Lair
Developer: Factor 5
Publisher: SCEE
Release Date: Out Now
Players: 1
Words By:

Luke Flytalker- “Okay Pledge we are about to take on the Death Star. Don’t worry, it will be just like shooting Womp Rats at Beggars’ Canyon back home. Set your X-Foils into position.”

Pledge Antilles- “Look at the size of that thing!”

Luke Flytalker- “Erm… that’s just my lightsaber making a bulge in my trousers Pledge. Please concentrate on the mission!

Pledge Antilles- “Yes sir. Sorry sir. Just inserting my disc into the PS3 battle computer.”

Luke Flytalker- “Me too. The tactical data contained on this special Lair disc should really help to…… what the hell? Everything has gone smoky and brown! There are fuzzy mountains everywhere! It’s hard to distinguish anything! You better not have put treacle in my windscreen wash bottle as a joke again Pledge!

Pledge Antilles- “No way sir, its happening to me too! Sweet Yoda’s ear flaps! Now my controls have gone completely! The analogue sticks aren’t working they are just sending my flight camera everywhere! How do we pilot our X-Wings now?”

Luke Flytalker- “Never mind that, look between your legs!!!

Pledge Antilles- “Oh sir you DO feel the same way about me too…

Luke Flytalker- “No you blithering idiot! Look at what we are sitting on. We aren’t inside X-Wings, we are now riding great big dragons with brown-textured batwings!”

Pledge Antilles- “Wow how cool! But how do we pilot these things? Are we supposed to use that Force nonsense you are always yapping on about?”

Luke Flytalker- “Maybe. I think I will try and… WOAH! That’s interesting. Hey Pledge, all you have to do is tilt the Sixaxis left or right to bank and turn. It’s pretty simple. And if you want to gain altitude just tilt it back. To descend just tilt it forward and…

Pledge Antilles- “Weeeeeeee! Ha ha, I can do a 180° turn. Just tilt the controller up really sharply!

Luke Flytalker- “But why can’t I do it? Grrrr… I am tilting it as quick as I can and nothing is happening! WHY IS NOTHING HAPPENING? God dammit what an inconsistent heap of junk! This beast is worse to drive than the Millennium Falcon after Han Solo has worked on the hyper Drive whilst drunk on Corrillian brain beer.

Pledge Antilles- “Erm… perhaps we should concentrate on the mission before the stress makes you turn to the dark side sir? Now let me see… Objectives… God this is a boring tactical data set! We are no longer supposed to attack the Death Star but fight off a rival nation and people called the Mokai or something. There are no spaceships or planets anymore sir, only dungeons and dragons-style creatures, Lord of the Rings-style mountains, towers and bridges and lots of men in armour and swords. And they are all fighting over environmental issues and volcanoes and stuff like that. And why is Angela Lansbury narrating it? Sounds like her but…

Luke Flytalker- “Silence! Pledge, before I give her another murder to write about. We have a mission to complete no matter how dull you may think it. And don’t ever mention Lord of the Rings to me again! Our story is way better! Apart from the Ewoks. And the new trilogy. And the acting… Oh forget it, let’s just go through the weaponry. Whilst in the air we can shoot balls of flame with quick presses of a button or we can hold the button down and concentrate a wide stream of flame. Makes a change from lasers eh?”

Pledge Antilles- “Any Proton torpedoes?”

Luke Flytalker- “No but we can engage other dragons in mid air and ram into them and claw at them and…

Pledge Antilles- “Yes but sir, it’s a bit rubbish isn’t it? Look, I am taking on this dragon now and it’s all a clunky mess. It’s dead easy to lock onto them but having to line up distance and height and then tilt the sixaxis to ram into them? That’s just lame and vague and doesn’t always work. In fact all this combat is doing is making my wrists ache and it doesn’t feel very connected. And now I can’t do that dratted 180 degree turn anymore!”

