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What’s Killing My Social Life This Week – The Legend of Korra

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Are you a fan of the Legend of Korra series? Actually don’t answer that, it was a stupid question. I mean, it’s got awesome ladies kicking butt and looking good whilst doing it. Who could hate that? In any case, if you’ve always wanted to know what being the Avatar feels like, then the game for you is finally here (and indeed has been here for the past 4 months).

The Legend of Korra is an action-adventure beat em up, developed by Platinum Games, which I’m currently drooling over with as much passion-infused saliva as possible. In it you play as Korra, a spiritual leader that can bend the four elements of water, earth, fire and air to her whim. She is also kickass. Have I mentioned that she’s kickass? Because she is. The game takes place between Books 2 and 3, when Korra has to deal with the consequences of leaving the Spirit portals open. At least that’s what I think is going on. Frankly, I couldn’t tell over the poorly-timed dialogue.

Now, the story isn’t exactly A material, to say the least. Plot-wise, things are sometimes off-cannon, like when you go to Airtemple Island and find a transparent girl floating about. Has Jinora’s ability to project her spirit after Harmonic Convergence even been established yet? Because I’m pretty sure we learn about it waaaaay after the Book 2 finale, when she’s looking for the imprisoned Airbenders (warning to any non-Legend of Korra fans and other aliens: You might not get some of the references cited here). And don’t even get me started on the cutscenes, or should I call them “Cut scenes”, since that’s what they are. In fact, if I didn’t know any better, I’d say they were rough cuts from the actual series. Aside from that, the dialogue takes a rather cringe-worthy turn halfway through, with brilliant lines such as “ blah blah blah my whole reason of being blah blah” or “Now you will truly taste the chaotic attack!”. Honestly though, the writing is sometimes ridiculous and others just silly.

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But who needs a story when there’s a fluid combat system to distract us? Well, I’m happy to say that –when it comes to smooth and satisfying gameplay- TLoK does more than deliver. In the actual fights anyway. The way your attacks combo with one another, along with how each element feels different with every move you unlock is just… ugh! I can’t describe it; words simply can’t express the joy TLoK’s combat brings to me. Even if pressured, I’d probably just produce a series of unnerving gushing noises. At the beginning of the game, you’re stripped of your powers and have to play through the game to regain mastery over the elements and level them up. As you do, you’ll be able to use more and more combos and abilities with every element, until you’ve maxed them all out. The more levels you have in one element, the more fun you’ll be able to have with it as- hufgrushgsuhoogshrrrsgh.

However, not all of the gameplay is fun. Besides the occasional boss fight with a Mecha-tank, there’s also a few levels in which you have to ride Naga around; Korra’s pet Polarbear dog and worst method of transportation ever. During one of these levels, you have to get around a busy city/spiky glacier, avoiding any popping obstacles, whilst maintaining an average speed of 50 miles per second. And forgive me for being unable to perfectly time my button presses, as if this is some sick and twisted version of quick-time events, while also having to maintain a high enough speed so I don’t die at the big drops. In short, the Naga levels are drawn-out, unforgiving and, even though it feels very satisfying to get through them -with no deaths and a platinum medal, naturally- they suck, thus creating an odd mix of fun and keyboard-gnawing frustration. But there’s ONE level, one bloody level that is the absolute worst; the bit where you’re expected to fight 3 obstacle-making Mecha-tanks while you’re riding that much-hated dog. It is terrible and I can’t for the life of me understand why anyone thought it was a good idea, unless there was some awfulness quota that needed fulfilling.

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So, should you play the Legend of Korra game? Heck. Fucking. Yes. The story might be awkward at times, but the gameplay’s really, really fun and what more reason do you want? Sometimes, being able to encase someone in ice, before launching them in the air with your extreme break dancing powers, is all the excuse you need to buy something.

-The Fairy Wizard

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Posted on March 1, 2015, in Features, Geekology, Reviews, Video Games, What's Killing My Social Life This Week and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 1 Comment.

  1. You know what’s sad? I never really got into this show even though I KNOW it’s good and that it picked up after that SLOW first season. All my friends tweet about it and I’m just sitting there with my bag of mini oreos wondering what I’m doing with my life.

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