Quick Impressions! Heroic jockeying of discs! The smashing of spans! Blurcars!

by Cory Birdsong on

DJ Hero (Everything)

This game is completely baffling when all you see is a screen, and Activision is doing a terrible job of explaining it.

Almost every time I am in their booth, there is a dude on stage playing it, and only the most recent time did they actually have a camera pointed at the controller so I might understand what was going on with the note highway. There are three lanes, not five. Some notes require a simple button press, others holding a button whilst scratchity scratch scratching the record. The outer two lanes also require you to flip crossfader switches at various points in the song. Once you figure out what the fuck is going on, it seems like a fairly decent package. One mode demonstrated allowed two players to compete mixing two different songs from the 80+ songs available, and a second player can join in on guitar when playing on The aesthetic is generally much smoother and polished than Guitar Hero has been lately, and obviously there is no competing superior DJ game.

Span Smasher (Wii)

This new Motion Plus-based Nintendo IP is incredibly unengaging. You basically fling the Wii Remote in the direction you want and this yellow blob breaks blocks as it flies in that direction. That’s it. Occasionally you collect doodads that don’t appear to do anything. There didn’t seem to be any way to die, or any real compelling reason to continue. I lost interest in less than five minutes. No wonder they didn’t make a big deal out of this one.

Blur (PS3, 360)

This is like if you took Project Gotham Racing and removed everything that made it unique, and then added a bunch of really terribly implemented Mario Kart tropes. Let me back up. Blur is a racing game made by Project Gotham developers Bizarre Creations. Purportedly, they hope it will widen the racing genre and bring in non-fans.

Unfortunately, it’s incredibly boring. The powerups are generic and uninspired, and you don’t really feel like you’re interacting with any of the other cars. Things happen to you, and then you throw powerups out, and they have absurd range so it doesn’t really feel like you are doing anything to anyone else. It ends up just being boring. Unfortunate, indeed.