Sunday, May 02, 2010

Video game number one hundred and sixteen: Blur Multiplayer Beta

Video game review number one hundred and sixteen in my 365 Games in 365 Days project is"Blur: Multiplayer Beta".

This is only the second "beta" I've played during this challenge (the first being Starcraft 2) but it certainly will not be the last. Halo Reach is about to launch to the public, and although I'm currently on the "Friends and Family" beta, I am obligated to wait until the public launch on Monday to officially review it for my game review project. While I spend the next couple of days waiting, here's Blur!

I'm enjoying this game quite a bit so far. I've already gotten more enjoyment out of it than I have from many of the "full" titles that I've played so far this year, and that's probably the sign of a really good game to come.

Blur was developed by the same folks behind Project Gotham Racing, one of my favorite series of racing games of all time. They've basically taken a racing game, with cool locations and cool cars, and added weapons to it. This makes it sort of like a cross between Project Gotham and (you guessed it) Mario Kart.

This beta is all about the multiplayer and I really enjoyed it. There were never less than 5 people in any of the matches that I played. Most of them were the nice, normal folks you tend to find in racing games....although I did run into a few assholes I had to mute along the way. For the most part though, everyone was playing as they were supposed to...and matches were easy to find, which always makes the game more fun.

Using weapons helps you to gain points, as does your position in the race. You start out with the shittiest cars known to man in your garage, and most everyone you meet online has a better ride than you do. I always hate when games do this, until I level up and become the dude with the awesome ride that can outrun all the noobs. Call of Duty does the same thing, and in the long run...I think it gives you something to strive for in game, which is a good thing. It sucks to be the new guy though, that's for sure.

I leveled up several times and started to get the hang of the weapons. You can fire them forwards and backwards (just like Mario Kart) and it's a lot of fun when you get a hit. Gradually, my cars got speedier and more useful. Eventually, I was coming in 4th or 5th instead of 7th or 8th....and I'm sure with more time, I'd be able to play first. Alas, the beta doesn't go on forever, and I've decided to hold off playing anymore of it in favor of waiting until the full game comes out. That game is going to have an entire campaign mode, where I assume you'll earn cars that you can drive online (not sure about that, but I think it's reasonable to assume something like that). I shall cross my fingers.

Overall Score: 7.5/10. As far as betas go, this one is great. You can download free demos of a zillion games to try on Marketplace, but the replay value on this one is just insane. I played it for many hours...and never really got sick of it.

Achievements? Not in this game...but I imagine there will be plenty to be had, in the full version, which I'll review soon.

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