As far as we know, it's an unwritten rule of reviewing that the first paragraph of any
review should sum up the author's feelings about a product, thereby making the rest of the
article generally irrelevant. Whenever we remember to do it, we've followed that
rule to the as far as we know unwritten letter. Well, gaming friends, that era of
clarity is about to end. This is the first of our new one-minute mystery reviews. They fall somewhere
between the adorable, Boy With Toothache Hummel figurine-like opinions expressed in the
short reviews and our epic, rhyming long reviews. In other words, these new reviews
are medium sized. On most of the other crummy sites you visit, that'd be gimmick
enough, because as far as they're concerned, you're just a cog in a machine that
manufactures equipment for branding barcodes on your forehead. They don't care about
you, even at Christmas or [Kwanzaa joke].
Our new One Minute Mystery Medium Review reviewing
gimmick is this: Unlike every other goddamn site, we're not going to ruin the suspense and
tell you right from the very first paragraph how we feel about a game. Instead,
we're going to state a few facts, drop a couple of subtle hints, and then only tell you
whether or not we like the game at the very end. See if you're clever - and brave! -
enough to guess our opinion... Before we even express it!
We received a package from Red Storm last week.
Here's a picture I took of its contents with the poor man's digital camera, our scanner:
In case you can't read, it says "Freedom: First
Resistance Gold Master". Sometimes crafty PR people send out finished titles in
this format so that reviewers can't sell the publisher's shitty games on EBay. Note
that I'm not implying that Freedom: First Resistance is shitty, I'm just saying in
general. Anyway, Chet was gone, there was some confusion that resulted in me
thinking this was actually a pirated beta copy of Freedom Force, and so I installed it
more or less by accident. The first thing I noticed was that Freedom: First
Resistance is based on a novel by Anne McCaffery. The second thing I noticed was that this
means absolutely fucking nothing to me. If you're such a big fan of reading, I have
a quick suggestion for you: go read a book. Some research at my local library, or as
I know it, the free video store, proves that if you simply choose a book at random,
there's about a ninety percent chance it's by Anne McCaffery, so you won't even have to do
much deliberate planning to have all your Anne McCaffery story entertainment needs filled
for free. Again, this is no reflection on the quality of the game, I'm just sayin'.
Another thing I noticed is that Freedom is one of those
games that likes to drag your monitor through fifteen different video modes every time you
play it. It's like a stress test for your monitor. Some games do it, some
games don't. I don't know why. Now don't infer anything about our final
opinion from this next observation, but the seventh time I loaded it, Red Storm's Anne
McCaffery's Freedom: First Resistance BLEW UP MY MONITOR. Honest to
God, I'm not kidding about this. Freedom began its normal routine of forcing my
monitor to sprint through a video mode obstacle course, only this time my beautiful
19" Hansol 900p made a noise like a bomb going off and died. The glass front
panel didn't shatter, meaning it was a fully-contained internal explosion - which
is the worst kind!
At this point, you might be wondering whether my monitor was about to die
anyway. All I can say is that why don't you try using that same logic on the
surviving family members of people killed in a plane crash and see how it holds up there.
Freedom: First Resistance BLEW UP MY MONITOR. I'll repeat
that for Red Storm's lawyers: Freedom + monitor = blowed up monitor. And if you Red
Storm people are thinking of suing me, be prepared for the Story of Ricky of courtroom
dramas. Your lawyer will be like "Your Honor, blah blah blah habeus corpus blah
blah restraint of trade blah bla-ACK!" because at that point I'll be
strangling him with his own intestines.
Here's a financial recap of my experience with Freedom: First Resistance:
Get game for free: +50.00
Game is gold master, unsellable on EBay: -50.00
Game BLOWS UP MY MONITOR: -483.74
Total cost of playing Freedom: First Resistance: 483.74
I still haven't revealed whether Freedom is worth your four hundred and
eighy three dollars and sevety four cents, but I would like to request
that Red Storm not send us any more "free" copies of their games, especially the
ones that BLOW UP YOUR MONITOR. Furthermore, I'd like to cordially
invite Red Storm, its employees and their families to go fuck themselves, Anne McCaffery's
Freedom: First Resistance, and Anne McCaffery. And, before I forget, motherfuck
fucking Tom Clancy too. Way to rip people off with your stupid three level Covert
Ops expansion pack. Here's a picture from it:
And here's some advice to go with the picture: If you're trying to produce
a realistic, hardcore anti-terrorist sim, don't have the company making it name themselves
"Magic Lantern Playware". And if that's not possible, don't have the
fucking words "Magic Lantern Playware" pop up every time I start the game,
because it makes me feel a lot less like a trained killer and a lot more like a fag.
On the other hand, Covert Ops didn't explode my monitor, which in retrospect makes
it kind of a rousing success for you idiots.