Deconstructing the game: Vanquish

Though there is always that other end where the game could have not picked up from a multiplayer standpoint and could have just cost a ton to add the feature to and maintain servers for a tiny community until eventually killing it off a year or 2 later which could have been even more damaging than the game just not selling so well in the first place. There is always that route, and I can totally see that being a detractor from adding the mode.

Now, all of the above complaints were pretty minor on the grand scale of things, despite the fact that I wrote so much about them. The negatives really stand out because I like Vanquish so much and feel that it is such an excellent experience that the minor issues frustrated me more because they were present in the game than they would in a more flawed game.

What I liked, loved and wished to have many children with:

Focused gameplay: Above all else, Vanquish is a really fun and highly playable game. When I try to describe the game to people I can’t not highlight the fact that it just oozes incredibly tight, well thought out gameplay. There aren’t the strange design choices in Vanquish that tend to exist in many big budget games, shooters in particular, as well as things that tend to detract from the experience such as infinitely spawning enemies, debris forming paths that lead nowhere and questionable objectives that often don’t feel important at all or have weird hit detection for triggering. The objective switch (you know, the place where the stage will continue on from) is always marked on the radar and it is always clear what to do. Enemies in the area are marked on the radar as well to avoid any ambiguity and to facilitate fluid navigation of the stage areas.

The control is spot on and, much like the well designed HUD, doesn’t over clutter the gamer so he is free to do whatever he pleases at any given time. I always lose the feeling that I am controlling a separate entity and I can just go with the flow. It’s a very hard feeling to explain, and yet the ability to just play a game without many hindrances is one that can be easily over looked when evaluating a game.

I find that many people play other wildly popular shooters and complain about a lot of things that could have been avoided from a design standpoint, and Vanquish is a game where those issues are few and far between.