Spark manages to release a new game for the Next-Gen consoles In hopes of standing out above all other titles. But does Legendary live up to its convenient title? Did Spark develop a game that could win back their former popularity? This reviewer thinks they could have, if they had only tried a bit harder...
By the time I'm done writing this review I'd have successfully cracked my head open against the wall and splattered my brains out all over the floor. Reason being is that writing this review has driven me madly insane, mainly because after playing Legendary I was torn between either admiring the beautiful scenarios and ideas behind the game or puking out gobs of hatred at its retro gameplay style. I really hate to say this because Legendary looked like it could be a very good game if given the time and effort but FUCK ME for not saying that developer Spark really needs to get on the ball! If you’re hoping to make a game that’s going to stand out above all the other titles then maybe you should do a bit of homework before swinging your penis about in an obnoxious manor! It's upsetting and disappointing and quite frankly I think it's safe to say that after I'm finished with this review I'm going to start writing a news article about this issue!
Getting back to the review, Legendary is an eight month old game developed by"Spark", a developer that was well known in its time after releasing the console version remake of Call of Duty for the PS2 and Xbox systems. Anyway, In Legendary you play the role of an art thief named Charles Deckard who is hired by a secret organization to steal Pandora's Box from a Museum set in New York City. Instead, his curiosity gets the best of him and he ends up opening the box, unleashing its power throughout the world and bringing about what looks like the end of the world as we know it. Being responsible for this global disaster, Deckard decides to take it upon himself to find a way to reverse the effects of Pandora's Box and save our modern civilization from complete and utter destruction. That's a pretty noble thing to do considering he's a THIEF.
Let’s go ahead and get the good part of this review out of the way. When I first played Legendary I was impressed. Really, I was. The beginning of the game really pulled me in and I couldn't rip myself away. The game supplied an action packed experience right from the start and I really got into it. Spark did very well in flexing the "Shock and Awe" factor of the apocalyptic events that take place. I was truly captivated by the stunning display of Gryphons flying through the City of New York and reeking havoc in the streets because not only did it look surreal, it also looked like allot of effort went into making this almost elegant display of destruction and mayhem, not to mention the intense and fitting sound track that playing in the back ground really helped improve these experiences.
Now comes the bad part of the review. Though Legendary’s graphics and the environments seemed elegant and masterful, the gameplay didn't do the game ANY justice. The controls seemed decent enough, but moving about the environment felt retro and the way you progressed through each level made it feel like the game developers took pointers from a mediocre old-school FPS game, constantly waiting for a scripted trigger to open another linier path that you must follow. Aiming was rather bothersome since the x-axis revolved slower than the y-axis, and aiming down the sights was even worse because your aim sensitivity seemed to accelerate. Jumping was a bitch and a half since your character couldn't seem to jump more that six inches off the ground, making it hard for you to jump over obstacles that you need to get over before continuing with the game. What’s worse is that the game seems to taunt you by placing an obstacles on the ground that look like you can jump over them, but you can’t seems to jump high enough. This issue is already noticeable at the start when you try to jump over a bench that can easily be cleared, but can't because you were supposed to jump over a small collection of rocks right next to it. That's a pretty stupid thing to do to the players if you ask me, but the level design is where it gets really bad.
Level design was decent, but in most cases half-assed in the since that any minor imperfection found along the floor was considered an "obstacle" to the player. One scenario that best demonstrates this issue is when you finally exit the Museum and reach the congested streets of New York. A beam of light from Pandora's Box shoots through the roof of the museum and opens a portal in the sky, causing a shock wave to pass through the city, creating a massive earthquake that sends everything in the streets flying a good six to eight feet into the air and creating massive tremors in its wake that begin destroying the road beneath you. As this is happening there's so much chaos going on around you that the game distracts you from looking at where you're going, much like a child in a candy shop looking around at all the amazing assortments of colorful candy. As I was moving about the streets in awe, I soon found myself stuck. When I looked down to see what was obstructing my path I saw a very rude chunk of asphalt on the ground in front of me. It was only 2 inches high and for some reason my character just couldn’t merely step over it. This frustrated me beyond any form of reason and I found myself asking, “Why is a two inch chunk of rock stopping my progression!?”. This, Spark, is what we call "LAZINESS"! You could have easily had the character step over this small obstruction, but no, instead it acts as a wall instead! If you're too lazy to do that at least have the common decency to make my character TRIP OVER IT instead of forcing me to look away from this spectacular scene of events just to jump over it!
NPCs were another aspect of the game that made me wince in pain. There are only four other characters in this game that seem to be as equally important as you are, and everyone else just seems to die the second you see them. This frustrated the hell out of me because the character design that went into some of these NPCs seemed like wasted effort since none of them ever survive. There were several NPC characters that looked interesting enough to have a back story and possibly a longer life span. Perhaps even lend a helping hand without sacrificing themselves. I mean, at first it was understandable when civilians are getting slaughtered in the beginning since the scenario was “every man for himself”, but once you start receiving help from allies I think that’s a perfect time to make the NPCs less “pussy-like” and more “badass”. There are several cut scenes that show off a variety of good looking NPCs that look as though they’re going to be key characters that help you through the game, but then the game thwarts that warm hearted feeling of friendship with the “most pathetic way to die, EVER” trigger that kills everyone around you. For a moment there I thought I was playing HALO since you were the only person left standing after every encounter with the enemy. What ticks me off more is when after everyone around you dies, more allies suddenly appear out of nowhere just to get slaughtered in the same manor. This was a total let down since there didn’t seem to be any connection with you and your fellow man, and because of this, the player is left not giving a rats ass if your allies die or not since they have no significant importance, thus defeating the purpose of having them come to your aid in the first place since the game makes you out to be a fucking one man army.
(I happened to take a liking to this particular NPC when I first saw him, thinking he was going to be some type of badass commando who will stand back-to-back with you when the shit hits the fan. Sadly he died not five minutes after this screenshot. R.I.P. NPC # 15709. We hardly knew ye…)
In my opinion, Spark needs to get with the program, as should all game developers, less they want more reviews like this one. Developer Spark seems to be falling behind in the world of next-gen gaming and honestly it's a disappointment because Legendary could have been so much more than what it is now, not to mention the game was rather short. I'm not actually sure if this is a good or bad thing at this point what with all the imperfections I've pointed out but the fact that there's a cliffhanger at the end makes me fear the coming of a sequel. If Spark would be willing to take this game and remake it, taking the time and effort to smooth out all the imperfections, Legendary might actually live up to its name and win a few awards. Until that happens, Legendary remains a very poorly made game.
Though Legendary was impressive when it comes to graphics and environments, the gameplay just dragged it down completely. I must say though that the idea and story behind it somewhat compensates for it’s errors, though not entirely. Legendary receives a 4 out of 10.
Score: 4-- Below Average (4's can sometimes look good, but only in the right light. They have few good points, but the imperfections are blatant. Not the worst games, but can be difficult to recommend to anyone except your little sister.)