Luke Flytalker- “Har har! Not so clever now are you? Well let me have a go at it, I have got more skill than you. Here we go, time to strafe some ships. Just look at that lovely bobbing water! Wow, see how it ripples with a shock wave as the vessel explodes. Good bit of physics that. See, this isn’t so bad Pledge! I think I will just go and fly up to that lovely detailed city and swoop under a few bridges because…

*****ANNOYING EXPOSITIONAL CUTSCENE*****

Luke Flytalker- “Humph. Stupid bloody storyline. Okay, I will take out the ice dragons first then. Right, NOW I will fly up to the city and… Oh, the level has finished.

Pledge Antilles- “Never mind, let’s do this night time level instead then. Lovely thunder and lightning effects. Look at that rotating tower that shoots searchlight beams for us to avoid. I think we have to take it out from the inside. That will be fun eh sir? At least there is a slight variation on just dull flying from one target to another.”

Luke Flytalker- “Yes! This will be a bit like a Death Star run. Okay let’s be clever and tactical about this - you take on and distract the enemy dragons and I will get in close and…

*****ANNOYING EXPOSITIONAL CUTSCENE*****

Luke Flytalker- “Arrrrgh! This is more annoying than C3PO! Okay then I WILL take out the boats on the river first. Right there goes one, got another one… starting to enjoy this! Right then, now that I have done what was instructed I will try some stuff out by swinging around and…

*****ANNOYING EXPOSITIONAL CUTSCENE*****

Luke Flytalker- “Oh for Kenobi’s sake is there anything good about this whole affair? Why can’t I just fly around and get on with it? And why is there all this radio chatter from our other wingmen? Are we somehow telepathic or something or do these dragons have built in intercoms?”

Pledge Antilles- “Maybe it’s that force power you keep boasting about sir. But look, this great big bridge mission is actually pretty good!”

Luke Flytalker- “Why yes! I can almost see the point of the whole thing. Look at all those ground troops. I can eat them, incinerate them or even touch down and swipe and flatten them. There is activity everywhere in the air and on the ground. Wow, prehistoric Rhino-type creatures are being dropped by enemy dragons to attack our troops! Ha ha ha, that means I can swoop and pick them up too and then throw them into the ravines hundreds of feet below! If it wasn’t for the linear missions, imprecise controls, treacle vision graphics and camera this could have been awesome Pledge! And the music is wonderful, very epic. If only there was more care taken in development and more spit and polish instead of just… Well, spit. Never mind this is almost fun, I am going to try out a cunning manoeuvre by descending to

*****ANNOYING EXPOSITIONAL CUTSCENE*****

Luke Flytalker- “You Stupid F***ing B**t**ds!!!!!!!!!

Pledge Antilles- “S-Sir. Shall we just give it up and go and wax Chewbacca? You are starting to scare me!”

Luke Flytalker- “Yeah I am off, this is all a pointless, by-the-numbers flying farce. I feel so angry and disappointed and my head is full of dark thoughts. Never cared about the stupid Jedi, the Rebellion or the bloody Empire anyway.

Pledge Antilles- “Don’t you mean the war between the Asylians and the Mokai sir?”

Luke Flytalker- “THAT DOES IT!!!!”

Pledge Antilles- “Ugh, my throat… it… it’s tightening. I can’t breath… S-sir please no… Aaaarrrgghhh!”


Best Bits

- Has the odd moment of visual grandeur
- The sea looks fabulous and choppy with proper physics
- Vast and busy environments
- Riding a dragon is always a cool thing and so is incinerating people
- The musical score is gorgeous
- The giant bridge battle gives a glimpse of how good the game could have been
Worst Bits

- Please, no more cutscene interruptions. LET ME PLAY!!!
- “Golden Brown, texture like crap…”
- Contrived, dull and soulless fantasy story
- Bad implementation of tilt controls in crucial action areas
- Often very little freedom to make your own choices and tackle the levels at your own pace
- Forgettable characters
- And once more - treacle and brown sauce graphics engine
- Camera issues when things get busy

by: 4thy

Copyright © Gamecell 2007