Eh. Well, my opinion isn't exactly glowing like RyRy's, but keep in mind that while I seem to complain a lot in the beginning, this demo was better than some I can think of, and it was still just a demo, the gasme has potential. I've seen a lot of mixed bag reviews so far and a lot of retarded whiny ass "omg no grappling h00k diz game suks"-type comments from tardasses.
Anyway, I've been waiting to play the demo for awhile, the game looked great in all the previews I saw. Maybe I just had high expectations but aside from the graphics and some crazy ass stunts you can pull, the actual combat disappointed me. The controls are a little clunky (melee is pretty much useless) but they're workable once you get used to them. The targeting system is a little awkward, takes a little getting used to.
But something about this game and Saint's Row bugged me in the way of controls and I couldn't figure it out until now. It was the way the controls...felt. I get in a car, I hit accelerate, the car goes, but I don't really feel like I'm controlling the car. I grab a gun, I point it, it targets, and I shoot...but it just doesn't feel like I'm shooting it. I don't mean I want a gun shaped controller and crap. Maybe I'm just used to tight controls from other games like MGS2/MGS3's tight, accurate FPV shooting (I know, it's not third-person really...but I can't really think of one that had controls I actually like), or GTA's (yes, I f***ing said GTA, deal) car controls where you can really feel the speed/weight differences of each car even if you're not really in them. I don't get the same feeling with this game between the cars or even the guns.
It's just a peeve of mine. Just like when Henry would run around in SH4 and look like he's just gliding on the ground with no weight to him, that bugged the hell out of me. It's not actually a problem
but it does kinda kill the experience for me. Yeah, I know, physics-wise, the ridiculous stunts you pull wouldn't really work if everything was really realistic, but there could at least be a balance between the two. Parachuting feels awesome along with jumping from car to car, at least. And depending on the boat you have, speeding along on the water feels wonderful.
Anyway, enough of me not being in love with the gunplay and shooting. My next problem is the AI, which for the most part is retarded. I landed on Esteban's car, I fling him out. Everyone shoots at me (missing, btw) and I just run around in a circle gunning Esteban down, and several times everyone would just look at me and do nothing while I gunned their leader down for several seconds at a time. It was just .. bah. Then after I gunned him down, I took out two of the guys that were with him, and out of nowhere, everyone just goes back to ignoring me. I shot another guy to get his attention, and he started strafe back and forth, not shooting me, while I just stood there taking it all. I hope the AI is a little more competent in the retail version. If not, this'll at least make for some hilarious stories later.
And three smaller complaints...the camera is extremely sensitive in the car/while parachute...it's kind of irritating because it makes it somewhat difficult to control but it's not too big a problem because I still managed to land right on top Esteban's car on just my second try. Second, sometimes a car will disappear on me when I barely walk 10 ft. away from it. Most of the time it happens when I start the second mission and it loads, then the car will suddenly be gone. That glitch happened a lot to me in GTA3 and VC and it pissed me the hell off everytime. Only once or twice it happened outside of that. Again, not necessarily a problem, but if there's no other car around me and I have to head somewhere that's still a bit away, running is a pain in the ass without any kind of sprint function. And the last complaint, Rico runs like a douche when he's unarmed. ^o^
Graphic-wise the game looks wonderful. It just does. The environment is just beautiful, the water makes me want to jump in and go swimming. Just lovely. It's exactly what I expect out of a 360 game (though the character models could stand to be better). And arguably the best part of the whole game is the crazy stunts you can attempt, which will probably be twice as fun with the grappling hook in the retail version. And while the demo doesn't have true free roaming, the element is still there...there are a number of ways you can kill some of the your marks, and lots of ways to get to mission locations, although so far the only thing I really do is parachute or jump from car to car.
Anyway, the demo was a big disappointing for me but at the same time I did kind of enjoy it. And the more you play it, the more you get used to it and find yourself exploring a little more and trying new things. You only play on one tiny ass little island in the demo, so I expect the other locations will make for a lot more different gameplay opportunities. I just hope the gunplay is tightened a litle and the AI is tweaked, even if the game is already out next month. This game gets compared to Saint's Row a lot....I dunno, I think that if I had the money to get one or the other, I'd probably get SR since that demo left a better impression on me, but I'm still considering JC...especially since it'll be about $10 cheaper than usual...