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I am not what you would call the average gamer, I am a 54 year old grandmother with three game loving grandsons, but I do like having a go on these games and often put one on when I have time on my own to while away an hour or so. There saying, the game has to be interesting with some sort of story and it also has to be quite easy for me to be able to do as I am not that good at repetitive button pressing and my lack of coordination and slow reflexes means things have to be going at a good pace for me.
I loved the film Avatar so when we were up our town the other day and in our local cash converter style shop and I spotted this ps3 game on the shelf I thought I would treat myself and see what it is like. It was only £7 to buy so I thought this was quite a good price for a ps3 game.
I started playing the game on my own, you can choose who you want to play as, there are quite a few different people you can be, either male or female soldiers or you can be a part of the na'vi which are the strange beings that live on Pandora where the story takes place. If you are a member of the na'vi then you fight against the RDA which is the army that are at the place trying to obtain some special rocks, (this bit of the story went a bit over my head but I think it is set before the film like a prequel, not sure what the rocks are to do with it all though). I decided to play as one of the RDA soldiers and chose a female character.
The game starts off with you just arriving there and you are given these missions to do which start off quite easy, just moving about and finding a person who you have to go and talk to and then they give you the next bit of the mission and so on. Each time you do a mission you get extra points and you can also earn things like better weapons, armour and skills. I found it a bit hard at first to work out what I was doing especially when the next mission that came up was to go and help someone out in the woods type of area outside the gates, then there were all these strange animals coming at you trying to kill you and you had to shoot them or die which meant you had to go back to the last checkpoint, in my case this was right back to base again. I found it quite hard to get the target to shoot the animal actually on the beast for long enough to be able to shoot it as it took quite a few bullets before it died. There were loads of them coming at you too, the other soldiers around you were helping out but you needed to kill some yourself to get your points bar to go up. You could earn some points by shooting certain plants around you too but you still needed to kill the beasts. I found that after playing it for a while and getting killed and starting again I gradually started to get the hang of it and managed to get through this level and carry on with the game.
All was going well and I was starting to enjoy the game but then I came across another level where you needed to fly one of their helicopters. This was another laughing matter as I could just about get the thing off the floor and I was crashing into the trees around and blowing up and having to start again. After about ten times of trying I gave up and the game went away until a few days after when one of my grandsons popped in after school and I showed his the game and he had a go and got me through the level in no time.
I have now carried on playing the game myself and am finding it really interesting and if I get to a bit where I just can't do it myself I just ring one of them up and they come and get me through. We have also had a few afternoons when they come round and play the game with me as they both seem to be enjoying it as well.
When we have finished the whole game we are going to start again and play as one of the na'vi as this would be a completely different experience as you get to use different kinds of weapons and have different special things you can do. I can see us having a lot of good play out of this game and even after I reckon it will be a favourite for them to put on when they come round and it will be something I can sit and play with them and have a go at. It does make them laugh when they see me trying to shoot something or move about in one of the vehicles without crashing.
All in all I think it was a good buy for my £7, not sure whether it would be good for those who are really into games but if you like the mission kind of games and like the film then may be worth a try, the scenery is really nice and as the RDA soldier you do get the chance now and then to play as your avatar which is quite an experience.
So everyone who has any interest in gaming as a bit of fun or a hobby will have seen several movie to game attempts. And in my opinion there are several that are not worth playing, they involve to many lengthy cut scenes and not enough action.
So when I was given this game as a christmas present I really didn't know what to expect. I have to say I was pleasantly surprised, I feel the graphics are good and the in game experience is excellent. The graphics are fairly good for this type of game to be honest and it follows the story line well. It adds some bits to it as well which is great as it improves the experience I can't say what the added bits are as it would give a little to much away and I would hate to ruin the game. I feel it was a good representation of the film and well worth investing in, although it might not take the avid gamer long to complete its a nice change from games already on the market.
The ingame controls are easy to get to grips with and being able to interact with other characters and the environment is a bonus.
Okay, so any gamer knows the track record for movie to game conversions, and it's not good. You can probably count those worth playing on one hand. So it was somewhat tentatively that I parted with my cash in exchange for the video game interpretation of Avatar, and if it wasn't for the fact that it was £12 in the bargain bin, then I probably wouldn't have taken the risk.
First impressions on entering the PS3 flavoured Pandora are good, with environments full of colour and detail, if eventually a little monotonous. The locales featured in the game will feel familiar if you've seen the movie (who hasn't?), with wildlife, foliage (including those amusing funnel shaped flowers that shrink away as you touch them) and sounds that are immediately recognisable. There's even a 'Pandorapedia' accessible through the in-game menus that will gradually fill up with people, plants, animals and other paraphernalia as you find and scan them on your travels. This will likely be a Marmite feature depending on how much of a completionist you are. One disappointing aspect of the exploration, which becomes immediately obvious when you pull up the in-game maps, is that the environments don't offer nearly as much freedom as they suggest visually. For example, most forest sections are nothing more than narrow corridors from one clearing/camp to the next, and in other areas with rocks or hills that look easily traversable, you'll find invisible walls. This, coupled with the lack of variety in environments, mean that getting from A to B can become tedious, although this is relieved somewhat by the fast travel stations that are activated as you find them.
