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Found 1 result

  1. Jonathan Higgins

    E3 2015 Hands-On: Metroid Prime: Blast Ball

    When Metroid Prime: Federation Force was revealed, and the “Blast Ball” announced at the Nintendo World Championships actually turned out to be a part of that game... suffice to say they weren“t the Metroid games that many were expecting. I“m not here to talk about Internet petitions and take sides on this particular issue. Actually, I have no real attachment to the Metroid franchise, since I only played Super Metroid very recently, and I honestly feel even that was outclassed by the recently released Axiom Verge. So — I“m here to judge Metroid Prime: Blast Ball for what it was, not what it should be. It“s certainly intriguing, if nothing else. Unlike most booths at E3, Blast Ball wasn“t a single demo kiosk, but rather several linked together. Six people, three on two sets of teams, competed at once to score the most points in the span of five minutes. Much like what you saw during the Nintendo World Championships — I can simply describe Blast Ball as, well... Space Soccer. Instead of kicking the ball, though, you“re shooting it. Get a bunch of players shooting a ball in one direction, score a goal by ramming the ball into the goalie and making him or her self-destruct. If you spent the entire five minutes volleying the ball back and forth between each other and things ended in a tie, it moved on to the Sudden Death round. But... that never happened to any of the groups that went before or after me. Either team of people always managed to sneak in an edge somehow. Both this game and Splatoon are genres I wouldn“t normally enjoy. But when I experienced Splatoon last year at E3 via my previous gig, I could tell it had the makings of something special. While playing Metroid Prime: Blast Ball was mildly entertaining in its own right, it doesn“t have the new, refreshing staying power that something like Splatoon does. There may be enough twists to the shooting soccer-based gameplay to keep you interested for a hot minute, but it“s lacking in universal appeal, unfortunately. The visuals are forgettable at best; the ambiance feels rather phoned in. The key to a good multiplayer experience, in my opinion, isn“t just about gameplay that“s fun for five minutes or five hours. It“s about creating a world that“s fun to go back to and see more of. Metroid Prime: Blast Ball, even without the controversy, has none of these things. The gameplay is decent, but it feels like it will be short-winded if it doesn“t do enough to become something more than simply blasting a ball back and forth. Mario Sports games and other relevant sport spin-off fodder do enough to stay refreshing. This game, unfortunately, does not. Still, I suppose Blast Ball is just a piece of the entire Metroid Prime: Federation Force experience. Maybe that game hides more innovation that simple space soccer lacks. The full game releases in 2016, so we“ll be sure to offer more information as we have it.
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