The Conduit Multiplayer: Pros and Cons
25 Jun 2009 00:53
David MarseillesDavid Marseilles

The Conduit Multiplayer: Pros and Cons

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There are some things that previews and even pre-launch reviews are worthless for. Multiplayer is one of them. This is because you can't know what the network performance will be like until tens of thousands of gamers raid the servers and bring things to a crawl. I'll be putting down some initial pros and cons in this post over the next couple of days.

Pros:

  • Finally, Scifi. Enough with WWII shooters already. We get it, they had guns then. Explore something, ANYTHING else. The environments and weapons of SciFi make for an excellent alternative.
  • You can find a Friend online and join whatever game they are in. Neither WaWii nor MoHH2 had this functionality.
  • Great control customizations
    • Full custom button remapping is a first for Wii (WaWii had different presets, but no custom). If there were any justice, there would never be another Wii shooter without it. You can even take vital functions away from motions and put them on a button. I did.
    • You can change the sensitivity of motions, which is VITAL. In MoHH2 I'd always accidentally trigger a reload when I was fighting someone on a staircase and aiming up, then down. I'd just as soon have no motions, but this is nice too.
    • The standard dead zone alterations, turn speed, cursor sensitivity are all present and accounted for.

Cons:

  • Friend Codes
    • We'll stop complaining the day they finally fraking die. No sooner. If you don't understand why they suck, I envy your bliss.
    • We don't blame High Voltage for this, as so far, they've been the most sympathetic to gamers of any company on the topic, but it still screws up the game so it's still a con.
  • Lag — could just be launch day excitement. Hopefully it improves over time.
  • Framerate drops
    • it is unclear if network performance is the cause of this. Will it get better after the launch is over? Who knows.
  • There's an intermediate connection screen between when you select a game type and before you go into a game lobby that can hang and there's no way to back out (B gets you out of most menu stuff) if it has trouble authenticating some of the players, short of actually turning off your Wii. It's a rare problem, but still a con.
  • Analog lag.
    • I don't know if this is a function of the networking or control design, but the control response to the analog stick is terrible. It feels like you're trying to drive a tank instead of moving a nimble secret agent whose job it is to save the world. Strafing speed is okay, but the time it takes you to get to full strafe speed from rest or to switch from strafe right to strage left is appallingly slow. The same for changing from forward motion to backward motion.

Neutral:

  • You can't take a party of friends into a public game. This is nice because it sucks ending up with 2 n00bs against a skilled, skype-using party of 4 friends. It sucks because with the ever-disgusting friend code system, putting together a full-fledged private match is tough to do, with the party system, you only needed half a private match to get a full game going.

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