Saturday, June 02, 2012
Resistance: Burning Skies Trial Impressions
Tonight I played a bit of history: the trial for the first ever portable dual analogue stick first person shooter. Of course, I'm talking about Resistance: Burning Skies for the PlayStation Vita.
The trial contains what I believe to be the first level of the Single Player Campaign, and the rest of the game, including Multiplayer, is locked. In the Campaign, players take on the role of Tom Riley, a firefighter and national guardsman. Riley and his team of firefighters are dispatched to an emergency call at a power station at Staten Island, only to discover that the Chimera invasion of America has begun. Riley must then escape, assist the resistance movement, and fight for his life as everything crumbles around him.
The trial controls quite well with the Left Stick overseeing movement and the Right stick naturally allowing you to look around. "R" fires your weapon, "L" zooms in, "Square" reloads, "X" jumps, "Circle" crouches, and "Triangle" toggles between the last two used weapons or brings up the weapon wheel when held (you can also upgrade weapons here once the right artifacts are collected). You can run by double tapping the rear touch pad or pressing down on the D-pad, and if you get close to cover left or right on the D-pad allows you to lean out or you can use "L" to aim over.
In general, a fairly standard set up and one that's easy to use. Given the lack of buttons compared to modern console's Controller, some touchscreen options are employed. All weapon secondary functions are used via the touchscreen, be it pressing and holding on an enemy to lock on to them with the Bullseye or gliding your finger along the back of the Mule to load a flaming crossbow bolt. You also tap doors to open them or touch Intel items to pick them up, and you hit the "Axe" icon to quickly melee with your trusty Fire Axe. You can also drag grenades to enemies to precision throw them or simply tap the icon to toss a grenade where your reticule already is.
In actual practice, some of this is a bit cumbersome but on Normal difficulty, Riley appears to be able to take a good bit of damage before dropping, and his Health regenerates somehow like in most modern shooters. Overall, the gameplay is simplistic and carries a retro feel that loosely reminded me of the Quake franchise, but I must say I found it quite enjoyable.
Graphical the trial was a bit of a mixed bag with some areas and textures looking better than others, but at no point was I ever horribly repulsed by anything and they certainly get the job done. The trial's audio was also good with a solid musical score when it kicked in and pretty standard voice acting. The character development didn't seem that strong and for the most part you're just a one-man tank shooting a few waves of basic AI enemies, but again it was fun in it's simplicity and featured a decent, if basic, boss battle at the end.
The innovation present, at least as shown in the trial, is not the actual gameplay itself but the fact that this is a portable system with a proper, completely playable and relatively easy to control first person shooter. That unto itself is a cool experience, and once a price drop occurs I fully expect I'll pick the game up.