Ryse: Son Of Rome Is As Fun As Dialing Phone Numbers - Ryse: Son of Rome - Xbox One - www.GameInformer.com
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Ryse: Son of Rome

Ryse: Son Of Rome Is As Fun As Dialing Phone Numbers

If you’ve ever watched Lost, you’re familiar with the character of Desmond Hume. The former monk was stranded on the series’ mysterious island, and was tasked with repeatedly pressing the same series of buttons on a keyboard for weeks at a time. Why he had to do that is still pretty confusing to me (as is the rest of the series), but I was reminded of Desmond’s task for the duration of my time with the demo for Ryse: Son of Rome. I spent two hours with the Xbox One title, but it felt like I was entering random numbers into a computer rather than actually playing a video game.

It’s clear what Microsoft and developer Crytek are shooting for here. At launch, they want a big budget, epic action game that clearly demonstrates next-gen visuals. Ryse is undeniably pretty, but that’s about all it had going for it in this demo. After a painfully generic story intro, the game began teaching me similarly uninspired combat mechanics. While it tries to sound like an in-depth action game with familiar elements like perfectly-timed blocks and focus meters, the actual experience is anything but deep.

I’m hoping that later levels introduce some more difficult enemies, as the dozens of encounters I had consisted of all the complexity of dialing phone numbers. Almost every fight started with me hitting the attack button a couple of times, then pushing the enemy in an effort to stop him from breaking my combo. Then, I’d continue attacking until he was weak enough for the execution sequence. Once this occurs, the game slows down and the enemy flashes various colors. You press the face button of the appropriate color, and your protagonist Marius dismembers or murders the foe in dramatic fashion.

It’s so basic and predictable, I began testing to see if I could get past most combat situations with one hand. With my left hand completely off the controller, I was able to slice and dice through tons of enemies simply by inputting the same sequence ad nauseum. On a couple of occasions, the game would shift to sequences that involved me defending an area with crossbow stations or ordering my men to block arrows with their shields. These were somehow even less exciting than the tedious swordplay.

When I sat down at the Ryse: Son of Rome station, I was a fairly blank slate when it came to knowledge of the title. I knew it was developed by the talented team at Crytek, and I knew it was gorgeous based on the videos I had seen at conventions, so I was prepared to be impressed. What I didn’t expect was a desire to get up and leave the demo about ten minutes in. I stuck it out in hopes that it would prove itself a deeper experience over time, but its only success was ensuring my wallet will be $60 heavier when the Xbox One launches.

  • i kinda figured this game wouldnt be good.....seems like a game centered too much around quick time events

  • well damn, I was somewhat excited for ryse, I didn't think crytek would flop this bad

  • Ouch, that was quite the punch in the face.

  • ... I dont care about Ryse ... as long as Dead Rising 3 is good, Im fine Hope someday DR3 comes to PS4 But I already made my decision no Next Gen for me until Infamous Second Son Bundle
  • Thank God I was right haha
  • I find it humorous that IGN says the exact opposite for this game in their article. Not picking sides, its just funny.
  • Is It correct that you were given special upgrades that the normal player won't have so early in the game? Does Ryse have more than one difficulty mode? If so do you think that changes the way you would approach combat? Would that change your opinion any? Brian over at IGN seems to have had a completely different experience than you did. I'm still unsure about purchasing this game and any extra info would be appreciated.

  • Your the first one I have heard get bored with the demo, other critics seem to really like it. Then again I have always found gameinformers reviews on games biased and lacking
  • i think people are falling into the next gen spectacle saying this looks good. the graphics and animations look sweet but the combat looks slow and awful. i just started the new devil may cry and the three weapon combat in that makes this look like grass growing. and they didn't really get rid of the QTE's just hid them. why even use them at all, it would be way cooler if the button presses were based on where the enemy was holding there weapon for defense once the executions started and would continue like that till they are dead rather than having them light up. it looks super dumb

  • So what the article is saying is that it is more fun than Beyond Two Souls, yes?

  • I KNEW this game would suck when I saw it at E3. Plus, just look who is developing it.

  • That headline...ouch...I heard there are bizarre super powers in the game, I wonder if those will make the game better later on. Based off this preview I'm definitely not going to play the game to find out.

  • This is disappointing, it looks great, I was hoping the gameplay would be good enough to pick up at launch, but looks like I'll save a few bucks

  • That was pretty much the impression I was left with after viewing the games reveal... Lol

  • wait a minute, arent some of you guys jumping the gun here? just because Dan didnt enjoy the game doesn't mean you or I won't enjoy it. Is Dan the be all end all expert on all of gaming? I respect him immensely and find him highly entertaining but one person's opinion isnt going to be enough for me to say I NOT EVEN GOING TO PLAY GAME IT SUX LOLXBONE ROFLCOPTER HAHAHAHAHA PS44LYFE. Come on guys, think for yourselves, give it a shot, try the demo at least. Experience it before you bash it...that's how i do it...
  • Wasn't it supposed to use Kinect 2 as well? That sounds even worse

  • This is just sad, while i was planning to go the PS4 route myself next gen i was hoping someone i knew would get a xbox one and would get this game so i could play it because i like games with a historical setting. But the fact that it is so uninspired is just a shame.

  • This is just sad, while i was planning to go the PS4 route myself next gen i was hoping someone i knew would get a xbox one and would get this game so i could play it because i like games with a historical setting. But the fact that it is so uninspired is just a shame.

  • Hopefully by the time I buy my Xbox One in the spring, Ryse will be discounted. After recently watching the HBO series 'Rome' recently, I was really looking forward to playing Ryse.

  • Brave article, You are going to cost them a lot of money...