Old Grandma Hardcore

This blog is the chronicle of my experiences with Grandma, the video-game playing queen of her age-bracket and weight class. She will beat any PS2, XBox, GameCube, etc., console game put in front of her, just like she always has. These are her stories. She is absolutely real. She lives in Cleveland.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Grandma has Destroyed The Darkness

Here's Grandma doing her best Darkness infused Jackie Estacado impersonation, complete with glowing, demon snake heads, upon completing this god-awful, piece of shit game. Even Mr. Bungle couldn't salvage this thing. For me- Mike Patton growling evil things into a microphone would have been reason enough to buy it but they somehow managed to fuck that up too.

This one was my fault; I take full responsibility. On Monday we read on Joystiq about some lucky bastards getting their hands on BioShock from Toys-R-Us early. Wednesday, (without checking, mind you) I took her to get a copy of her own, figuring the Toys-R-Us mistake was someone jumping the gun by only a day or so. Surely it would be out then. Well it wasn't. NEXT Tuesday, we were told, would be the day for BioShock awesomeness. But Grandma was bored NOW. She needed a new game and we didn't have much from which to choose. And so- it was I who pointed at The Darkness on the PS3 rack and said "hey look, that one is made by 2K as well. Let's get that one for now. I heard it's good."

That was a goddamned shameful lie.

"Jesus, where do I even start with this? It was DUMB. I don't know if the game was supposed to be funny or serious or what but it sure didn't make any fucking sense. So it's supposed to be this guy, Jackie's 21st birthday, and he ends up getting in a car accident by being chased by the cops and some guys paid by his Uncle Paulie (the bad guy) to kill him, but he ends up in this building that just happens to have a television set with a message from Paulie that he now, out of the blue, really fucking hates Jackie because of a thing that just happened that day, and he planted a bomb in the closet and it blows him up and now he's hearing voices and has demon heads coming out of his shoulders and shit and he decides to calmly GO SEE HIS GIRLFRIEND.

You know, any normal person that has fucking demons coming out of their body is going to freak the fuck out, find a doctor, crawl in a ditch and scream for awhile, anything! But to head down through the subway saying hello to everyone he meets like he just had a slightly bad day at the office? It doesn't make any sense! Maybe I could have gotten passed the shitty dialogue if the graphics on the characters didn't look like they were Guitar Hero singers just moving their mouths up and down a little bit. And it was really obvious when they zoomed in to show how great the skin textures were or something. I mean- they can make a guy have really sharp looking stubble but they can't make his mouth move when he talks?

And that's the other thing. He NEVER SHUTS THE FUCK UP. I don't mean he's like Dante in Devil May Cry 3 or anything, I mean- and this might be the worst part of the whole game- whenever you go from one area to another, like going from Chinatown to the Canal Street station, you have to sit through a stupid fucking cutscene of him sitting in the dark playing with a gun acting all stupid. EVERY TIME. Sometimes he's talking about what's going on in the game, and that's fine, but he repeats himself every time you go into that area.

You enter the Subway a LOT in this game. They couldn't make it so you could just walk down the street, no- you HAVE to go through the station. So that's two stupid cutscenes you have to sit through. You can't skip them, you can't turn them off, they're always there. It would have been better to just have a black screen with a loading bar at the bottom but I had to listen to the same goddamn quip about Crazy Abdul given in a ridiculous, cartoony New York-Italian accent about fifty goddamn times.

And if you accidentally step back into the area you just left? Fuck you- you have to watch the cutscene again. And then another one when you correct your mistake.

Then there's the 'collectables' thing where you pick up pieces of paper with phone numbers written on them. You call the number, listen to an occasionally funny message, and it says "Extra Content Unlocked" every time you do it. I still don't know where this 'extra content' is, and I really don't care at this point.

It has minions like Overlord, kind of, only they're called "Darklings." They're good for shit. They don't always go where you tell them to go and when they do get there they don't always do something. It was funny at first when they would say stupid shit like "let's kill a commie" or "up yours asshole" or something like that, but it gets old. It was FUNNY when the minions in Overlord peed after getting drunk in a pub. The Darklings seem to pee on every corpse they pass, even if you're being shot at and need them to do something! It ceases to be funny and just gets annoying.

The game isn't really fun at all until you get the Black Hole Darkness Power and start sucking groups of people up into the air. It's easy enough to aim the weapons because it sort of drifts into whatever there is to shoot at, but the weapons are nothing to write home about. Then there are these parts that go back to World War I trenches with his grandfather or something and everyone looks like Frankenstein and those whole levels are just dumb as hell to anyone who's played a decent WWII shooter recently. They could have made it so much better. Make it scary. Make it funny! WHATEVER. Just make it not suck.

