I think we all know by now what AMY is; the so-called craptastic piece of programming so awful that IGN deemed it to be a 2 out of 10. Well, from a viewing perspective, it doesn't appear to be that bad...it's just has a lot to be desired.
Let's cut to the chase; we have our protagonist, Lana, and our titular, telekinetic mute, Amy. Upon their travel to visit Dr. Lavigna (or Ellen, as Lana refers to her as), their train crashes. Of course, this being a survival horror game, everything immediately goes straight to hell. Now moving on to discussing the weapons and combat mechanism would be wise, seeing at the start of the game, you can't exit the train until Lana finds some sort of object to defend herself. Between fight or flight, the game leans somewhat more towards fleeing, since your weapons can actually break (the only weapon you find in the beginning is a rusty pipe), leaving Lana to only resort to dodging and shoving enemies out of the way until escaping. Luckily, Lana is quite the sprinter, so escaping an altercation doesn't seem to be too difficult. However, later on in the game, you do obtain a crowbar, which can somehow break. It's rather odd how a crowbar can easily snap into two (It'll be more realistic if it bends instead of breaking) upon striking monsters that literally dissolve into nothing after an ass-kicking. Quite early in the game, you are forced to do a puzzle...if you can call it that, as you have to find the DNA of the various dead soldiers throughout the wreckage of the train crash in order to enter a certain room, and you continue to do this in various points in the game. Other puzzles vary from you having Amy crawl into small spaces to retrieve something from a room or triggering switches and elevators to have both her and Lana access a specific location. Not only are these puzzles tedious, they can also be rather annoying and flat out frustrating, not to mention appearing to lack creativity. The puzzles themselves overall are only somewhat original. Then we have a few espionage elements in AMY, further decreasing the necessity of fighting. You will have to distract soldiers and enemies to get to your destination while hiding along with the way. Chapter 5 was heavily dedicated to this and it was so aggravating that players (including some Let's Players) just went "Screw it" with the game and never wanted to deal with it again. To be honest, it did look ridiculous and actually pretty damn-near impossible to complete. However, some players have actually gotten through with this part along with completing AMY itself, as the final chapter, Chapter 6, holds a poor excuse for a final boss. You basically rinse and repeat; place defibrillator in puddle, have super-zombie walk into it, stun him, hit him with the crowbar, run back to Amy and have her turn on the power again, and run back to said puddle to turn on the defibrillator, and repeat that around 3-6 times. Lana's stamina is determined by some sort of monitor on her back; Green, she's healthy, Orange, you might want to get that checked out, Red, you're going to die. The green status is only permanent when you are with Amy, who is completely immune to the virus that's somehow spread throughout the town like wildfire. Surprisingly, there's a benefit to this; when you're highly contaminated, enemies will mistaken you for one of them, something you must rely on in Chapter 5. In the absence of Amy, there are syringes and the gas masks of the slaughtered soldiers around to suppress the virus. A downside about this tactic is that the only indication you'll get when you're close to death is when your screen is completely red, and you can die any second, turning into one of the monsters, obviously a game over. When you really pay attention to AMY, the game does seem actually pretty easy if you know what you're doing; it's just too ridiculous to be even considered that. The gameplay does have some elements from the Resident Evil Outbreak series (in terms of combat, weapon deterioration, and contamination meter), with a side of Haunting Ground (having Amy crawl through small spaces and flip switches and fetch for items while Lana has to detour to meet up with her), along with a hint of Death By Degrees (the espionage missions have you sneaking past numerous enemies). Again, this is from a viewing perspective; I have not experienced hands-on to say how crappy the AI, controls and camera angles are. AMY does not seem to be too bad of a game, though the story itself could use a lot more work, as the ending itself is a cliffhanger. Overall, it just has a lot to be desired.
Posted Jan 16, 2012 3:46 pm GMT