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The Conduit Review/Impressions

I have a strict rule against putting a score so if that’s all you’re going to be looking for look away now.

First off I’m so glad to see how far The Conduit’s gone.  From a first person shooter exclusive with so much potential and no publisher at all, High Voltage Software aimed to give Wii owners what they wanted and what the big bad publishers wouldn’t offer.  It’s now here and I can tell you how much potential was met with this game.

Gameplay

What you’ve heard about the controls is true.  It’s the most customizable first person shooter for a console ever (so far) when it comes to controls.

You can set any motion gesture to a button and almost any button to a gesture.   For example grenades by default is a nunchuk shake but if you wanted to you could set this to a button.

The customizability doesn’t end there as you can change the turning speed, the motion sensitivty, the deadzone (the area in which you can move the reticle without turning), even the placement of HUD objects.

Anyway when it comes to the single player it’s a mixed bag.  What I did like was the awesome weapons and satisfying gameplay.  What I didn’t like were the puzzles and the lack of any life in the game.  I mean I never really felt like I was in an invasion.

If you care to know the game can definitely be hard.  Amazingly I died many times in both the first and second levels.  It gets a bit easier once you get an enhancement suit as health regenerates and later on jumping and damage resistance improves.  If you want a hard single player game then this is one for you.

Graphics/Presentation

When it comes to how the game looks it’s a bit inconsistent.  The enemies sheen, the guns and ASE have awesome lighting effects, and it runs at 30 fps.

There are some bad things too.  The textures on walls while detailed are generally boring.  It’s surprising to me since I usually don’t care about this but it just stands out.  Some textures also don’t look that great and they look somewhat like a low-res pasted on texture.  The enemy designs aren’t really that “alien” but they do the job well and I really like the Mite-type enemies.

The game’s world feels a bit dead at times too.  There are no signs of previous life in any of the levels so it can be a bit underwhelming of the situations.

But don’t go looking too deep into this because the pros outweigh the cons and they’re at least better than most offerings which give you PS2 level graphics.

Story

I can’t comment too much about the game since I’ve followed the game since the debut on IGN and I know too much to be surprised by the story.  Basically you’re a secret agent that fights off soldiers and aliens.  You try to fight off a villain who plans to abuse the invasion to gain power and keep a mysterious orb known as the All Seeing Eye from said villain.

The story is as deep as you want it to be, further emphasizing High Voltage Software’s goal of giving you control over how you want to play the game.

The game really shines in its little details and touches.  There are hidden messages everywhere meant to pull you into the story and get you curious and the radio broadcasts basically give you a taste of what’s happening to the civilians and outside world. In-game it’s basically just you and the enemy with no form of innocent people running in terror so the broadcasts really brings the game some sense of invasion.

There are also subtle hints, like what you find in hidden weapon caches,  that I’m probably over analyzing as hints but a good conspiracy should do this.

In the end it’s not really an epic and can be compared to a popcorn film that you watch for fun but not to have a deep meaning or moral to the story.  But don’t expect it to be just any other alien invasion.

Multiplayer

This is where the game really shines.  The options are great, lag is generally never an issue and the modes are plentiful.

Once you connect to Nintendo’s online service you’re given the option of playing with friends, with people around your general region, and people around the world.

I have yet to play in a private sessions with friends because of scheduling issues but what’s great is if a friend is currently in a match you can join that match as well.  Since I’ve never played with friends I have yet to try out Wii Speak.

Regional and Worldwide are basically the same thing right now.  Since this is only released in North America at the time this review was written I can’t really do a real comparison but so far I have never suffered heavy lag or a disconnection.  I actually had an easier time finding worldwide players for some reason.

Every weapon from the campaign returns in the multiplayer.  Weapons are put into sets rather than having every gun available at any time in a match.  This issue is never big because you’re always going to find at least one or two weapons that are both fun to use and very effective.

I usually vote for the Near/Far set as I get to use both the SPAS 12 (Shotgun) and the Stike Rifle (a semi-automatic gun that has a secondary function which serves as the game’s sniper).  Very fun indeed.

Games can get really crazy really fast especially in smaller maps and the multiple types of online modes makes sure you’ll have at least one favorite type of mode.  I’ve grown to love the Capture the ASE mode where you win by surviving the longest with the ASE in hand with no option other than grenades to attack back and Bounty Hunter mode in which another player is a target and you too are a target for someone else.

The only faults I can give the game is the lack of ability of dropping out of a match after losing before the time limit and the fps can get a bit wonky at times.

Overall it’s a great package and it’s the reason to buy the game.  It has the best system with any online game that has friend codes and even the trading friend codes is streamlined.

Overall

It doesn’t look as good as Metroid Prime 3 and it’s single player isn’t going to make you want to buy a Wii but at the moment now it’s the best online experience you can have on the Wii and if you’re a Wii only owner this is a game you shouldn’t skip.  Plus you can’t really blame it for not looking as good as Metroid Prime 3 since it’s more stylized and it’s developed by Nintendo/Retro Studios.

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One response

  1. rabiakhanum

    Interview Request

    Hello Dear and Respected,
    I hope you are fine and carrying on the great work you have been doing for the Internet surfers. I am Ghazala Khan from The Pakistani Spectator (TPS), We at TPS throw a candid look on everything happening in and for Pakistan in the world. We are trying to contribute our humble share in the webosphere. Our aim is to foster peace, progress and harmony with passion.

    We at TPS are carrying out a new series of interviews with the notable passionate bloggers, writers, and webmasters. In that regard, we would like to interview you, if you don’t mind. Please send us your approval for your interview at our editor Ghazala’s email address “ghazala.khi at gmail dot com”, so that I could send you the Interview questions. We would be extremely grateful.

    regards.

    Rabia Khanum
    The Pakistani Spectator
    pakspectator dot com

    June 27, 2009 at 12:24 pm

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