Think about it. a somehwhat underground but extremely popular comic who people either love or loathe releases a low budget low brow comedy that isn't expected to go anywhere. But it becomes a hit. A big one, and the comedian's career takes off big time. It happened with Ace Ventura, and it could happen with Larry The Cable Guy: Health Inspector. Now, I honestly don't think this guy is anywhere near Carrey in terms of talent, but he does have an army of redneck fans that will most likely make his feature debut a suprise smash hit this weekend, which could easily be the launching pad for a huge career.
But really, none of this weekend's offerings look that enticing. Stay Alive is just The Ring with a video game instead of a tape (and it's PG13, the only good horror film ever made that wasn't rated R was Poltergeist). Inside Man is another mystery twister that'll just throw in one convulted suprise after another til nothing makes sense anymore.
With all the hoopla surrounding Oblivion and Kingdom Hearts II, one deserving rpg may be left out in the cold. Suikoden V was released this week, and while I was very cautious of it after the last mediocre entry in the series, so far all the reviews point to this being a very solid turnaround. If I ever get bored with Oblivion and KHII, that would probably be my next rpg of choice.
And finally I'll go a little more in-depth with what I think of Oblivion. I love that you can simply fast travel to most major cities and any landmarks you have previously traveled, that's a HUGE improvement from the original. The combat, though still fairly simple, has also gotten a great overhaul with the add of a block and power attack option. The graphics are pretty impressive, but since my PC just barely meets the minimum requirements, I probably can't do them much justice.
Now for the bad: I love a good narrative. A good narrative can get you through a fairly mediocre game, and it can make you come back to a great game time & time again. Morrowind was lacking this in spades and Oblivion is as well. It's to be somewhat expected given the open-ended nature of the game, but there's a reason I've spent little to no time on the main quest-I just don't feel driven to finish it anytime soon.
But probably the biggest dissapointment is the complete BS job Bethesda has pulled on us with "Radiant A.I.". They claimed this would make NPCs live their own life and react individually with unpredictable behavior. But everybody has patterns and follows a specific script, even repeating annoying phrases and actions over and over again.
But these are honestly pretty minor things. This is easily what I'd say is the first must buy title of 2006 and an easy early contender for game of the year.
Ok, that's it for now. I will be back on Sunday for sure.