I haven't played Multiplayer yet so maybe that will justify what I paid for it but I doubt it.

Maybe I'm just pissed I didn't get BioShock and ended up with this crap. I don't know. But this was really, really lame."

I haven't finished it yet, but Grandma finished it tonight. She even went back to her save to see if there was an alternate ending if you make a different choice at the end.

She didn't find one.

We've gotten a few postcards (more on the awesomeness of what's going down with that contest coming next post) so if you haven't already, send us one! Here again is the address:

One Year Xbox Live Gold Subscription Giveaway Thing
c/o Barbara St. Hilaire (aka Old Grandma Hardcore)
PO Box 553
Mantua, OH 44255

I cannot stress enough how much Grandma loves getting mail.

So send her a postcard! And unless you haven't already- for the love of GOD, avoid The Darkness, out now on the Xbox 360 and Playstion 3.

Just to review:
The Darkness = quirky, crazy band from the UK
The Darkness = mediocre television show
The Darkness = mediocre vampire movie
The Darkness = shitty video game

If you remember that, then we will have done something good this week.

Next week: BIOSHOCK, motherfuckers!! Wooooo!!!

Game on!


  • At 12:31 AM, Blogger Gamer Named Tim said…

    BioShock is going to be so awesome! I have a question for you guys though, and please answer this: Are you going to try to get your hands on the collectors edition BioShock, or are you gonna go with the regular one? I know that GameStop stopped taking pre-orders due to reports of the Big Daddy figures being broken in the box, but you might actually be able to pick a good one up if you get there quick enough.

    If you haven't heard what exactly is in the collectors edition, it comes with: BioShock, a Big Daddy figure, a soundtrack CD, and a "making-of" DVD, which will make for some good entertainment on your downtime from the game. This will only cost you $10 more than the regular edition, which is a kick-ass deal.

    If you don't care about those extras and you just want the game, BE SURE to pick it up at Circuit City, as they are selling it for only $50. You can check the weekly ad on the website to see for yourself. Anyway, nice update, and I had pretty high hopes about The Darkness up until the demos release. The game is crap, and, judging by this blog post, that's an understatement!

  • At 12:50 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Disagree completely about the Darkness. Have it for the PS3 and the story was pretty damn good.

    The reason why Paulie wanted him dead is because Jackie *POTENTIAL SPOILER ALERT* a) screwed up a drug deal and didn't get the money. b) Paulie thought he was getting power hungry.

    The only thing I disliked about the game is that the sense of direction was a little wack. I found myself getting lost. That and the shooting was sub-standard. The auto-aim was terrible.

    Anyways, can't wait for Bioshock! Keep on gamin', OGHC!

  • At 3:12 AM, Blogger CtrlAltDelete said…

    gamer named tim: I was thinking I would only be able to pick up the regular edition for her, seeing as this thing has been hyped up to be the best thing to ever hit the 360 it's unlikely I'll be able to snag a collector's edition Tuesday morning without a preorder. If I only get her the regular edition I can probably get one of the figures later for her if she wants (and I know she wants.)

    She downloaded and played the demo on her 360 when it first became available and was thoroughly impressed. I think this is going to be a great one. Awesome postcard by the way :) This Wednesday's post will interest you greatly!

    anonymous: It's all good. The Darkness wasn't for everyone, I suppose. I haven't made it to the end yet so I haven't really got to see Paulie other than once during the cutscene in the middle of the game before the first 'trip' to the trenches and at the very beginning in the television screen. I think from Grandma's perspective it just seemed silly, even for a simple drug-deal-gone-wrong plot that he would resort to ...well, everything he resorted to. It seemed a bit much.

    But she and I disagree on quite a few games so I know there's folks out there who are going to disagree with her too. On this one, anyway, I agree. I just don't like it very much.

    But BioShock is going to be worth it. She's really excited about that one! And when I'm not working maybe I'll get to play it too ;)

  • At 4:48 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Hey Grandma! Sorry to hear that you didn't like the game. Then again, I guess that's the whole point of having a library - with different games in different genres to suit different tastes, most games will be liked and appreciated by someone out there. I'm in the process of writing a letter right now, I promise. So you will get some mail from me.

    Jen (dontgiveahoot)

  • At 5:13 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…


    How are you! How have you been? How's your family!

  • At 5:44 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Hey Granny! Too bad you didn't like The Darkness, I really enjoyed it a lot. The only thing I didn't like that much is that it's too short!

    I pre-ordered Bioshock last month, so I'll be getting it this week as well! I hope it's good.

    GAME ON!

