Watch Dogs: Review

 

This wasn’t what I was expecting at all.

Released nearly a month ago, Ubisoft’s Watch Dogs is an open-world, hacker-themed game for Xbox 360, PS3, Xbox One, and PS4.  Similar to GTA, players take the third-person perspective of Aidan Pierce, and roam around the street of Chicago.  I’d get into more detail about plot, graphics etc., but my disappointment led me to putting the game down, going to my room, and contemplating my life’s overall direction.

I can commend Ubisoft on its marketing strategy.  I caught the commercial during an episode of iCarly.  My, uh, kids were watching that show and I happened to be in the room at the time.  Kids are great, right? Having them sure is fun.  I totally remember the day when my, uh, wife birthed those kids right there in that hospital.

Anyways, I didn’t really watch the commercial because I was watching a pvr’d episode of iCarly.  I managed to catch the title-screen saying “Watch Dogs” and figured I’d pick it up for my new PS4.  Having recently switched over from being a Nintendo-only guy, I felt like I needed something for my new next-gen system.  Boy was I in for a shock…

More like DON'T Watch Dogs

More like DON’T Watch Dogs

I guess I should’ve prefaced all of this with my gaming background.  My favourite system has, and always will be, Nintendo DS.  My most played titles: Animal Crossing, Animal Paradise and, of course, the Nintendogs series.  If you haven’t checked out the latter, here’s some gameplay.  It’s a great game for kids, which is why I own it.  I bought it for my kids.

I absolutely loved the animal content in those video games.  The problem was I found the games too interactive.  Enter Watch Dogs.  The title sold me; here’s a video game where I could just watch dogs.  At least, that’s what the title suggested.

Here I am, 12 hours in and not one dog to watch.  Oh great, I can hack into some mainframe and do some other bullshit, but  I’m still waiting to observe a shitzu, or witness a schnauzer.

I give the game three out of ten barks.

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Edge of Tomorrow: Review

There’s something that feels repetitive about this movie, but it’s not the content.

Tom Cruise stars as “Cage”, a soldier who has the power to return from the dead to repeat the past day.  He gets this power from magical alien blood, and off we go!  Starting to sound familiar? It should.

This “original” concept was actually ripped from a 2002 classic.  Instead of Cruise, we had Wow.  Instead of Blunt, we had Song.  I’m talking, of course, about John Schultz’s masterpiece Like Mike.

Don’t believe me? You’re an idiot.  They’re basically the same movie.  In Edge of Tomorrow, Cage gets a miraculous ability early on and becomes a phenomenon for the army.  Like Mike‘s Calvin uses a pair of lightning-struck Jordans and lights up the NBA.  Starting to see the connection?

Let’s look at the characters a bit more.  Cage is a down-on-his-luck soldier, who just can’t catch a break when it comes to armying.  Calvin Cambridge is a 13-year-old orphan who couldn’t sink a jumper if it meant his parents coming back.  Then their powers swoop in and save the day.

And if that wasn’t enough, there comes the climax. For Edge of Tomorrow, it’s Cage’s last attempt at saving humanity.  In Like Mike, it’s Calvin trying to get the Los Angeles Knights into a playoff spot.  I know what you’re thinking…was notable plagiarist Shia Lebouef writing this flick? It only gets better.

Shortly before the climax, each protagonist loses their respective power.  Cage and Calvin are back to their old, schlubby selves.  But *spoiler alert* somehow they’re able to cope.  Cage kills off the alien race, saving the world.  Calvin dribbles in between Vince Carter’s legs and the Knights win the game, making the playoffs.

Even though they’ve lost their powers, both guys get the “girl”.  Cruise’s character meets back up with Blunt’s character, and we’re only left to assume they hook up later (probably while wearing a pair of Jordans).  Lil Bow Wow gets adopted because he used to be sick at basketball and was able to catch the eye of his adoptee.

Aside from the seven “Mikes” working on-set as underwater lighting technicians, photo technicians etc., there’s clear allusions to the 2002 Oscar snub.  Here’s a few:

  • NBA Productions had a hand in both films
  • Both movies are clearly set up for a sequel (If you have a chance, please check out Like Mike 2: Street Ball.  LM:LM2=Godfather:Godfather 2)
  • Cruise’s character wears a Knights jersey during most of the battle scenes

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The evidence is damning.  I’ve reached out to Schultz’s camp, but have yet to hear back.  Still, Like Mike was a movie ahead of its time, truly on the edge of tomorrow.