The game involves, as you might expect, the human RDA (Resources Development Administration) and the Na'vi. You start off as one of the RDA marines, but early in the game you'll reach a decision point where you need to choose which side you will pledge your allegiance to. Helpfully, the save point created at this juncture can be retrieved later, effectively allowing you to play the game through from both perspectives, regardless of which you choose first time around, without having to play the first hour or so of the game again. However, what little variation there is in the game play and objectives from one side to the other is largely cosmetic, so only the most committed will find themselves playing the game through to completion twice.
The core mechanics of the game are unfortunately derivative, monotonous and lazy. It mainly consists of fetch and carry or escort missions that become all too familiar, all too quickly, punctuated by drab cut scenes that serve to push the lacklustre story forward in a way to fails to engage the player. Each area also has a set of themed objectives (e.g. kill 10 of these animals, collect 20 samples of this plant, etc.), but ultimately these become just as repetitive as the main mission structure and you'll find you lose interest in these quickly, unless you're chasing the trophies that are linked to 100% completion in each area.
Regardless of which side you choose, combat is a regular occurrence, whether it be with hostile wildlife (more so if you're playing as RDA), or opposing forces. It's fortunate then that taking the fight to the enemy is one of the more enjoyable aspects of the game. As the Na'vi, your weapons comprise tribal blades, staffs and bows, in contrast to the RDA offering of a variety of guns. Playing as a Na'vi can be a little frustrating given the huge bias toward close quarters melee weapons, particularly when facing off against the RDA who have far more range to their attacks. However, I found combat a far more visceral experience as the Na'vi, as they are more agile, and interesting to watch. Even better, as you become more powerful (e.g. gain experience points), you unlock incrementally better weapons and armour, as well as special abilities. These special powers range from summoning wildlife to fight by your side (Na'vi) to calling in powerful air strikes (RDA), but all have cool off periods of various lengths so you need to use them tactically. One inconsistency I observed was with re-spawning enemies; once some areas are cleared they seem to be cleared for good, whereas other areas seem to be constantly re-populated for no apparent reason. However, this is only a slight distraction, and I guess the world would be awfully empty without it.
Combat and missions will earn you currency which can be used to buy units in Conquest, a kind of strategy mini-game. However, you may find you miss this altogether as it's not particularly well signposted, and can only be accessed at fast travel stations. I didn't realise it was even there for several hours. However, once you do find it, it offers a welcome diversion from the main game, and you may find yourself spending more time playing it than running around Pandora. The basic aim is to gain territory from opposing forces by building bases/placing units, in order to gain experience points and enhancements that feed into the main game. It's kind of fun, but not integrated well enough.
I haven't dabbled much in the online side of the game. Mainly because there isn't anything inspiring on offer, beyond what you'd expect (e.g. deathmatch, capture the flag, etc.), but also because the game doesn't seem to lend itself particularly well to multi-player. That might seem an odd thing to say given the whole premise involves the struggle between two warring factions, and it might just be me, but I couldn't get into it. I also found lobbies to be relatively empty, suggesting maybe I'm not the only one feeling that way.
It's worth mentioning that the game supports 3D, but unfortunately I can't offer an opinion on how effectively that's been implemented as I don't have a 3D TV.
In conclusion, I found Avatar: The Game to be an inoffensive and occasionally entertaining affair. But it just didn't hold my interest for long enough at a time, and instead of drawing me in (like the film did), the storytelling in the game is at best adequate and at worst downright sleep inducing. It's definitely worth a rent, and if you're a fan of the film you might want to make the permanent investment; even more so now it's widely available for under £10.
(Review also posted under the same name on another review site).
James Cameron's Avatar: The Game is a video game related to the hit 3D movie called Avatar. It takes place in the same world as the movie but the difference here is that the game offers a prequel tale to Pandora's past.
The game features many races and species. Pandora, the main planet is inhabited by a fierce species called the Na'vi which are 10 feet tall. Pandora also has a toxic atmosphere. Avatars are a hybrid of humans and the Na'vi. The planet has a unique mineral called Unobtanium which is a very critical mineral for all of these species. Most of the time, players will complete missions related directly or indirectly to obtaining this mineral.
The player has to play the role of Abel Ryder who is recruited by the RDA. The RDA is a mercenary unit for hire. Soon the players will have to accomplish different missions. In the later part of the story, they have to make a choice of either completing missions for the Na'vi or the RDA.
The story and plot of the game are OK. The main disadvantage of the game is its voice acting and background music. The controls are not user friendly. This game is good for renting but not for buying.