Thursday, March 02, 2006

Full Auto

I checked out Full Auto via Gamefly last week.

It's a bit of fun. It's fun to drive fast and blow things up, for at least a little while. And the "rewind time" feature, which allows you to back up a few seconds (depending on a meter that fills based on your driving), is a very nice piece of design. But mostly, we've seen all of this before, or it feels like we have.

Full Auto is a victim of value.

At $29.99 on the Xbox, AA could be a surprise cult hit, a game with a surprising amount of play at a value price.

At $59.99 on the Xbox 360, though, it's paper thin. For sixty dollars, it has to be more than "driving fast and blowing stuff up." No storyline, no connection between missions, no sense of being part of a greater world. It looks pretty and shiny, but the gameplay is pure arcade, with the difference being that I wouldn't spend two hundred and forty quarters on this game in an arcade. At $59.99, it's a rental.

The price delta between new Xbox titles (most of them, anyway) and 360 titles is twenty dollars. For some games, that delta won't be justified.

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