Lost Planet 2


posted 6/16/2010 by Charles Husemann
other articles by Charles Husemann
One Page Platforms: 360
The following is a conversation I had with my girlfriend regarding Lost Planet 2.

Her: "I thought you didn't like that game, so why are you still playing it?"

Me: "Because I think it might get better."

I wish the game got better, because ultimately I decided after playing through the first half of the campaign of Lost Planet 2 that there was no point in playing the rest because it was just too much of a grind to finish it playing it by myself. The last part of that sentence is the critical part, because if you play the game with others the game is marginally better, but there are still critical flaws in the game but we'll get to that in a minute. It's not that I didn't want to like Lost Planet 2, it's just that Lost Planet 2 seems to fight the concept of fun at every step.

Lost Planet 2 is set on E.D.N. III (which is much catchier than LV-426), the same place you battled it out in the first game. Big changes are afoot as  the planet has undergone some serious terraforming in the decade sine the first game, and now features some level types other than "Hoth". Now you get to shoot people and giant monsters in deserts, jungles, and cities. If the later levels of the game feature a office building and a warehouse then I think they'll have checked off every single generic shooter environment we've seen before.

There are a couple of other cool new features in the game, like the harmonizer which allows you to convert thermal energy (t-eng) to health. Since you no longer need thermal energy to stay alive in the cold environments, this makes collecting thermal energy helpful. You can still die with a full load of t-eng in your backpack though, so you learn very quickly to pace yourself in combat.

Lost Planet 2 ships with two major modes. A co-op campaign and a set of online competitive multiplayer maps. The co-op campaign is fixed to four people and broken out into six episodes with three or so chapters in each episodes. The game lacks drop-in/drop out co-op which means that you have to wait until you hit one of the chapter breaks before you can re-start the game with your friends. This might have been acceptable a few years ago, but right now it's a major feature miss. This wouldn't be so bad if playing the game by yourself was enjoyable at all.

Why you ask? It's because the your AI teammates seems to be based on a bad high school relationship. They are eager to please but they are super clingy and tend to be a bit on the clumsy side. Clingy is great when they serve as a meat shield between you and enemies, but that meat shield is a problem when they can block outgoing rocket fire which causes some un-fun localized splash damage. The AI is also useless on some of the more complex missions that require you to have an organized team that's doing multiple things at once.
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