Tagco-op

Monaco – What’s Yours is Mine [Game Review]

I picked up Monaco: What’s Yours Is Mine recently when it was offered free to Xbox Live members. I heard it was a good co-op game and I was delighted to find it allowed for Couch Co-op. This means my wife and I could sit on the couch and play it together.

In the age of Xbox Live, fewer games allow two people to play together in the same room. It’s irritating because I love to play together but there is so little to choose from. And don’t say Halo or Call of Duty. Gunning people down gets old quickly, especially for casual play.

Monaco: What’s Yours Is Mine was a wonderful find. It has a retro 8-bit style and is shown top-down. This is important because the game is all about sneaking through buildings to pull off heists. To start, four thieves are available. Each has a certain skill set to aid your mission. It allows for up to 4 people to play locally or online. We started out and quickly added two more thieves to our roster.

Choose your crew wisely.

The challenge was finding the best thief for the job. We robbed banks, freed other criminals and stole passports from an embassy. Often starting over as we triggered alarms and were found and killed. We tried again. Learning how to better get through a room. How to hack an alarm or laser trigger to sneak by unsuspecting guards.

The game is one big stealthy puzzle. In some levels, we had access to guns. But mostly we had smoke bombs or bandages. Have you ever snuck through a three-story building against armed guards with nothing more than your cunning and a bandage?

We had a blast playing it. I look forward to picking it up and trying to make it through the next levels.

Download the game for Xbox 360 or Steam for Windows, Mac or Linux.

Give me co-op or give me death

I am having a really hard time getting excited for any of the new games coming out. They’re all sequels or far deeper into the series. Borderlands 2 is coming out again. This time with new characters and more guns!

I can hardly get excited over more piles of useless guns laying strewn around after every battle or random enemy encounter. They’re littering the world like so many worms on sidewalks after a rain storm.

There is a new Gears of War game being teased for E3. I played the first one for an afternoon for a couple of hours intneding to go back and finish it. But I never did and never have touched any of the sequels since.

I am sure the games are getting tweaks and changes but the play style doesn’t speak to me so I don’t enjoy it. Like the time I rented the Chronicles of Riddick:Assault on Dark Athena
and Hitman: Blood Money
from Gamefly and then realized I cannot play stealth games.

I am the barbarian. I crash into a room wielding axes or with guns blazing with no thought of myself or others. I am not sneaky. I am not stealthy. I won’t wait for my opening to make a kill. I will barrel into the room and overwhelm with force. This is not what those games were built for and I die, a lot.

There is another Halo 4
game being released. I will buy it. I will play it. But I will do this more because most everyone I know on Xbox Live will be playing it too, as well as half the Xbox-owning world at least until the Next Big Thing comes out. I enjoy the series well enough but it’s changing hands with this release so there are going to be some growing pains and changes I won’t like.

We’ll see when it hits shelves and people get their hands on it how it is received and how the new company take the reins on a beloved series that has a rich history behind it.

Speaking of trading games, the Call of Duty
franchise annoys me because they’re split it between two game developers. This means two things.

  • Two totally different versions of the game every other year.
  • A new game Every. Single. Year.

This seems excessive. There doesn’t need to be a new version of the same thing every single year. And the continuous ignoring of cooperative game play rubs me the wrong way. I fault the Battlefield
series for this as well.

There is almost always more than one person on your side on the screen in the war at any time in the game. There is usually a squad of 4 or more. Why can’t at least one if not 3 or more of my friends be those other players? Why must I be stuck with useless AI drones who couldn’t hit the broad side of a barn instead of real human beings who can aim and shoot and talk to me? I just don’t understand.

I’ve heard the excuse of it “ruining the story” which is a cop-out. The story is kill those Nazis/Arabs/Zombies/Aliens because this is World War II/Desert Storm/The Future. I don’t buy it. If you don’t want to do co-op because it’s hard or because you don’t care enough about it or if it would be technically challenging that’s fine. But don’t claim it would ruin your story when the story is point and shoot.

It may not be all the games that are coming out that don’t entice me. It could be me tastes and where I decide to spend my time are changing. I bought Serious Sam 3
which is a series I love more than any other and I haven’t touched it. Maybe because it’s on the computer and not the console. I don’t know. I need to make time for that game in my life because it’s mindless fun and great with friends.

I have played entirely through and enjoyed Saints Row: The Third. The Saints Row series is what Grand Theft Auto
would be if it had a sense of humor. The situations and weapons just get weirder and funnier. The story line gets crazier and more outlandish and it’s just fun.

The game doesn’t take itself seriously. I mean there’s a giant dildo bat, an octopus-shooting rocket launcher and a fart-in-a-jar grenade. Do I need to explain further?

The big thing that draws me to games today is the co-op. I love to play cooperatively. Part of it is because I like talking to someone while I play and the other part is that it’s more fun for me to play through things with friends and not alone.

Saints Row: The Third has co-op through the entire campaign. This is why it has earned a lot of hours in my Xbox. The multi-player and co-op in
always earn it high marks for reply value and fun. The firefight missions allow co-op play with at least three friends and the campaigns are the same.

I’d rather go into battle with a good friend at my side and not a pre-programmed AI player any day. I will live longer and have more fun too.

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