Turning Point: Fall of Liberty

2010-11-11 16:37:35

First of all, a great premise, alternate timelines are often full of great speculation and great possibilities for things that are full of the whimsy of imagination. This game starts off on a great foot, what if the Nazi's invaded? Kinda has the same feel as Red Dawn in this kind of scenario. Here we are a US Construction worker working on the skyscrapers that define New York City, when out of no where comes  the zeppelins of the Fuhrer. Already our pulse is pounding, we're looking for a way down, we see some of our buddies fall to their deaths, we gotta walk the steel and get off safe.

After the hair raising steel walking experience you encounter the nazis and secure some of your first weapons in what is to be American Guerrilla warfare against the German's overwhelming numbers and armor. Overall the game design is pretty solid, things are pretty believable, and the scenarios play out the way you would expect. Controls are a little coarse and the weapons don't have very much body to their audio representation, leaving everything feeling a tad watered down. There are also numerous bugs which at the time I played this game (9/4/09) made portions of it virtually unplayable. I ended up giving up playing the game after a number of frustrating bug ridden encounters left me retrying over and over to beat a certain mission with but a needle fine margin of error. It just couldn't happen. I had to relent to the enormous bugs that made that mission impossible except off of luck.

Bugs are a killer for games, and whats even more telling is that this game was older by the time I had acquired it, so the coding team had had ample time to return to the software and code some bug-fixes, but did they? no, they left it in the shambles that it was in at launch. One thing I cannot stand is the world we live in now, where because the internet is so ubiquitous as is the memory storage for our next gen consoles the game companies no longer feel that any level of QA is really that important. Most beta releases go like this: AAA title is going to be released around x date, partner company Y  is producing a B-list game, we bundle in a redeemable code for the AAA game Beta and suddenly B-list game is now AA-List opener, with shitty resale value/post initial profits. The game companies are gaming us the consumer by feeding off our selfish hunger for early access to the best games, by forcing us to buy shit in a box for 60 bucks so we can get a scratch off card toward playing AAA release beta for 2 months.

At the Call of Duty 4 beta was a beta, with an active community and recorded and remedied glitches betweeen the various multiplayer maps. everything since then has felt relatively hollow. Games that are single player like Turning Point end up shitty because not enough testing is done, QA timeframes are trimmed to reduce costs and increase speed of production, with the thought that users will not only tolerate it, but will find it easy to just download a patch when we get around to it, but we'll only get around to it if initial sales indicate we should.

What we need to do is put companies on notice, that we won't stand for poorly QA'd shit box titles in the wild. Start keeping track which companies and which studios are known for producing shovelware on launch and how many go back and patch the mistakes. That way we get an idea of Reputation of various companies and how their post sales support truly is.

Reason Score
Start 10
Compelling What If style historical fantasy makes for a great backdrop for an American Guerrilla Warfare setting +2
Horrible Game ruining bugs throughout the game, to the point of being almost 100% game ending toward the final two stages. -15
no patch for shitty game ruining bugs after having an extended period to fix them -6
Final -9

Shit in a box, not worth any price even if a new sealed copy was found at the dollar store, bag of marbles would provide better replay value, a trip to the library would provide more subject matter in a less bug infested way. Corpses are less bug ridden that his filth. Toxic Game Avoid at all costs.