at all. It even adds to its charm in a way.

From the trailer you can see the traditional comic book style text that pops up when someone gets hit or something big happens, which I think is good to reinforce to people that this is a comic. Brian Lee O’Malley will probably reap the benefits of that with increased book sales as a result. It’s so deserved though.

Because it’s so clear that this is a comic book, that’s why I am such a fan. I think non-comic readers who are sceptics and who think that comics are only for super-heroes and for kids will rethink that perception.

Of course, older people may still think that it’s for kids, but it at least shows how much is possible in the medium of comics and how over the years they’ve been wasted to an extent by over-focusing on one genre over all others.

Just like every other medium, like music for example, variety is important and I think comics are embracing this concept more than ever at the moment. Not that it wasn’t before, but it’s certainly on the rise. My final point is that I find comics frustrating in that publishers are stuck in a rut creating stories for the same old characters endlessly. It’s not just that super-hero comics are too prevalent, but more that it’s the same super heroes, and that has to change.

By no means get rid of the iconic characters we all know, but perhaps scale them back and bring along more completely new content to supplement the traditional with.