  • At 11:58 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    What about Two Worlds? I know Grandma LOVES Oblivion, so why doesnt she get get Two Worlds, which is supposed to be like it?

  • At 4:33 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    i really liked the darkness. especially the story. but, i respect your opinion because you and your grandson are awesome!!!

  • At 5:20 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    If Grandma thinks that the multiplayer will be worth it, shes in for another sad surprise. I bought the darkness and started on the multiplayer after 3 hours of gameplay and it sucks. It lags so bad its ridiculous. Being a darkling can be fun, but not being able to hit anyone will piss you off in a hurry.

  • At 6:52 PM, Blogger Sarah said…

    BioShock motherfuckers indeed! I'm SO excited for BioShock to come out. Sucks that I only get two days with it before I go on vacation for a week. So be sure to enjoy it a shitload for me. I have it preordered so HOPEFULLY GameCrazy calls me and I'll run crazy for a mile to get it. Probably not. If they don't, I'm taking my Circuit City ad and price matching it down ten bucks, so check your Sunday paper or Frys if you have one.

    Sucks about the Darkness though.

    I added Grandma to my postcard list. I probably should have time to write postcards during 6 days of PAXiness. Ok so PAX is only 3 days, I'm doing shit for the other 3 days as well.

  • At 7:54 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Hey i was wondering if it can be answered by a fellow commenter or Granny herself next time,

    WHere does she buy her games? Gamestop, EB games, Wal mart? I always wondered.

    ALso Tim, Hows your smoke quitting going? You never updated us on it again.

  • At 9:43 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I kind of knew The Darkness was going to be bad because I read the graphic novel first and that was shit. The writing was terrible and the plot jumped around so much it wasn't fun to read. I'm guessing the game had the same flaws.

  • At 2:08 PM, Blogger lilith42 said…

    Ya know, I just thought about it, and I never received my "prize pack" from whoever in that last giveaway thing you guys had going forever back. No biggie, it was still cool as hell to get a call from THE Tim St. Hilaire of OGHC fame. :P

    We are playing the Darkness now and though it is mindless fun to break stuff with my demon tails and suck people into vortexes, I am glad that I rented in from gamefly. I wouldn't have wanted to waste my money on buying it.

  • At 5:21 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    You guys buy games like they're candy. Seriously, you only got Overlord a few weeks ago and you're already bored so you layed down the $60 for The Darkness out of impulse. I'm both jealous and disgusted.

  • At 8:48 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    I heard the Darkness is supposed to be pretty good. I'm suprised to hear you say this really. I guess some of the critics are wrong really. Can't wait to hear about Bioshock!

  • At 1:58 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    Hey OGHC! In response to your earlier comment, I'm okay. Tired physically and a bit wrung out emotionally still, but all in all pretty good, especially compared to a few weeks ago when Dad went and scared us again. I think I'm probably going to bore you stiff with the letter that arrives soon, because I forgot that I already told you all about Dad, and I went and repeated it all. Stupid me.
    Also, I was trying to get the camera to work to send you some more recent photos (it didn't work) and I kept getting annoyed and muttering that the "blue circle wouldn't glow", much to my mother's confusion. This is proof that I have gotten way too far into Fatal Frame 3. This time I'm determined to beat it.

  • At 11:31 PM, Blogger deadgopher said…

    Look at this shit. Everyone likes The Darkness. I don't know what they're smoking, Grandma, because I agree with you completely. I played it up until the girlfriend's apartment, then I sold it. Such a crappy game. OGGC FTW!

  • At 12:39 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    You rule Grandma...i wish I had someone like you to enjoy gaming as much has I do

  • At 2:34 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    The Darkness was so good! I have to agree with a couple of your criticisms. The gunplay was a little loose, and you're right, I would probably have freaked out if a demon was trying to use me as a host.

    Overall though, I enjoyed the game, and there was a scene or two that got me pretty emotionally involved. I actually liked the open-ended world, even though the story was still fairly linear. You have to use maps on the streets and look at the street signs and stuff.

    Anyways, keep on gaming, and enjoy BioShock. It was really ... DEEP lol

  • At 10:33 AM, Blogger Dana said…

    Oh my God,
    I completely agree about the cutscenes thing! I have this for 360 and while I don't think it's horrible, it could have been a bit better. I wouldn't go as far as to call it shit but I really those cutscenes were removed.
    The darklings thing, yeah, they do get on my nerves from time to time because they either burn and die because I forgot to shoot out all the lights on the street (way to waste ammo), or because they're just off doing their own thing. Anyway, I'm going to go read about your fun in Bioshock now! Keep kicking ass.

    Much love,

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